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Hemudu Culture Site
2019-10-15 15:35 Text Size: A A A

Hemudu Culture Site, a site under state-level protection, is situated on the bank of the Yao River (or Yuyao River), 25 kilometers west of Ningbo, 22 kilometers east of Yuyao and 4 kilometers away from the Xiaoshan-Ningbo Railway. Backed by the Siming Mountains and facing the Ningshao Plain, it dates back to the Neolithic Age. In the site a large number of rare historical objects have been unearthed, totaling 7,000 pieces of wares made of stones, bones, wood, pottery and jade, over 500 thousand of pottery shards, animal and plant remains, huts of wood stem-columns as well as 20 tombs, all in an area of 40,000 square kilometers. The site testifies that over 7,000 years ago, primitive people already made home at this place, doing business and establishing a splendid primeval culture. The fact that plenty of well-preserved golden rice remains of artificially cultivated indica rice, and many Si (a spade-shaped farm tool) made of bones have been unearthed from the site proves that primitive people started to plant rice as early as 7,000 years ago, belying the argument that “there was only round-grained rice but no long-shaped rice in the Neolithic Age” and establishing the unique status of Ningbo as one of the earliest places planting rice.

Tools such as bone knives, wood knives, stabs and arrows unearthed from the site demonstrate that hunting, fishing and breeding were prevalent. Actually, a kind of bone-whistle made from animal bones can still perform the complete musical scale even today.

Ceramic and stone spinning tools such as wood knife, bone needle and spinning wheel unearthed prove the then rather sophisticated spinning and weaving process.

Furthermore, a tenon-and-mortise wood structure was unearthed in the site. It is a ganlan-type house built on wood columns, 23 meters in length and 7 meters in width. The columns, beams and purlins are jointed with tenons. The wooden components even have carved patterns on them as decorations.

People also found a large number of black potteries, painted wooden bowls, wooden slips, craft jewelries, ivory carvings and toys there. The discovery of Hemudu Culture Site renders the Yangtze Lake Basin a significant status similar to that of the Yellow River, a cradle of Chinese civilization.

Thousands of relics were unearthed after two excavations. Some of them are collected in the  Natural Museum of Zhejiang Province and the rest are exhibited in Hemudu Culture Site Museum nearby, with the inscription written by Jiang Zemin, former General Secretary of the CPC.

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