China: 30 tombs, 28 chariots and 98 horse skeletons dating back 2,800 years found in Hubei
Also discovered are some of the earliest music instruments ever found in China
- January 8, 2015 11:57 BST
In the three months they have been excavating, the archaeologists have also unearthed another pit, five metres away from the chariot pit, which holds at least 49 pairs of horse skeletons.
The archaeologists say that the number of chariots buried with the tombs are meant to demonstrate the high ranks of the tomb owners, as well as the strength of the ruling state they lived in at the time.
"More chariots mean that the country was powerful. The strength was measured by the number of chariots. In modern words, the chariots represent a kind of high-tech product. Only people with rather high ranks can own chariots," Liu said.
One of these states was Chu, which covers most of present-day Hubei and Hunan province, so it can be surmised that the nobles buried in these tombs were related to the ruling house of Chu.