Lost maritime treasure: 500-year-old shipwreck filled with porcelain treasure discovered in South China Sea

Lost maritime treasure: 500-year-old shipwreck filled with porcelain treasure discovered in South China Sea

The sunken ships, which appeared to export mainly porcelain and other imported wood, were found about a mile deep in the water on the northwest slope of the sea, about 10 nautical miles apart.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Wednesday, May 24, 2023, 11:07 AM IST
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500-year-old shipwreck filled with porcelain treasure discovered in South China Sea | State Administration of Cultural Heritage

China's State Administration of Cultural Heritage proudly announced a significant breakthrough in the realm of deep-sea archaeology.

Recent expeditions in the South China Sea unveiled the remarkable findings of two massive ancient shipwrecks, marking a pivotal moment in China's exploration of its maritime history.

In an announcement, China's State Administration of Cultural Heritage said that the discovery of the ancient ships, which sailed and returned to the same sea area, proved a historical fact that Chinese ancestors developed, utilized, and travelled to and from the South China Sea, per a Fox Weather report.

"The well-preserved relics are of high historical, scientific, and artistic value. It may be a world-class archeological discovery in the deep sea," Yan Yalin, director of archeology at the State Administration of Cultural Heritage, said.

The sunken ships, which appeared to export mainly porcelain and other imported wood, were found about a mile deep in the water on the northwest slope of the sea, about 10 nautical miles apart.

Preliminary judgments of the cultural relics were believed to date as far back as 1506 to 1521 from the Zhengde period of the Ming Dynasty.

On one of the sunken ships, many piles of cultural relics were suspected to be separated by the vessel's cabin. The estimated 100,000 items were mostly porcelain and were scattered over tens of thousands of square miles.

Numerous logs, which were of similar size and neatly stacked, were found on the other ship. Some items on this ship possibly date back to the reign of Emperor Hongzhi (1488-1505).

It was preliminarily considered an ancient shipwreck that loaded goods from overseas and sailed to China.

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