Luxurious Ornaments of Silla Women with 200 Pieces of Baduk Stones at Tomb no. 44 in Jjoksaem, Gyeongju
- To Identify Gilt-Bronze Ornaments with Golden-Edge Jewel Beetles and a Stone Mortar and Pestle/ Online Presentation at 4pm on 7th December-
The Gyeongju National Research Institute of Cultural Heritage (GNRICH_Director Lee Jong-Hoon) has carefully excavated the Silla ancient tomb no. 44* at Jjoksaem in Gyeongju since 2014.
Last month, the GNRICH discovered various ornaments, which tomb owner wore, including a gilt-bronze crown, a pair of gold pendants, a pair of gold earrings, a chest ornament, 12 pieces of gold and silver bracelets, 10 pieces of gold and silver rings, a silver belt ornament, gilt-bronze ornaments decorated with golden-edge jewel beetles, a stone mortar and a pestle and 200 pieces of baduk stones and 50 pieces of mica* through this close excavation research.
*Excavation area: 349-3, Seongdong-dong, Gyeongju-si, the Jjoksaem Housed-Excavation Site.
**Mica: Mica is one of the silicate minerals. It was believed as a medicine for perpetual youth and longevity in Taoism.
Styles of the ornament assemblages, worn by the owner of the Silla stone-piledwooden chamber tomb no. 44, are a typical type that could be found in the wooden chamber tombs.
In particular, the chest ornament was woven in 4 rows of gold and silver beads with indigo glass beads and Dalgae*.
Such style was a design that onlyfound in the upper-class tombs such as Hwangnamdaechong (Great Tomb of Hwangnam) and Cheonmachong (Tomb of the Heavenly Horse).
* Dalgae: thinmetal adornments dangle from crowns to twinkle.
To consider assemblages and materials of adornments, the owner of the Silla stone-piled wooden chamber tomb no. 44 could be presumed as a royal family.
In addition, there is a high possibility that the person could be female as she carries a knife with silver decoration rather than an adorned dagger (裝飾大刀).
Based on excavated artifacts, the height of the buried person is estimated to be about 150cm.
Overall small size of ornaments, including a gilt-bronze crown, earrings, bracelets and pendants for a belt, proves that the buried person is a woman.
The small size of adornments is similar to Geomryeongchong (Tomb of the Golden Bell) among the previous investigations.
Although it is hard to identify exact pattern and shape of the gilt-bronze crown and silver belt adornment at the moment, it will be identified through preservation research later.
The construction date of the Silla stone-piled wooden chamber tomb no. 44 is assumed to be in the late 5th century considering the similarity with excavated earthenware, styles of gold earrings and bracelets from Geomgwanchong (Tomb of the Golden Crown).
Another remarkable artifact is the decorations of golden-edge jewel beetles. Dozens of decorations of golden-edge jewel beetles were found in the upper part of a chest for grave goods, placed at the head of a buried person.
Two wings of golden-edge jewel beetles overlaid to form a water drop and were fixed by a gilt-bronze panel in its front and back.
Its size is 1.6x3.0cm in width and length and 2mm in thickness. The form and size of the accessories have not been found in any Silla ancient tomb thus far.
The ornaments of golden-edge jewel beetles at tomb no. 44 lead to assume the status of the buried person.
It is because that the decorations golden-edge jewel beetles had been discovered only from tombs of the highest ranks in Silla, such as the south tomb of Hwangnamdaechong, Geomgwanchong and the Tomb no. 14 in Gyerim-ro.
Furthermore, all the adornments of the golden-edge jewel beetles from the Silla ancient tombs were all horse gears thus far. Because of that, these ornaments from the tomb no. 44 could be used to hang on saddlesor saddle flaps.
A stone mortar and a pestle were identified together right next to the iron pot inside of the chest at the buried person’s head.
The stone mortar has a flat bottomin a rectangular shape. It was made of granite and polished to make a shallow hollow in the top. Based on its size (height 13.5cm, width 11.5cm) and capacity of its hollow (about 60ml), the mortar is estimated to be buried for a symbolic meaning or used as a mortar for medicine rather than a practical mortar for wheats.
