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Shangcun ling [Shang-ts’un ling]locked

  • Li Liu

Extract

[Shang-ts’un ling]

Site near Sanmenxia in northern Henan Province, China. A cemetery for the nobility of the state of Guo (annexed by the state of Chu in 655 bc) was excavated here in 1956–7 and dated to a period ranging from the late part of the Western Zhou (c. 1050–771 bc) to the early part of the Spring and Autumn period (722–481 bc). The excavation yielded 234 tombs, three horse-and-chariot burials and one horse burial. The grave goods include ceramic, bronze, stone and jade objects. Some 181 bronze ritual objects were unearthed, including ding, li, xian, gui, hu, he, pan and yi vessels (for illustrations of these types see China, fig.), which were decorated with various motifs such as taotie (animal-masks; see China, People’s Republic of, §VII, 3, (ii), (a)), kui (mythical animals), panlong (intertwined dragons), fish and birds. A large number of bronze weapons, tools and chariot parts were also found. Other grave goods include jade and precious-stone necklaces and earrings, lacquerware, musical instruments, and three bronze mirrors with dragon, deer and bird designs. Four of the bronzes bear inscriptions including the character ‘Guo’. Some of the chariots, made of wood and painted, are well preserved, and illustrate the range of types that had developed by this time. New large tombs were discovered at Shangcun ling in the 1990s....

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