Prof. Chang Chuen Memorial Public Lecture Series: “Archaeology, History and Science: Unlocking the Mysteries of the Terracotta Army”

The 23rd round of the memorial lecture series was held on 30 March 2021 (Tuesday). Prof. Marcos Martinón-Torres 馬可教授, Pitt-Rivers Professor of Archaeological Science, Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge, delivered a lecture titled “Archaeology, History and Science: Unlocking the Mysteries of the Terracotta Army.” Around 90 participants attended the lecture.


Dr. Kin-sum (Sammy) Li introduced the speaker and served as moderator at the Q&A session. In his lecture, Prof. Martinón-Torres drew on his expertise in material culture, achaeometallurgy, and the archaeological application of modern technologies to offer new insights into the production of the famous Terracotta Warriors.


The Terracotta Army, heavily armored and based outside China's First Emperor's mausoleum over 2200 years ago, is one of the most significant archaeological discoveries of all time, and an endless source of mysteries. Prof. Marcos Martinon-Torres delivered a fascinating lecture that analyzed these mysteries from different points of view. He discussed about warriors and the relationship among materials, knowledge and labour. He examined the implementation of reverse engineering on weapons and warriors. He concluded that material science, shape analysis, inscriptions, and spatial analysis help people understand more on the Terracotta Army and Mausoleum complex.