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The Capital Museum features 5,000 years of history
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The Beijing Capital Museum opened an exhibit today featuring artifacts throughout 5,000 years of Chinese history.

Inside the museum the line of visitors stretched from the first floor to the basement. Zhang Yan, surrounded by her mother, sister, and nephew gave her thoughts before entering:

"I got the news online and I decided to take (my family) here. I think it's instructive (for my nephew) to know the splendid culture of China. And it's also a good chance for us adults to get some knowledge of the history."

Her nephew, Chen Zhengyu, had a more pragmatic take:

"I don't know what's on show in the museum but I just want to visit the exhibition and write a composition as my homework."

The exhibit features the most precious relics from 27 provinces across China. It is the broadest representation of ancient Chinese culture ever displayed publically in Beijing.

The hall is kept dark and air conditioned. Most of the artifacts are kept in sealed containers with temperature and humidity controls. It goes in chronological order from the oldest Neolithic objects to more modern pieces.

A few well known items are placed throughout the three sections. These include a Jade burial suit worn by wealthy Han aristocrats 2,000 years ago and a small collection of the terracotta warriors from Emperor Qin's tomb in Xian.

Scott Dunham from Michigan in the United States summed up his impression:

"It's amazing. Being from America we have such a short history and to see things that are from 8,000 years ago are pretty incredible."

The exhibition will last through the end of September this year.

(China.org.cn by David Humphrey, July 29, 2008)


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