Home News New progress has been made in the archaeological excavation of the Sanxingdui site. Nearly 13,000 cultural relics were unearthed from 6 sacrificial pits_Ivory_Bronze_Protection

New progress has been made in the archaeological excavation of the Sanxingdui site. Nearly 13,000 cultural relics were unearthed from 6 sacrificial pits_Ivory_Bronze_Protection

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New progress has been made in the archaeological excavation of the Sanxingdui site. Nearly 13,000 cultural relics were unearthed from 6 sacrificial pits_Ivory_Bronze_Protection

Original title: New progress has been made in the archaeological excavation of the Sanxingdui site. Nearly 13,000 cultural relics have been unearthed from 6 sacrificial pits

Back-shaped grid-shaped device, bronze-topped dragon-shaped decoration, three-hole jade bi-shaped device, bronze head with golden mask, bronze statue with snake body on top, bronze altar, bronze giant beast, bronze dragon… On June 13, in Sanxingdui At the news briefing on the staged results of archaeological excavations at the site, Ran Honglin, director and executive leader of the Sanxingdui Institute of Archaeology, introduced that new discoveries have been made in sacrifice pits No. 7 and 8, which are in the process of extracting buried objects.

K7 Back Grid

K7 bronze crown with dragon ornament

K7 three-hole jade bi-shaped device

K8 bronze altar

K8 bronze dragon

Nearly 13,000 cultural relics unearthed from 6 sacrificial pits

Since 2020, archaeologists have conducted archaeological excavations on 6 sacrificial pits (K3, K4, K5, K6, K7, K8) newly discovered in Sanxingdui. As of May 2022, K3, K4, K5, and K6 have completed field excavations Among them, K3 and K4 are in the sorting stage, K5 and K6 are carrying out laboratory archaeological cleaning, and K7 and K8 are in the stage of extracting buried cultural relics.

6 new pits open directly under the accumulation layer of the Song Dynasty, among which K6 breaks K7.

The plane shape of the sacrificial pit can be divided into three categories: wide rectangle, narrow rectangle and approximate square. K8 has the largest area, about 19 square meters, while K5 and K6 are only 3.5 square meters and 4.1 square meters respectively, which are very small. The larger the area, the deeper the depth. K3 and K8 are the deepest, with a depth of more than 2 meters, and K5 is the shallowest, with a depth of only about 50 cm. All “sacrificial pits” are not oriented in the north-south direction, and the long axis direction is roughly northeast-southwest (K1, K2, K3, K4, K5) or northwest-southeast (K6, K7, K8).

The buried accumulation of each pit, except that K5 and K6 have only one layer of buried cultural relics under the filling accumulation. The rest of the pits are relatively simple with K7, burying ivory and flake-shaped gold, bronze and jade objects directly under the filling. K3 and K4 have a layer of ash between the ivory accumulation and the filling accumulation. However, the ashes of K4 are all over the pit, while the ash layer of K3 is only distributed in the northeast of the pit.

According to Ran Honglin, the accumulation of K8 is the most complicated. First, many bronze utensils of different sizes and textures are buried, then a large amount of ivory is buried, and then the south and north sides are filled with yellow-brown silt soil mixed with braised clay, and then covered with The whole pit is filled with ashes, and then filled with yellow-brown silt soil mixed with large pieces of red-burned soil and “stone chime” fragments, and finally filled with soil for burial. There is no clear boundary between the different buried accumulation layers of the above-mentioned large pits, and some ivory is actually mixed with various buried cultural relics, and there are several bronze utensils in K3 that were obviously buried after the ivory was buried in the pit. The ashes of K3, K4 and K8 are not simple, including burning soil particles and fragments and components of many small cultural relics or large cultural relics. There are silk fabrics on the surface of the bronze unearthed in K3

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There are silk fabrics on the surface of the bronze unearthed in K3

K4 Burial Situation

K5 ivory carving

K6 bottom plate gray and cinnabar

Burial of K7

Burial of K8

A total of nearly 13,000 numbered cultural relics were unearthed from the 6 pits, including 3,155 relatively complete cultural relics.

