277-year-old bell discovered in north China province
SHIJIAZHUANG, Aug. 23 (Xinhua) -- An iron bell, which was made 277 years ago, has been found in a village in north China's Hebei Province, the local cultural relics department said Thursday.
The bell measures one meter in height, with a diameter of 80 centimeters at the bottom and is 2 centimeters thick.
Weighing around 200 kg, the bell consists of two parts. Eight characters wishing for a long life for the empire and the crown prince are cast into the upper section. While the lower section has an over 300-character inscription indicating the history of the bell and when it was made.
Cultural relics experts in Cixian County said that bells have a long history in China. They were once used to convey messages and later became musical instruments and tools for sacrificial activities.
The new finding will help understand religion, customs, and the development of the foundry industry in the southern part of Hebei.