Inside the Temple of Heaven: The Imperial Vault of Heaven


The building was built in the 9th year of the Jiajing era of the Ming Dynasty (1530). Initially, it was a round building with double-eave roof, named "Hall of Tai Shen". It is the main hall of the heavenly treasury in the Circular Mound Altar, which is used to enshrine the gods of the worship ceremony on weekdays. In the 17th year of the Jiajing era (1538), it was renamed the Imperial Vault of Heaven. In the 17th year of the Qianlong era of the Qing dynasty (1752), the building was converted into the form we see today.

The Imperial Vault of Heaven is 19.5 meters high and 15.6 meters in diameter, with a wooden arch structure. The architecture is rigorous, covered with blue tile gold roof, delicate and dignified. The caisson of the ceiling in the hall is a golden dragon caisson in green tone, with a large golden dragon pattern in its center, which is a masterpiece of ancient architecture.

Translated by LIU Yu