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Changsha Jiandu Museum

Address: 92 Baisha Road, Tianxin district, Changsha, Hunan province
Hours: 9:00 - 17:00 (no entry after 16:30)
Closed Tuesdays and the Eve and the first two days of Chinese New Year
Tel: (+86 731)85425680, 5678, 5676
General admission: Free (passport required for entry)

The two-hectare Changsha Jiandu Museum is devoted to collecting, protecting, collating, and studying bamboo and wooden slips. Jiandu is the Chinese name for bamboo and wooden slips, the main media for writing documents before paper was widely introduced. The inscribed bamboo and wood - narrow or broad - bears detailed records of political, economic, military, cultural and geographic information of the local area under the rule of the Kingdom of Wu (222-280). The museum is quite young, formally opening to the public in 2007, but the collection, primarily archaeological finds from ancient tombs and sites, are time-travelled "letters" from the first few centuries or even earlier.

Changsha city has the most unearthed bamboo and wooden slips of China. The slips span nearly one thousand years from the Warring States Period (475-221 BC) to the Jin Dynasty (265-420). The astounding bamboo and wooden slips excavated from Zoumalou of downtown Changsha in 1996 are inscribed on the list “the 100 great archeological discoveries of the 20th century in China". A selection from the 100,000-plus unearthed Zoumalou slips are displayed in the permanent exhibition gallery, where visitors can explore the taxation, household, and bureaucracy of the Kingdom of Wu and trace the evolvement of the Chinese writing system.

Last Updated: Dec 17, 2018

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