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Over 5,300-year-old Paddy Field Discovered in East China

Archaeologists have recently found an expanse of prehistoric rice paddy, dating back about 5,300 to 5,500 years, in east China’s Zhejiang Province.

Covering about 1,000 square meters, the ancient paddy field was discovered in the core area of the Neolithic Hemudu culture, where human activity was frequent, said the Ningbo municipal research academy of cultural heritage management.

Three ridges, nine pits and some remains of rice and weeds were discovered during the excavation work. A ditch for irrigation and drainage was also unearthed at the site, along with a road believed to have connected surrounding residences with the paddy field.

The pits are likely to have been formed during the renovation of the ridges and the ditch in prehistoric time, said the researchers.

The new findings at the site help reveal a complete rice-field system at that time, providing important research materials for studies on the rice-planting agricultural mode in the local plain area, according to the research academy.

Hemudu culture, named after Hemudu Township of Ningbo where its ruins were first discovered, belongs to a prehistoric society along the lower reaches of the Yangtze River and is known for its rice-planting agriculture and unique stilt-style architecture.

Source: Xinhua