1,293 pieces were unearthed in K3, including 764 pieces of bronze, 104 pieces of gold, 207 pieces of jade, 88 pieces of stone, 11 pieces of pottery, 104 pieces of ivory and 15 pieces of others.

79 pieces were unearthed in K4, including 21 pieces of bronze, 9 pieces of jade, 2 pieces of pottery, and 47 pieces of ivory.

K5 extracted 23 pieces, 2 bronze pieces, 19 gold pieces, and 2 jade pieces.

Only two jade wares were unearthed in K6.

706 pieces were unearthed in K7, including 383 bronzes, 52 golds, 140 jades, 1 stone, 62 ivory and 68 others.

1052 pieces were unearthed from K8, including 68 bronzes, 368 golds, 205 jades, 34 stone and 377 ivory.

The more typical cultural relics include K3 gold mask, bronze-topped figure kneeling and sitting, bronze-topped altar figure, bronze-topped Zunren head, bronze small standing figure with pointed hat, bronze head with standing crown, bronze climbing dragon cover, bronze coil dragon Cover, large bronze mask, bronze round mouth square statue, bronze animal head with bird round statue, bronze small divine beast, divine tree pattern jade cong, engraved jade pedestal.

K4’s bronze statue of a kneeling with his head turned.

K5’s gold mask, bird-shaped gold ornaments, ivory carvings.

K6 jade knife, wooden box.

K7’s tortoise-shaped grid-shaped device, bronze-topped dragon-shaped decoration, and three-hole jade bi-shaped device.

K8’s bronze head with gold mask, bronze figure with snake body on top, bronze altar, bronze giant mythical beast, bronze dragon, bronze figure standing in skirt, bronze standing figure wearing ivory, bronze pig-nosed dragon, bronze temple cover, stone chime and so on.

The cleaning and restoration of cultural relics are synchronized with scientific protection research

“With the continuous excavation of the archaeological site, the cleaning and protection of the unearthed cultural relics are also being carried out simultaneously.” said Xie Zhenbin, chief engineer of the Sichuan Provincial Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology.

Starting from the archaeological excavation in Sanxingdui, the Sichuan Provincial Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology has determined the working concept of “project presupposition, protection synchronization, multi-disciplinary integration, and multi-team cooperation”. The clean-up work is carried out in accordance with the “Regulations on the Protection and Restoration (Cleaning) of Sanxingdui Sacrificial Pit” and other systems and norms, and the scientific and standardized protection and restoration of the cultural relics unearthed in Sanxingdui Sacrificial Pit is realized in terms of operation behavior, analysis and testing standards, cleaning process, and achievement indicators. ,standardization.

In the finishing stage, after careful and standardized cleaning and reversible physical solidification, a batch of “weight” statues, such as the large-mouthed statue, the round-mouthed square statue, the top statue of the top statue, the statue of the statue of the top altar, and the statue of the golden mask and the golden mask, etc. Class” artifacts “stand” and are displayed to the public. So far, 77 bronzes, 120 jades, 44 golds, 678 ivory pieces (sections), and 46 ivory carvings have been cleaned up. K3 unearthed copperware cleaning

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K3 unearthed copperware cleaning

K4 work scene

K5 Whole Extraction

K6 “Wooden Box” Extraction

K4 unearthed CT photo of the bronze portrait

Sanxingdui Cultural Relics Protection and Restoration Museum

Sanxingdui Cultural Relics Protection and Restoration Museum

In the process of protection and restoration, the principle of simultaneous development of analysis, research and protection is adhered to. Explore the relationship between the environment and corrosion of bronzes through electrochemical monitoring of the preservation environment.

Using microscopic observation, it was found that more than 20 unearthed bronze wares and ivory had textiles on the surface; it was found that there were textile and silk traces in the K4 ash layer, and the enzyme-linked immunosorbent technology was used to find that there was silk protein in the K4 ash layer. Using microscopic observation, hyperspectral and micro-nano CT analysis, it was preliminarily judged that the ash layer K4 had no obvious delamination; Bamboo subfamily, Phoebe, broad-leaved trees, palms, reeds, grasses, cabbage, soybean were found in the K4 ash layer. , Chrysanthemum Leaf Arborvitae, a small amount of carbonized rice and other plants, of which Bamboo subfamily accounts for more than 90%. The results are of great significance for studying the environment of the Sichuan Basin during the same period. Using the infrared reburning temperature measurement method, it is known that the burning temperature of the K4 ash layer is about 400 degrees.

