Dictionary of Geotourism

2020 Edition
| Editors: Anze Chen, Young Ng, Erkuang Zhang, Mingzhong Tian

Maijishan Grottoes

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-13-2538-0_1492
The Maijishan Grottoes are one of China’s four major grottoes and are a key protected cultural feature. They are also a world-renowned art treasure. The Maijishan Grottoes are located on Maiji Mountain southeast of Tianshui City, Gansu Province. The associated caves are arranged like a hive. There are 194 caves with overhanging plank paths, constituting a spectacular 3-dimensional architectural building group. Maiji Mountain is composed of Palaeogene muddy and sandy conglomerate that has a loose structure and is not suitable for fine carving. Therefore, Maiji Mountain became famous because of its exquisite clay sculptures. Over a period of 1,600 years from the initial work, which was conducted in the Late Qin Dynasty of the Sixteen States period, through the West Qin, North Wei, West Wei, North Zhou, Sui, Tang, Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties, the carvings and renovation of the Maijishan Grottoes had never stopped (Fig. 4).
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