陈列展览边栏导航

Current Exhibitions

Changsha Mawangdui Han Dynasty Tombs Exhibition

3rd Floor
Permanent Exhibition

Free admission

The excavation of the three Western Han Dynasty Tombs at Mawangdui, Changsha, which took place between 1972 and 1974, was one of the world’s most important archaeological discoveries of the 20th century. The fully preserved tomb structure as well as a wealth of funerary items serve to fully embody everyday life and funeral concepts during the Han Dynasty. Over 700 exquisite lacquer items with intricate workmanship reflect the brilliant accomplishments of Han Dynasty lacquerware, and over 500 exquisite textile garments fully attest to the “Kingdom of Silk” (Seres) in the Western historical records. More than 50 bamboo slips and silk manuscripts serve as “encyclopedias”, demonstrating the knowledge and wisdom of the ancient sages. Strange and bizarre coffin paintings embody the fantasies of people in the Han Dynasty ascending to the heavens and longing for external life, while the dreamlike face of a deceased woman is a testament to extraordinary preservation techniques. The Mawangdui Han Dynasty Tombs are renowned as the exemplar of the history and civilization in the early Han Dynasty, providing a window to understand society in China over 2,100 years ago.

Hunanese

2nd Floor
Permanent Exhibition

Free admission

Hunan, located in the central Chinese hinterland, is bounded in the north by the waters of Lake Dongting, embraced on three sides by majestic mountains, and crisscrossed by the four rivers, Xiang, Zi, Yuan, and Li. The province, known as the “Land of the Hibiscus” since Tang Dynasty, is blessed with rich resources and a temperate climate. The region was settled almost 500,000 years ago by people who have welcomed migrants over various periods with open hearts. The descendants of these original settlers and generations of migrants make up the “Hunanese” we know today. From the earliest domestication of wild rice to the breeding of rice cultivars and finally to the growing of the hybrid rice of today, Hunan has always been grounded in rice farming. Over the generations, the diligent and wise people of Hunan, with their practical minds, have engaged in mutual help and built a comfortable pastoral home for themselves. In the process, they created a land abundant with food, which is known as “the Granary of China”. From eating rice with fish to enjoying spicy and hot flavors, the people of Hunan practice a way of life that has been passed down through the generations and seek a way of life that is above and beyond the mere utilitarian. Shang and Zhou (1600--256 B.C.) ritual music instruments made out of bronze, lacquered-wood vessels from the Han Dynasty (202 B.C.--220 A.D.), the popular Changsha ceramics in the Tang Dynasty (618--907 A.D.), and the well-educated farmstead family of Ming and Qing periods (1368--1912A.D.): these are all reflections of Hunanese customs and beliefs, and the Hunan way of life. For thousands of years, due to deep immersion in the culture of the Central Plains, patriotic thoughts, strong scholastic heritage, and modern ideological agitations cultivated the generations of great men who have emerged from Hunan. The people of Hunan are bold, fiercely patriotic, and deeply loyal.