Archaeological Team, 2010 Prince of Asturias Award

  May 19, 2010 at 8:38 am by

Courtesy of the Prince of Asturias Foundation

The archaeological team who discovered the Terracotta Army has been laureate with the 2010 Prince of Asturias Award for Social Sciences. The Jury for the Award, which announced its decision today in Oviedo, believes this archeological project is a multidisciplinary research project which allows studying an important period of formation of the Chinese Empire.

The Terracotta Warriors and Horses of Qinshihuang in Xi’an, is part of the mausoleum of Emperor Qin Shi Huang (221-207 B.C.), the first to unify China and founder of the Qin Dynasty. This Army was fortuitously discovered in 1974 while a few peasants were looking for water to attack the drought. It consists of more than 7,000 life-size terracotta figures of warriors and horses, which were buried in military formation a short distance away from the tomb of the emperor Qin Shi Huang; it is believed this army entombed in the earth was made for him to conquer the afterlife. It took 700 thousand laborers and almost 40 years to build. The Complex was opened to the public as a museum in 1979, and has received over 60 million visitors from around the world since then. In 1987 It was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Click to enlarge

In words of the President, the Jury “have wished to pay tribute to a team of archaeologists and other scientists who have unearthed this great tomb complex and, in particular, the work that has revealed to the world the cultural importance of China and of its civilization that spans thousands of years, its social organization and its artistic splendor. The team has made it possible for millions of people from all over the world to enter into contact for the first time with a fundamental chapter in the history of civilizations. It has also opened up an extraordinarily prolific path for multiples fields of knowledge.”

Each of the eight international recipients is awarded 50,000 euros, a specially commissioned Joan Miró sculpture, a diploma and an insignia. The Presentation Ceremony of the 2010 Prince of Asturias Awards will take place in the autumn at Campoamor Theater in Oviedo, capital of the Asturias Principality, and it will be presided over by H.R.H the Prince of Asturias.

To learn more about the 2010 Prince of Asturias Award visit this thread.

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