Tang Shipwreck: Digging into Controversy

An excellent article by Bama which I would like to share with others . . . . . . .

What an Amazing World!

The Tang Shipwreck gallery at Singapore’s Asian Civilisations Museum

In the ninth century CE, an Arabian dhow sailed from the Middle East to China, possibly bringing precious cargo from Africa, Arabia, Persia, and other places along its journey to the Far East through the Indian Ocean, the Strait of Malacca, and all the way into the South China Sea. On the way back, after setting sail from the port of Canton in southern China, the dhow, which by now had been fully loaded with tens of thousands of fine Tang-dynasty ceramics and gold items, traveled the same route to return home. However, it never made it through the Strait of Malacca as it veered off hundreds of kilometers to the south of what is now Singapore and nothing was ever heard again of the ship.*

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One day in 1998, a group of fishermen started their day uneventfully…

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8 thoughts on “Tang Shipwreck: Digging into Controversy

  1. Thanks for posting. It is a difficult dilemma. When I was in Central America, I was interested in an old Mayan temple site I visited. When I researched the history, I found it was unearthed by an American. He recovered the artifacts. When he returned home for a visit, government officials looted the artifacts for their own gain. The artifacts were not safely kept together anywhere. Sad.

    • Sometimes. it is not sure whether opening up / uncovering of some artifacts is a blessing or not.
      As you say, it could be subjected to theft or become scattered. I understand that there is a large underground tomb next to the Terracotta in Xian that is intentionally not opened, for fear of deterioration and lack of suitable means to preserve.

    • I suspect this is with Egypt too. They may know more about the whereabouts of buried tombs and mummies and only uncover them when they feel there is a need – say, to attract more tourists when the tourist sector is down.

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