Archaeology Magazine

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Maids’ Cemetery Uncovered in Western Xi’an

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

XI’AN, CHINA—A cemetery where maids of the imperial palace were buried during the Tang Dynasty (619–907 A.D.) has been found. “There are two types of maids according to the epitaphs. Five of them died of old age, and the rest were ‘Wanggongni’—maids who became nuns because the emperor they served died before them,” explained Liu Daiyun of the Shaanxi Archaeology Research Institute. The women had been buried with lacquer, bronze, and stone items; animal figures; and bronze waistbands.