3,000-year-old bronze sacrificial altar found in China

(ORDO NEWS) — The bronze sacrificial altar was found among 13,000 other relics at an archaeological site near the village of Sanxingdui in southwest China’s Sichuan province, CNN reported, citing Chinese state media.

Other interesting finds dating back over 3,000 years include a tortoise-shell box and other artifacts, many of which are made of gold, bronze, and jade. The most striking of the items presented are bronze masks of a characteristic appearance, found in large numbers.

Research, however, is still hampered by the fact that no written references to Sanxingdui have been found, and no human remains have been found, so historians still know relatively little about this civilization.

It existed on the Yangtze River in parallel with the Xia and Shang cultures in the Yellow River basin, as well as the Ban Chiang culture in Thailand – and with all of them Sanxingdui could maintain cultural ties. Many scholars also believe that the inhabitants of Sanxingdui were part of the ancient kingdom of Shu,

A joint team of archaeologists from the Research Institute of Cultural Relics and Archeology of Sichuan Province, Peking University, Sichuan University and other institutions have been studying six excavations at the site since 2020.

Archaeologists have found 3,155 relatively intact relics, including more than 2,000 bronzes and statues, in recent expeditions, according to the Chinese state news agency Xinhua.

The researchers described, among other things, a tortoise-shell box made of bronze and jade as one of their most intriguing finds, saying that they had seen such an artifact for the first time.

“It would not be an exaggeration to say that this item is one of a kind given its unusual shape, craftsmanship and ingenious design. Although we don’t know for sure

A nearly one meter high bronze altar was also found in one of the pits where people of the Shu civilization are believed to have made offerings to heaven, earth and their ancestors. Remains of bamboo branches, reeds, soybeans, cattle and wild boars in the pits suggest that they were all sacrificed to some deities.

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