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14 October 2003
Ancient heating wall found in China

Chinese archaeologists were recently surprised to find an ancient heating wall in the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region in north China which can still be used. The wall with flues for heating was discovered in Xinglongwa, a cultural relics site in Chifeng which can be traced back to 7,600  years ago.  
     However, the heating wall is believed to be younger than the whole relic site. Archaeologists from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and the regional archaeology institute said that the wall was used by ancient people 4,000 years ago. Though the burning turned it maroon, archaeologists said the wall, 30 cm high, 20 cm wide and two meters long, is one of the best preserved heating facilities of the Neolithic Age ever found in north China. Archaeologists found that smoke can be seen at the flue exits when firewood is burnt.  
     Discovered in 1982, Xinglongwa is regarded as the best preserved, the  largest and the earliest cultural relic site of the Neolithic Age in China. The site has drawn close attention from both domestic and overseas  archaeologists. Since first excavation in May 2001, more than 1,000 ancient houses have  been unearthed in Xinglongwa.

Source: China View (14 October 2003)

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