SHIJIAZHUANG, Oct. 12 (Xinhua) -- An old stone tablet recording a tax reduction was recently discovered in northern China's Hebei Province, according to local authorities.
Dating back to the Qing Dynasty (1644-1912), the tablet was set up in 1845 and was unearthed in Yanli Township, Nanhe County.
Measuring 95 cm in height, 52 cm in width and 16 cm in thickness, the 174-year-old tablet has a 263-word inscription carved on the surface.
The inscription recorded in detail that after the Opium War, local villagers struggled with heavy taxation and poverty. They reported their hardship to governmental departments, and the local county head later decided to cut taxes for the people.
Lan Jianhui, a historian, said after the Opium War, the Qing government signed the unequal Treaty of Nanjing with Britain in 1842. The huge compensation increased the financial burden of the Qing government, which was transferred to the people at the same time.
"The discovery of this stone tablet is of great historical value for the study of the civil administration, social and economic situation and the class contradictions in Hebei after the Opium War," Lan said.