Archaeologists Discover 2,400-Year-Old Pot of Soup
Posted on December 30, 2010
A 2,400-year-old pot of soup, sealed in a three-legged, bronze, cooking vessel has been discovered by archaeologists in the tomb of either an ancient solider or a member of the land-owning class near the ancient capital of Xian.
It is the first discovery of bone soup in Chinese history.
To say the soup, has past its expiration date is certainly an understatement.
The pot measures 8 inches high and 10 inches in diameter and was a vessel clearly designated for cooking and serving meat. It has now been resealed and sent away for content analysis.
The soup contained several bones and was still in a liquid state, although it had turned green due to the natural oxidation process of the bronze. The soup did not evaporate because the tomb had been so tightly sealed.
A separate bronze vessel that contained an odorless liquid, believed to be wine, was also found in the tomb, which was being excavated to expand the city’s airport.
The culinary discovery will fill in many gaps of knowledge concerning the eating and cultural habits of the warlords of the Chinese Warring States Period, which ran from 475 to 221 BC.
The ancient city of Xian near where the soup was found, once served as China’s ancient capital for over 1,100 years, and is renowned for the amazing terracotta army of warriors at the burial site of China’s first declared emperor, Qing Shihuang, who presided over the unification of China in 221 BC.
Believe it or not, this discovery does not represent the oldest food pot found. In 2005, a 4,000-year-old pot containing noodles was discovered at a site near the Yellow River.