Ancient Oven Unearthed in NW China

Local archaeologists have unearthed an ancient oven, dating back more than 3,500 years, in Qinghai Province in northwest China.

The oven, discovered at the Lajia Ruins of pre-historic disasters in the Minhe County, is the largest and most intact ancient oven ever found in northwestern China, local archaeologists say.

Wang Guodao, deputy director of the Qinghai Provincial Institute for Relics and Archaeological Research, said that the fireplace is divided into two layers by a flagstone. The lower layer is believed to have been used for the fire and the upper layer for cooking.

Archaeologists also found a flue-pipe and stone stool at the excavation site.

Wang says that the fireplace proves that people were baking pastry and sweet potatoes more than 3,500 years ago. The discoveryalso provides evidence that at that time similar table ware was used by Oriental and Occidental people.

The Lajia Ruins which cover 200,000 square meters, are part of the Qijia Culture ruins of the New Stone Age and date back 3,500 to 4,000 years.

Last year at the site, archaeologists unearthed the ruins of three houses from the Qijia Culture, a dozen human skeletons, a large musical instrument and a number of porcelain, jade and copper utensils.

People's Daily Online ---