After four years of excavation work at the Longmen Grottoes (龙门石窟) in Henan Province, the largest excavation to be carried out at this UNESCO World Heritage-listed site since 1949, archaeologists report that their work at the Leigutai grotto complex is drawing to an end. During the past four years, over 1,900 artefacts have been excavated from the caves and restored by a team of archaeologists and researchers from…
As some of you already know, I've been hinting at a blog re-branding for a couple of weeks now. The Amateur Archaeologist has been a wonderful blog to work on but I felt it lacked any real focus. So I'd like to announce my new blog, China Heritage Watch.
China Heritage Watch will focus on Chinese archaeology and cultural heritage issues in modern-day China but I also plan to continue sharing links to educational resources for fellow amateur (and professional) archaeologists and lifelong learners.
Time for another portion of Eye on East Asia’s Tasty Links!
- Aeri’s Kitchen - Aeri shares her recipe for Gangnam style carbonara tteokbokki.
- Easy Korean Food - Luna shares some simple but tasty recipes for Korean side dishes (banchan).
- Haikugirl’s Japan - Ali posts her monthly recipe for September: prawn ramen.
- Hiroyuki’s Blog - Hiroyuki shares his award-winning recipe for enoki hot cakes.
- Humble Bean - Azusa posts a video recipe for hearty miso soup.
- Kimchi Mom - Amy prepares some steamed shisito peppers (kkwarigochu muchim).
- Korean Bapsang - Hyosun shows you how to make your own radish water kimchi (dongchimi) to enjoy in the winter months.
- Life on Nanchang Lu - Fiona lists her ten must-try Uyghur foods.
- Out to Lunch - Carolyn makes Cantonese-style coconut and lotus moon cakes.
- PRC & Me - Matthew tucks into his first moon cake of the year.
- Sinosplice - John talks about the current state of moon cake commercialism in Shanghai.
- The View From Over Here - The author attends the Royal Court and Aristocrat Food Festival (궁중과 사대부가의 전통음식축제) at Uihyeongung Palace.
- With Pork Throat - EEW explains why you shouldn’t pass up the opportunity to try local street food during your travels.
That’s all for this week. The next edition of Tasty Links will be posted on the blog on Saturday 6th October 2012.
- Ask a Korean - The author gives in and shares his thoughts on Psy’s hit song Gangnam Style.
- Aussie on the Izu - The author attends some sumo matches at Tokyo’s Ryogoku Stadium.
- Bamboo Butterfly - Rhonda shares her short and sweet Taipei travel guide.
- Country Fried Egg Roll - The Left Brain talks about his first experience of eating snake.
- Dale’s Korean Temple Adventures - Dale visits the beautiful Okcheonsa Temple in Goseong.
- Fili’s World - Fili visits Taipei’s Puppetry Art Centre.
- From Korea With Love - Alex undergoes a painful ordeal in Daegu.
- From Our Ger - Susie admires the spectacular autumn colours of the Mongolian countryside.
- Good & Bad Japan - The author writes about the woes of clothes shopping in Japan.
- Green Shinto - John attends a festival at the Shimogamo shrine in Kyoto.
- Hermit Hideaways - Gregory hikes along the trails of Cheonggyesan.
- Korean Modern Literature in Translation - Charles reviews the anthology Words of Review, a collection of stories by three female Korean writers.
- Life on Nanchang Lu - Fiona shares some photos of the stunning mountains and deserts of Xinjiang.
- Mark’s China Blog - Mark shares his thoughts on Ang Lee’s controversial 2007 film Lust, Caution.
- Marshmallow Sensei - Matt writes about how his height could be his undoing during an earthquake.
- More Glimpses of Unfamiliar Japan - The author attends this year’s Kawamoto Kagura competition.
- My Korean Corner - Dia lists her favourite sounds of Korea.
- Seeing Red in China - Hannah explains why she has no female Chinese friends.
- Sinoglot - Kellen talks about the issue of simplified characters in Taiwan.
- This Japanese Life - Eryk gets tangled up in red tape when he loses his Japanese ID card.
- Tofugu - Hashi talks about how stars are depicted in Japanese culture.
