Huqiu (Tiger Hill)
Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, China
Bus/taxi from Suzhou,
|Entitled as "the most famous place in Wuzhong", Tiger Hill, also named "Surging Sea Hill", "Surging Sea Peak", is located at the northwest suburbs of Suzhou city, 3.5 kilometers from the Chang Gate.
Tiger Hill is 36 meters high, 630 meter in perimeter with a total area of 20 hectare (200,000 sqm). Formed about 150,000,000 years ago, Tiger Hill's history can be traced back to 2500 years ago, the same time with the ancient Suzhou city. It is recorded that it was the very place of the tomb of Wu King Helu in the Spring and Autumn Period (770 B.C-476 B.C). In 496 B.C., Wu King Helu died in the war between Wu Kingdom and Yue Kingdom, his son then buried him under the Tiger Hill with his excellent sword.
According to Records or the Historian, three days after the burial of Wu King Helu, people found a white tiger was squatting on the tomb, hence the name Tiger Hill.
|During the Eastern Jin dynasty, with a temple built on the hill, Tiger Hill changed into a Buddhism hill from the tomb of the kings. In successive dynasties, more and more architectures were added here and with the change of the dynasties, Tiger Hill experienced the rise and the fall endlessly during 2400 years, which leaves us numerous relics of legacy of history. The ancient carving, the horizontal inscribed boards, the couplets, the poems of the celebrities, the various scenes, the paintings and the handwritings, the proses, so forth and so on, the whole reaches a seldom seen amount, that could be hardly found around the world.
Su Dongpo, literary master of the Song dynasty once remarked, "It's a thing for regret to visit Suzhou without seeing the Tiger Hill". So popular is the saying that the Hill becomes a must on the itinerary of every visitor to Suzhou.
|Broken Beam Hall: popularly know as "the Second Entrance Gate", was first built in the Tang dynasty and rebuilt in 1338 during the Yuan dynasty (1338.A.D). Its principal beam consists of two pieces of round timbers, showing the skill and wisdom of the ancient Chinese architect and builders.
Sword Testing Stone: It has a split within it, seeming to be cut by a sword. Legend goes that it was cracked by Helu, who tested all his swords on the stone. According to legend, the king was buried with 3,000 swords. And because all 1,000 builders were killed after building the tomb, the secret of the swords would not be revealed.
|Tiger Hill Pagoda: Also named Yunyan Temple Pagoda, the pagoda was first built in the Sui dynasty (581-618) and rebuilt in 961 AD in the Northern Song dynasty. It is the oldest pagoda in Suzhou. Built on an octagonal base, it is 47.5 meters high with 7 stories. From 1638A.D, the pagoda began to lean aside and now the biggest obliquity reaches 3o59', known as China's Leaning Tower. With a history over 1000 years, the pagoda now is regarded as the symbol of Suzhou city.
Tomb of the True Lady: It is the tomb of Hu Ruizhen, a beautiful lady of the late Tang dynasty. She was good at singing and verse and when the bad procuress forced her to ingratiate a visitor, she committed suicide by hanging herself. A pavilion was built by the side of the tomb in memory of the lady.
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