Nihewan Basin(Chine): Paleolithic relics unearthed
Archaeologists have unearthed new paleolithic remains that may be 500,000 years old in north China's Hebei Province, which indicated the hominids of Northeast Asia lived in a wider habitat than previously thought.
The remains were excavated some 150 km away from the Nihewan Basin site where mammal fossils and Old Stone Age remnants known as the Nihewan Culture ruins were first discovered in the 1920s. They widen the geographic scope of relevant research,archaeologists said.
Xie Fei, head of Nihewan Archaeological Institute of Hebei Normal University, said thecore research area of the Nihewan Culture ruins remained in the Nihewan Basin inYangyuan County of Zhangjiakou City, where Chinese and foreign archaeologists hadconducted in-depth studies since 1920s.
Future research should be broadened to the new excavation site in Huailai County, Xietold Xinhua on Friday. He said a grand Nihewan Culture region is being etched out, which also includes Datong County in Shanxi, Yanqing County in Beijing, Zhuolu and Yuxian County in Zhangjiakou.
Li Dingyuan, curator of Huailai County Museum, also agreed that Huailai was animportant piece Nihewan ruins.
The 500 new relics include stone tools and animal fossils. They bear striking features ofthe Nihewan Culture ruins, said Li.
He noted that the findings also dated the history of hominids in Huailai County back hundreds of thousands years to the Middle Pleistocene.
According to Xie Fei who's been participating at the excavation since August, the unearthed stoneware are mainly tools used to crush and cut animals used by hominids during hunting, while the animal skeleton fossils were believed to be food remains.
Archaeologists including Xie believe the Nihewan region is the cradle of "oriental mankind" or hominids of northeast Asia, but it is still controversial whether mankind originated there or migrated there from elsewhere.