Excavations of Peking Man, Beijing
The prehistoric village near Zhoukoudian, situated 43km/27mi southwest of Beijing, has attracted interest from archaeologists all over the world. Extensive finds prove that hominids settled here about 500,000 years ago. Even before this was discovered, laborers occasionally found fossils in chalk quarries on the Dragon Bone Mountain (Longgushan); they thought the finds were dragon bones, hence the mountain's name.Since the first complete preserved skull of the Peking man (Homo erectus pekinensis) was discovered, finds of equal interest were made in subsequent years: human thigh bones, collar bones, shin bones, skull and teeth, also ashes, stones and bones showing clear signs of burning, suggesting that Peking man knew how to make fire. In all the remains of 40 humans were found. After the start of the war in the Pacific in 1941, in the attempt to ship the most important finds to the USA, many were lost. Later the remains of skeletons and artifacts of early Paleolithic man, who lived 12,000-27,000 years ago, were also discovered in the higher part of the mountain.Displayed in the exhibition hall are finds from the Dragon Bone Mountain and more fossils from other parts of the country. They are divided into three sections: the evolution of man, the life of the Peking man, and the role of paleoanthropology and paleontology in China.
Opening hours: 8:30am-4:30pm
Entrance fee in CNY: Adult ¥20.00