Sites & cities that bear the name of Huế


Today in : Viet Nam
First trace of activity : ca. 4th century C.E
Last trace of activity : today
Recorded names : Kandapurpura, Phu Xuan, hoá

Description : Huế is the capital of Thừa Thiên Huế Province in central Vietnam that was the capital of Đàng Trong from 1738 to 1775 and of the Nguyen Dynasty from 1802 to 1945. The city served as the administrative capital for the Nguyen dynasty, and later functioned as the administrative capital of the protectorate of Annam during the French Indochina period. The city's economy is primarily built around tourism, as it contains one of the few UNESCO designated sites in Vietnam, the Complex of Hué Monuments being a tourist attraction, alongside its moat and thick stone walls. The complex encompasses the Imperial City, with palaces and shrines; the Forbidden Purple City, once the emperor's home; and a replica of the Royal Theater. Nearly 4.2 million visitors had visited the city in 2019 and much of its historic landmarks are undergoing restoration. The oldest ruins in Hue belong to the Kingdom of Lam Ap, dating back to the 4th century AD. The ruins of its capital, the ancient city of Kandapurpura is now located in Long Tho Hill, 3 kilometers to the west of the city. Another Champa ruin in the vicinity, the ancient city of Hoa Chau is dated back to the 9th century. In 1306, the King of Champa Che Man offered Vietnam two Cham prefectures, O and Ly, in exchange for marriage with a Vietnamese princess named Huyen Tran. The Vietnamese King Tran Anh Tong accepted this offer. He took and renamed O and Ly prefectures to Thuan prefecture and Hóa prefecture, respectively, with both of them often referred to as Thuan Hoa region. In 1592, the Mac dynasty was forced to flee to Cao Bang province and the Le emperors were enthroned as de jure Vietnamese rulers under the leadership of Nguyen Kim, the leader of Le Dynasty loyalists. Later, Kim was poisoned by a Mạc Dynasty general which paved the way for his son-in-law, Trinh Kiem, to take over the leadership. Kim's eldest son, Nguyen Uông, was also assassinated in order to secure Trinh Kiem's authority. Nguyen Hoang, another son of Nguyen Kim, feared a fate like Nguyen Uong's so he pretended to have mental illness. He asked his sister Ngoc Bao, who was a wife of Trinh Kiem, to entreat Trinh Kiem to let Nguyen Hoang govern Thuan Hoa, the furthest south region of Vietnam at that time. Because Mac dynasty loyalists were revolting in Thuan Hoa and Trinh Kiem was busy fighting the Mac dynasty forces in northern Vietnam during this time, Ngoc Bao's request was approved and Nguyen Hoang went south. After Hoàng pacified Thuan Hoa, he and his heir Nguyen Phuc Nguyen serectly made this region loyal to the Nguyen family; then they rose against the Trinh Lords. Vietnam erupted into a new civil war between two de facto ruling families: the clan of the Nguyen lords and the clan of the Trinh lords. The Nguyen lords chose Thua Thien, a northern territory of Thuan Hoa, as their family seat. In 1687 during the reign of Nguyen lord- Nguyen Phuc Tran, the construction of a citadel was started in Phu Xuan, a village in Thua Thien Province. The citadel was a power symbol of Nguyen family rather than a defensive building because the Trịnh lords' army could not breach Nguyen lords' defense in the north regions of Phú Xuân. In 1744, Phu Xuan officially became the capital of central and southern Vietnam after Nguyen lord- Nguyen Phuc Khoat proclaimed himseft Vo Vương (Vo King or Martial King in Vietnamese). Among westerners living in the capital at this period was the Portuguese Jesuit João de Loureiro from 1752 onwards. However, Tay Son rebellions broke out in 1771 and quickly occupied a large area from Quy Nhon to Binh Thuan Province, thereby weakening the authority and power of the Nguyen lords. While the war between Tây Sơn rebellion and Nguyễn lord was being fought, the Trịnh lords sent south a massive army and easily captured Phú Xuân in 1775. After the capture of Phú Xuân, the Trịnh lords' general Hoang Ngu Phuc made a tactical alliance with Tay Son and withdrew almost all troops to Tonkin and left some troops in Phu Xuan. In 1786, Tây Sơn rebellion defeated the Trịnh garrison and occupied Phú Xuân. Under the reign of emperor Quang Trung, Phú Xuân became Tây Sơn dynasty capital. In 1802, Nguyen Anh, a successor of the Nguyen lords, recaptured Phu Xuan and unified the country. Nguyen Anh rebuilt the citadel entirely and made it the Imperial City capital of all of Vietnam. The city's current name is likely a non-Sino-Vietnamese reading of the Chinese 化 (Sino-Vietnamese: hoá), as in the historical name Thuan Hoa (順化).

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