Jingzhou Museum (Chinese name: 荆州博物馆) is located in one of China’s historic city – Jingzhou City of Hubei Province. The museum is famous for its rich collections of distinct regional cultural and archeological relics, as well as abundant archaeological research results. The museum is set with all kinds of basic facilities and has unearthed more than 7000 sites of ancient tombs and nearly 200000 square meters archeological area.
The whole museum covers a total area of 50,000 square meters, which covers display buildings, office buildings, treasure houses, relic store and an old temple. And there are more than 130,000 relics in the museum, including bronze, silk fabrics, pottery, lacquer, bamboo slips, jade, china and other items. The highlight of museum is the over 2000 year old ancient corpse, a pink body that can be seen by looking down into a rectangular pit – looks like floating in something. Visitors can look at it through the glass enclosure from about 20 feet above. The ancient corpse is more than 2000 years old (estimated date of death is 167 BC) and is amazingly well preserved. It is regarded as the oldest and well-preserved male cadaver of the Western Han Dynasty (206 B.C.- 24 A.D.). Its organs are shown separately beside it. Another highlight is. You can not miss it.
The exhibitions of collections in Jingzhou Museum are divided into two parts: The Front Part and the Back Part. The front exhibition part is used for basic display. In accordance of historical development, it displays representative selection of cultural relics for visitors, showing the civilization development of Jingzhou from new Paleolithic to the Qin and Han Dynasty period. There are two thematic exhibitions here: “Primitive Culture Exhibition of Jianghan Plain” and ” Culture Exhibition Chu and Han Dynasty in Jianghan Plain “.
The back exhibition area is used for displaying the main collections of the museum. The exhibition halls includes “The Exhibition of Relics in Prehistory”, “The Exhibition of Bronze in Jianghan Plain”, “The Exhibition of Bamboo Slips Excavated in Jingzhou”, “The Exhibition of Jade Excavated in Xiongjiazhong Tomb”, “the Silk Exhibition Hall”, “Porcelains Exhibition Hall” and “The Treasure House”. The collections here is quite rich, including bronze, pottery, lacquer, silk fabrics, jade, bamboo slips, china and so on.
The most precious treasure of the museum would be the corpse of a man and the burial objects of the Western Han Dynasty (206 B.C. – 24 A.D.). These were unearthed from the site of the Chu Kingdom in 1975. Due to the depth of burial and the anoxic condition, the corpse was still well preserved. The characters found in the tomb recorded that the man was a high official under the reign of the Wen Emperor of the Western Han Dynasty and that the exact year of his funeral was 167 BC.
Pieces of Brocades and silks excavated from a tomb of the Chu Kingdom in 1982 are very well displayed in this hall. The silks are all from the late Warring States Period but showed very high levels of artistry and craftsmanship. There are clothes, trousers, quilts and ribbons with exquisite designs and patterns. The ceramic figures at the Jingzhou Museum are wonderful and the molds for these figures too.
To visit the entire site you would probably need a minimum of 90 minutes. There are museum tour guiding equipment for rental. It tells detailed explanation of different sites and exhibitions in the museum with clear recording. If you visit the sites in the museum one by one and listen to the explanation recordings in the tour guiding equipment, it would take at least 3 hours.
How to Get there
It is quite convenient to reach in downtown Jingzhou. Visitors can take Bus Route 1, 15, 19, 33, 34, 5, 10, 103 to五医站, or take Bus Route 14, 19, 26, 101 to市妇幼保健院站, and walk there. It is recommended to spend 2 or 3 hours to visit the museum.