2,000-year-old Bronze Sword Unearthed in China

Tombs, Treasures, and 2,000-year-old Bronze Sword Unearthed in China

(Read the article on one page)

Archaeologists in China have made a spectacular discovery at a construction site in Zhoukou City, Henan Province – a tomb complex containing 21 ancient tombs filled with treasures including a 2,000-year-old bronze sword.

According to China Daily , the discovery was made when archaeologists carried out a search for any cultural relics ahead of an infrastructure project in the city's Xiangcheng area.

Xinhuanet news reports that the age of the tombs span from the Warring States Period (475 – 221 BC) to the East Han Dynasty (25 – 220 AD). Nineteen of the tombs are earth pits, while another two are brick-chambered tombs.  Most of the tombs had been looted in the past, but five of the tombs remained intact.

Archaeologists uncovering relics in one of the newly-discovered tombs.

Archaeologists uncovering relics in one of the newly-discovered tombs. [Photo/IC]

Within the tombs researchers found numerous grave goods including jewelry, ceramics, utensils, tiles, and bronze wares. One of the more significant findings was a bronze sword that has been dated to around 2,000 years old. Research Han Yanzhen, a scholar with cultural heritage institute of Zhoukou City, explained that the sword was well preserved due to the soil conditions.

“The sword belonged to the tomb owner and was buried with him when he died,” reports China Daily. In addition, researchers found two bronze spears and a bronze dagger-axe.


The finding adds to another recent discovery of an ancient sword in China. Late last year, an 11-year-old boy was washing his hands in the Laozhoulin River in Gaoyou County, China, when he felt something hard and metallic. He pulled out the object and found that it was a rusty sword, later dated to around the time of the Shang and Zhou dynasties, more than 3,000 years ago, which is among the oldest swords ever recovered – the first bronze swords are believed to have first been developed in China around 3,200 years ago.

A bronze Shang dynasty sword.

A bronze Shang dynasty sword. Credit: Huhan Provincial Museum .


Archaeologists have said that they hope the new discovery will bring a greater understanding of the culture and customs between the Warring States Period and East Han Dynasty.

Featured image: A well-preserved bronze sword was unearthed in Zhoukou, Henan province. [Photo/IC]

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.

Human Origins

Ancient Technology

Roman glass (not the legendary flexible glass). Landesmuseum Württemberg, Stuttgart.
Imagine a glass you can bend and then watch it return to its original form. A glass that you drop but it doesn’t break. Stories say that an ancient Roman glassmaker had the technology to create a flexible glass, ‘vitrium flexile’, but a certain emperor decided the invention should not be.

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