Ancient ruins located on the upper reach of China's Yangtze River have provided evidence of the diverse origins of Chinese civilization. The Sanxingdui ruins in Guanghan, Sichuan Province, are of the ancient Shu Kingdom, which can be dated back some 3,000 to 5,000 years.
Chen De'an, an archaeologist with the Sichuan provincial archaeological team in southwest China, said that the ruins were home to three different but consequently developed ancient cultures.
Jade ware featured with unique characteristics and processed with advanced technology for the times, suggests that the Sanxingdui culture in the first phase had interacted with the cultures of the lower reaches of the Yangtze River about 3,700 to 5,000 years ago.
The second phase culture in Sanxingdui represented by bronze, which occurred afterwards, had been dominant in the Shu Kingdom, and extended influence on other cultures while also being influenced by civilizations from the central region and the middle reaches of the Yangtze River.
Chen said the ancient kingdom of Shu located in Sanxingdui was a stable, independent political entity that was more advanced than tribe culture. The kingdom was a typical "ancient kingdom" bordering the ancient hinterland.
The ruins also serve as a convincing proof that the origins of Chinese civilization are diverse. Chen said that Sanxingdui ruins, which archaeologists have been excavating for two decades, will not only "belong to" the archaeologists, but also to the experts in other fields in the new century.
The study of the ruins is a systematic project which includes geology, environment, hydrology, and more sciences. Chen said that archaeologists in future excavations are expected to uncover such mysteries as, where the raw material for the bronze came from, and when and why the civilization disappeared.
(Eastday.com December 12, 2000)