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Stone for the deity Houtu (Chinese:后土之) at the burial site of Gia Long, former emperor of Vietnam.

Houtu (Chinese:后土), also Hou Tu or Hou Tu Niang Niang (Chinese 厚 土 娘 娘), in Chinese mythology, is the deity of the earth and soil. Houtu is of ambiguous gender.[1]

Han Wudi[edit]

Houtu was worshiped by Emperor Wu of Han in 113 BC.[2]

Yellow River Map[edit]

Houtu is according to some stories featured in the mythology of the Great Flood of China: Yu did not do such a great job of channeling the Yellow River into the sea, dredging the wrong way. Sacred Mother Houtu then made the Yellow River Map, and sent one of her divine messenger birds to tell Yu what to do; specifically, that he should open a channel to the east, to allow the right drainage.[3]


  1. ^ Yang, 135
  2. ^ "Hou Tu - MSN Encarta". MSN Encarta. MSN. Archived from the original on 2009-10-31. Retrieved 10 November 2008. 
  3. ^ Yang, 137

Works cited[edit]

  • Yang, Lihui, et al. (2005). Handbook of Chinese Mythology. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-533263-6

See also[edit]