|Leaders of Hanoi city give flowers to congratulate Hoan Kiem district at a ceremony to receive the recognition of Bach Ma temple as a special national relic site. (Photo: Tuan Duc/VNA)
In January the Prime Minister signed a decision to recognize five special national relic sites nationwide, including the four guardian temples of Thang Long (Thang Long Tu Tran): the Bach Ma temple in Hoan Kiem district, Voi Phuc temple and Quan Thanh temple in Ba Dinh district, and Kim Lien temple in Dong Da district.
|The procession goes from Bach Ma temple through the old quarter and around Hoan Kiem Lake. (Photo: dangcongsan.vn)
Bach Ma temple is dedicated to Long Do deity, who guards the eastern side of the Thang Long ancient citadel. The temple is associated with the legend of King Ly Thai To building Thang Long citadel in 1010.
The temple has kept historical documents recording the temple’s history, worship rituals, and restorations over the past 1,000 years, and the Book of Ordaining, a document given by the king to confer titles on nobles, officials, and reward people with meritorious services, as well as precious items such as incense burners, a vase, bronze bells, and procession palanquins.