The Culture of Sky Road -- Exhibition of Tibetan History and Culture
February 27, 2018 - July 22, 2018 Time: 9:00—17:00 (closed on Mondays) Hall B, Ground Floor, Capital Museum

Preface

Known as the"Roof of the World" and the"Third Pole of the Earth," the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau is China's largest and the world's highest plateau, stretching all the way from the Himalayas north to the Kunlun Mountains, Altun Mountains and Qilian Mountains. The Pamir mountains and the Karakoram Range lie to its west, while to the east and northeast lie the Tsinling Mountains and the Loess Plateau. The Qinghai-Tibet Plateau is the world's youngest as well and has seen the rise of Chinese and Indian culture. It may be geographically isolated by its high altitude and steep mountain roads, but here one can witness the mysteries and diversity of Tibetan culture.

Part One: Origins of Civilization

Several great rivers that bred ancient Eastern civilization originated from the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. The meandering rivers, too, are sources of life and civilization across the snow-covered plateau. fine stone leaves, plain pottery and mysterious gold vessels silently tell the story of how a nationality evolved. 

1. Ancestors 

Artifacts excavated from the late Paleolithic Period dating back between 10,000 and 50,000 years demonstrate that there lay the footprint of human activity. Some scholars consider the microlithic culture in Tibet as part of the non-geometric microlithic culture centered in North China, based on the analysis of the characteristics of what is found at present. Remains of ancient humans became greater in number and more diversified in form after the Neolithic Age. The Karub archaeological site has potently proved that as early as 4,000 to 5,000 years ago, not only was there the existence of human beings on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, but also a relatively developed primitive culture.

2. Tribal Unification

Many tribes distributed along the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau since the Neolithic Age were gradually unified by Songtsen Gampo into the Tubo Empire. Of these, the Zhangzhung, Sumpa and Yarlung played a vital role in the historical formation and progress of the Zang nationality. 

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