|Name:Chariot-and-Horse Pit Museum of Guo Kingdom|
Tel:Liufengbei Road, Sanmenxia City
On the northern part of
City, stand the Guo Tomb Ruins of the West Zhou Dynasty, a state-level key relics protection unit, the Museum was built to exhibit these themes. To the north stands the Yellow River and to the south is
Mountain. As one of the three remaining sites museums in the country, it displays the relics, and ruin sites as well as the garden landscape.
Built in 1984, the museum, with an area of
1,200m², was built in the ancient architecture style. There are generally three exhibition series, namely, A Brief History of Guo Kingdom, the Art of Stone Inscription in History, and the Chariot-and-Horse Pit of Guo Kingdom and Chariot replicas. As the only large state cemetery between the East and West Zhou dynasties, the pit marks the beginning of burying an important figure with a real army and horses. The underground charioted army in the pit is well preserved, orderly arranged and fully ranked. It is the origin of the ritual of burying terra-cotta warriors and horses in the Qin Dynasty. There are enormous historical, scientific and artistic values in the pit.
Since 1956 when the place was discovered, there were more than 800 ruin sites discovered and nearly 30,000 relics unearthed, among which two emperors’ mausoleums (Emperor Guo Ji and Guo Zhong), excavated in 1990s and later known for the worth and quantity of the relics, were ranked among the Ten National New Archeological Discoveries in two consecutive years and “100 Big Archeological Discoveries of the 20th Century”.
A rectangle pit, at the bottom it is
15m long from north to south,
3.82m wide from east to west and
4.1m deep. There are now 5 preserved chariots and 10 horses, arranged from north to south. As wooden structure, each chariot has a single shaft and two wheels. The painted chariots have wheels, a cart, shaft and so on. Under each chariot there are two horses, with heads facing north. In view of their orderly arrangement, they were killed before buried. Besides horses, dog bones were also found under the cart. Along with the chariots plenty of bronze accessories, harnesses and other objects were unearthed.
The museum has an area of 10 hectares. Guo Tombs Ruins and Relics, one of its exhibition series, is divided into four parts, namely, Exhibition of Unearthed Relics in Guo Tombs, Exhibition of Unearthed Relics of Lady Liang, the queen of
Kingdom, Exhibition of Ruins of Underground Chariots and Horses in Battle Formation, and Exhibition of the Ruins of the Mausoleum of Emperor Guo Ji. On display are the underground chariots and horses in battle, the earliest and the largest of its kind in the country, the emperor’s mausoleum, the No.1 Iron Sword of China, a mask dotted with jade, and Qi Huang Lian Zhu (an accessory which has seven semi- circular jade pendants stringed together), some of which are considered national treasures. What’s more, the surname Guo originated from this old land.
The museum nowadays has become a cultural resort with a rich historic heritage.
Address: Liufengbei Road, Sanmenxia City.