Up to date, there were cases to find mortars and pestles from the Silla ancient tombs; a set from the south tomb of Hwangnamdaechong and a pestle from Seobongchong (Tomb of Auspicious Phoenix).
Although the find location is not clear, there is a mortar and pestle setin donated artifacts by Dr. Kukeun Lee Yangseon (1916~1999).
200 pieces of baduk stones were excavated between earthenware under the feet of the buried person.
The size is about 1~2cm in diameter and 0.5cm in thickness and most of them were 1.5cm in diameter in colors black, white and gray.
It is presumed that baduk stones were collected in nature and used as it was because there were no traces of artificial process.
In the past, baduk stones of the Silla era were unearthed in tombs of the highest class, such as 243 pieces from the south tomb of Hwangnamdaechong, 350 pieces from Cheonmachong, 200 pieces from Geomgwanchong and 2 pieces from Seobongchong.
After this period, 170 pieces of baduk stones were found in the 7th century’s stone chamber tomb no.6 with tunnel entrances in Yonggang-dong and a baduk-board-shaped stone with engraved 15rows vertically and horizontally were discovered at Bunhwangsa Temple site.
According to King Hyoseong parts (reigned. 737-742) in the Samguksagi (history of the Three Kingdoms) and Samgukyusa (memorabilia of the Three Kingdoms), there were records that the King Hyoseong played baduk and the Silla peopleplayed baduk well.
These baduk stones could provide the actual supporting data about baduk culture in Silla.
Hitherto, tomb owners where baduk stones were excavated were all assumed to be male. Hence, it was predicted that baduk was the exclusive property of men.
As the tomb owner at this time is presumed to be female,it is expected to give new interpretation and meaning to the baduk culture.
This excavation on the Silla ancient tomb no. 44 at Jjoksaem area in Gyeongju, which has been conducted since 2014, has been in its 7th years this year.
Currently, the excavation has been exposed artifacts from the buried person. In addition, ritual traces performed around stone protection for the tomb, burial methods, structure and construction methods of piling stone and ritual acts at various spots have been identified.
Through this, various supporting materials are ensured to restore the structure of the medium and large stone-piled-wooden chamber tombs and its construction methods. Moreover, these unearthed artifacts lead to understand the burial culture of the Silla’s highest ruling society at that time.
In the future investigation, the GNRICH will closely research and analyze various artifacts excavated in layers.
The GNRICH will also restore the structure and construction process of the entire tomb through dismantling investigation of the tomb’s substructure, stone protection and piled stone part.
Furthermore, the GNRICH will conduct thorough and interdisciplinary researches on the stone-piled wooden chamber tomb no. 44 at Jjoksaem area in Gyeongju based on the co-operation with domestic and overseas research institutes.
The Gyeongju National Research Institute of Cultural Heritage, under the Cultural Heritage Administration, strives to make an excavation research that communicates with the people through the real-time sharing of the excavation process, regular report of research results, on-site presentation to the public and various experience programs.
The result of this excavation research on tomb no. 44 will be held to present at 4pm on the 7th of December through the GNRICH YouTube channel.
From the YouTube, online presentation and question-and-answer session will be in real-time to communicate with the public.
The GNRICH YouTube channel:
'NEWS & THESIS' 카테고리의 다른 글
|신라가 신선, 도교의 왕국이었음을 유감없이 증명한 경주 쪽샘 44호분 (0)||2020.12.07|
|Go stones, jewelry unearthed from Silla-era tomb of woman (2)||2020.12.07|
|Excavation of Jjoksaem No. 44 Tomb (2) 경주 쪽샘 44호분 (유물편) (0)||2020.12.07|
|Excavation of Jjoksaem No. 44 Tomb (1) 경주 쪽샘 44호분 (구조편) (0)||2020.12.07|
|Millenium Kingdom Silla from 1,600 years ago returns on YouTube (0)||2020.12.06|