Minh Mang Tomb in Hue, Vietnam

Minh Mang Tomb, also known as Hieu Lang (孝陵, built by King Thieu Tri), is located on Cam Khe Mountain, near Bang Lang Junction, where the two tributaries of Huu Trach and Ta Trach form the Huong River, from Hue City 12 km. Minh Mang Tomb was built from 1840 to 1843,  mobilized to ten thousand workers and soldiers. The tomb has the architectural completely according to the eastern style.

The works are distributed on three axes parallel to each other in which Than Dao (Vietnamese: Thần Đạo) is the central axis. Among the architectural works are lotus lakes and hills covered with green pine trees, creating a charming and beautiful landscape. The head of Than Dao is Dai Hong Mon (Large Gate), the main entrance to the tomb, built of brick lime, higher than 9 m, 12 m wide. The gate has three aisles with 24 high and low roof leaves and some carvings of dragon shapes, which are considered typical of the three-entrance gate of Nguyen Dynasty. The gate is open only once to bring the king’s coffin into the tomb, then closed, the door must go through two extra ports are Ta Hong Mon (The gate on the right) and Huu Hong Mon (The gate on the left).

After the Dai Hong Mon is a large yard, paved Bat Trang brick (45 x 45 m wide), the two sides have two statue lines of martial art officers and literature officers, horses, elephants. At the end of the yard is Bi Dinh (The house contain a big stone stele) located on Phung Than Mountain, inside is the stone stele of King Thieu Tri writing inscriptions on the biography and merit of his father.

The next large yard is divided into four large steps to reduce the feeling overwhelmed by the immensity of the architecture, which is the Court Yard (The place where a king and officers hold meetings). Hien Duc Mon (Hien Duc Gate) opened the area for Tam Dien (Place where worships a king) area limited by one squared wall layer which symbols for the earth (from the idea of round sky, square earth). Sung An Dien (Sung An Temple) is located in the center, in which the tablets of King Minh Mang and Queen Ta Thien Nhan are worshiped. Besides Sung An Dien, there are other works around.

From here starts a new world full of leisure, transcendent and boundless. 17 stone steps lead visitors to the shady trees and the fragrant smell of wildflowers. Three bridges: Ta Phu (left), Trung Dao (middle), Huu Bat (right) crossing the Trung Minh Lake as a blue silk, bring visitors to Minh Lau (light multi-storied house). Minh Lau is the place where the king thought of the nation, human beings and the universe on the moonlight nights. That is also the place of return of the souls of the emperors before.

Behind the Minh Lau is 2 majestic pillars built on 2 Binh Son and Thanh Son mountains. A moon-shaped lake named Tan Nguyet embraces Buu Thanh (where a king rests). Thong Minh Chinh Truc Bridge acrosses Tan Nguyet Lake. 33 stone steps lead to the resting place of the king, located in the heart of a hill named Khai Trach Son.

The tomb has the architectural completely according to the eastern style. The works are distributed on three axes parallel to each other in which Than Dao Road is the central axis. Among the architectural works are lotus lakes and hills covered with green pine trees. All bring a peaceful feeling to visitors.

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