Watch VideoPlay Video
Now the idea of getting to know 5,000 years of Chinese civilization all at one stop may not sound very practical. But a Beijing exhibition offers nothing less than an innovative solution.
"Archaeological China" at the Capital Museum represents 5,000 years of history as expressed by artifacts dug up over the last 60 years. The exhibition showcases old discoveries, new techniques, and tantalizing hints of possible treasures to come.
The naked pottery figures used as funerary objects of Western Han Dynasty about 22 hundred years ago.
The stone dragon head of Northern Dynasties when Buddhism flourished in China.
Other objects claim even greater antiquity, such as the carbonized broomcorn millets from the Neolithic Age and an ancestor of domestic pigs and dogs.
Over four hundred precious cultural relics excavated from more than 60 ancient settlements, imperial city ruins, Buddhist temples and imperial tombs are on display along with numerous photographs, text commentaries and a selection of documentary films on the excavation of a number of archaeological sites across China.
The exhibition helps illustrate the glorious cultural legacy that the Chinese people have inherited from their forefathers. The various exhibits allow visitors to experience the sense of achievement of the past sixty years and indulge their interests in the different aspects of archaeological research.
Visitor,said, "This exhibition helps broaden my knowledge since some of them aren't seen on history books."
"The real pieces of cultural relics gives me a feeling of authenticity."
"This show is not bad. It gives a thorough introduction to each unearthed relic."
Organized by the Institute of Archaeology of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, the exhibition is the largest of its kind in China. It's also a tribute to the painstaking efforts by renowned scholars and the outstanding achievements of hundreds of archaeologists across four generations.
Most of the exhibits are on public display for the first time since their discovery. They touch upon some of the major issues in Chinese archaeology, such as the characteristics of cultural change around ten thousand BP, the origins of agriculture and animal husbandry, the dawn of Chinese civilization and the rise of royal dynasties, and the evolution of the imperial capital throughout China's dynastic history.
The exhibition also focuses on the latest developments in archaeological research as well as topics which may be of interest to the general public, such as the vestiges of prehistoric earthquake, how the ancients buried their dead and how archaeologists are able to analyze eating patterns and diets in ancient times.
In addition, the exhibition highlights the important role that scientific techniques and equipment plays in modern archaeological research and presents an overview of the applied use of GPS satellites, digital photogrametry, 3D laser scanners, remote sensing and ground-penetrating radar in archaeology.
"Archaeological China" is not merely a showcase of the CASS Institute of Archaeology's achievements in the sixty years since its foundation, it is also the first time that such an exhibition has been open to, and aimed at, the general public.
The exhibition, which runs at the Capital Museum until October 10th, embodies the enduring dialogue between the past and the present and has an air of timelessness about it. Visitors to the exhibition will no doubt find themselves completely immersed in China's archaeological past and its ancient and resplendent cultural history. MASHUO, CCTV.