Qufu, located in southwest Shandong Province, is the home town of Confucius, the founder of Confucianism. It is a small city, however, it has various kinds of souvenirs, such as Bei Tie (碑帖, a rubbing from a stone inscription), Jie carving (楷雕) and Nishan ink stone (尼山砚), and they are regarded as three treasures in Qufu. In some calligraphy and painting shops and superstores, these three treasures are sold in package; the price range is from 100 yuan to 300 yuan.
Bei Tie, Jie carving and Nishan ink stone are three treasures in Qufu. Bei Tie is a rubbing from a stone inscription. Qufu is the main producing area of Bei Tie in China. More than 5,000 inscriptions of past dynasties are kept in Qufu, and the oldest ones can date back to the West Han Dynasty (206 B.C.–A.D. 24). Jie carving is a particular craft in Qufu, with the material is Jie tree (楷树, a kind of tree in North China), and the traditional artistic products are statues of Confucius and canes. Nishan ink stone has brown color, and every ink stone is simply but elegantly made according to its natural shape.
Places to Buy
If tourists in Qufu want to purchase some local products, they can go to the following two shopping areas. One is Queli Pedestrian Street (阙里步行街) to the east of Confucian Temple, and the other is Parkson Shopping Center in Fuxingmen Avenue (复兴门大街).
Queli Pedestrian Street
It is a tourist shopping street in Qufu, opened in 1984. It gathers various kinds of souvenirs, including statues of Confucius, works of Confucius, Bei Tie, works of calligraphy or painting, crafts made out of azure stone or jade, Nishan ink stone, ceramics, stone carvings, wooden carvings, jewelries and costumes. When purchasing products in the street, shopping around and bargaining is necessary.
Parkson Shopping Area
It has many shopping places, including Parkson Shopping Center, Qufu Cultural Relics Shop (曲阜文物商店), Hualian Department Store, Chunqiu Pavilion Painting and Calligraphy Community (春秋阁书画社). Generally speaking, the quality of the products and the price would be higher than that in Queli Pedestrian Street.
I updated this article on April 13, 2012
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