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800,000-year-old Stoneware Unearthed
Chinese archaeologists have unearthed a site inhabited by ancient people in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, south China, containing more than 1,000 stone tools dating back about 800,000 years.

The relics include chipped stone tools such as pickaxes, axes with thin blades and chopping tools, and quartz fragments that had been used in making the stoneware. They were found on a hill near Baidu Village of Tiandong County in the Baise Prefecture. The archaeologists said this was the first time such artifacts had been found in the stratum at Baise.

Xie Guangmao, an expert on Baise Paleolithic cultures and director of the research institute of the Guangxi Cultural Heritage Working Team, said these stone tools were buried underground and featured the same characteristics of other stoneware excavated in Baise Basin in the past, in terms of processing technique, size, type and formation.

It can be concluded that ancient people lived in the area about 800,000 years ago, Xie said.

The pickaxes were chipped on both sides and made into determinate sizes.

"This shows that there was no intellectual difference between the ancients of Asia, Africa and Europe in the early stage of the Paleolithic Age," said Xie.

During the past 29 years, archaeologists have discovered more than 70 Paleolithic Age sites in Baise Basin, 90 km long by 15 km wide. More than 8,000 pieces of stoneware unearthed from the basin are now exhibited in the Guangxi Museum.

(Xinhua News Agency September 13, 2002)

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