Mukden Temple of Imperial Ancestors

2013-11-24


Built in 1781 during the reign of Emperor Qianlong, the Mukden Temple of Imperial Ancestors consists of buildings including the Main Hall, the Eastern and Western Halls, and the Gate. It is the only group of buildings with entirely yellow roofs in the Shenyang Imperial Palace, and originally the Taoist Jingyou Palace (commonly known as the Three Officials Temple). During Emperor Qianlong’s third eastward inspection to Mukden in between late September and October 1778, to restore the system of the Temple of Imperial Ancestors, he ordered to “renovate the Temple of Heaven and the Temple of Earth in Mukden and relocate the Temple of Imperial Ancestors to the east of the Great Qing Gate.”


In 1783, during the reign of Emperor Qianlong, the Qing imperial court sent the posthumous royal seals and royal booklets to the Mukden Temple of Imperial Ancestors for the first time, including those of the five emperors and eleven empresses during the reigns of Nurhaci, Huang Taiji, Emperor Shunzhi, Emperor Kangxi, and Emperor Yongzheng. Since then, such a regulation formulated during the reign of Emperor Qianlong had been observed by the successors from Emperor Jiaqing to Emperor Guangxu, with posthumous royal seals and royal booklets newly made and delivered for collection with reverence in the Mukden Temple of Imperial Ancestors, whenever there was a change in regents. In 1888, during the reign of Emperor Guangxu, the posthumous royal seals and royal booklets were sent for the last time to the Mukden Temple of Imperial Ancestors. At present, the Mukden Temple of Imperial Ancestors collected a total of 32 sets of posthumous royal seals and royal booklets.