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A Time Traveling Phoenix in GuanCheng

In the center of Dongguan Culture Square erects a glittering sculpture consisting of two flying phoenix birds. Forged by stainless steel and covered in rolled gold, the 14-meter-tall sculpture was built 15 years ago by the city government in honor of one of Dongguan’s famed eight scenes—the Phoenix Terrace.

An old legend stated that there were special kinds of herbs that attracted phoenix birds lingering in the area. In Song Dynasty, a Taoism temple and a pagoda were constructed there; scholars would have their names inscribed on a stone monument. Gradually, it started to gain a reputation. In Ming Dynasty, a party of enthusiastic scholars formed a “Phoenix Poem Club” at the Phoenix Terrace, where they came to write, chant and share poems.

Although the terrace, temple and pagoda no longer exist after the Cultural Revolution, the place still represents Dongguan’s culture and literature. That’s why the Guancheng Culture Center, the Children’s Palace and the phoenix sculpture were built nearby the former site to continue the Phoenix Terrace’s legacy.