Saturday, October 11, 2008

Inner Circle

Fujian tulouSome of the tulou in Fujian have unique architectural characteristics. This was one of the last ones we visited on our trip, and probably the most impressive. At the center is a family shrine, surrounded by concentric circles of rooms (mostly for storage and livestock). There are various paths to go between the concentric circles, but only one path that leads directly to the outer structure--it was almost like a maze to walk through. I would not suggest this one for anyone who is claustrophobic.

5 comments:

Josh said...

That picture is amazing. Reminds me of something like Shakespeare's Globe theater. I'd love to go check that our someday.

JA Huber said...

Very cool photo! Would love to get inside to check it out.

Jill Browne said...

Reminds me of farms in northern France. It's that inward-looking setup. It sends such an unwelcoming message - though in France the people have been the opposite of what that particular architecture suggested. Ditto Denmark.

I wonder just how far back this style goes. Very defensive. Is it meant to defend only against other humans, or also against wild beasts and the forces of nature, I wonder.

Matthew said...

Jill, the architectural style goes back quite a long time. Oldest one still standing is almost 700 years old. Supposedly they were built to defend against invaders. But I'd imagine it's a good design for a typhoon-prone region too.

Slim from the Saloon said...

You have added something to my 'must see' list for when I return to China. Thank you.