Thousand-Buddha Hall

Zhenguo Si, Shanxi

This hall is one of the earliest surviving wooden buildings in China; it dates to 963, in the Northern Han dynasty of the Five Dynasties period. Rebuilt in 1816 with brick walls, the hall is still revered for its authentic great eave and brackets, and for the early statues that occupy its interior (following page). It is three bays square, with no interior columns, like Nanchan Si. But, unlike Nanchan Si, it boasts huge bracket sets, that are comparable to the East Hall of Foguang Si1

1 References: Steinhardt, Chinese Architecture, pp. 117 and 119, and Howard, Chinese Sculpture, pp. 373 and 374.