Human Sacrifices Discovered at Torched Shang Dynasty City Huanbei (The Independent)
A team of researchers excavating a 3,300 year old Shang Dynasty palace-temple complex at the ancient city of Huanbei have discovered that it was burned down after only 50 years of use by the city’s own rulers.
The complex was stripped of all its goods before being destroyed, but a large number of human sacrifices were left behind, with 40 discovered in one building alone.
Professor Zhichun Jing, of the University of British Columbia, has been working with colleagues in China to excavate and study Huanbei, which is a large site, slightly bigger than New York’s Central Park. The palace-temple complex was at the centre of Huanbei, and would have had a population of at least 10,000 people. [continue reading]
Tomb of Ancient Chinese General Excavated (China.org.cn)
Photo taken on May 12, 2010 shows the excavation site of the tomb of Cao Xiu, a noted general from the Three Kingdoms period (220-280 A.D.) in Mangshan of Luoyang City, central China’s Henan Province. Archaeologists of Henan provincial cultural heritage bureau confirmed that they have founded the tomb of Cao Xiu during the tomb excavation in Mengjin County of Luoyang City at a press conference on Monday. [see photos]
10,000-year-old Shells Unearthed from China Construction Site (Xinhua)
Construction workers have unearthed more than a dozen sea shells dating back 10,000 years — a key archaeology discovery — at the hi-tech zone in northern China’s industrial city of Tianjin, archaeologists said.
The shells were found 17 meters underground earlier this month.
The city’s geological survey and research institute Thursday confirmed the shells were a major discovery. [continue reading]
A Grave Robber’s World (China.org.cn)
Slim and short, a young man squatted behind a pile of porcelain vases and wooed his customers. His grimy fingernails, soiled skin and the yellowish freckles on his wrists provided a clue to his vocation – grave robber.
Dong Mu (alias) is one of hundreds of antique dealers who convene at Baoguo Temple in Beijing each Thursday to sell their merchandise. Without any hint of shame, but rather as a selling point, Dong boasts that he himself dug out the items from graves.
Grave robbers like Dong wander the countryside and cities stealing from the dead, and hoping to make a fortune. Experts estimate 100,000 grave robbers could be roaming the country. [continue reading]
Taiwan Needs a National Aboriginal Museum (Taipei Times)
If Taiwan is a culturally diverse country, then how is that reflected in our museums? The National Palace Museum in Taipei remains the main portal for those who want to learn about Chinese culture in Taiwan. The only Taiwanese museum dedicated specifically to Aboriginal culture is the Cultural Park Bureau of the Cabinet’s Council of Indigenous Peoples. Its status is uncertain, it lacks research experts and its permanent exhibitions are not being updated. In other words, it falls far short of the standard we have a right to expect from a national museum of Aborigines.
Aside from the National Palace Museum, the highest-ranking national museums in Taiwan are the National Museum of History in Taipei, the National Museum of Natural Science in Taichung, the National Science and Technology Museum in Kaohsiung, the National Museum of Marine Biology and Aquarium in Pingtung and the National Museum of Prehistory in Taitung. The Museum of Prehistory is the highest-ranking museum in Taiwan dedicated to prehistoric research, Aborigines and the connection between prehistory, Aborigines and Austronesia. Although it is charged with promoting balanced cultural development in eastern Taiwan and in the nation’s remote regions, the Museum of Prehistory has the smallest staff, even though Aborigines make up a majority of residents in those areas. [continue reading]
Envoys Offer Globalizing Tips on Baekje Bash (JoongAng Daily)
For 55 years, South Chung-cheong’s Baekje Culture Festival has been a modest regional celebration of one of Korea’s ancient three kingdoms. But this year, the local government is taking it international, running activities to attract foreign visitors to the event from Sept. 18 to Oct. 17 in the district of Buyeo and city of Gongju.
With it comes a new name, the 2010 Great Baekje World Festival.
Foreign ambassadors to Korea from 10 countries visited Buyeo and Gongju on Saturday and Sunday with 100 members of a group called the Korea Tourism Supporters. [continue reading]
Joseon-era Mummy Found at Construction Site (JoongAng Daily)
A mummy estimated to be about 500 years old was recently unearthed at a construction site on the outskirts of Seoul, a research institute said yesterday.
The 154-centimeter (5-foot) tall female mummy was discovered early last month at an industrial complex being built in Osan, some 55 kilometers south of Seoul, by a group of scholars and researchers from the Seokyeong Cultural Properties Research Institute. [continue reading]