Confucianism, the Literati, and Chinese Imperial Traditions

Membership, Community, Diversity

Are there any Confucian or CIT holy sites (other than temples) or cities?

Confucian tradition spotlights a number of places associated with the lives of Confucius and other major sages and scholars. Only a year after Confucius’ death the Duke of Lu dedicated a temple to him in Qufu (478 B.C.E.). Within a few years, his tomb and temple in Qufu had become widely known holy places. As early as 195 B.C.E., an imperial sacrifice at the tomb further broadened Qufu’s fame as a sacred site. Confucian tradition did not elevate any one city to prominence as a center of authoritative teaching, but certain cities were home to the great Confucian universities. The most important cities were always associated with the seat of imperial government, and that changed often through Chinese history, even during the tenure of a single dynasty. Beijing has been perhaps the most important Confucian city. It was the capital uninterruptedly for nearly five hundred years, and Confucianism was highly favored and influential through virtually that whole period.


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