Trace back to the History of Hangzhou…

The best way to trace back to the history of a city is to recognize its archeological discoveries. In 2017, Hangzhou excavated 88 tombs of around 11,600 square meters, and unearthed 3050 pieces of cultural relic specimen. Let’s read the stories that have been buried for thousands of years…

Hangzhou Xiaoshan Chenjiabu Ancient Tombs

Excavation place: the surrounding hillsides of Zhejiang Ocean University, Chenjiabu, Tiger Cave Village, Xianghu Scenic Area
Excavation time: from October 25th, 2016 to June 5th, 2017
What has been found:  21 tombs dating from the Spring and Autumn Period (771 to 476 BC) to the Ming Dynasty, 115 cultural relics in an area of approx. 1150 square meters

Among the discoveries, a convex rectangular vertical rock tomb pit of Han Dynasty (206 BC - 220 AD), which still preserves the untouched mounds for sealing and an unbroken jade bracelet of Han Dynasty. Another tomb of Han Dynasty was also discovered, which was a two-room brick tomb of a smaller scale, used for storing funeral objects. This structure is so rare because from it, we can find the traces of the box-type wooden-chambered tombs from the Warring States Period to the early Western Han Dynasty, for instance, the compartment and the function arrangement. These discoveries are also the new clues for the study of the funeral customs of the Han Dynasty.

Hangzhou Lin’an District Government Ancient Architectural Ruins of Five Dynasties Period

Excavation place: west of Qianliu Tomb, near Yijing Street
Excavation time:  from April - October 2017
What has been found: the ancient architectural ruins of Five Dynasties Period, a large number of relics, such as porcelain fragments, copper coins, word bricks, eaves tiles and so on

The ruins exposed here mainly consist of a large building base of the Wuyue Kingdom, facing the east, with a length of 11.5 meters and a width of 12.25 meters. Its plinth is paved with plain square bricks and is edged with a type of stone. Compared with other architectural discoveries from the Wuyue Kingdom, its plinth is larger. Hangzhou, as one of the seven ancient capitals of China, is well-renowned not only for the capital of Southern Song Dynasty, but also for the capital of Wuyue Kingdom, whose culture is of great significance to Hangzhou’s ancient history. According to historical records, Wuyue had a large territory and Lin’an was predicted to take a strategic part.

Hangzhou South Peak Tower Ruins

Excavation place: South Peak
Excavation time: from January to September 2017
What has been found: the ruins from Five Dynasties Period to Qing Dynasty, and a few architectural components, such as eaves tiles, drops, tower bricks and so on

Two Peaks Piercing the Clouds is reputed as one of the ten views of the West Lake in Southern Song Dynasty for its towering towers, however, these disappeared when the North Peak was destroyed. To restore the historical view, last year, Hangzhou Cultural Relics Archeology Institution started the excavation of the South Peak Tower Ruins, which achieved remarkable results. The South Peak Tower was built with a hexagonal base and delicate sculptures in the Five Dynasties Period. This excavation ascertains the location and the shape of the South Peak Tower, and identifies the general layout and structure of the South Peak Tower of Song Dynasty. In addition, South Peak Tower, according to historical records, might have been used as an observation tower in the Southern Song Dynasty when the religions flourished, so it provides an excellent example for the study of the small religious ancient architectures from Five Dynasties Period to Song Dynasty.

Hangzhou Quanyeli Ancient Ruins

Excavation place: west of Dongpo Road, east of Qiwang Road, south of Changsheng Road and north of Xueshi Road
Excavation time: from October 2016 to June 2017
What has been found: many relics of houses, roads and all kinds of porcelain, and two ancient tombs

This discovery is precious for its location in downtown Hangzhou. After this excavation, we know that the Southern Song Dynasty used a wooden tube, which was only 5.3 meters, to deliver the water. The connected points of the sections are called Zimu Junction (Mother and Son Junction), and every one of them is equipped with two removable boards that are convenient to clean the sludge up. The tubes are buried under the roads paved with bricks in an exquisite way. This discovery of an ancient water diversion system gives important enlightenment to today’s modern water equipment.
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