Almost 500 documents, written works and other printed papers relating to the Ho Dynasty Citadel, Ho Quy Ly and the Ho Dynasty are currently being exhibited at the science museum in central Thanh Hoa province.
On display are photographs, books and works of literature, newspapers, magazines, scientific analysis and research by both domestic and foreign academics.
The documents tell about the Ho Dynasty Citadel, Ho Quy Ly, the Ho Dynasty and the Ho Dynasty Citadel’s recognition by UNESCO as a world cultural heritage on June 27, 2011.
Amongst the exhibits are photos of the citadel from the air as well as the camp where the stone masons lived during its construction, plus the book La Province De Thanh Hoa by French scholar Le Proton.
The exhibition is to allow the public access to the Ho Dynasty Citadel relics and the cultural history of Thanh Hoa province and to meet demands from researchers.
Located in Vinh Tien and Vinh Long communes in Vinh Loc district, the citadel measures 870m by 883m and was built in 1397.
The citadel's construction was supervised by the Tran Dynasty's top mandarin, Ho Quy Ly, who later occupied the citadel when he took the throne by force in 1400 and changed the country's name from Dai Viet to Dai Ngu.
Ho Quy Ly's rise to power began the Ho Dynasty and although it did not reign for long, the citadel was still known as the Ho Dynasty Citadel.
Also known as the Tay Do Citadel, the ancient building is famous for being strategically located where it could be easily defended. The citadel is protected by a mountain range to the north, while the Ma River runs to its west and the Buoi River to its south, creating a huge natural moat.
However, unlike many other citadels that were built of brick, the Ho Dynasty Citadel was built with huge stone slabs taken from the nearby mountains. It features four arched entrances facing east, west, north and south.
The citadel's grounds include the Hoang Nguyen, Dien Tho and Dong Cung palaces, which were linked together by stone paved roads.
The citadel itself includes the Dan Nam Giao, a platform used for offerings to the heavens, the Dong Mon communal house and Tam Tong temple as well as a number of other building.
However, after the passing of many centuries, almost all of the citadel's main structures have been seriously damaged, while only the wall and four main entrances are still well preserved.
Although the Ho Dynasty only lasted from 1400 to 1407, Emperor Ho left a significant legacy. He is credited for pioneering the circulation of the first banknotes in Vietnam , expanding the network of schools and promoting the use of the Vietnamese Nom ideographic script.-VNA