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1st pottery with human-body design unearthed in Gansu

Updated: 05 07 , 2013 19:39
An ancient earthen jar with a human-body design painted on it, the first of its kind ever discovered in China, has been unearthed in Lintao City, northwest China's Gansu Province.
The 30-cm-tall jar, discovered by local peasants, has a pair of asymmetrical handles and a fish-type mouth, which is common in ancient pottery unearthed in Gansu, says Wang Haidong, vice president of the provincial Research Institute of Ancient Painted Pottery.
The jar dated back about 3,200 years ago, belonging to the Majiayao culture type (about 3300 BC to 2050 BC). The design of two human bodies, painted in black pigment, was the first ever seen in China, Wang Haidong says.
Clearly painted and lifelike, the two figures are in different postures, with intact trunks, legs and arms, heads and facial features.
Designs related to human bodies had been found on pottery unearthed in China before, yet all of them were clay figures, different from the two figures depicted in lines, according to Wang.
The discovery of a human body design on ancient pottery indicates that the ancient Chinese people were skilled in drawing and proves that pottery designs are the origin of traditional Chinese paintings, Wang says.
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