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Hubei Provincial Museum

Updated: Mar 25, 2019 Print

Hubei Provincial Museum 
湖北省博物馆

Address: 160 Donghu Road, Wuchang District, Wuhan, Hubei Province 
Websites: http://www.hbww.org/Home/EnglishIndex.aspx (En) 
http://www.hbww.org/Home/Index.aspx (Cn) 
Hours: 9:00 - 17:00 (no admittance after 16:00)
Closed Mondays (except for national holidays) and Chinese lunar New Year's Eve 
(Currently closed for construction)
Telephone: (+86 27) 86794127,86790329
General admission: Free (passport required for entry)

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[Photo/hbww.org]

The Hubei Provincial Museum was established in 1953. It houses over 240,000 artworks in categories of bronze ware, lacquer ware, metal ware, bamboo strips, jade ware, ceramics, painting and calligraphy. The four most noteworthy of the museum’s artifacts are the bronze bell set (bianzhong) of the Marquis Yi of Zeng, unearthed from his tomb dated to the early Warring States Period (475-221 BC); a shining, rust-free bronze sword of the hegemon Goujian (r. 496-465 BC), who annexed the territory of his rivals after twenty years' of humiliation; a blue-and-white prunus vase depicting Chinese intellectual traditions during the brief Yuan dynasty (1271-1368) when Mongols ruled China; and a fossilized skull discovered in western Hubei, considered a specimen of homo erectus from one million years ago. 
The Hubei Provincial Museum also boasts inscribed Qin Dynasty (221-206 BC) bamboo strips discovered in tombs in Yunmeng County, which record ancient China's medical achievements, law making, and bureaucratic establishment more than 2,000 years ago with a writing system that is still recognizable today. A selected portion of them are on display in the permanent exhibitions.

Covering 40,000 square meters, the museum has organized about 100 exhibitions, the subjects of which include lacquer ware made during the Warring States, the Qin, and the Han (206 BC - AD 220) periods, and archaeological finds from the mausoleums of the Marquis Yi of Zeng and others. More than 15,000 relics datable to 2,400 years ago were excavated from the marquis's tomb, including bronze ritual vessels, coffins, musical instruments, gold and jade decorative items, lacquer ware, weapons, and strips of inscribed bamboo.

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