Mawangdui Tombs

The world famous Mawangdui Han Tombs is one of the most fascinating attractions in Hunan Province. It is no exaggeration to say that the Mawangdui Han Tombs is an open book to the glorious West Han Dynasty (206BC-24). All three tombs were excavated between 1972 and 1974. According to the research this place was a family graveyard from at least two thousand years ago. The tombs are very grand and complicated as well. Number 1 and Number 3 tombs were in excellent condition when excavated and Number 1 tomb is the largest among the three. Number 1 and Number 2 tombs have been in filled. Number 3 tomb has been preserved and covered by a ceiling for the benefit of the visitors.
The sarcophagus of Number 1 tomb was covered by a colorful silk painting. It is the best preserved painting of its kind of Han Dynasty (206BC-220) with the highest artistic value in China. It is in the shape of the English letter 'T', so people also call it 'T' silk painting. In fact, this kind of silk painting was called 'long narrow flag' in ancient time and used for funerals. The whole painting is symmetrical and colorful with fine depiction, reflecting the lofty painting skill in the Western Han Dynasty. All the mysteries, strange animals and mysterious signs in the painting present us with a romantic world with its own sense of symbolism. As yet no one has been able to interpret its real meaning.

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