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The Ruins of Ancient Loulan

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The ruins is at the down part of Kongque River and at northwestern bank of Lop Nur, 220 kilometers southwest to Ruoqiang County. It is a state-protected key cultural relic site. The name of Loulan was first recorded in the Xiongnu Records of Simaqian’s “The History”. Many discovered microliths from Loulan area prove that human activities existed in the Neolithic times and it was an important settlement of the early human beings in Xinjiang. In 77BC, the Loulan Kingdom changed its name as Shanshan Kingdom, and selected Yuni as its capital. From the time of Eastern Han Dynasty to the times of Wei and Jing Dynasties, Loulan, continued to be an important communication juncture on the Silk Road for about 400 years. And it was about at the time of the Early Liang time, the city was deserted, thus it was buried in the desert for more than thousand years. In the spring of 1900, Swen Hedin, a Swedish explorer, helped by a Uygur guide, Ordek, discovered the ruins of ancient Loulan by his luck. After that, foreign explorers went to the ruins one after another. These explorer unearthed and looted a large number of invaluable ancient relics, which shocked the world of that time. And the ancient city has been said as a “museum” left by the history and a “Pumpei” in the east. The Chinese scientists and expedition teams went to the area and have carried out comprehensive surveys in Loulan area and opened new page of the studies of ancient Loulan civilization.

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