T'ang Dynasty Architecture - Ancient China
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T'ang Dynasty Architecture

Longmen Caves
Longmen Caves (493-900 AD)

By the time of the T'ang Dynasty, in the 600s AD, people were bringing together the Buddhist and Taoist traditions in China to create a new unified Chinese artistic style. At the Longmen Caves, sculptors carved many Buddhas and bodhisatvas in this new style. The T'ang emperors also built themselves a beautiful new capital city at Chang'an.

Tang Dynasty pagoda
Kunming East Pagoda (ca. 850 AD)

For about a hundred years beginning in 751 AD, the Nanzhao Kingdom conquered parts of south-western China. These rulers built the Kunming East and West Pagodas in Kunming. At the same time, people in the T'ang Dynasty continued to build Buddhist pagodas too. T'ang period pagodas usually had a square base, like the one in this picture. The emperor Wuzong's great persecution of Buddhists in the 840s destroyed many Buddhist buildings, but afterwards, in the last years of the T'ang Dynasty, people rebuilt them.

Song architecture
More Chinese Architecture
Ancient China home

Bibliography and further reading about ancient Chinese architecture:

Song Dynasty History
Song Dynasty Art
Song Dynasty Architecture
More about Chinese Architecture
Ancient China

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Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram or Twitter, or buy her book, Vandals to Visigoths.
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  • Carr, K.E. . Quatr.us Study Guides, . Web. 30 April, 2017