Huge ancient stone murals discovered in central China

Share This Post

Huge ancient stone murals discovered in central China
Photo taken on Sept. 21, 2022 shows part of a stone mural discovered in the Zhouqiao relics site in Kaifeng City, central China's Henan Province. (Xinhua/Li An)

Two stone murals from the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127) have been unearthed in central China's Henan Province, which are the largest of their kind ever found in the country, archaeologists said Wednesday.

The murals, discovered in the Zhouqiao relics site in Kaifeng City, are symmetrically distributed along the northern and southern banks at the east side of the Zhouqiao Bridge.

The murals are 3.3 meters in height, and it has been revealed that the excavated length of the south bank mural is 23.2 meters, while that of the northern one is 21.2 meters.

The stone murals are engraved with auspicious patterns of traditional Chinese culture such as seahorses, flying cranes and clouds.

Further excavation and cleanup work is still in progress, said Zhou Runshan, head of the excavation project, adding that the total length of a single mural is presumed to be about 30 meters.

It is estimated that the total length of the stone murals is expected to reach about 100 meters and the total carved area will reach around 400 square meters upon complete excavation of the murals on both east and west sides of the bridge, Zhou added.

"In terms of scale, subject and style, the stone murals can represent the highest standards of the stonework system and the highest level of carving techniques during the Northern Song Dynasty," said Zheng Yan, a professor at Peking University's School of Arts.

"It is an important discovery that enriches and rewrites the art history of the Song Dynasty," he added.

Zhouqiao Bridge was built between 780 and 783 in the Tang Dynasty (618-907) across the Grand Canal, a vast waterway connecting the northern and southern parts of China. It was a landmark structure in the central axis of Kaifeng City and was buried in 1642 by mud and sand due to the flooding of the Yellow River. Archaeological excavation of the Zhouqiao site was launched in 2018.

So far, a total of 4,400 square meters of the site have been excavated, and 117 sites of remains and ruins have been found. 

Follow on Twitter and Facebook to join the conversation.
ChinaNews App Download

Related Posts

Starry nights on stage

From popular children's choir to Peking Opera, cultural carnival promises a surge of nostalgia as the People's Republic of China celebrates its anniversary.

Upcoming documentary show presents a rich 'Bouquet' of Chinese civilization

Within just five minutes, the extent and scope of Chinese culture is given a vivid presentation in China Bouquet, a bilingual documentary which will be for viewing on several online platforms.

Tasty tradition is sweet success for culture

Seen from afar, they are decorative polychromatic flowers, placed front and center at dining tables to feast the eyes.

High tech and art merge in Nanjing exhibition

The ongoing exhibition In the Line of Flight, for Possible Worlds at Deji Art Museum in Nanjing, Jiangsu province, has attracted lots of visitors by offering them a cool experience by mixing art and technology.

​Exhibition reviews development of ancient Chinese paintings

Editor's note: A collection of more than 1,700 copies of Chinese paintings and related calligraphy works from the Han Dynasty (202 B.C.- A.D. 220) to the Qing Dynasty (1636-1912) are currently on display at the National Museum of China in Beijing. 

Billboard expands its coverage in China’s market

As Billboard expands in Asia, Billboard China, a new edition, has been launched.Mike Van, who was named the new president of Billboard this May, said in an interview with China Daily that, "Billboard is further expanding its coverage in one of the biggest music markets in the world" and the move will be "bringing global pop music to Chinese fans and expose Chinese artists and music to an international audience".
- Advertisement -spot_img