The White Horse Temple is the first temple built, since the introduction of Buddhism in China. The temple holds significant importance in the development and cultural exchanges of Chinese Buddhism in China's hisotry. It is heralded as "The Origin of Chinese Buddhism," and "the Number 1 Ancient Temple of China."
Legend has it that a senior Indian Buddhist missionary came to Luoyang to develop Buddhism in China, bringing with him a large number of Buddhist classics. Liu Zhuang, the Han emperor of that time, ordered the first Buddhist temple to be built in its traditional way, naming it White Horse Temple after the white horse that carried the Buddhist sutras and statues to China from a remote country which is current day Afghanistan.
The Toll of the White Horse Temple comes from a large bell hung high in the Great Buddha hall of the temple. It is believed that the melodiuos midnight toll on clear nights can be heard several kilometers away, lasting and floating in the night's quietness. In the dense cypress woods in the court near the Temple of Gate with an ancient classic style, there lie two famous tombs, in honor of the two Indian senior commissioners whose names read Jash Moton and Juvalen.