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2,000-year-old mural discovered in Inner Mongolia tomb

(Inner Mongolia)

Updated: 2016-07-25

Archaeologists in Inner Mongolia have discovered a mural in a tomb which was painted nearly 2,000 years ago, local sources said on July 18.

The tomb is in a cluster in the desert near Ordos City, where archaeologists also unearthed two skulls in a decayed sarcophagus, as well as pieces from pottery and bronze utensils, said Gao Xingchao, a researcher with Ordos city museum.

The mural, on the walls and extending on to the ceiling of a vault, covers more than 30 square meters. More than 10 pictures tell the life story of the tomb's occupants, as they travel, feast and take care of their livestock. There are also pictures of flowers, flying dragons and a phoenix leading all kinds of birds, to show life after death.

The patterns were painted with mineral colors on a white background.

According to Gao, identity of the tomb owners is not known yet due to the scarcity of relics recovered, but the tomb, discovered last September, was completed in the East Han Dynasty (24 - 220 AD).

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