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Rural village strives to preserve traditional cultural identity

Tien Hoi village is associated with a legend about King An Duong Vuong building the ancient Co Loa Citadel to resist foreign invasions in the 3rd century BC. The legend says that Tien Hoi was the place where fairies from the sky met to help King An Duong Vuong build the citadel.

However, work on the walls of the fortress was undone at night by spirits allied to the son of a previous king. They were led by a 1,000-year-old white chicken from a nearby mountain peak.King An Duong Vuong then asked the golden turtle to defeat the white chicken so the fairies could complete their work. The village was therefore named Tien Hoi (Fairy Meeting). Though it is just a legend, the villagers never raise white chickens.

In 1970, more than 80 artifacts of ancient Viet people, dating back more than 3,000 years, were found in the village. The artifacts indicated that at that time, Tien Hoi people lived by hunting, raising animals and growing rice. Some say that these people were mobilised to build Co Loa Temple.

There are still many historical relics in Tien Hoi village including the Tien Hoi communal house, the Holy Prosperity Pagoda built in 1774, and a temple dedicated to Marshal Cao Na, who rendered great services to the nation’s struggle against foreign invaders during King An Duong Vuong’s reins. After his death, Cao Na was honoured as the village genie. Before the August Revolution in 1945, people in Tien Hoi lived by growing potatoes and castor oil plants. Today, many new occupations exist to help the residents improve their living conditions.

"Since coming into existence, Tien Hoi village has experienced many ups and downs throughout its history," said Dang Trung Dao, head of Tien Hoi village. "In the past, Tien Hoi contributed greatly to the struggles for national liberation. Today, the village has changed dramatically, especially in the current renewal process but still maintains the cultural traditions of an ancient village, which was home to many outstanding scholars."

According to Mr Dao, in the last 10 years, the number of carpentry and construction jobs have increased in the village. Tien Hoi is also a main supplier of coal stoves for Hanoi and neighboring areas. These occupations have helped raise people’s livelihoods and many have become billionaires. Dozens of companies have been set up in the village generating jobs for hundreds of residents.

VOV - (29/08/2005)

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