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12 February 2006
Xi'an museum of the Neolithic to reopen

The museum of the Banpo Ruins, the largest and best-preserved prehistoric settlement ever discovered in China, will reopen on April 1 after renovations, the curator has said. The protection hall built half a century ago above the ruins was in disrepair, posing a threat to the relics, hence the need for renovation, curator Zhang Lizhi said.
     The museum and local authorities on cultural relics also reburied the ruins in a bid for better protection from May to August, 2003. The ruins have been in good condition since they were reburied, according to observations of archaeologists. The renovated protection hall covers an area of 4,600 square meters, up from the original 2,700 square meters. Six exhibition rooms in the hall provide an insight into primitive life using modern digital technologies, Zhang said.
     The museum was built on the 6,000-year-old Banpo Village about seven kilometers east of Xi'an, capital of western Shaanxi Province. The remains of this prehistoric settlement were discovered in 1952 when workers were laying the foundation for a factory building. The ancient settlement reveals the natural living environment, labor skills and social customs of local residents belonging to a matriarchal clan community of the Neolithic age.

Source: China News (12 February 2006)

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