Crossbows and imperial craft organisation: the bronze triggers of China's Terracotta Army

  title={Crossbows and imperial craft organisation: the bronze triggers of China's Terracotta Army},
  author={Xiuzhen Janice Li and Andrew Bevan and Marcos Martin{\'o}n-Torres and Thilo Rehren and Wei Cao and Yin Xia and Kun Zhao},
  pages={126 - 140}
The Terracotta Army that protected the tomb of the Chinese emperor Qin Shihuang offers an evocative image of the power and organisation of the Qin armies who unified China through conquest in the third century BC. It also provides evidence for the craft production and administrative control that underpinned the Qin state. Bronze trigger mechanisms are all that remain of crossbows that once equipped certain kinds of warrior in the Terracotta Army. A metrical and spatial analysis of these… 
Building the Terracotta Army: ceramic craft technology and organisation of production at Qin Shihuang's mausoleum complex
Abstract Despite decades of research into the Terracotta Army of the First Emperor of China, many questions remain about how, where and by whom the figures were made. This new study compares the
Ink marks, bronze crossbows and their implications for the Qin Terracotta Army
At the heart of bureaucratic practice during Warring States and early Imperial China were regular, small acts of accountancy in which objects and people were marked so that their movements could be
Marking practices and the making of the Qin Terracotta Army
Abstract A striking feature of Qin material culture (770–210 BC) in ancient China is the frequency with which it preserves stamped, incised or painted marks with a variety of Chinese characters,
Technology and complexities of the Inner Asian frontier reflected in crossbow bolts
Abstract The Inner Asian frontier along the Gobi Desert was an arena for competition between the Xiongnu (ca. 209 BCE–100/150 CE) and Han (206 BCE–220 CE) empires. A number of crossbow bolts from two
Complicating the frontier: Armaments, fortifications, and identities beyond the Great Wall
Abstract The recovery of iron and bronze “bimetallic” crossbow bolts from walled settlements located in the Mongolian Gobi Desert reflects the presence of Han dynasty material culture along the Inner
Roles of weapons: significance, identity and value in Anyang late Shang (c. 1200-1050 b.C.) society China
Weapons of the late Shang (c.1200-1050 B.C.), characterised by their frequent discovery and various forms and materials, have often been dogmatically deciphered as either symbolic signifiers or
The prehistoric individual, connoisseurship and archaeological science: The Muisca goldwork of Colombia
Unlike art historians, archaeologists rarely make systematic attempts at attributing artefacts to individual artisans – they stop at the broader category of ‘provenance regions’ or ‘technical
Coercive Power and State Formation in Northern Vietnam
Archaeological researchers have long contemplated the origins of ancient states, and ongoing research has produced numerous theoretical explanations accounting for archaic state formation. Although
Surface chromium on Terracotta Army bronze weapons is neither an ancient anti-rust treatment nor the reason for their good preservation
It is shown that the lacquer used to cover warriors and certain parts of weapons is rich in chromium, and it is demonstrated that chromium on the metals is contamination from nearby lacquer after burial, and the chromium anti-rust treatment theory should be abandoned.
Thirty years ago on a London street, an excited young teenager stood in a queue the likes of which he had never previously seen. The wait, however, was worth it, for the reward was the opportunity to


The First Emperor: China's Terracotta Army
Hiromi Kinoshita is Exhibition Assistant for the First Emperor exhibition and a catalogue contributor. She was co-curator of the Royal Academy exhibition, China: The Three Emperors (1662–1722) held
Inscriptions, filing, grinding and polishing marks on the bronze weapons from the Qin Terracotta Army in China
Abstract This paper is concerned with the inscriptions and finishing marks present on the surfaces of the thousands of bronze weapons recovered together with the Terracotta Army at the mausoleum
Mass-Produced Pre-Han Chinese Bronze Crossbow Triggers: Unparalleled Manufacturing Technology in the Ancient World
Abstract After an introduction to pre-Han and Han bronze crossbow triggers and bronze casting in China, these ancient mechanisms are examined from an engineering and manufacturing perspective. These
Point pattern analysis revisited
The outcome of this work is presented as a case study and compared with earlier analyses of this dataset, and the value of ADE-4 for archaeological spatial analysis is assessed.
Scientific Analysis of Glazed Tile from the Seljuq Palace of Kubad-Âbâd, Lake Beyşehir, Turkey
The palace of Kubad-Âbâd was built on the instructions of the Seljuq Sultan Alâeddin Keykubad I. Excavations have recovered large quantities of decorated glazed wall tile, typically in the familiar
Computational Approaches to Archaeological Spaces
This volume of original chapters written by experts in the field offers a snapshot of how historical built spaces, past cultural landscapes, and archaeological distributions are currently being
Multi-disciplinary Investigation of the Windows of John Thornton, focusing on the Great East Window of York Minster
Twenty-seven samples of glass from panel 2e of John Thornton’s Great East Window (1405–1408) at York Minster have been analyzed using energy dispersive x-ray analysis in the scanning electron
Techniques for Assessing Standardization in Artifact Assemblages: Can We Scale Material Variability?
The study of artifact standardization is an important line of archaeological inquiry that continues to be plagued by the lack of an independent scale that would indicate what a highly variable or
Cultural transmission, copying errors, and the generation of variation in material culture and the archaeological record
Archaeologists are adept at analyzing variation in artifacts. The discipline has well established and tested methods to track change through time and to evaluate the function of artifacts that depend
What the bronzes from Hunyuan tell us about the foundry at Houma
Etude stylistique et technologique des bronzes de Hunyuan (5e s. av. J.-C.) decouverts en 1923, qui ont du etre moules a 500 km de la, a Houma, capitale de l'etat de Jin aux 6e et 5e av. J.-C., et