Ancient Crossbow found at Terracotta Warrior Site

The most complete ancient crossbow to date was discovered in the terracotta army pit one in Xi’an, Shaanxi province.

In an astonishing find, archaeologists in China have located a 2,200-year-old crossbow in pristine condition buried with the vast army of terracotta warriors at the excavation pit at Xi’an, Shaanxi province.

Reported by news site to be the most complete crossbow found to date at the site, it has a 145 centimeter (57 inch) arch and, incredibly, the bow string remains intact and measures 130 centimeters (51 inches) long. Researchers believe the string is made of animal tendon rather than fabric, which would have degraded and disappeared long ago.

Shen Maosheng, head of the archaeological team which made the discovery says that two wooden sticks, called Qing, were found alongside the crossbow. There Qing were thought to help maintain and transport the crossbows thousands of years ago, as noted in ancient records. Expert opinion could never be confirmed until now, with the discovery of the intact mechanisms.

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