Temple of Moon

Address: No 6 Yuetan North Street Xicheng Dis.
Tel: +86-10-68020940
Entrance Fee: 1 RMB

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Introduction

Temple of Moon which located at the western central of Beijing, strategically at the southwestern part of Fucheng Men was the altar specifically used in ritual sacrifice to the Moon. The main structure within this temple is an altar in square shape which was built with white glazed tiles to signify the Moon.

Temple of Moon was built in 1530 within the reign of Emperor Jiajing of Qing Dynasty. Throughout Ming and Qing Dynasty, there were certain years according to Chinese lunar calendar that the emperor must host the ceremony for worshiping the Moon while the rest of the year, the occasion could be hosted by ministers in representative of the Emperor. The altar was designed in facing east and there are two gates at the outer wall which were the North Gate and East Gate. The East Gate is the main entrance to this temple. There is some sister buildings located outside the outer wall of Temple of Moon. For example, the dressing hall at the northwestern part, well tower at the north as well as kitchen and equipment stores at the southwestern part of the altar.

In comparison between the four main imperial sacrificial temples throughout Beijing consisting of the Temple of Heaven, Temple of Earth, Temple of Sun and Temple of Moon, the Temple of Moon is the one having smallest scale of area but badly damaged among all. Majority of the outer wall had been destroyed and the altar itself was partly demolished as well. In 1969, the television launching tower was built at the entire address of the altar. Anyway, the damaged altar as well as part of its sister buildings had been returned to its original looks after the efforts poured by the local authority. However, as the television launching tower was impossible to be removed at this moment, some sister buildings were still unable to rebuild. The Temple of Moon is still listed as one of the National Key Heritage Conservation Unit in China. Nowadays, it is one of the famous recreational parks among the local residents.

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