Also translated as Imperial College, it was first established in 1306. It served as the supreme administrative headquarters for the organization of education and the highest seat of learning during the Yuan(1271-1368), Ming(1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties. Flanked by the Temple of Confucius and Yonghe Lamasery, it is located at 15 Guozijian Road (originally named Chengxian Road). Being the imperial college, it attracted much attention from the state, and was rebuilt many times. After two large-scale repairs in the Ming Dynasty, and the construction of Biyong Hall in the Qing Dynasty, it became what we see today, covering an area of 37,000 sq meters (44,250 sq yard). It is the last imperial ccademy in China and has been listed as an important cultural relic site under state-level protection.
Remarkable Architectural Complex
Facing south, it is the only imperial college from ancient times preserved up to now. It is a remarkable architectural complex, with over one hundred buildings. Jixian Gate (the front gate), Taixue Gate (the second gate), the glazed archway, Biyong Hall, Yilun Hall and Jingyi Pavilion are located along the central axis. On the east and west sides of the main building, four halls and six palaces were laid out to achieve the symmetrical effect of perfect unity.
Inside the second gate, Taixue Gate, stands an imposing glazed archway. It is the only archway built to show the value of education in Beijing. Built in 1783, it has three portals, four pillars, and a roof in Wudianding style (a roof with four slopes and five ridges, of which the main ridge is formed by the front and the back slopes). On the glazed archway, there is a horizontal tablet, whose inscriptions on both sides were written by the Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Yellow glazed tiles cover the roof of the archway, showing the strong belief of the royal family in education (the color yellow is the representation of the ancient Chinese royal family).
Yilun Tang Hall
Yilun tang Hall, the auditorium, is located north of Biyong Hall. Before Biyong Hall was built, Yilun Tang Hall was the lecture room when the emperor gave lessons. The horizontal tablet bore its name Yilun Tang and was inscribed by Emperor Kangxi. There are four halls on the east and west sides of Yilun Tang, which served as the separate venues for the officials who were in charge of documents, discipline, books, and education respectively.
Jingyi Pavilion, built in 1528, sits behind Yilun Tang Hall. On the east and west sides of the pavilion, there are offices for Jijiu (the president of the Imperial Academy) and Siye (the deputy).
Six palaces containing 33 rooms are on the east and west sides of Biyong hall. The palaces are where the students had classes.
189 Steles Engraved with the "Thirteen Classics"
|The Statue of Confucius|
|Admission Fee:||CNY 30 (including ticket for the Temple of Confucius)|
|Opening Hours:||May to October: 08:30 to 18:00 (tickets have to be purchased before 17:30) |
November to April: 08:30 to 17:00 (tickets need to be purchased before 16:30)
|Transport:||By Bus; |
Take bus 13, 684 and get off at Guozijian Station.
Subway Line 2 or Subway Line 5: get off at Yonghegong Station, get out of the station from Exit C (Southwest Exit), and walk south about 300 meters, then you'll find Guozijian Jie where the Temple of Confucius and it located. Walk another 100 meters or so to the destinations.
Beijing Bus / Subway Search
|Best visiting season:||from April to October|
Hutong Experience: to visit the most popular attractions
One Day Visit: Panda House - Lama Temple - Confucius Temple - Imperial Academy - Skewed Tobacco Pouch Street
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