- Travel Wire Asia - Chris shares 8 dirty secrets about Korean love motels.
- Webs of Significance - YTSL explores the temples and bamboo groves of East Kamakura.
That’s all for this week. The next Eye on East Asia Blog Round-up will be posted on Wednesday 3rd October 2012.
If you’re looking for a way to improve your Mandarin skills and learn more about Chinese culture and society at the same time, Thinking Chinese may be the website for you. It’s updated regularly, comprehensive, relevant and, best of all, it’s free!
According to the site’s authors, Thinking Chinese is “a place where modern China is exposed to the foreign reader in an innovative and revealing manner”. Visitors to the website will find a wide range of language learning resources at their disposal, such as bilingual articles on a variety of topics, a thematic dictionary of Chinese idioms, a section devoted to modern Chinese slang, and some fun puzzles that will help you get to grips with Chinese radicals, characters and vocabulary. Furthermore, there are dozens of articles on popular culture, contemporary Chinese society, online trends, and business culture which will give readers an insight into the Chinese mind.
There are no audio or video resources on this site and the thematic dictionary would be far more effective if the authors had included some example sentences to demonstrate how the idioms and slang are used, but, all in all, Thinking Chinese is an excellent resource for anyone who wishes to boost their reading skills and learn more about China and its people. Add it to your bookmarks today!
Catalogue of Lost Chinese Artifacts on Display in Beijing (Global Times)
A catalogue which lists over 15,000 artefacts that were stolen during the Sino-Japanese wars and the Japanese occupation of China is currently on display at the Palace Museum in Beijing. Items listed in the catalogue include oracle bones, books, jade pieces, and traditional paintings, and heritage workers have hoped that the list will aid in the identification and repatriation of the missing artefacts.
Radical Overhaul at Forbidden City? (People’s Daily Online)
Beijing officials have put forward a proposal to move imperial artworks and antiquities out of the Forbidden City in a bid to alleviate overcrowding during peak season and public holidays. Tens of thousands of people visit the World Heritage Site each day and city officials believe that moving the antiquities into a new, purpose-built museum would help limit damage to the palace buildings. Some heritage experts disagree with the proposed measures and argue that the antiquities could suffer irreparable damage during relocation and would lose their cultural significance and historical value if they were moved out of their original setting.
Buddha Hall Oldest in China (Global Times)
Archaeologists are currently trying to determine if Leiyin Cave in Beijing’s Yunju Temple is the oldest Buddha hall in China. Artefacts unearthed at the site are believed to date back to the early 7th century and it is thought that the research conducted at the cave has advanced the historical record of Buddha halls by two centuries.
Laser surveys of the Mozu and Furuichi kofun tomb clusters in Osaka Prefecture have revealed a previously undetected dirt platform at the site of Emperor Ojin’s kofun tomb in the city of Habikino. The platform is 22 metres long, 16 metres wide and 3 metres high and archaeologists believe it may conceal a second burial site. Further research will reveal the actual purpose of the structure.
Are you feeling hungry for this week’s edition of Eye on East Asia’s Tasty Links?
- Appetite for China - Diana shares her recipe for tomato egg drop soup.
- Beyond Kimchee - Holly shows you how you can make gluten-free “nude” pork and cabbage dumplings.
- Fuchsia Dunlop - Fuchsia posts a link to an interview she did for the website Talking of Food.
- Humble Bean - Azusa posts a video which shows you how to make your own kombu and katsuo dashi.
- Japanese Cuisine - Yukari prepares a dish close to her heart, anago chirashizushi (穴子ちらし寿司).
- Korean Bapsang - Hyosun attends the 4th International Kimchi Conference in Washington D.C.
- Life on Nanchang Lu - Fiona spends a day getting to know the bakers of Kashgar and learns how to make delicious Uyghur naan bread.
- Little Corner of Mine - The author shares a recipe for vegetables with wood ear (木耳) fungus.
- Maangchi - Maangchi makes braised saury, or kkongchijorim (꽁치조림).
- Shizuoka Gourmet - Robert cooks up some tasty kabocha (カボチャ) pancakes.
- Taiwan Xifu - Serina writes about xibing (喜餅), wedding cake packages that are normally given to friends and relatives at Taiwanese weddings.
