Wednesday, December 15, 2010

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Old Fengshan City North Gate

12/15/2010 Taiwan Explorer

The Old Fengshan City 鳳山縣舊城 (also called Old Tsoying City 左營舊城) was located in the area, that's now part of the northern Kaohsiung, around the Tsoying district. The city had a defense wall with four gates. I was lucky to see one of them: The North gate (Chinese 北門, pronounced Běimén) or Gongchen gate (Chinese 拱辰門, pronounced Gǒngchénmén). The gate is 16.64m long and 8.44m tall. The first wall around the old Fengshan City was built in 1722 during the Qing dynasty and was made of mud. The current stone wall was built in 1826 and was one of the most advanced walls in Taiwan at that time. Today only 3 gates remain with a small portion of the wall. In case you plan to see the North gate, go to the Lotus lake, it's very close to the Dragon and Tiger pagodas, you can reach the gate by foot.

These are my photos of the Old Fengshan City North Gate:

This used to be inside the old Fengshan City.

This used to be outside the old Fengshan City.

I wonder if the name Donutes is a spelling mistake of Donuts. The gate on the left.

I'm not really happy to see what was built so close to this historic gem. This gate should have more space, maybe a nice park, benches... oh yeah, there are benches. And a café. Well, this is Taiwan. Historic sites are too often not very appreciated by the locals.

The two sculptures on each side are 門神 (Ménshén) or door Gods. On the left is God Tu (神荼), on the right is Yu Lei (鬱壘). The door Gods were supposed to protect the city from evil ghosts. They are only found on the walls of the North gate, because the old Chinese believed that it's from the north where the evil spirits would enter the city.

The upper part of the gate today.

The northern stretch of the wall.

A view on the old wall from within the old Fengshan city, the Dragon and Tiger pagodas are visible.

The gate from the back side.

A signboard near the gate.

I hope that during my next visit of Kaohsiung, I can see other two remaining historic gates of the old Fengshan (or Tsoying) City. I love these old gates from the Qing dynasty and I already introduced them in my posts about the old gates of Taipei.

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