I know that "underground palace" can be a translation of "地宮", but I'm not too sure on the "correct" translation.

Seeing some pictures on baike, "underground palace" doesn't really seem to fit what the pictures depict.

From what I see, I think that something like "underground maze" would suit it better, stemming from "迷宮". However, with the English translation of "underground palace", should the "palace" then not be taken literally as a "palace"? I'm a bit confused since from the pictures, "地宮" seems to be more like an "underground tomb" than a "palace".

  • 迷宮 "underground maze" is labyrinth – user6065 Sep 2 '15 at 16:55
  • It depends on the contexts. – Henry HO Sep 3 '15 at 14:38

Without the context its kind of hard to know which definition you're looking for, but Oxford gives us two definitions with explanations:


1 地下陵墓 tomb chamber

Underground tomb/mausoleum

2 地下藏经室 underground shrine housing Buddhist relics

Buddhist sutras collection room


how about tomb palace? it is indeed a tomb


If you talk about games there are many games named that as "Dungeon".


If we go along the definition found in the Baike link you provided:


then we could probably use "burial chamber" as used in similar structures inside a pyramid.

Sketch showing pyramid interior structure: http://www.ancient-egypt.org/_v3d/topography/giza/khefren/map3d.gif

That said, it seems to me that the literal translation of "underground palace" is a valid and quite poetic rendering in English and might be better in certain contexts.


I think that crypt is what you want.

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