20 Han Dynasty Tombs - Three Gorges Dam

20 Han Dynasty Tombs Found Near Three Gorges Dam

(Read the article on one page)

Archaeologists in the Fengdu region of China have discovered twenty tombs which date back more than 2000 years.   The tombs, which were found on the banks of the Yangtze River close to the Three Gorges Dam, contained 430 objects from ceramics to items in iron and bronze and will provide new insights into the funerary customs and social structure from the period of the Hans dynasty. 

The Three Gorges Dam is the world’s largest hydroelectric power station and has been attracting attention worldwide due to the massive rescue operation underway to save the area’s archaeological treasures before they are lost below the rising waters of the reservoir.

More than US$125 million has been allocated to fund the Three Gorges Relics Rescue Program, which has seen nearly 100 archaeological teams from more than 20 provinces descend on the region to protect and recover its historical sites and relics.   Already more than 1 million square metres have been excavated more than 50,000 valuable artifacts have been unearthed dating as far back as the Old Stone Age, up to 100,000 years ago.

Archaeological findings have included a host of city sites, settlements, graves, buildings, kilns and agricultural remains, and valuable relics recovered have ranged from stone reliefs used to decorate ancient tombs to bamboo writing slips, statues of Buddha and stone carvings erected in front of temples.

The latest discovery of twenty burial sites has revealed that there is plenty more yet to be uncovered in this archaeologically rich region, which is now recognised as the birthplace of Chinese civilization, but time is running out for the research teams as the waters are rising rapidly.

By April Holloway

Register to become part of our active community, get updates, receive a monthly newsletter, and enjoy the benefits and rewards of our member point system OR just post your comment below as a Guest.

Top New Stories

The excavation of the Oseberg Ship, Norway. 1904 - 1905.
In the autumn of 834 AD, two elderly women were buried together in the magnificent Oseberg ship discovered in 1903 near Tønsberg in Vestfold, Southeast Norway. Ever since the ship was excavated in 1904-1905, many theories have been put forward about who these women were. The objects they took with them to the grave may provide the answer to this Viking Age mystery.

Human Origins

Kalash girls with traditional clothing.
The Kalash (known also as the Kalasha) are an indigenous people living in what is today Pakistan. Although Pakistan is an Islamic Republic, with more than 95% of its population being adherents of Islam, the Kalash hold on to their own religious beliefs, along with their own identity, way of life, and language.

Our Mission

At Ancient Origins, we believe that one of the most important fields of knowledge we can pursue as human beings is our beginnings. And while some people may seem content with the story as it stands, our view is that there exists countless mysteries, scientific anomalies and surprising artifacts that have yet to be discovered and explained.

The goal of Ancient Origins is to highlight recent archaeological discoveries, peer-reviewed academic research and evidence, as well as offering alternative viewpoints and explanations of science, archaeology, mythology, religion and history around the globe.

We’re the only Pop Archaeology site combining scientific research with out-of-the-box perspectives.

By bringing together top experts and authors, this archaeology website explores lost civilizations, examines sacred writings, tours ancient places, investigates ancient discoveries and questions mysterious happenings. Our open community is dedicated to digging into the origins of our species on planet earth, and question wherever the discoveries might take us. We seek to retell the story of our beginnings. 

Ancient Image Galleries

View from the Castle Gate (Burgtor). (Public Domain)
Door surrounded by roots of Tetrameles nudiflora in the Khmer temple of Ta Phrom, Angkor temple complex, located today in Cambodia. (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Cable car in the Xihai (West Sea) Grand Canyon (CC BY-SA 4.0)
Next article