finally a wooden spindle whorl, or maybe more correctly the whorl of a fire-drill, Pl. 32 : 3. The comb, which has been partly reconstructed in Fig. 49, has had the shorter teeth secured in a lost transverse piece (of tendon?) and the long outer teeth have
Fig. 45. Probable a=- been the sides with strings running to thidith stringin in the marked notches
rangement of bronze a g
fittings from Grave z, on the upper part. If this reconstruction is correct it shows a Charchan. Half size.
certain likeness with the Lop-nor comb Pl. 9: I.
Grave 7 was situated by the side of Grave 6. The construction was in conformity with the other one but the roof was made of reed bundles wound round with two cords. The pit contained one skeleton and a clay pot of the same kind as several purchased in Charchan ånd stated to originate from Kohna-shahr. The people were not quite certain if the cup Pl. 35 : 6 or 35 : 7 was found in this grave.
Both of these graves seem to have been more or less plundered on some former occasion. In the earth around the dug out graves I found a small carved peg with a row of holes (K. 13345 : 6) having quite withered wood.
The other graves were destroyed by treasure-seekers long ago, and so was another group of five or six graves a little farther to the west.
On the surrounding ground we did not notice any fragments of pottery, otherwise so common in Kohna-shahr proper. This burial place was apparently situated outside the old town.
As the funeral deposits are very poor the dating of these graves is somewhat hazardous. It is quite clear that they are of a pre-Mussulman age, and that they belong to people that inhabited Charchan before MARCO POLO passed here. It is not quite out of the question that Graves 6 and 7 belong to the Lou-lan period, as the construction of these graves reminds us of some of the Lop-nor graves, but the sepulchral furniture is too insignificant to allow of any proper distinction.
B. `TATI' FINDS. Pottery.
From the historical data regarding Charchan, as seen from the brief extract given above, we do not reach further back than the time of the Han dynasty, when the oasis was known as Chü-mo. There is nothing to contradict the supposition that Charchan was inhabited long before that, possibly already in prehistoric times. The finds furnishing the proofs, however, have been wanting. With the acquisition of the beautiful earthenware vase shown in Pl. 1 we have apparently acquired an object antedating the Han dynasty, cf. p. 18 f. Its general features places it among the chalcolithic pottery, possibly of the second millenium B. C. A few plain potsherds may also be prehistoric. (K. 13342 : 28, 30-31, 52-53).