Anyway, a mining site in the eastern
yielded more than 1,200 turquoise artifacts. Beside a large amount of pottery and bronze items, some textiles, and pieces of stone and bone were also found. province of Xinjiang
The mining site of approximately 8 sq km is located close to the ancient
Silk Road and was active during two well-defined periods: the Spring and Autumn Period ranging from 700 to 476 BC, and the Warring States Period that covered the years 475 to 221 BC. This last end date coincides with the foundation of Qin’s Dynasty, i.e., that of the First Emperor. Interestingly, it is known that by 334 BC (during Alexander’s lifetime), there were seven Warring States: Qin, Chu, Wei, Han, Yan, and Qi, who were very much divided.
The discovery of the turquoise source seems to confirm industrial exchanges between Xinjiang and other regions of
. Based on these facts, it is not entirely impossible that Alexander had some knowledge of those far eastern states. China
In any case, the influence of Hellenism in China has been established with the life-size and life-like terracotta figures of athletes (see: Alexander’s influence reached all the way to China) and with the vast terracotta army in the tomb of Emperor Qin (see: The First Emperor, China’s Terracotta Army and Alexander the Great)
The first archaeological surveys started in 2016 and will continue later this year.