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Who is Marquis Yi Zeng?

An exhibition of Chinese archaeological treasures from the tomb of the Marquis Yi of Zeng, dating from 433 B.C.E. The tomb is one of the most famous Chinese excavations of the late 1970s containing over a hundred musical instruments including an extraordinary set of 65 bronze bells. The People's Liberation Army accidentally discovered the tomb in 1977 while destroying a hill to build a factory at Leigudun. The tomb was constructed of large wooden timbers and covers an area of 220 square meters. The tomb is divided into four separate chambers. The tomb was laid out like an underground palace with four chambers filled with musical instruments, with ritual vessels, bronze animal figures, chariots, weapons and the coffins of the Marquis and his 21 concubines, women musicians and dancers. The richness of the artefacts and their antiquity certainly convey an overwhelming sense of dynastic power and wealth. Further aerial view showing the four chambers of the tomb. Central chamber: bells/instruments/ritual vessels; West: 13 coffins of women musicians/dancers; East: double coffin of the Marquis and coffins of his eight concubines; North: Armoury, chariots and weapons. The tomb is like a Chinese-box structure with its components set one inside the other: coffins inside coffins, inside chambers within an underground palace that is itself wrapped in inner and outer layers. The eastern chamber contained the tomb of Marquis Yi, who was buried in a wooden lacquer coffin nested inside a larger lacquer coffin. This chamber also contained eight other coffins that held the remains of eight women. The western chamber contained thirteen coffins that held the remains of thirteen other women. The central chamber is the largest, and contained a large ensemble of ritual musical instruments, including a set of 65 bianzhong (bronze bells).

Posted on 2013-02-14 23:26:44

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Great! If this time I traveled to China, I would like to go and see it from near. Where is this museum located? I am crazy about archaeology. [em3]

2013-02-14 23:26:44

Nice post.  Why he killed the women and dancers with himself? It has a story?

2013-02-14 23:26:44