One of the interesting activities when traveling Hoi An Ancient Town is visiting the ancient building constructions. Nguyen Tuong Family Chapel has a history thickness and a special architecture, which attracts domestic and foreign tourist. This article helps you know generally about the origin and architecture of the chapel before you come to visit it.
Nguyen Tuong Family Chapel is located in a small alley right next to Cau Pagoda. On the outside, the building has a humble, simple appearance. The chapel was built in 1806, which is the residence of Mr. Nguyen Tuong Van, a mandarin under the King Gia Long reign, promoted to the national defense minister in the first Minh Mang year (1820). The Nguyen Tuong family is a well-studying family. Later generations, many people passed the big exams. In particular, the descendant of Nguyen Tuong at the beginning of the 20th century was famous for the names: Nguyen Tuong Tam (Writer Nhat Linh), Nguyen Tuong Lan (Writer Thach Lam) and Nguyen Tuong Long (Writer Hoang Tao) – key writers founding the organization of Tu Luc Van Doan, starting modern Vietnamese literature.
The building has 3 main spaces and 2 additional spaces with a depth of 5 parts. In general, the building has the structure of Hue’s communal house with a wooden frame, two additional spaces built with bricks, but all roofs with yin yang tiles. Wooden frame system with sculptures was made with high aesthetics by artisans of Kim Bong Hoi An carpentry villages.
The worship place is in the middle part of the building. Above there is a horizontal wood board having the 4 words Nguyen Tuong Family Chapel in Traditional Chinese. The fourth part and fifth part are quite simple, developing from the middle part, creating a quite airy space. The building has been going on for over 200 years with two restoration times, the first was 1909, and the second was 2005. In spite of that, the building still shows ancient and unique shape. In the chapel, the edicts of the kings of Gia Long, Minh Mang, Thieu Tri, Tu Duc and Thanh Thai of Nguyen Dynasty are still preserved. That edicts are clear evidence for the contribution and dedication of the family to the society and country. Nguyen Tuong Chapel is also known as Mr. Big Palace, partly showing the respect of people to an academic family. There are also many utensils and books have been kept for later generations. Currently, the house is due to the 9th and 10th generation living, worshiping, preserving. This is also a cultural activity address of Hoi An Ancient Town.
Generally, Nguyen Tuong Family Chapel was built over 200 years ago. Until now, it has still kept beginning shape. The chapel is an example for the houses of big officials under Gia Long reign. It is the house of the ancestor of 3 famous modern Vietnamese writers. The chapel is located in a small alley right next to Cau Pagoda, so getting it is very easy, visitors can also go by bike or on foot.
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