Temple of Literature and Royal College

Temple of Literature Entrance
Temple of Literature (Van Mieu) was built in 1070 during Emperor Ly Thanh Tong to honor scholars and literary men, and was dedicated to Khong Tu (Confucius). In 1070, the Royal College (Quoc Tu Giam), Vietnam’s first university, was founded here to educate the children of court mandarins, which remained until 1802 when the national university was moved to the new capital, Hue. Here is the entrance gate to temple complex, which reserved for the royalties.

Khuc Van Cac
Khuc Van Cac open pavilion which provides space for study and leisure.

Dai Trung Gate
Dai Trung Gate or Gates of Talent and Virtue, as view from the inside temple.

Thien Quang Tinh and Dai Thanh
Thien Quang Tinh pond and after it, Dai Thanh (Great Success or Synthesis) Gate, which leads into the temple precinct. The flag with 5 colours which each represents an element of the nature: metal, wood, water, fire and earth.

Tortoise Stelae
One of the 82 Tortoise Stelae which recorded names, birth places and achievements of the 1306 successful triennial examination candidates. All of them was erected between 1442 and 1778. The Tortoise Stelae pavilions are on both sides of the pond.

Temple of Literature
Courtyard of the temple and the Bai Duong (House of Ceremonies).

Large bonsai in front of the building to the right of sanctuary.

Statue at Temple of Literature
A statue at the courtyard of the Temple of Literature.

Temple of Literature
Rafters in the main temple sanctuary were constructed without nails or screws. It’s interesting to note also how the building overhanging eaves help to keep these buildings cool; large doorways are also important in cooling the buildings. In the winter, when it is cold in Hanoi, the sun is lower and heats the inside.

Temple of Literature
The main temple sanctuary of Temple of Literature with stork statues, symbolizing longevity.

Temple of Literature
Inside Temple of Literature sanctuary, housing statue of Confucius and his four greatest disciples.

Entrance fee to the Temple of Literature: VND 5,000.