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Mapang Drum-Tower

Mapang Drum Tower, Sanjiang, Guangxi

Drum tower is the symbolic architecture of Dong Village. Where there is a Dong Village, there stands a drum tower. The tower is a kind of multi-eave pagoda-like wooden structure, usually in a square, hexagonal or octagonal shape. It has a larger lower body and a smaller upper body with a gourd-shaped auspicious top part. The tower can have three to a dozen of stories, on each of which there are bright color paintings presenting dragons and phoenix, animals and floras, legendary figures and folk myths and other auspicious patterns. The tower is a public meeting place for the Dong people where celebrative and ceremonial events and activities are held.

Mapang Drum Tower is located in Mapang Village in the Autonomous Region of Dong Nationality, over 20 kilometers (12.4 miles) from Sanjiang County. Originally built in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and rebuilt in 1943, the tower is in a square shape at a height of 13 meters (43 feet) with nine stories. The twelve wood pillars on the outer circle of the tower support the elegant up-eaves on each story and symbolize the twelve month in a year. The four greater pillars further inside the tower, ascend to the top of the tower resembling the four seasons in a year. On the beams and girders are color-paintings of birds, flowers, animals and legendary figures. The top of the tower is covered with tiles with a pair of bird-like decorative structures on the ridge.

On the day of March 3rd or June 6th on the Chinese lunar calendar, the tower will become a festive venue where Dong people get together and hold fantastic celebrations.

Admission Fee: CNY 10

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