Chinese archaeologists have discovered a large ceramic porcelain kiln site dating back as far as 1,000 years ago in the southwest Sichuan Province.
The Xiba kiln site near an expressway construction site, is on a hillside near Jianyi and Miaotuo villages in Leshan City. It covers a total area of about 300,000 square meters, according to Gao Dalun, the Sichuan Provincial Archaeological Research Institute president.
Researchers said they had already found remains of four horseshoe-shaped kilns and collected pieces of porcelain bowls, plates, pots and other items.
Gao said most of the kilns belonged to a period between the Song Dynasty(960-1279) and the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).
The discovery is considered valuable to the study of regional porcelain production and in the national archaeological research on porcelain history.
Gao said the institute would carry out further excavations and organize a thorough survey of the area.
China has a long history of porcelain and pottery production as ceramic products, along with silk, were the favorite exports in ancient times.
Jingdezhen in eastern Jiangxi Province is considered the country's most famous porcelain-making center. The area has been making artistic ceramic pieces with sophisticated technologies for more than 1,600 years.