Since early exploitation by foreign archaeologists in the nineteenth and early twentieth century, the area has continued to reveal amazing relicts of the past.Modern Chinese archaeologists have revealed more details of the ancient inhabitants and their ways of life.The unique dry conditions have preserved usually perishable artifacts and even the bodies of some of the people buried there.What have surprised many in the West were the European features of some of the bodies.The limbs were bound with thread below a layer of lacquer.If the materials are really silk and Chinese lacquer, then the use of these materials clearly suggests Chinese craftsmanship.People farmed and traded in the oases and nomads visited both for trade and warfare.Stephen Selby examined several bows in Urumqi that were of various designs and from several periods.
The term we use for bow tips, siyah, is not really appropriate In outline, the bow looks like the Classical Cupids bow of Greek and Roman art. Despite being found in the modern confines of China, this bow represents a survival of the ancient Scythian bow, which was used from Italy in the west to the north of China in the east.
Its watercourses eventually evaporate in the Takla Makan.
Subeshi (Subeixi) is situated to the east of the famous Silk Road town of Turpan (Turfan).
One type of great significance to the history of archery was very similar to bows familiar in the West from Greek, Persian and Scythian The bow in question possessed a feature that is no longer common in modern composite bows.
It was thick and narrow in the cross-section of that part of the limb where it bends.