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Ancient Villages--Daxu Town, Jiangtou and Yueling
Daxu Acient Town
    Daxu, means a big market in Chinese, a little twon located about 20 kilometers southeast to Guilin. On both sides of the old street of the town live 200 households which still follow their easygoing way of life. The 2.5 km-long old street was paved with dark green quadrate limestones that have been ground and washed smooth by shoes, carts and rain.

    It was a busy trading center in centuries ago, and was one of the four famous big market in Guangxi. The town came into being in around 200 B.C.. Since the Emperor Qin Shi Huang built the Ling Canal which linked Xiang River of the Yangtze River water system with Li River of the Pearl River water system, this lucrative water route played a more and more important role in transportation and Daxu, the town lying by Li River, became a place and a port of gathering and distributing goods. There are still 13 docks along the old street from which you can imagine its prosperity in former days.

    The town was getting quiet since 1930s when railways and highroads replaced river shipping.
But many local residents still keep their traditional handcraft and business, such as home workshops of rice wine, carpenters, bamboo baskets and traditional Chinese medical clinics. There are about 20 clinics gathered along the street, some of which specialize in gynecology and some in paediatrics. Coming into the clinic, you can smell the scent of medical herbs and timeworn medicine chests tell the history of the clinic. The rice wine workshop remains the old way of brewing wines by using old barrels, baskets and distillery.




 
Jiangtou Ancient Village
    Located north of Guilin, Jiangtou Ancient Village is the largest and best preserved collection of ancient buildings in Guangxi province. History proved that the Jiangtouers were the descendants of Zhoudunyi-an outstanding literati and philosopher in Song dynasty. Mr. zhou is well-known for his abstruse philosophy of being honest and upright as an official which was clearly stated in his masterpiece giving honor to lotus. Zhou gave lotus the connotation of a virtue of honesty. Here he intended to exhort his later generations to keep honest in performing their official duties.

    The colony of ancient architectures is large in scale, the largest of its kind in Guangxi. Approximately, the site includes more than 80 buildings, most of which keep their original style and features of the Ming and Qing dynasties. These wooden architectures are quite unique and elegant: brick walls preventing rain infiltration, black tiles recording the history of the village, ornamented beams reflecting the profound local culture and ornamental engraving-decorated gates standing for the particular flavor of the architectures. After hundreds of years' rain and wind, these buildings remain what they were. Actually, they still dominate the village and are homes of the locals.

First built in Song dynasty, Jiangtou Ancient Village now enjoys a long history of more than 800 years. History has left to this place innumerous sites and relics, as if it favored this part more than others. Many valuable and rare historical relics are well preserved here, such as ancient coins, inscription forest, ancient instruments, longevity beds and so on. Relics here contribute greatly to explore the culture of the Ming and Qing dynasties.

    Jiangtou radiates not only for its history and culture but the talents from it. Small as it is, it cultivated 28 celebrities ranging from upright and incorruptible high officials in central government to hard- working and wide-learned magistrates in county.

    Jiangtou also boasts excellent natural scenery. The evergreen mountains, jade-like river and the vast green field make it appear to be a beautiful sketch.






 
Yueling Village
    Yueling Village is a village of over 700 years old where live around 400 households whose 28 generations all developed from one family, Family Tang, and all maintain this surname still. Six compounds in the village are kept very well. They were all built at the end of Ming dynasty and at the beginning of Qing dynasty and belongs to ancient Hunan style: Every compound is composed by six buildings, including major and minor sitting rooms, two dooryards, bedrooms, kitchens, guest rooms, storehouses, an opera stage, wells and gardens. At the entrance of the village stands a paifang (Chinese torii) which was built in 1839 to honor Mr. Tang Jing-tao's, the number one scholar of the village, foster mother's chastity. The paifang, 10.2 meters high, is made of marble with exquisite and vivid reliefs, some of which are out of an entire stone, of unicorns, dragons and legendary figures.
 
 
 
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