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Physical Appropriation Of Nestorian Heritage by Settlers

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Chapter Summary

This chapter discusses the physical appropriation of Nestorian sites and objects by Han Chinese settlers and farmers. The practise of using Nestorian gravestones for the construction of Buddhist sites has a long history in Inner Mongolia. The majority of gravestones from the cemetery of Olon Sume were discovered in the foundations of a sixteenth- or seventeenth-century Buddhist temple situated within the city walls. The physical appropriation of Nestorian objects and sites continued among Han Chinese farmers who settled in Inner Mongolia at the end of the Qing rule. Perhaps the most destructive form of the physical appropriation of Nestorian heritage-resulting in the loss of both site and objects-concerns the widespread looting of ancient sites in Inner Mongolia. The tourist sector in Inner Mongolia was helped a great deal by the development of infrastructure in the steppe.

Keywords:Han Chinese settlers; Inner Mongolia; Nestorian Heritage; Olon Sume



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