In the history of the capitals of Vietnam, each citadel was located and built in each specific geo-cultural context and each has its own position, role and characteristics, creating an invaluable part. historical and cultural heritage of the nation. The Citadel of the Ho Dynasty is a citadel, although it has not existed for a long time, but has many unique cultural characteristics and values not only of Vietnam but also of East Asia and Southeast Asia.
The Ho Dynasty Citadel is a unique ancient stone architecture in Vietnam. Ho Dynasty Citadel, also known as Tay Do Citadel, Tay Giai Citadel, An Ton Citadel, belongs to Vinh Tien and Vinh Long communes (Vinh Loc district, Thanh Hoa province), built by Ho Quy Ly at the end of the century. 14, early 15th century, was the capital of Dai Viet country – Tran dynasty from (1389-1400) and capital of Dai Ngu country – Ho dynasty from year (1400-1407).
The form is nearly square, each side is 800m above and below, the wall is 4-6m thick, the base is over 20m wide and the circumference is over 3.5km. The Citadel of the Ho Dynasty includes four gates in four directions south, north, west, and east, also known as the front – rear – left – right gates. Four gates are built in the style of rolling arch, the South gate is the main arch door with three entrance gates, over 34m long and 10m high.
The four city walls were built of solid stone, creating a majestic and majestic barricade. Each door is opened in the middle. The walls have high level of stone grafting technique. The city gates are arranged in orange-shaped stone slabs, very large in size.
With two thick, heavy and sturdy doors that are shown by the traces left by the holes punched in the rock and the places where the sills were installed. In the past, when closed, when opened by sets of wooden doors with rolling wheels, horizontal latches. The citadel is located in a rather difficult terrain, has advantages in military defense, is a political, economic and cultural center. The location of the citadel is especially dangerous, surrounded by rivers, dangerous mountains, and has strategic defensive significance while promoting the advantage of land transportation.
Coming to the Citadel of the Ho Dynasty, people are most impressed with the unique feature in the art of assembling large blocks of stone from 10-20 tons, moss green color, finely chiseled and square into a solid and sturdy citadel. firmly without using any adhesive. However, the Citadel of the Ho Dynasty still had the common features of the citadel at that time, which was surrounded by a moat that was both wide and deep, and four sides of the wall were covered with spikes.
The stone for the citadel is quarried at An Ton mountain (Vinh Yen commune), or Xuan Dai mountain (Vinh Ninh commune), then polished and carefully processed, helping to increase the connection between the stone blocks. The stone blocks are stacked more than 10m high, but the most magical is still the technique of building arched doors in a gradual, curved shape like a roof. The use of stone to build a monumental work like the Ho Citadel is an “unprecedented” breakthrough phenomenon in the history of Vietnamese architecture.
The Citadel of the Ho Dynasty has both the spirit of the traditional East and the imprint of a national reform. In only about three months, the time was too short and urgent, the Citadel of the Ho Dynasty was completed. That great wall has gone through six hundred years of age, through many ups and downs and events but has remained intact until now.
The most unique value of the Citadel of the Ho Dynasty is the stone citadel… It all speaks of a miracle of human beings, the organizational and administrative talents of the engineer and the creative labor of the peasants. craftsmen in the professions of stone making, firing bricks and tiles, construction and decoration…”. UNESCO experts confirm that in Southeast Asia there is no stone citadel like the Ho Dynasty Citadel.
King well, Nam Giao and a part of La Thanh
According to documents left behind with archaeological work and current status research, the Ho Dynasty Citadel heritage complex includes the inner citadel, the Hao citadel, the La citadel and the Nam Giao altar located outside the citadel. In particular, the Imperial Citadel is the most massive and intact work remaining so far.
On June 27, 2011, the Ho Dynasty Citadel was officially recognized by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage. And on the evening of June 16, 2012, the Ho Dynasty Citadel officially received the certificate of recognition of the World Cultural Heritage in the pride of the people of Thanh Hoa in particular and millions of Vietnamese people in general.
UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Vietnam