Khai Dinh tomb (also known as Ứng tomb) is the place where the emperor Khai Dinh (1885-1925), the 12th king of the Nguyen dynasty rests in peace. It is located on steep hill in Chau Chu Mountain near Hue. The construction of the tomb was started on September 4, 1920 by under the direction of Commander Le Van Ba and this construction lasted for 11 years to complete. In comparison with the rest of imperial tombs, this tomb is small in extent, little more than 5600 square meters, howevers, its construction, decoration and details are very elaborate. It is the combination between Asian and Western architecture. The structure of the Imperial Khai Dinh tomb is a rectangle of 117 meters long by 48.5 meters wide, is constructed largely of reinforced concrete and the imperial tomb of Hue has more Western influences. Furthermore, the penetration of several of architecture has left an imprint on the tomb of Khai Dinh, for example, the top finishes of the gate is in Indian architecture, the pillars are affected by Buddhism and the stele house with octagonal columns and Roman arches.
The imperial tomb has 2 very different parts: the Palace Thien Dinh, where we can see the sarcophagus of Emperor Khai Dinh, and the outside of the Tomb Imperial, where standing ceremony statues in the courtyard, the House of mandarins and Pavilion of steles with hexagonal-shaped, is most remarkable. Upon crossing the gateway to the Imperial Tomb, we find 37 steps whose railings have been carved in the shape of dragons which are the largest of all Vietnam. Once you have uploaded the steps, we will find ourselves with a small courtyard with houses of the mandarins on both sides. To access the next part of the Hue Imperial Khai Dinh Tomb, we will have to climb other 29 steps to the most beautiful points of the visit, the courtyard of ceremonies, with stone statues (rare material in this imperial tomb), which unlike the rest of Hue imperial tombs, has 2 rows of statues which are the bodyguards of the emperor. In that same place of the Tomb in the courtyard of ceremonies, we have the stele Pavilion, with a stela engraved in stone on the life and reign of the emperor. This monument is unique, as is the single flag of the stelae of all Hue imperial tombs whose shape is hexagonal.
The last part of the complex Khai Dinh, to the top of the Imperial Tomb, is the Thien Dinh Palace, where we can see the sarcophagus of Emperor under his seated statue upon his throne. The decoration is made with stained glass and mosaics built ceramic based broken into pieces. In the room next to the sarcophagus room, we have a statue of Emperor Khai Dinh, scale, made of bronze. There are some interesting facts about this Imperial Khai Dinh tomb like the cost and materials used for constructing. It is said that the construction cost was such so the emperor raised taxes to the Vietnamese villages by 30%. Moreover, he had to go to the French to buy steel, iron, cement and tiles and sent ships to China and Japan to achieve ceramics and stained glass needed for the tomb.
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