Built during the Yuan Dynasty in 1306, the Confucius Temple in Beijing is the second largest one of its kind throughout China after the one in Qufu, Shandong Province. It stands on Chengxian Street, next to the Imperial Academy and about a few hundred yards away from the Yonghegong Lamasery. Lengthy ceremonies were held here every year in honor of the great sage.
The temple occupies an area of 22,000 sq. m in tranquil surroundings. In front of the main entrance is a memorial arch of glazed tiles, Xianshimen (Gate of the First Teacher), and inside is a courtyard with a series of pavilions which house 198 stone tablets. The tablets bear the names of the scholars who, in past dynasties, passed the imperial examinations. In addition, there are also 189 stone tablets inscribed with thirteen Confucian classical writings. Further inside are Dachengmen (Gate of Great Success) and Dachengdian (Hall of Great Success). In the rear courtyard is Chongshengci (Shrine of the Great Wise Man) which enshrines the tablets of Confucius' ancestors.
In palatial style, the roofs of the buildings in the temple covered with yellow-glazed tiles that could only be used on buildings in the imperial palaces.