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China retrieves Ming porcelain

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Bee Cha
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« on: July 22, 2007, 01:30:05 am »

China retrieves Ming porcelain

    July 16 2007 at 09:14AM 
 
Beijing - Chinese archaeologists have retrieved more than 300 pieces of porcelain from an ancient shipwreck at the bottom of the South China Sea, Xinhua news agency said on Monday.

Guangdong archaeologists used satellite navigation equipment to locate the sunken ship in early June. The vessel, dubbed South China Sea-II, is about 17 metres to 18 metres long and lying at a depth of 20 metres.

A preliminary study of the ship shows it may have sunk 400 years ago after striking a reef.

"These porcelain objects, mostly bowls, plates, pots and bottles, were believed to be produced in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644)," Dr Wei Jun of the Guangdong Archaeology Institute, was quoted as saying. "They have a great archaeological value."

Foreign smugglers were using advanced technology to steal
The wreck came to light when local police got wind of fishermen recovering ancient porcelain objects from the sea.

The sunken ship was found just a few days after China began salvage operations at another wreck site dating back to the days of the Song emperors, who ruled between 960 and 1279.

South China Sea I, discovered in 1987, was the first ancient vessel discovered in the area along the "Marine Silk Road" linking imperial China with the West.

Foreign smugglers were using advanced technology to steal China's seabed treasures, mostly porcelain from ancient shipwrecks, the China Daily said in April. Many relics were being shipped to the United States and other antique markets.

Art collectors and dealers have been pursuing China's seabed heritage in earnest since early 2005, when about 15 000 pieces, mainly blue-and-white porcelain about 300 years old, were found in a shipwreck off the southeastern province of Fujian.

 
http://www.int.iol.co.za/index.php?set_id=1&click_id=588&art_id=nw20070716083032441C745254
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rockessence
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« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2007, 02:13:56 pm »

Great to hear of more Chinese porcelain coming to light as so much was destroyed during Mao's time....
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