Beijing: A cemetery dating back around 4,000 years and containing hundreds of tombs, some of which held sacrificed humans, has been discovered in China. The tombs found near Mogou village were dug beneath the surface of the ground and were oriented towards the Northwest. Some of the tombs had small chambers where finely crafted pottery was placed near the deceased. Almost 300 tombs were excavated between August and November 2009 and hundreds more were found between 2008 and 2011.
Archaeologists also found that mounds of sediment covered some of the tombs, which could have marked the location of these tombs. They found entire families buried together within the tombs with their heads also facing the Northwest. They were buried with a variety of goods, including, necklaces, weapons and decorated pottery, ‘Live Science’ reported. In one tomb, “the human sacrifice was placed on its side with limbs bent and its face toward the tomb chamber. The bones are relatively well preserved, and the individual’s age at death is estimated at around 13 years,” archaeologists wrote in the journal Chinese Cultural Relics.
The goods found in the tombs included pottery decorated with incised designs. Researchers also found artifacts that could have been used as weapons. Bronze sabers were found that researchers say could have been used for cutting. They also found stone mace heads, axes, daggers and knives.