The gilded copper pagoda was excavated from the underground palace of a pagoda in Qingyang County in June 1976. When it was first taken out of the underground palace, it was inside a silver casket with a silver plaque attached to it stating that construction of the underground palace had begun in 1155, the twenty-fifth year of the reign of Emperor Shaoxing of the Southern Song Dynasty.
This gilded pagoda is very similar to the miniature carved sarira pagoda preserved at Asoka Temple. Although one was made of metal and the other of wood, they have only fine differences. They might be products of the same period; at least, they could not be seven to eight hundred years apart.
The square pagoda rests on a flat Sumeru pedestal divided into four sections by columns. In each of the sections is a seated Buddha. The four sides of the pagoda have carved pictures depicting Buddhist stories. The four upper corners of the pagoda have ornaments in the shape of banana leaves. As each side of the inserted banana leaves has two Buddhist stories inscribed on it, there are altogether thirty-two stories inscribed on all the decorative banana leaves. The downside bevel faces of the leaves have engraved images of golden-winged roes. The spire, which is large in proportion to the body of the pagoda, has a lotus pedestal and five tiers of discs. The top of the steeple is a precious bead divided into petals. The whole pagoda is 32.2 centimeters high with a bottom width of 12.4 centimeters.