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500yo Ming Dynasty mummies unearthed at Chinese construction site

500yo Ming Dynasty mummies unearthed at Chinese construction site
A construction crew in China made an unexpected discovery when attempting to install plumbing, unearthing a tomb containing the mummies of a couple believed to date back to the Ming Dynasty.

The discovery of the corpses, which are believed to be around 500 years old, was made in Taikang county in Zhoukou, Henan province, the Dahe Daily reported. Other discoveries found at the site included a tombstone and two crystal coffins.

It is believed that the remains are those of the grandson of Gu Zuo, an official during the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644), and his wife.

Despite their age, the clothes on the mummies were in such a perfect condition that a gold-colored pattern could be made out on them.

Some online posts claimed that other valuables, including swords and fans, had been stolen by locals when the tomb was unearthed on March 19, the South China Morning Post reported

However, a local official denied this, noting that the tomb was unlikely to contain any valuables since people lived modestly during the Ming dynasty due to a crackdown on corruption during that era.

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Security guards have since been deployed at the scene on a 24-hour basis, according to the local culture department.

Although Chinese law requires that approval be granted for infrastructure construction, the crew had reportedly not sought permission to dig. It remains unclear how badly the tomb was damaged when it was unearthed.