Qixia Monastery 棲霞寺



  • Qixia Monastery (English)
  • 棲霞寺 (Traditional Chinese)
  • 栖霞寺 (Simplified Chinese)
  • Qīxíasì (Pinyin)
  • Ch'i-hsia-ssu (Wade-Giles)
  • Gongde Monastery (Pinyin)
  • 功德寺 (Traditional Chinese)
  • 功德寺 (Simplified Chinese)
  • Yinjun Qixia Monastery (Pinyin)
  • 隱君棲霞寺 (Traditional Chinese)
  • 隐君栖霞寺 (Simplified Chinese)
  • Miaoyin Monastery (Pinyin)
  • 妙音寺 (Traditional Chinese)
  • 妙音寺 (Simplified Chinese)
  • Punyun Monastery (Pinyin)
  • 普雲寺 (Traditional Chinese)
  • 普云寺 (Simplified Chinese)
  • Qixia Chan Monastery (Pinyin)
  • 棲霞襌寺 (Traditional Chinese)
  • 栖霞禅寺 (Simplified Chinese)
  • Jingde Qixia Monastery (Pinyin)
  • 景德棲霞寺 (Traditional Chinese)
  • 景德栖霞寺 (Simplified Chinese)
  • Huxue Monastery (Pinyin)
  • 虎穴寺 (Traditional Chinese)
  • 虎穴寺 (Simplified Chinese)


  • China
  • Province:
    • Jiangsu Province (English)
    • 江蘇省 (Traditional Chinese)
    • Jiāngsū shěng (Pinyin)
  • County-city:
    • Nanjing Municipality (English)
    • 南京市 (Traditional Chinese)
    • Nánjīng shì (Pinyin)
  • Political-subdivision:
    • Qixia District (English)
    • 棲霞區 (Simplified Chinese)
    • Qīxiá qū (Pinyin)
  • Coordinates:
    • Lat. 32.154167° Long. 118.953889°
  • Site Information

    The Qixia Monastery is a Buddhist monastery complex located in Qixia district, Nanjing municipality, Jiangsu province. It was constructed from the residence of the recluse Ming Sengshao in 489 under the Qi dynasty (Wu and Chen 1994, online edition). Ming Sengshao was born in a gentry family in Shandong, and because of his knowledge in Confucianism and Buddhism, he became a scholar during Yuanjia period (424-453) of the Liu Song dynasty. Although he was repeatedly offered a position at court, he always declined, choosing instead to live in seclusion. He first lived in the Laoshan area (today's Qingdao municipality, Shandong province) and give lectures to his followers (Li 2010, 56; Li 2015, 3). In 466, as the region north of the Huai River was seized by Northern Wei, Ming Sengshao moved to Jiangkang (modern Nanjing) and settled in Mount Qixia (Li 2015, 3-5). Following Ming Sengshao's wishes, his son Ming Zhongzhang converted his residence on Mount Qixia into a Buddhist monastery named Qixia Jingshe (Qixia Monastery) after his death (Li 2015, 12; Li 2010, 58).1

    At the beginning of the Tang dynasty, the emperor Gaozu (r. 618-626) renamed it Gongde Monastery and built 49 more subsidiary buildings. Because of its grand scale, the monastery, together with Lingyan Monastery in Shandong, Yuquan Monastery in Jingzhou, and Guoqing Monastery in Zhejiang, was known as one of the Four Great Forests [of Buddhism] (Ren and Yang 1989, online edition). It was later renamed Yinjun Qixia (“Recluse of Qixia”) Monastery because Tang emperor Gaozong wrote a stele inscription for Ming Sengshao. Qixia Monastery suffered significantly during the suppression of Buddhism in the reign of Tang Emperor Wuzong (r. 841-846). During Southern Tang dynasty, the monastery was reconstructed and renamed Miaoyin Monastery (Li 2015, 17; Wu and Chen 1994, online edition).2

    It was subsequently called Puyun Monatery, Qixia Chan Monastery, Jingde qixia Monastery, and Huxue Monastery during Song dynasty (Wu and Chen 1994, online edition). At the end of the Northern Song dynasty, the Jin army took control of Jiankang. Qixia monastery was destroyed once again and remained desolated for over two hundred and sixty years (Li 2015, 17). It was renamed Qixia Monastery in 1392, and the timber buildings were destroyed by war in 1855 (Wu and Chen 1994, online edition).In 1919, sponsored by Sun Yat-sen and people from all walks of life, the Monk Zongyang directed the reconstruction of Qixia Monastery (Li 2010, 82).3

