Jade Tube

Jade Tube

National Treasure

National Treasure Intro

The Jade Tube is in the collection of the National Museum of Prehistory in Taiwan.

It is one of the special jade objects excavated in 1984 at the site in Peinan, Taiwan, from the Late Neolithic period, it is 28.75cm long, compared to similar objects unearthed in the eastern part of Taiwan and neighboring countries, this tube-shaped object is the longest to be found. Accordingly, in 2012 it was designated as a national treasure on the basis that it is of “excellent quality and exceptionally rare in quantity, and has historical significance or can represent the special characteristics of traditional, ethnic, or local culture.”

3D gallery:Jade Tube

National Treasure Appreciation

The Jade Tube is the most unique object from the excavation site at Peinan, Taiwan. Compared to other excavation sites in eastern Taiwan, there were a lot of jade tubes excavated from Peinan, they were also the longest. Among them, the Jade Tubes are more round than square, and most of the other jade tubes found were probably used as neck ornaments.

When this group of long jade tubes was unearthed, the five jade tubes were found placed next to the body of the tomb’s owner, so they were not like the short jade tubes that were placed on the chest of the tomb’s owner. Therefore, it can be inferred that these jade tubes were made for a specific purpose.

The jade tube was a burial object that accompanied someone buried in a slate coffin at the Peinan site. It is made of Taiwan jade (nephrite). There are five pieces in this group, and the size of the pieces is uniform. The tube length is 28.75cm, the circular diameter is 9.4mm, and the weight is 40.5g. They are the longest and the most complete set of jade tubes.

These jade tubes were produced by taking a long piece of jade and grinding it into a cylinder, and then drilling the ends into a tube. This object shows that there was already a high level of craftsmanship at that time.


    1. National Cultural Heritage Database Management System
    2. Yeh Mei-Chen, “Prehistoric Precious Jade: The Peinan Site Jade Ornaments,” National Museum of Prehistory Wenhua Yizhan, 31:2012, pp.47-53.
    3. Tsang Cheng-hwa and Yeh Mei-Chen, Peinan Jade Artifacts in the Collection of the National Museum of Prehistory. Taitung: National Taiwan Museum of Prehistory, 2005.


The National Museum of Prehistory (NMP) began in 1980 with the construction of the new Taitung Station on the South Line Railway, which led to the discovery of the Peinan Site. The Peinan Site is the largest and most complete prehistoric settlement ever found in Taiwan, and has the largest slate coffin burial complex in Southeast Asia and the Pacific Rim.

In response to the call to preserve Taiwan’s cultural resources, the NMP was built to the south side of the Kangle Station in Taitung, and the original Peinan Site was turned into the Peinan Archaeological Site Park. The Museum of Archaeology, Tainan Branch of NMP was also established in the Southern Taiwan Science Park in Tainan, where there is the most abundant cultural layer in southwest Taiwan.All these precious materials can be viewed on the “National Museum of Prehistory’s Database.”