Khai Dinh tomb – Unique Asian-European architecture
Khai Dinh tomb is a Hue sightseeing spot, leaving many impressions on tourists because of its unique architectural style that blends European modernity and Vietnamese classical features.
Under the reign of Khai Dinh (1916-1925), Vietnamese sovereignty was completely in the hands of the French colonialists and Western artistic culture strongly penetrated our country. So some modern elements have jostled into the traditional architectural art of the nation. In terms of architecture, the Khai Dinh tomb was placed outside the traditional architecture of the Nguyen dynasty.
Khai Dinh tomb is located entirely on the slope of Chau Chu mountain which is also known as Chau E. The tomb used to be a low hill in the foreground as a criminal record, Chop Vung and Kim Son mountains in front of them used to be called “Ta dragon” and “Huu Bach tiger”. There is Chau E slot flowing from left to right to make “water convergence”, called “minh road”. The king changed the name of Chau Chu mountain – both post-occipital, and the “ground” of the mausoleum – Ung Son citadel and named the mausoleum after the mountain name: Ung Lang. The tomb started to be built on September 4, 1920 and lasted for 11 years to complete.
Compared to the 6 tombs of the Nguyen kings, Khai Dinh tomb is the last one. This is also the smallest architectural space. However, this is the project that requires the most time, effort and money with the gathering of many famous craftsmen and artisans across the country such as Phan Van Tanh, Nguyen Van Kha, Ky Duyet, Cuu Horn …
Khai Dinh tomb has a very strange architecture unlike the tombs of previous kings. It is a mixture of many different layers of architecture. At first glance, the tomb is like a castle in Europe because it is built of concrete on a mountain slope. The traditional indigenous materials such as wood, stone, brick, and lime here are just a negligible amount. Modern materials outnumber traditional ones. The iron doors, the evil-tiled tile, the lightning rod, the electric light system, the stoupa spiked towers are also exotic things.
The removal of the green color of the old trees, the absence of the pond water surface in the tomb, makes the overall architecture from the first level to the 127th level lacking a mellow, fresh look. The heavy concrete form of the whole mausoleum makes the Khai Dinh tomb different from that of the previous Nguyen kings.