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The Central Plains region covers modern-day Henan, the southern part of Hebei, the southern part of Shanxi, and the western part of Shandong province.
Because of the area’s political and strategic importance, several imperial dynasties established their captials there, in the cities of Luoyang and Kaifeng.
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Oracle bone inscriptions are the earliest form of written Chinese characters, they date from the Bronze Age, over 3000 years ago.
If the carved marks on the bones really were Chinese characters from the distant past, the question was: How old were they? Wang Yirong had no answer.
Liu E was the first person to conduct a serious study of the inscriptions. Like Wang Yirong, he realized that they were a form of Chinese script dating from remote antiquity.
The discovery of the ‘big four’ proved to be crucial for deciphering the jiaguwen characters, because they were so heavily inscribed with characters.
By cross-referencing among the ‘big four’, Dong Zuobin was able to reach a conclusion on the meaning of one particular character.
Thanks to the efforts of all these scholars down through the years, we now have a remarkable insight into the lives of our Shang Dynasty ancestors living on the Central Plains.
In 1899 recognized the characters as being an ancient Chinese script
Identified thirty-four characters
Recognizing the names of the Shang kings, positively dated the oracle bones back to the Shang Dynasty.
Demonstrating that the chronology of the Shang emperors matched that in Sima Qian’s Records of the Grand Historian.
Research into the ‘big four’, which revealed that the Jiaguwen were characters used in a divining ceremony.
Along the River at Qingming is considered one of the most valuable works in Chinese art history, celebrated for its high technical quality and the liveliness with which it portrays the myriad details of its numerous subjects.
Song Dynasty artist Zhang Zeduan
Celebratig the festive spirit and worldly commotion at the Qingming Festival, rather than the holiday´s ceremonial aspects, such as tomb sweeping and prayers.
The entire piece was painted in hand scroll format and the content reveals the lifestyle of all levels of the society from rich to poor as well as different economic activities in rural areas and the city. It offers glimpses of period clothing and architecture.
During the two thousand years of its history, White Horse Temple has experienced numerous ups and downs; it has been destroyed and rebuilt on several occasions.
Location: 12 kilometers east to Luoyang City, Henan Province.
Built Time: First built in 68 A.D. in mainland China after Buddhism was spread in the country in the Eastern Han Dynasty
Name Origin: It was named after the white horse for carrying back Buddhist statues and sutras from Tianzhu (today’s India) along with two imperial envoys.
Main Constitution: 5 principal halls: the Heavenly Guardian Hall, the Hall of Grand Buddha, the Hall of Mahavira (Great Hero), the Jieyin Hall and the Pilu Hall from south to north, each of which enshrined Buddhist figures carved in the Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties.