Touch China > Culture Express   

Ancient tomb under national protection
   CCTV.COM   2004-01-12 10:01:30   

    Fuxi was a legendary sage-emperor, who had shaped Chinese society in its early days. For thousands of years, the purported tomb of the demigod figure has been worshipped in Huaiyang county, in central China's Henan province. In 1996, the State Council included the sacred site in its folk culture legacy protection program.

    Huaiyang county in Henan province is said to be the hometown of Fuxi. There has been a tomb of the legendary figure there as early as the Spring and Autumn period, some 3,000 years ago. Over the centuries a gigantic building complex has risen on the site. Buildings and plants were arranged to form a small city according to the eight trigrams invented by the sage-emperor.

    Chinese mythology has it that Fuxi was the human ancestor who introduced the concepts of cooked food, marriage, fishing and hunting into the primitive community. From Feb.2 to Mar.3 of the lunar calendar, locals will hold a temple fair at Fuxi's tomb. Besides circus and folk opera performances, ceremonies will be held in honor of the legendary man.

    The temple fair has expanded rapidly in recent years and often attracts as many as 200,000 people in a single day. The ancient and mystic rites have attracted numerous international researchers on oriental civilization as well as throngs of worshipers from across China.

    Visitors to Fuxi's tomb never miss the hole in the cornerstone of the Xianren Hall. It's an ancient tradition for women worshipers to rub their fingers in the hole to be blessed with a happy marriage and healthy children. According to ancient legends, the tomb was where Fuxi gathered young men and women to decide on their marriage.

    Among the many commodities at the annual temple fair are clay figurines. The mostly dog-shaped beasts are said to guard the tomb of the deceased sage emperor. The figurines are often painted with loud colors of red, black and yellow, bearing distinctive the features of primitive totem art. People often have such figurines in their houses to keep away evil spirits and bring about good fortune.

Editor: Sun Weichao

China Central Television,All Rights Reserved