Zhōu Dynasty Discovery of Chariots and Horses in Luoyang

Archaeologists have discovered a tomb in Luoyang, China during the excavation works in advance of the construction of a new hospital.

The team unearthed tomb that contains a vertical earthen pit with the remains of horses used to draw chariots. Other discoveries also include five chariots, bronzes and ceramics all dating from the early Western Zhōu Dynasty 3000 years ago.

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The Zhōu Dynasty dates from 1046–256 BCE and through its political and military control, lasted longer than any other dynasty in Chinese history, however the Jī (Chinese: 姬) family only lasted during the Western Zhōu period.

Western writers often describe the Zhōu period as ‘feudal’ because the Zhōu’s early rule invites comparison with medieval rule in Europe. (The Chinese term for the Zhōu system is fēngjiàn 封建 ) However, this period was also one of prosperity, scholars and philosophy.

The origins of native Chinese philosophy developed its initial stages beginning in the 6th century BCE. The greatest known of these is Confucius, founder of Confucianism, and Lǎozǐ, founder of Taoism.

This recent discovery gives an unprecedented insight into the funeral customers from this period with archaeologists convinced, that the perfectly preserved tomb belongs to that of an official or scholar of standing.

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Mark Milligan
Mark Milligan
Mark Milligan is multi-award-winning journalist and the Managing Editor at HeritageDaily. His background is in archaeology and computer science, having written over 7,500 articles across several online publications. Mark is a member of the Association of British Science Writers (ABSW), the World Federation of Science Journalists, and in 2023 was the recipient of the British Citizen Award for Education, the BCA Medal of Honour, and the UK Prime Minister's Points of Light Award.

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