Urbanist Hanoi

BackHeritage » Vietnam » [Photos] A Dao Mau 'Mother Goddess' Ritual in 1920s Nam Dinh

[Photos] A Dao Mau 'Mother Goddess' Ritual in 1920s Nam Dinh

Situated in Nam Dinh City, Phu Giay is considered the largest center of the Dao Mau 'Mother Goddess' religion across all Vietnam. There are more than 20 temples and mausoleums in the area dedicated to Dao Mau, an ancient and distinct Vietnamese folk religion. 

The following black-and-white shots, taken in the 1920s by an unknown French photographer, capture key moments of the famous Phu Giay Festival. What we see is a procession of the Mother Goddess Lieu Hanh, one of the Four Immortals worshiped by Vietnamese people in the Red River Delta.

Some claim the religion, which draws together fairly disparate beliefs and practices and includes spirit mediumship rituals, is more similar to a systematic goddess cult. Either way, the combination of Dao Mau and elements of Buddhism, along with other religion's ritualistic goddess worship, attracts many Vietnamese every year during the third month of the lunar calendar.

Take a look at the festival in the 1920s below:

[Photos via Flickr user manhhai]


Related Articles:

[Photos] 1885 Hanoi Revealed Through Sepia Prints, Sketches, Postcards and Maps

[Photos] The Two Sides of 1920s Hai Phong: Fancy Hotels and Seaside Shanties

[Photos] The People of 1880s Indochina Captured in a Series of Striking Portraits


Related Articles

in Vietnam

A Rare Look Inside the Hue Imperial Court in 1895 in Watercolor

'La cour de Hue' (The court of Hue) is a series of painting done by Nguyen Van Nhan in 1895, during the reign of Thanh Thai, emperor of the Nguyen Dynasty at the time.

in Vietnam

An Ancestral History of Northern Vietnam’s Railway Construction

We often see archival images of old Hanoi, but these photos are different - they are personal. The following shots, which come from a collection of five photo albums, are the only surviving record of ...

in Vietnam

New Proposals Suggest Repairing or Replacing Nam Dinh Cathedral With Replica

Back in May, a renovation plan to replace Bui Chu Cathedral in Nam Dinh Province with a newly built replica angered the public.

in Vietnam

[Maps] A Brief Cartographic History of Hai Phong From 1898 to 1968

Known today by the moniker "City of Red Flamboyant Trees," Hai Phong has always been one of Vietnam’s most prominent port cities ever since its establishment in 1888.

in Vietnam

[Photos] 16 Rare Images of 1900s Vietnam as Part of French Indochina

In a mishmash of sketches and grainy photographs, Vietnam’s landscapes in the 1900s feels almost surreal.

in Vietnam

[Photos] 18 Rare Photos of Northern and Central Vietnam in the Late 19th Century

During the 19th century, postcards were one of the most popular forms of media that connected Vietnam with the rest of the world.