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Wanbuhuayanjing Pagoda in Hohhot of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region
This pagoda is located at Baita (White Pagoda) Village on the old site of Fengzhou City of the Liao Dynasty in the eastern suburbs of Hohhot, the capital of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. Since the pagoda was painted white, it is known as the White Pagoda by the local people. It was named the Wanbuhuayanjing (Ten Thousand Volumes of Huayan Scriptures) Pagoda because, so the legend goes, ten thousand volumes of Huayan scriptures were preserved inside. Today no Buddhist scriptures are to be found there.

Although the pagoda was constructed entirely of brick, wooden rafters were installed as reinforcement, just as steel reinforcing bars are used in modem buildings. The rafters increase the building's antiseismic strength. The octagonal pagoda, 43 meters high, has seven storeys. The lower part of the pagoda is a tall pedestal decorated with gorgeous carved patterns. The main body is supported by three layers of huge lotus petals. Above the door on the south side of the first storey hangs a horizontal board inscribed with the name of the pagoda. On the outside walls of the first and second storeys are sculptures of Buddhist images, including bodhisattvas, heavenly kings and guardians, all vividly executed in different postures. There are no ornamental carvings from the third level up, but there are eaves and balconies around each storey. Even-number storeys have doors; odd-number storeys have windows. The eave brackets at each level vary in form.

Apart from its great architectural value, the pagoda is esteemed for inscriptions written by noted men of letters and other visitors in different historic periods, beginning with the year 1172 in the Kin Dynasty. The inscriptions are in many languages, including Han, Mongolian, Tibetan, Qidan, Xixia, Nüzhen and Phagsba. They reflect the frequent economic and cultural intercourse between the different nationalities in ancient times. There were originally eleven inscribed stone tablets on the inside walls of the first storey, but only six remain. The neatly inscribed characters are all in the Han language. Though few, they provide important data for the study of the history of the different nationalities of China.

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