5,000-Year-Old Stone Sculptures Discovered in North China

Two exquisite stone sculptures dating back 5,000 years, one of a human face and the other either of a snake or a dragon, have recently been discovered in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.

The unusual looking snake has a ferocious expression. It is colored green and is 4.2 centimeters long. Archaeologists say it has features of several other animals and might be meant to be a "dragon", an ancient Chinese symbol.

Many ancient relics show that the dragon is a combination of numerous animals, such as the crocodile, pig, snake and horse.

The other sculpture is of a human face, which is 8.3 centimeters high and made of a red stone. The statue has a unique countenance, large eyes, arched eyebrows, a triangular nose and thin lips but no ears. There is a hole on the right side of its forehead which experts say is for hanging.

The two extraordinary sculptures were discovered at a Neolithic Age (10,000 to 4,000 years ago) relic site in Linxi County of the autonomous region.

(Xinhua News Agency April 1, 2002)

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