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The Mausoleum of General Yue Fei (岳飞), situated near the West Lake, is a memorial built in honor of the great general Yue Fei who had won many wars against the armies of the Jin Dynasty. He was politically executed by traitors and since then, he has evolved into the role model of loyalty in Chinese culture. Above the statue of Yue Fei is a tablet bearing an inscription in his very own handwriting that says, “Restore Our Lost Land”, or literally means “Give me back my rivers and mountains”.

Yue Fei’s mother wrote four words on his back: 盡忠報國 (jin zhong bao guo), means “serve the country with utmost loyalty“.

The four kneeling iron statues are Qin Hui (秦桧), his wife Lady Wang (王氏) and two of Qin Hui’s subordinates, Moqi Xie (万俟軼) and Zhang Jun (張俊). They were made to kneel before Yue Fei’s tomb, and for centuries, these statues have been spat, urinated, cursed, and Jacky even touched one of them! Yucks! Now these statues are protected as historical relics. There is a poem that reads, “the iron was innocent to be cast into the statues of traitors” !

There is a legend saying that the direct descendant of Qin Hui and his wife threw both statues into the West Lake and the next day, the lake turned pitched black and smelt of vomit!

The tomb of Yue Fei in front of the kneeling statues.

From then onward, the angry Chinese made “you tiao” () to deep fried and eat them. “You tiao” is made of two doughs joining in the middle, resembling the traitors Qin Hui and his wife. “You tiao” is actually called “Yow Cha Gui”, literally means “oil fried ghosts”, as 桧 (hui) and 鬼 (ghost) are similar in Chinese dialect pronunciation. Try one of these “you tiao”, they are yummy!

youtiao

Next: Zhexi Valley, Zhejiang!