Preliminary analysis of some typical bronzes, jade substrates, structure and composition of rust products, and casting techniques were made by using micro-CT, scanning electron microscope energy spectroscopy and Raman spectroscopy. Ongoing multi-disciplinary research work includes the effects of ivory surface burning, jade change analysis, jade material and micro-mark analysis, gold foil composition detection, bronze metallographic analysis, ivory ancient DNA analysis, etc., and the results have emerged one after another.

These studies provide the basis for cultural relics protection and restoration measures, and provide scientific support for cultural relics information and value interpretation.

Archaeological excavation site emergency protection system based on preventive protection, through independent design and joint research and development with relevant units, integrated constant temperature and humidity archaeological excavation cabin, multi-functional archaeological excavation system, emergency protection platform, air intelligent control system, comprehensive information on cultural relics protection The scientific and technological facilities and equipment, such as the management platform, the comprehensive information system for monitoring the environment and soil sites, have provided effective temperature and humidity control for the protection of unearthed cultural relics, especially the protection of organic ivory, with obvious effects.

In the Sanxingdui Cultural Relics Conservation and Restoration Hall, which integrates cultural relics restoration, cultural relics display, visiting experience, and popular science education, the archaeological unearthed cultural relics meet the public at the first time of sorting and research, and comprehensively present the real scene of cultural relics restoration work. Here, the audience can immersely experience the restoration and protection process of cultural relics, understand the basic technology and protection methods of cultural relics protection, and the boring, long, rigorous and scientific cultural relic restoration scene.

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The burial age of the Sanxingdui sacrificial pit is confirmed

“The new archaeological discovery of Sanxingdui confirms the age of the Sanxingdui sacrificial pit. Multidisciplinary research has enriched the cultural connotation of Sanxingdui. The evidence shows that the ancient Shu civilization is an important part of Chinese civilization.” Ran Honglin introduced.

Carbon-14 dating was carried out on nearly 200 samples, and the dating data was concentrated between 1131 and 1012 BC. Approximately, it can be seen that except for the No. 5 and No. 6 pits that broke the relationship, the burial age of the other pits is the same, which is in the late Shang Dynasty, about 3200 to 3000 years ago. Controversy over the burial age of the “Sacrificial Pit”.

Archaeological discoveries of bronze masks, statues of people with their heads turned and kneeling, altars, jade knives and other previously unseen artifacts enriched the types of bronzes at the Sanxingdui site. Techniques such as riveting, mandrel, etc.; silk was found in several pits through microscopic observation and silk protein analysis, filling the blank of no silk material in the Xia and Shang dynasties in the southwest; K4 confirmed through plant archaeology that the ashes in the pits were mainly bamboo. , and other genus Nan, broad-leaved trees, palms, reeds, grasses, cabbage, soybeans, chrysanthemum and quinoa, etc., indicating that the climate of ancient Shu was warm and humid, the sacrificial area was close to the river and the vegetation was dense; residue analysis showed that sacrificial animals were used There are cattle, wild boars, etc. Many new discoveries present a more complete and richer species and cultural connotation of Sanxingdui remains.

Several new artifacts excavated this time show the close cultural connection between the Sanxingdui site and other parts of the country. The bronze statues, copper pots, and copper pots found in K3 and K8 are typical bronze artifacts of the Yin-Shang culture in the Central Plains. The jade found in K3 and K4 Cong is from the Qijia culture in the Gansu-Qingdao area. The collared jade bi, jade Zhang, and jade Ge found in K3, K7, and K8 have been found in Henan, Shaanxi, Shandong and the vast South China. The half-moon zone is in line with the ancient tradition of using gold. The sacred tree, the kneeling figure and a large number of dragon-shaped utensils show that the users of the Sanxingdui site are similar to those in other parts of the country in terms of their own identity, etiquette, religion, and understanding of the world and nature, which undoubtedly shows that the Sanxingdui site belongs to the ancient Shu civilization. It is an important member of Chinese civilization.

Photo courtesy: Sichuan Provincial Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology

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