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Last piece of ancient tablet fragment salvaged

06-21-2010 09:06 BJT

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Yi-Heming, a 160-character giant stone tablet, is honored as a "master of calligraphy." Sculpted on the west cliff of Jiaoshan Mountain, in east China's Jiangsu Province, the inscription was hit by lightning and sank in the Yangtze River during the Song Dynasty.

Archaeologists have been trying to retrieve some yet-to-be-confirmed tablet pieces, and as the last piece of the fragments was salvaged Saturday, it marks the end of the 22-day project.

The 300-ton piece is greatly eroded. The salvage crew used several ropes to bind the huge irregular fragment tightly, like a rice-dumpling. Thirty-five minutes later, the stone was finally pulled out of water and was put on a platform beside the three previously-salvaged fragments.

This stone is six meters in height. Its bottom is quite flat, but the other three sides are uneven because of the blast.

The salvage work has ended, but whether the four pieces of stone are inscribed with real HE-YIMING characters still needs to be checked by the archaeologists.

Archaeologists have been trying to retrieve some yet-to-be-confirmed tablet pieces, and as the last piece of the fragments was salvaged Saturday, it marks the end of the 22-day project.
Archaeologists have been trying to retrieve some yet-to-be-confirmed tablet 
pieces, and as the last piece of the fragments was salvaged Saturday, it marks
the end of the 22-day project.

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