Neolithic Jade Dragons

Neolithic Jade Dragons

BEIJING, Nov. 29, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — A news report from on Neolithic jade dragons in northeast China :

Neolithic Jade Dragons

The Hongshan culture is the most famous Neolithic archaeological culture in northeast China, dating back around 6,500-5,000 years ago.

Many Western scholars believe China’s civilization is only about 3,000 years old instead of 5,000 years old. The discovery and establishment of the Hongshan culture pushed the history of Chinese civilization forward by more than 1,000 years.

In the late Neolithic period, a number of jade ritual vessels notable for their special purposes, such as serving as symbols of royalty and theocracy, emerged throughout the land. The Niuheliang site of the Hongshan culture is known as the “Center of Ancient Jade” with an astonishing number of jade artifacts. Inside the large-scale cairn cemetery of the site, there are a number of large tombs, each surrounded by many small tombs. Numerous exquisite jade wares are buried in the large tombs, with the upper sections serving as altars made of soil and stones. Near the cemetery, there are also goddess temples dedicated to sacrifice, which are ceremonial places with strong religious undertones and strict hierarchical privileges. The exquisite jade ritual vessels were formed during this historical period, and their owners were doubtlessly members of the nobility with high social standing. 

The Hongshan people are particularly known for its jade dragons.

There are different opinions on the origin of dragons, such as lizards and crocodiles. It is said that the dragon head origins from horse head, cow head or pig head. Jade dragons of the Hongshan Culture are ones of the earlier images of dragon having discovered in China.

The Cultural Sit-Down with Wang Xiaohui 

Neolithic Jade Dragons 


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