“Shou” Stele

Written by Empress Dowager Cixi, “Shou” Stele is one of the key protected cultural relics of Sanya, 2.76 meters high, 1.1 meters wide and 0.3 meters thick. The Chinese character “Shou” is engraved in the center, 1.45 meters high and 0.68 meters wide. Empress Dowager Cixi’s seal is engraved above the “Shou”. There is a sentence on the right side of “Shou”: “In 28th, September, Guangxu 29th years, Empress Dowager Cixi wrote at the 60th birthday.” A “Ci”, which means grant, is on its right side, and name “Wang Gen” is on the left side. The full text wrote for the stele is engraved beneath the “Shou”.  

As recorded on Yazhou Chorography, “Shou” Stele was made in the 28th year of the Guangxu Period of the Qing Dynasty (1902). The owner is Wang Gen, born in Xiangxiang of Hunan Province, good at painting. At Cixi’s 60th birthday, Emperor Guangxu appreciated his painting skills and asked him to paint a screen for Cixi. His paintings were all praised by Cixi and Emperor Guangxu. So Cixi wrote a “Shou” and gave it to Wang Gen. In 1901, when appointed as magistrate of Yazhou, Wang Gen asked craftsmen to engrave the “Shou” on the stele, and built a hall named Tongshan to place the stele. Later, Tongshan Hall was destroyed, and the “Shou” Stele was moved to the Cave World in 1994.


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