This exceptional mummy from China accidentally found by road workers is unique because there are very few mummies around the world preserved as well as this one. She was a high-status Chinese woman and, according to her attire, lived during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). Among the most impressive items of the mummy’s apparel are a set of shoes with upturned toes, a large jade ring, and original silk clothes (while silk seldomly survives burial, as it is a very fragile fabric).
The Taizhou mummy that was found in Taizhou, Jiangsu Province, China in 2011 is extremely well preserved. Although, scientists think that it wasn’t intentional – basically, this woman was just lucky to be laid to rest in conditions that allowed the body to naturally mummify. Those people who buried her didn’t do any embalming treatment. But anyway, the body and clothing of centuries-old (she can be 400 or even 700-year-old) Taizhou mummy practically didn’t deteriorate at all.
The archaeologists and other scientists working with this mummy were very excited to get such a find – it told them a lot about the accurate Ming Dynasty clothing traditions, funeral customs, etc.
The woman was 1.5 m (about 5 feet) high. Her attire indicates that she lived during the Ming Dynasty and was a very high-status female, possibly even a royal. Over her outfit, the mummy was wrapped in layers of silk and linen that further protected her clothing.
Most of the mummy’s garments were made from silk with a little bit of cotton. All in all, there were 20 pieces of clothes in the tomb. Among the most interesting items, which also can be seen in detail in available photos of the Taizhou woman, are a pair of fabric shoes with upturned toes and a modest black headdress.
Also, the woman had several pieces of jewelry on. Including a beautiful jade ring and a silver hairpin.
Such wonders sometimes happen and we find ancient mummies in various places around the world that show us very accurately and in detail the clothing people used centuries ago.