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Xuefa Ancestral Hall, a "Folk Palace" in Guangdong

2022-Sep-7       Source: newsgd.com

In Guangdong's Qingyuan city, there is a magnificent country complex in wooded grounds—Xuefa Ancestral Hall (学发公祠).

In Guangdong's Qingyuan city, there is a magnificent country complex in wooded grounds—Xuefa Ancestral Hall (学发公祠). Its architectural style is a combination of Chinese traditional Hakka walled village (客家围屋) and western palace's exterior decoration styles. As a result, it is hailed as the "Folk Palace" and the "Potala Palace in Guangdong". 

Xuefa Ancestral Hall. (Photo: Local Chronicle Office, People's Government of Guangdong Province)

Xuefa Ancestral Hall started construction in 1923 and was completed in 1935. It was the former residence of a patriotic overseas Chinese, Zhu Haijun. The complex covers an area of about 10,941 square meters, with 182 rooms, which can accommodate hundreds of people at the same time.

Xuefa Ancestral Hall consists of three parts: the front part, the back part and the east and west wings. The main buildings of the front part are equipped with trussed beams (盖桁角) and fireproof walls (封火墙), which make them look solemn and orderly.

Aerial photo of Xuefa Ancestral Hall. (Photo: Local Chronicle Office, People's Government of Guangdong Province)

The front view of Xuefa Ancestral Hall. (Photo: Local Chronicle Office, People's Government of Guangdong Province)

While the corridors, columns, roofs, windows and doors of the Xuefa Ancestral Hall have adopted romantic western architectural styles. The murals, clay sculptures and patterns of doors and windows in the house obviously absorb art elements from western architecture. Each floor has two patios with green ceramic fences.

Inside the Ancestral Hall. (Photo: Local Chronicle Office, People's Government of Guangdong Province)

There is also a platform on the roof of Xuefa Ancestral Hall. The decorative pattern on the platform originates from Islamic architecture, which is unique and exquisite.

Western patterns in Xuefa Ancestral Hall. (Photo: Local Chronicle Office, People's Government of Guangdong Province)

In 1985, Zhu Hanxiang, the son of Zhu Haijun, donated the back part of Xuefa Ancestral Hall to the Yangshan County People's Government. In 2015, Xuefa Ancestral Hall was listed as a cultural relic protection unit in Guangdong province.

Author | Ariel, Peggy (intern)

Editor | Wing, Olivia, Monica, Jerry

Editor: Ariel

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