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17 December 2006
Palaeolithic stone tools found in China

Archaeologists have discovered 21 sites and thousands of stone tools dating back to the Palaeolithic Age - more than 20,000 years back - in northwest China's Shaanxi province. "Over 20,000 stone implements were unearthed from the sites near Longwangchan village, Yichuan county, during excavations," said a representative of thethe Shaanxi Provincial Archaeological Institute.
     These stone implements include fine stone cores, a millstone and other stone tools. The most eye-catching discovery was a polished shovel made of shale, which is 12.7 cm long, 9.2 cm wide and 0.8 cm thick. Experts said the shovel was one of the most important discoveries from the Palaeolithic age in China and estimated it to be the earliest polished stone tool ever discovered in the country.
     Compared with Europe, China has unearthed few decorative items from the Palaeolithic Age. However, the archaeologists discovered two pieces of ornaments made of clamshell - one is rectangle-shaped, 3.7 cm long and 1.6 cm wide; and the other is fan-shaped, 1.5 cm long and 1.1 cm wide. These ornaments provide material evidence for studying life in late Palaeolithic times, said experts with the archaeological Institute. They also discovered fragments of charcoal and charred animal bones at more than 20 sites - evidence that the ancient people used fire.

Source: RxPG News (13 December 2006)

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