CHENGDU, Nov. 9 (Xinhuanet) -- The Chinese might have
learned to adorn themselves with periwigs more than 2,000 years ago, said
archeologists who unearthed a skeleton wearing a hairpiece from an ancient tombs
in southwest China's Sichuan Province.
The wig, found on the lower part of
the skull, was made of hemprope, says Zhang Rong, a heritage repairs technician
with a local museum in Liangshan prefecture, where the finding was reported.
Zhang said she had consulted several seasoned hemp
knitters in the prefecture before she came to the conclusion.
The wig dates back to years between the Warring
States Period (475 - 221 BC) and the Western Han Dynasty (206 BC - 24 AD), said
Liu Hong, curator of the museum in Liangshan, a community of the Yi ethnic
He said a joint archeological team sent by the museum
and Sichuan University excavated 11 tombs in Sikai district, Zhaojue county in
the Daliangshan Mountain in the past two weeks.
The tombs, built of slates and rectangular in shape,
are typical to Liangshan prefecture but rarely found elsewhere in China.
According to the ancient burial tradition in the region, the corpses were buried
only after they were air dried in the wilderness, said Liu.
The identity of these tomb owners remains a mystery,
though some historians assume they were forefathers of the Yi nationals living
in the area today. "The new finding might provide some clues to scientists who
are working to unravel the mystery," said Liu.
Besides the skeleton and his wig, the tombs also
produced many earthen pots, a few pieces of bronzeware and three wooden rings
engraved with dainty patterns, said Tang Liang, head of the archeological team.