    The Qixia Monastery is known as the origin of Three Treatise school (Sanlun zong 三論宗) of Chinese Buddhism. The school adopts the Middle Treatise (Zhong lun 中論), the Twelve Gate Treatise (Shiermen lun十二門論), and the Hundred (Verse) Treatise (Bai lun 百論) as three principal texts, all of which were translated into Chinese by the Kuchean monk Kumarajiva (Jiumo luoshi 鳩摩羅什) in 404 (Li 2015, 21; Buswell and Lopez 2014, 1424). During the Southern Dynasties, the monk Senglang brought Kumarajiva’s teachings to the region south of the Yangtze River (Jiangnan 江南) when he resided in Qixia Monastery. Because of this he was called “the originator of Three Treatise school in Jiangnan (Li 2015, 25).”4

    棲霞寺位于江蘇省南京市,是建于永明七年(489)的一座寺院 ,由隱士明僧紹的舍宅改建而成(Wu and Chen 1994)。明僧紹出身山東士族,劉宋元嘉年間(424-453)因其儒學、佛學修養而成為秀才。然而其後十幾年間明僧紹多次拒絕朝廷征辟,隱居於嶗山一帶(今山東青島)聚徒講學(Li 2010,56;Li 2015,3)。466年,因淮北四州被北魏占領,明僧紹隨家族南下建康(今南京),並於480年定居棲霞山(Li 2015,3-5)。明僧紹死後,其子明仲璋尊崇父親遺願,將明僧紹故居改建為佛寺,名為棲霞精舍(Li 2015,12;Li 2010,58)。1

    初,唐高祖將棲霞寺改名功德寺,並增建殿堂49所,規模宏大,與山東靈巖寺、荊州(今湖北)玉泉寺、浙江國清寺並稱天下四大叢林(Ren and Yang 1989,,online edition)。後因唐高宗題寫明徵君(即明僧紹)碑文改名爲隱君棲霞寺。唐武宗年間(841-846),棲霞寺於會昌毀佛中被毀。南唐時期棲霞寺被重建,並改名妙音寺(Li 2015,17;Wu and Chen 1994,online edition)。2

    宋代時棲霞寺先後改名爲普雲寺、棲霞禅寺、景德棲霞寺、虎穴寺(Wu and Chen 1994)。北宋末年金兵攻陷建康後,棲霞寺再次被毀,此後荒廢二百六十余年(Li 2015,17)。1392年複名棲霞寺,最終大部分建築于1855年毀于戰火(Wu and Chen 1994, online edition)。1919年,宗仰法師在孫中山及各方人士的資助下主持修復棲霞寺(Li 2010,82)。3

    棲霞寺作為三論宗的發祥地被人熟知。三論宗是中國佛教宗派之一,以《中論》《十二門論》及《百論》為主要典籍,均由鳩摩羅什於404年傳譯至中國(Li 2015,21;Buswell and Lopez 2014, 1424)。南朝時僧朗法師將鳩摩羅什的學說傳到江南,在居於棲霞寺期間研究並弘揚三論宗,世稱他為「江南三論之祖」(Li 2015;25)。4

    Date Founded in 489
    Dynasty Qi Kingdom 479-502 5

    External Links

    Works Cited

    Any information without attribution has been created following the Syriaca.org editorial guidelines.

    • 1 吴. 1994-09. 栖霞寺, accessed March 28, 2021.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record; 李. 2010. 栖霞寺, 56, 58.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record; 李. 2015. 天下四绝 : 佛教的海内四大名刹, 3-5, 12.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record
    • 2 吴. 1994-09. 栖霞寺, accessed March 28, 2021.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record; 任. 1989-10. 栖霞寺, accessed March 28, 2021.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record; 李. 2015. 天下四绝 : 佛教的海内四大名刹, 17.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record
    • 3 吴. 1994-09. 栖霞寺, accessed March 28, 2021.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record; 李. 2010. 栖霞寺, 82.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record; 李. 2015. 天下四绝 : 佛教的海内四大名刹, 17.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record
    • 4 李. 2015. 天下四绝 : 佛教的海内四大名刹, 21, 25.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record; BUSWELL. 2013. The Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism, 1424.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record
    • 5 WILKINSON. 2000. Chinese History: A Manual, 11.Link to Zotero Bibliographic Record

    Contains artifact(s) (4)

    Date range

    How to Cite This Entry

    ZHANG Xuliang 張序亮, “Qixia Monastery 棲霞寺 ” in Architectura Sinica last modified April 3, 2021, https://architecturasinica.org/place/000294.


    ZHANG Xuliang 張序亮, “Qixia Monastery 棲霞寺 .” In Architectura Sinica, edited by Tracy Miller. Entry published 2021-04-03-15:00. https://architecturasinica.org/place/000294.

    About this Entry

    Entry Title: Qixia Monastery 棲霞寺

    Authorial and Editorial Responsibility:

    • Tracy Miller, editor, Architectura Sinica
    • ZHANG Xuliang 張序亮, entry contributor, “Qixia Monastery 棲霞寺

    Additional Credit:

    • Initial research 2021 by ZHANG Xuliang 張序亮
    • Website coordination by Yuh-Fen Benda

    Copyright and License for Reuse

    Except otherwise noted, this page is © 2021-04-03-15:00.

    Distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.