Banpo (Bànpō) is an archaeological site discovered in 1953 and
located in the
Yellow River Valley
Yellow River Valley just east of Xi'an, China. It
contains the remains of several well organized
like Jiangzhai, carbon dated to 6700–5600 years ago. The
area of 5 to 6 hectares (12 to 15 acres) is surrounded by a ditch,
probably a defensive moat, 5 to 6 meters (16 to 20 ft) wide. The
houses were circular, built of mud and wood with overhanging thatched
roofs. They sat on low foundations. There appear to be communal burial
Banpo is the type site associated with
Archaeological sites with similarities to the first phase at
considered to be part of the “
Banpo phase” (7th millennium BC)
Banpo was excavated from 1954 to 1957.
The settlement was surrounded by a moat, with the graves and pottery
kilns located outside the moat perimeter. Many of the houses were
semisubterranean with the floor typically 1 meter (3 ft) below
the ground surface. The houses were supported by timber poles and had
steeply pitched thatched roofs.
According to the Marxist paradigm of archaeology that was prevalent in
China during the time of the excavation of the site,
considered to be a matriarchal society; however, new research
contradicts this claim and the Marxist paradigm is gradually being
phased out in modern Chinese archaeological research. Currently,
little can be said of the religious or political structure from these
ruins from the archeological evidence.
The site is now home to the
Banpo Museum, built in 1957 to
preserve the archaeological collection.
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