Saturday, February 04, 2012

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Temple of the Five Concubines 五妃廟, Tainan

2/04/2012 Taiwan Explorer

Temple of the Five Concubines 五妃廟 is one of the smaller, but very interesting temples in Tainan, that memorizes a very significant historic event important for Taiwan and China. Built in 1683, it's dedicated to five women, concubines of Zhu Shugui 朱術桂, a descendant of Ming's first emperor Hongwu 洪武帝. He came to Tainan in 1664 upon an invitation from Koxinga's son, Cheng Ching 鄭經, who was ruling the small Kingdom of Tungning in the area what would today be Tainan City and its rural outskirts. At that time the Qing Dynasty already gained control of China and in 1683 they conquered the last remains of the Ming dynasty on Taiwan and turned them into history. Their presence on the beautiful island would last over two centuries.

Zhu Shugui's last days must have been very dramatic. When he heard that Qing dynasty's forces are on the way, he decided to kill himself. And his five concubines, who were living with him, decided to follow and hanged themselves before him in order to show their loyalty. Read more about Zhu Shugui's life here>>

See some of my photos of the temple:

Two of the concubines depicted on the gates.

The antique painting.

Another one.

The altar.

Paper money.


Tsai Ying-wen poster behind the door of the staff.

An interesting detail.

A smaller shrine in the park nearby.

A closeup.

The park.

The temple is small and compact.

This is definitely a highlight among the numerous historical buildings in Tainan, especially because of a unique and intriguing historical event from the tumultuous 17th century.


My 2012 SOUTH-CENTRAL TAIWAN Tour - NEXT: Chiayi City>>

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