The Ningbo Tianyige Museum, featuring the renowned Tianyi Pavilion, is a museum dedicated to the art of book collecting. With an area of 31,000 m2, it is currently a nationally recognized historical site and “grade AAAAA tourist destination”. Each year, thousands of tourists from home and abroad visit the museum, drawn by its ties with the tradition of book collecting, its exquisite gardens, its traditional architecture, and easy access.
The Tianyi Pavilion is the oldest existing private library in China, and one of the three oldest existing private libraries in the world. Built between 1561 and 1566 AD, it originally housed the private book collection of Fan Qin, a high-ranking military official in the Ming dynasty. Today the Pavilion holds nearly 300,000 ancient books, of which 80,000 are rare volumes in prime condition. Particularly notable are the Ming dynasty local historical records and mandarin examination records. In recent years, the museum saw greater development as it expanded to include the Chen Ancestral Hall and Qin Ancestral Hall. Today the former houses a display of the origin of Mah-jong, while the latter is known for its unique architectural design, integrating traditional local crafts.
The Tianyige Museum is a public institution established under the auspices of the Ningbo Bureau of Culture Radio & TV, Press and Publication. Its main responsibilities include maintenance and management of the museum and its grounds, collecting and displaying historical artifacts and records, promoting Chinese culture, collecting, assessing, archiving, restoring, storing, displaying, studying, and teaching the public about ancient books, organizing exhibitions in collaboration with other institutions, making the museum available for tourism, and engaging in international cultural exchange.
Address: No. 10 Tianyi Street, Haishu District, Ningbo