Temples hoping for changes in plaques’ status

NATIONAL TREASURES? The two plaques were awarded by a Qing emperor in 1886 for the joint efforts of two temples in Chiayi and Yunlin to end a drought in Taiwan

Taipei Times
Date: Jul 28, 2020
By: Ting Wei-chieh and Dennis Xie / Staff reporter, with staff writer

Chinese antiques specialist Lin Jen-cheng on Sunday inspects a plaque inscribed with the characters Tai Yang Xian You, gifted to Chiayi City’s Cheng Huang Temple in 1886 by Qing Dynasty emperor Guangxu.
Photo: Ting Wei-chieh, Taipei Times

heng Huang Temple (城隍廟) in Chiayi City and Chaotian Temple (朝天宮) in Yunlin County are applying for a change in status for two plaques awarded by a Qing Dynasty emperor to the houses of worship, elevating their historic designation from “general antiquities” to “significant antiquities” or possibly “national treasures.”

Each of the plaques is inscribed with four characters — Tai Yang Xian You (臺洋顯佑) for the Chiayi temple dedicated to Cheng Huang (城隍, city god) and Ci Yun Sa Run (慈雲灑潤) for the Yunlin temple dedicated to the sea goddess Matsu (媽祖).

They were gifts from emperor Guangxu (光緒) in 1886 after the two temples collaborated to bring about rain and end a drought that year. Tai Yang Xian You refers to blessings for Taiwan and the ocean, while Ci Yun Sa Run reflects the goddess’ benevolence manifested in the form of clouds bringing rain.

The tablets have been listed as “general antiquities” by the cultural heritage review committees of Chiayi and Yunlin, Lin Chao-chi (林朝基), head of the Chiayi Cultural Affairs Bureau’s cultural heritage section, said on Sunday.    [FULL  STORY]

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