The original name of Twin Pagoda Temple is Yongzuo Temple; it was first built in the period of Wanli of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).
Two pagodas stand in this temple, making it more magnificent. Both of the pagodas stand straight like two pens, so it also gains the name of “Twin Pagoda of Pen”. Actually, the two pagodas are not built at the same time; the southeast pagoda is earlier than the northwest tower. The distance between the two pagodas are 60 meters, means complete and endless in accordance of Mijiao’s theory. Each of the pagodas is made entirely of bricks and stone. There is only one piece of wood in each floor of its eave. The techniques of the construction are exquisite and proficient. Looking from a distance, the height of the two pagodas are just the same and the two styles is very harmonious. Only close to the pagodas, can people see the differences of the two pagodas. The southeast pagoda is made of brick; the sculptures in the pagoda are elegant and refined and the diameter of the body of the pagoda is the same. So this pagoda is tall and straight. While the brim of the northwest pagoda is made of colored glaze, the sculpture is refined and delicate. The perimeter of the body of this pagoda vary greatly, thus it looks graceful and pretty.
Yongzuo Temple lies below the pagodas, as old as the older pagoda. Yongzuo means praying for bliss from the Buddha. People call Yongzuo Temple Twin Pagoda Temple for the reason of the two pagodas. The main architectures of Yongzuo Temple are Daxiong Hall, Sansheng Pavilion and Gubei Corridor. Besides, there is famous Peony Garden in Yongzuo Temple.
Daxiong Hall and Sansheng Pavilion are old-world and beautiful. They are splendid works of the wooden architectures of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). The stele corridor in the temple congregates various stone sculptures of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and the Qing Dynasty (1636-1912); it is an ideal place for appreciating the Chinese calligraphy. “Only the peony is the most beautiful flower in the country. When the peony blossom out, it shocks the whole capital”. Although the peony in Taiyuan can not be compared with the peony in Luoyang and Heze, the peonies in the Twin Pagoda Temple come through three hundred years’ hardships; they remain in their full blossom, flamboyant, fragrant and easy on the eyes. Wandering in the garden, it just likes walking into a picture, making people ecstatic and relaxing.