93 Warring States Period to Han Dynasty tombs found in Hebei

16:46, May 27, 2010      

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Archeological teams unearthed 93 tombs from China's Warring States Period to the Han Dynasty at the Zhangduo Ruins in Neiqiu of Xingtai, Hebei. (The Warring States period covers the period from 475 B.C. to the unification of China under the Qin Dynasty in 221 B.C.) Earlier, two Han Dynasty(206 B.C.–220 A.D.) kiln sites and 104 Warring States period to Han Dynasty tombs were unearthed.

The 93 tombs found in the south of Zhangduo Village are divided into Number One and Two cemeteries. There are 42 tombs in the Number One Cemetery and 51 tombs in the Number Two Cemetery. Funerary objects unearthed totaled more than 260 pieces, including spade-shaped coins, bronze belt hooks, brass bells, tripods, clay workshops, jars, pots, cups and bowls.

The structure of tombs during the Warring States period was generally funnel-shaped and rarely belonged to earth-shaft graves. The burial form of these tombs was primarily under the unique burial customs of the Qin people with the skeletons of the dead maintaining the fetal position. Objects buried with the dead were few and only some clay tripods, jars, stemmed bowls and plates were found in certain graves.

During the western Han period, there were two types of tombs, earth-shaft graves and brick-chambered graves, and funerary utensils were generally similar with that of the Warring States period, but had some changes. For instance, the graves were surrounded by a wall of bricks and covered by wooden boards to replace previous wooden chambers.

In the earth-shaft graves, funerary objects were more plentiful than that of the Warring States period. The objects were mainly jars and there were also cups and pots in some graves, generally placed in front of the grave occupant's head. In the brick-chambered graves, funerary objects were generally composed of tripods, pots, boxes and jars and there were also figurines and basins in certain graves.

The Archeological Team for the South-to-North Water Diversion Project under Xingtai Municipal Cultural Relics Management Office initiated the excavation at the Number Two site in 2009 and unearthed two Han Dynasty kiln sites and 104 Warring States period-Han Dynasty tombs.

By People's Daily Online
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