Date: 17 June 2013 Time: 08:13 AM ET
china mural tomb discovered
Four men blow into long horns at the entranceway into a 1,500-year-old tomb chamber, located on the south wall. The mural tomb likely held a military commander and his wife in what is now Shuozhou City, China.
CREDIT: Photo courtesy Chinese Archaeology

A colorful, well-preserved “mural tomb,” where a military commander and his wife were likely buried nearly 1,500 years ago, has been uncovered in China.

The domed tomb’s murals, whose original colors are largely preserved, was discovered in Shuozhou City, about 200 miles (330 kilometers) southwest of Beijing. Researchers estimate that the murals cover an area of about 860 square feet (80 square meters), almost the same area as a modern-day bowling lane.

Most of the grave’s goods have been looted, and the bodies are gone, but the murals, drawn on plaster, are still there. In a passageway leading into the tomb, a door guard leans on his long sword watching warily. Across from him, also in the passageway, is a guard of honor, supported by men on horses, their red-and-blue uniforms still vivid despite the passing of so many centuries. [See Pictures of the Ancient Mural Tomb]

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