Zhuge village, also known as Zhuge Bagua village, located in the west of Lanxi, Zhejiang province, is a popular tourist attraction that has long been shrouded in mystery and legend.
The village is the largest existing residential community of the offspring of Zhuge Liang (181-234), the Prime Minister of the Shu Kingdom during the Three Kingdoms (220-265) period, who went down in history as the insurmountable pinnacle of Chinese scholar-bureaucrats.
The village was founded by Zhuge Dashi, a 27th generation descendant of Zhuge Liang, during the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368). Most of the buildings still standing in the village today were constructed during the Ming and Qing dynasties (1368-1911) and are laid out in a bagua pattern (the eight diagrams in Taoism).
In the center of Zhuge village sits a taichi-shaped pond. [Photo/zj.zjol.com.cn]
Legend has it that the village miraculously survived numerous attacks by gangsters, warlords, and invaders throughout its 700-year history. It is said that a group of gangsters once broke into the village but quickly got lost and ended up being encircled and captured by villagers. In 1925, a fierce three-day fight between a local warlord and Kuomintang army occurred nearby, without a single bullet or shell entering the village. In 1942, invading Japanese troops ransacked all nearby villages but passed by Zhuge village, seemingly not even noticing its existence.
Dagong Hall, facing the pond in the center of the village, was founded during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) as a memorial hall for Zhuge Liang. It is the only one of its kind still standing in the southeast of the Yangtze River Delta. [Photo/IC]
The villagers, numbering nearly 4,000 at present, have long lived by a Chinese proverb which states that "A virtuous man should be either a good chancellor or a good doctor". Since their ancestor Zhuge Liang was the best chancellor of all time, many villagers instead opted to take up traditional Chinese medicine. During the Ming and Qing Dynasties, around two thirds of the thriving drugstores and clinics in Lanxi were run by people surnamed Zhuge who came from the village.
Most of the residences in the village were built in the Huizhou-style architecture style, which was prevalent in the southeast of the Yangtze River Delta during the Ming and Qing dynasties. [Photo/IC]
March 15, 2022