Hairui Tomb Haikou Hainan Island

Hai Rui Tomb Haikou Hainan Island

Haikou Hairui Tomb Hainan Island3

Where is Hai Rui Tomb Haikou Hainan Island:

Tomb of Hai Rui is situated in the western outskirts of Haikou City, 5 kilometers (3.1 miles) from the civic center. It represents people’s esteem towards Hai Rui, an upright and uncorrupted official. It was originally built in 1589 during the Ming Dynasty (1368 -1644), and some of the constructions in the tomb garden remain intact. With an area of over 4,000 square meters (4784 square yards), the layout was designed according to the level of the official titles at that time. Today it is rated as the Key Cultural Relic Preservation of Hainan Province.

Story of Hai Rui

Hai Rui ( 23 January 1514 – 13 November 1587) was a Chinese Official of the Ming Dynasty.  He is remembered as a model of honesty and integrity in office. A play based on his career, Hai Rui Dismissed from Office, gained political significance in the 1960s during the Cultural Revolution.

Hai Rui, was born in Qiongshan, Hainan on January 23, 1513. His father died when he was three, and he was raised by his mother. His great-great-grandfather was a native of Guangzhou named Hai Da-er (海答兒, Haidar, an Arabic name), and his mother was also from a Muslim (Hui) family that originated from the Indian subcontinent. Hai Rui himself however was noted primarily as a Neo-Confucian and never discussed Islam in his Confucian works.

Hai took the official examinations but was unsuccessful, and his official career only began in 1553, when he was 39, with a humble position as clerk of education in Fujian. He gained a reputation for his uncompromising adherence to upright morality, scrupulous honesty, poverty, and fairness. This won him widespread popular support but made him many enemies in the bureaucracy. Nevertheless, he was called to the capital Beijing and promoted to the junior position of secretary of ministry of Revenue. In 1565, he submitted a memorial strongly criticizing the Jiajing Emperor for the neglect of his duties and bringing disaster to the country, for which he was sentenced to death in 1566. He was released after the Emperor died in early 1567.

Hai Rui was reappointed under the Longqing Emperor but soon forced to resign in 1570 after complaints were made over his overzealous handling of land-tenure issues. He then spent 15 years in retirement in Hainan before being finally brought back to the Empire’s “auxiliary capital” of Nanjing, in 1585, to serve under the Wanli Emperor.  Hai Rui was promoted to censor-in-chief of Nanjing in 1586, but died in office a year later.

What to see or do to visit Hai Rui Tomb Haikou Hainan Island:

Tomb of Hai Rui is a place worthy of a visit because there you can not only view the scenery and constructions, but also know more about Hai Rui. Going across the Hai Rui Bridge and entering the tomb garden, you will be greeted by the exuberant pines and coconut palms and sweet lotus, which make the garden tranquil and simple. Along the path stand stone statues of lions, goats and horses. Walking forward and stepping up three levels of stairs, you can see a stone tortoise carrying a stele on its back.

Thirty meters (32.8 yards) farther still on the third level is the tomb area of Hai Rui. In front of it lies an incense burner which is also solemn. On each side stand four 4-meter-high (13-feet-high) monuments by Hai Rui’s disciples and colleagues. Behind those, are the four levels of stairs and the tomb of Hai Rui.

The tomb is surrounded by white granite. It is 3.3 meters (10.8 feet) high and faces to the west. The base of the tomb is octagonal with four carved stories. On these stories is a round ceiling made out of pieces of vesuvianites from Hainan Island.

A pavilion stands behind the tomb with two couplets by Hai Rui, both praising his honesty. Going to its back you will see the Qingfeng Pavilion displaying Hai Rui’s stories and relics, and you can understand why he has been respected by generations of people.

Hai Rui Tomb in Haikou Hainan Island

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