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【双语新闻】追寻夏的轨迹⑥|新密新砦遗址:夏朝开国都城,是它吗?

2021年09月23日 10295
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The Xia Dynasty Travel Episode VI

The Xinzhai Site in Xinmi: The First Capital of the Xia Dynasty?

追寻夏的轨迹⑥|新密新砦遗址:夏朝开国都城,是它吗?

 

When it comes to the culture of the Xia Dynasty (2070 BC-1600 BC), the Erlitou Culture (around 1735 BC-1530 BC) can not be neglected. Often referred to as "the earliest China", the Erlitou Site in Luoyang city of Henan province has become well known around the world.

说到夏文化,自然绕不过洛阳二里头文化。“最早的中国”的提法,将二里头推向世界,家喻户晓。


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What is less known, however, is that the remains of the Xinzhai Phase (around 1870 BC-1720 BC) were also discovered in Henan. The Xinzhai Phase is generally believed to be earlier than the Erlitou Culture.

然而,鲜为人知的是,在河南,还有一个“新砦期”文化,学界一般认为比著名的二里头文化还要早,是更早期的夏文化。

 

The real existence of the Xinzhai Phase

“新砦期”的确存在

 

As for the origin and formation of ancient Chinese civilization, the mainstream has been formed that the Erlitou Culture is of the Xia Dynasty, but the questions have not been resolved such as "What is the culture of the early Xia Dynasty?" and "Are there any cultures earlier than the Erlitou Culture?"

近年来在探讨中国古代文明的起源与形成这一重大学术课题时,二里头文化是夏文化已经成为主流认识,但对于何为早期夏文化,有没有比二里头文化更早的夏文化等问题,学术界争论不一。


Aerial photo shows the Xinzhai Site in 2016. [Photo provided to Henan Daily]


To solve these questions, we visited the Xinzhai Site in Xinmi of Zhengzhou city.

带着这些疑问,我们来到新密新砦遗址,继续寻找“夏的轨迹”。

 

On a maize field, archaeologists were busy working. A new round of archaeological investigation has been carried out on a larger scale at the Xinzhai Site. Standing in a row, each of them held a Luoyang spade - a traditional tube-shaped testing tool widely used by Chinese archaeologists, thrust the spades into the earth first and pulled them out to observe the soil carefully. It was so hot that they were sweating even before 8:00 am.

在一片玉米地里,考古人员正在忙碌的工作。这里正在进行新砦遗址更大范围的新一轮钻探工作。几名工作人员排成一排,每人手拿一个长长的洛阳铲,先是用力地向地下插去,再挺直向上拔出,仔细观察铲子带出来的泥土。虽然还不到早上八点,但烈日已经当头,工作人员挥汗如雨,在深埋的土层中寻找着历史的蛛丝马迹。


Archaeologists working on a maize field. [Photo/Henan Daily]


"It is so hot, so we started working at 5 am." Geng Guangxiang, head of the archaeological team, showed us into the office.

“天太热,我们早上五点就上工了。”新砦遗址考古工地负责人耿广响快步走了过来,把我们带到了考古队办公室。

 

Geng told us that the area covering Zhengzhou and Luoyang with Songshan Mountain as the center is the main field to explore the early Xia Dynasty. In 1970s Zhao Zhiquan from the Institute of Archaeology of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences put forward the concept of the Xinzhai Phase, and pointed out that this culture was later than the Longshan Culture (around 2500 BC-2000 BC) but earlier than the Erlitou Culture. However, there are still some disagreements on this viewpoint.

针对我们的疑问,耿广响说,以嵩山为中心的郑洛地区是探索早期夏文化的主战场。早在上世纪70年代,中国社会科学院考古研究所的赵芝荃先生已经提出“新砦期”的概念,认为其文化面貌介于龙山文化与二里头文化之间。但对于此提法,学界看法不一。


The remains of the city wall. [Photo provided to Henan Daily]


From 1999 to 2000, the Center for Ancient Civilization Studies of Peking University and the Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology of Zhengzhou jointly lunched a new excavation at the Xinzhai Site. According to Zhao Chunqing, a researcher at the Institute of Archaeology, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, also the head of the archaeological team, one of the most important findings is that they discovered the stacked remains of the third stage of the Wangwan Culture (after 2400 BC or so), the Xinzhai Phase and the early stage of the Erlitou Culture. Besides, thousands of cultural relics were unearthed, more than 300 of which have been restored. Finally, the sufficient evidence points to the existence of the Xinzhai Phase. Nowadays, basically the Xinzhai Phase has been confirmed to be of the Xia Dynasty, even earlier than the Erlitou Culture, which is of great significance to search for the capital ruins of the early Xia Dynasty, study its establishment and probe into the origin of ancient Chinese civilization.

