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The Temple of Heaven, built in 1420, is one of the most impressive imperial temples for its perfect fusion of art and architecture. It is served as the place where emperors of Ming and Qing dynasties offered sacrifices to their heavenly gods and prayed for a good harvest. The round design of the halls and the dark blue tiled roofs show its spiritual purposes. Legend said it is the exact meeting point of Heaven and Earth. The temple contains there main parts – Hall of Players, Huanguiongyu, and the Altar of Heaven. The number of nine play a magic digit in the design of the temple. Ancient Chinese believed that the number nine is a special number since it is the highest single-digit number. It is often connected with the idea of rationality and prosperity of life. One could find this intense numerology at play in the design of the temple. Fore example, there are nine steps in each of the three tiers of the staircases made of white marbles when you walk up the circular altar. The slabs that form the circular altar are in the multiples of nine. The Temple of Heaven is where you could get a sense of rich meaning of the magic number nine in ancient China.
The Temple of Heaven History
Temple of Heaven