- American in North Korea - Joseph shares his photos of his visit to the Dongbong Co-operative Farm.
- Chengdu Living - Sascha explains why we shouldn’t believe the hype surrounding the anti-Japanese protests in China.
- Country Fried Egg Roll - The author lists some of the places in Shenyang that sell American and other imported groceries.
- Dale’s Korean Temple Adventures - Dale visits the colourful Eungseoksa Temple in Jinju.
- Dru’s Misadventures - Dru returns to Hiroshima.
- Fili’s World - Fili talks about the little-known Museum of Drinking Water in Taipei’s Water Park.
- Fluent Flix - Ben interviews Greg Bell, Chinese learner and author of the blog En Route to Fluency.
- Hacking Chinese - Olle lists 12 songs that are excellent for learning Chinese and expanding your horizons.
- Into the Middle Kingdom - Matthew writes about his visit to the Chiu Gompa Monastery in Western Tibet last May.
- Journey to Hong Kong - Anna revisits the charming fishing village of Tai O on Lantau Island.
- Life & Times in China - JZ talks about the highs and lows of his first week as a student in China.
- More Glimpses of Unfamiliar Japan - The author seeks out onigawara “demon tiles” in Shikoku.
- My Kafkaesque Life - The author compiles a list of parks in Taipei.
- Oh Happy Dae - Janelle explores the Hongdae Free Market.
- Rurousha - The author talks about Japanese “fox weddings” (狐の嫁入り).
- Shu Flies - Catherine celebrates the 5th anniversary of her move to Taiwan and writes about the 10 things she’s learnt in that time.
- Sinoglot - Randy writes about Zhu Haijuan, a native Mongolian speaker, and what it’s like to grow up as a Mongolian speaker in Jilin Province.
- Tales From Hebei - Kelly finds that she’s increasingly unsurprised by all the ridiculous things that go on around her.
- Tea Leaf Nation - Eddie shares 15 feel-good internet stories from China.
- The Wild East - Steven lists 5 of Taiwan’s top tourist attractions.
- Tofugu - John writes about dragons in traditional Japanese culture.
- Unbrave Girl - Sally talks about the 5 things she kind of liked about Macau.
- Webs of Significance - YTSL shares some beautiful photos taken of Hakone’s Lake Ashi.
- Zooming Japan - Jasmine visits Japan’s “Cat Island”, Tashirojima (田代島).
The folks over at Neo Mammalian Studios have put together an infographic which celebrates the insane glory that is “Gangnam Style”, the wacky viral hit by South Korean rapper Psy (real name: Park Jaesang, 박재상). I have to admit that I only got around to watching this video this week, despite the fact that it has been featured on countless TV shows and covered by numerous artists, including the group Maroon 5 and singer Nelly Furtado. My bad…
The infographic below was created when the song hit 100 million views on Youtube. At the time of writing this blog post, it had been viewed a staggering 214, 714, 667 times worldwide, making it one of the most viewed music videos on Youtube this year.
(Infographic found via 9Gag).
Artefacts unearthed from the Jonoyama burial mound near the city of Tainai (胎内) in Japan’s Niigata Prefecture (新潟県) have led archaeologists to conclude that the Yamato Kingdom’s cultural and political influence did in fact reach as far as the Tōhoku region (東北地方) as early as the fourth century AD. Until recently, scholars believed that the northern extent of the Yamato Kingdom’s influence was the Noto Peninsula (能登半島) in Ishikawa Prefecture (石川県). However, these latest findings are being taken as proof that the kingom’s sphere of influence not only stretched almost 250 kilometres further north than previously believed but it also expanded into the Tōhoku region nearly three centuries earlier than originally thought.
Items excavated from the burial mound include a bronze mirror, a bow, a lacquered yuki (靫) quiver, comma-shaped magatama beads (勾玉), a long sword and traces of a wooden boat-shaped coffin. Many of the artefacts bear remarkable similarities with grave goods found in burial mounds in the central Kinki region (近畿地方), leading archaeologists to believe that the burial mound in Tainai may be the grave of a person who had close ties with the Yamato Kingdom.