1999 -2000年,北京大学古代文明研究中心和郑州市文物考古研究所联合对新砦遗址重新进行发掘。中国社会科学院考古研究所研究员、河南新砦队领队赵春青认为,其重要收获是发掘出王湾三期文化、新砦期遗存和二里头文化早期遗存的三叠层。并出土各类器物数千件,其中复原陶器达300余件。最终,从地层关系、器物形制演变、碳十四测年数据等多方面,证明“新砦期”的确存在。如今,考古学界基本认为,“新砦期”文化是比著名的二里头文化还要早的夏文化。它对于寻找早期夏都遗址、探讨夏王朝的诞生以及中国古代文明的起源,都具有十分重要的意义。


A broken pottery ware. [Photo provided to Henan Daily]


Bumper harvests realized during the Xinzhai Phase

“新砦期”已“五谷丰登”

 

The emergence of ancient civilization is closely related to the development of grain production. Population would not increase without agricultural development. So how about the agricultural development during the Xinzhai Phase?

众所周知,古代文明的产生与谷物农业的发展有着密切的关系,只有农业经济的发展才能使人口得以较大规模的聚集。“新砦期”的农业是什么样的情况?


A pottery tripod. [Photo provided to Henan Daily]


"During the Xinzhai Phase, a multi-variety crop planting system had been developed with bumper harvests." According to Zhao, 84.87 percent of the carbonized seeds unearthed from the Xinzhai Site are of crops, including millet, glutinous millet, unhusked rice, soybeans and wheat, sorted from the most to the least. People relied on millet and other crops at that time, and began to grow rice. Originated in West Asia, wheat was introduced into China through Central Asia. The discovery of few wheat seeds at the Xinzhai Site indicates that wheat had already been introduced into China but not widely cultivated.

“可以这样说,在新砦期,已经出现了多品种农作物的种植制度,‘五谷丰登’的局面初步形成。”赵春青介绍,在新砦遗址出土的碳化种子中,农作物种子在绝对数量上占到84.87%。绝对数量由多到少的顺序为粟、黍、稻谷、大豆、小麦。可以看得出来,当时的人们以小米等农作物为主,但也已经开始种植稻米。小麦起源于西亚,并通过中亚传入中国,新砦遗址出土了小麦种子,但数量极少,说明当时小麦已经传入中国,但还未得到广泛的种植。

 

A special pottery bird statue painted red with cinnabar unearthed

“后羿寒浞代夏”证物管窥

 

According to Zhao, one of the prominent features of the Xinzhai Phase lies in its oriental culture. A 3,800-year-old red pottery bird statue discovered different from the bird models popular in the Central Plains and the Yellow River basin has the characteristics of such models seen in East China. Perhaps it was the embodiment of totem worship of the local people at that time or created during the period of Taikang (the third king of the Xia Dynasty).

说到新砦期的重要特征,赵春青说,其中一个就是在这里发现了东方文化因素。出土的其中一只3800年前的彩绘陶鸟,明显区别于中原地区、黄河流域流行的鸟类造型,带有东部地区考古所见鸟类造型特点,或是当时新砦期居民图腾崇拜的实物体现,或与文献记载的“后羿寒浞代夏”时期相当。


The 3,800-year-old red pottery bird statue. [Photo provided to Henan Daily]

 

A capital city built by Qi

有可能是夏启都城

 

Some experts pointed out that the Xinzhai Site was the capital city of the king Qi. The findings suggest that the Xinzhai Site was a large ancient capital city with three moats of the early Xia Dynasty. At the site, the remains of large buildings (used as ancestral temples) and handicraft workshops (for bone implements) were discovered with numerous cultural relics that are exquisite and of high quality, reflecting the importance of the Xinzhai Site. Analysis from the perspective of chronology with the employment of carbon-14 dating technologies shows that the Xinzhai Site was probably built by Qi.

有专家认为,新砦遗址极有可能是中国考古界苦苦寻找多年的夏代开国之君夏启的都城。发掘表明,新砦遗址是一座规模宏大、拥有内外三重城壕的夏代早期都邑性质城址。城址内部不仅发现宗庙性质的大型建筑,还发现有加工骨器的手工作坊区,出土的遗物数量众多,做工精美,规格很高,反映出新砦城的重要性质。经碳十四测定,从年代学的角度分析,不排除新砦城始建于夏启的可能性。


A pottery pot. [Photo provided to Henan Daily]


Chinese civilization has a 5000-year history. A new round of archaeological investigation is currently underway at the Xinzhai Site. The secrets under the seemingly ordinary field will help us to know more about ancient China.

我们关注新砦遗址,在于关注中华文明的源远流长。今天,新砦遗址新一轮的田野工作仍在我们的身边波澜不惊地进行着。但洛阳铲每一次的提起、放下,都有可能带出一段前所未知的历史,为我们揭示出一个越来越清晰、真实的中国。(中文来源/河南日报客户端 记者/刘春香 翻译/赵汉青 视频/实习生王君艺 审校/李文竞)


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