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Chengxu Taoist Temple

Chengxu Taoist Temple
 

Chengxu Taoist Temple, more popularly known as St. Hall, was built about 900 years ago, during the Emperor Yuanyou period of the Song Dynasty (1086--1093).

As shown in the Zhouzhuang Town Record, “In the Ming Dynasty, no one lived in the region to the west of the temple. A lamp pole was erected upon the bridge to illuminate the West Bay for docking boats.”

Since the middle of the Ming Dynasty, the Taoist temple has enlarged its scale. As it came to the reign of Emperor Jiajin of Ming Dynasty, Wang Bi, a local resident, donated funds to have a front gate built for the temple.

In 1686, the 25th year of the reign of Emperor Kangxi of Qing Dynasty, Hu Tianyu, a Taoist, collected funds to expand the temple by constructing the Yuhuang Pavilion. Five years later, he had the Wenchang Pavilion built on the west side.

In 1751, the 16th year of the reign of Emperor Qianlong of Qing Dynasty, Jiang Nanji, another Taoist, built the Shendi Pavilion outside the main gate, near the Puqing Bridge. As a result, Chengxu Taoist Temple eventually had three imposing architectural complexs, with an area of 1,500 square meters, making it one of the most famous Taoist temples in Jiangsu Province.