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Lin Zexu Memorial to reopen

The Lin Zexu Memorial in Fuzhou will reopen in June this year, it was announced yesterday.


The memorial manager told reporters that the main expansion project has been completed, with the area now doubled in size and featuring a combination of Fuzhou traditional characteristics with classical gardens. Currently, the memorial collects and displays artifacts for exhibition.


Built in 1905, the Lin Zexu Memorial, located on Macao Road, covers an area of about 3,500 square meters. The original memorial building contained eight halls and 600 square meters of exhibition areas.


At the end of 2007, Fuzhou initiated a repair and expansion project of the memorial, expanding the area to 8,500 square meters. It's reported that Lin Zexu will be displayed in five roles in the new memorial: as a patriot devoted to his country, a diligent, pragmatic and honest official, the first Chinese to open his eyes to see the world, a national hero who fought against aggression and finally, a world- reknowned historic man. The memorial is said to become China's largest Lin Zexu memorial and historical research center.


About Lin Zexu


Lin zexu is most recognized for his conduct and constant position on "high moral ground" in his fight as a "shepherd" of his people, against the opium trade in Guangzhou.


Although the non-medicinal consumption of opium was banned by Emperor Yongzheng in 1729, by the 1830s China's economy and society were being seriously affected by huge imports of opium from British and other traders based in the city. Lin's forceful opposition to the trade on moral and social grounds is considered to be the primary catalyst for the First Opium War of 1839–42. Because of this firm stance, he has subsequently been considered as a role model for moral governance, particularly by Chinese people.


(China Daily April 2, 2009)