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A natural bond

Updated: 2023-09-09 06:52 ( CHINA DAILY )
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The site of the palatial complex (some suggest that they could be temples of worship) is Liangzhu's center of power and belief. The river in the lower right corner is where giant logs and discarded jade materials and lacquerware — pointing to the existence of various workshops — have been found. CHINA DAILY

Between 2015 and 2017, Wang, together with his colleagues from the Zhejiang Provincial Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology, conducted excavations on the site of an ancient river course. Five millennia ago, that river was running right along the eastern fringe of Liangzhu's palatial complex, the heart of Liangzhu City, which in turn functioned as "the center of power and belief of an early regional state", to quote UNESCO, who put the Archaeological Ruins of Liangzhu City on its World Heritage List in 2019.

Today, the river still exists, but the complex, which Wang believes to be "temples of worship" for the people of Liangzhu, who had developed their own unified belief system, had long been reduced to a rammed-earth platform shaped roughly like a trapezoidal prism. With its lower base measuring about 630 meters from east to west, and 450 meters from north to south, the platform supports three earth mounds, on top of which the edifices are believed to have been built.

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