Cutrual Relics Bureau: Six reasons the tomb belonged to Cao Cao

15:43, December 29, 2009      

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Archaeologists also found 59 engraved stone plates logging the name and amount of the articles buried in the tomb. Seven of the plates logged weapons "often used by the king of Wei", or Cao Cao

On Dec. 27 of 2009, National Cultrual Relics Bureau made an announcement that an ancient tomb discovered in Anyang, Henan province was assured to be the tomb of Cao Cao, a renowned warlord and politician in the third century, after a year's excavation. There are 6 main reasons make archeologist believe the owner is him.

First: The scale of the tomb is quite large at nearly 60 meters long; the coffin chamber's form and structure are similar to known royal noble tombs of the Han and Wei dynasty, and this suits Cao Cao's identity; the tomb was not sealed by earth, which is similar to the description of "no seal and no trees" given in documents.

Second: The unearthed artifacts, portrait stones and other relics carry clear character of Han and Wei dynasty, in which Cao Cao lived.

Third: The location of the tomb is exactly the same as recorded in documents. According to relevant history books, Cao Cao died in Jan. 220AD, and his body was escorted back to Ye City in February before being buried at Gao Ling. Gao Ling was at the west of "Xi Menbao's Temple". In addition, in another document unearthed in 1998, the location of Cao Cao's tomb was clearly points to this spot.

Fourth: According to Cao Cao's will he was buried with no precious jewels, instead wearing only normal clothes. What we found in the tomb has exactly verified this point: although the tomb chamber is quite large in scale, the decoration is simple with no murals; weapons, a stone pillow and other things can all be proved as daily tools thanks to the words on them; the delicate jades were all his daily wearing.

Fifth: The stone memorial tablet and pillow, which were carved with the characters "Wei Wu Wang (魏武王)", are the most conclusive evidence for the identity of the tomb's owner. As we know, Cao Cao died with the title "Wei Wang (魏王)", and his son added his title -"Wu Hang Di (武皇帝)". So the name carved on the stones was how Cao Cao would have been addressed at the time.

Sixth: Archeologists found a pair of bones belonging to a man, who died in his 60s, approximately. As history records, Cao Cao died at 66 years old.

By People's Daily Online
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