Largest ritual site unearthed on Loess Plateau


XI’AN, Feb. 11 — Remains of a 4,200 square meter building on a hilltop in northwest China’s Shaanxi Province are the largest Shang Dynasty(1600 BC – 1046 BC) ritual site on the Loess Plateau.
Located in Xinzhuang, Qingjian County on the west bank of the Yellow River, the late Shang site covers up to 100,000 square meters and is believed to reveal the relationship between the ancient Chinese and nature.
An team led by Shaanxi Provincial Institute of Archeology began the excavation work in April, 2013. Over a hundred artifacts made of clay, bones, copper, wood and stone, have been unearthed, and the earliest wooden floors on the plateau were found.
The team’s Sun Zhanwei, said the thickness of each piece of floor was different, creating a flat surface on the rugged terrain.
Associate research fellow Zhong Jianrong said two winding corridors surrounding the main building clearly demonstrate the architecture’s ritual function.
The construction, on a hillside over a hundred meters above the ground level, is similar to that of the Potala Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Tibet.[db:内容2]