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Mysterious female pottery face sends 7,300 year-old smile

Photo taken on Sept. 20, 2018 shows a piece of pottery shaped as a female head at the Anhui Bengbu Museum in East China's Anhui province.[Photo/Xinhua]

Zhang Dong, professor with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said international archaeological experts tended to link the inscriptions on the pottery items from Shuangdun to drawings in the Olmec civilization and hieroglyphic inscriptions in Mayan culture.

Ji said that following the global naming bid, the museum would hold an international symposium on the the item.

"I think it is the earliest and the most beautiful facial portrait, and suggests the humans had developed from emotional thinking to rational thinking," said Xu Xiaohong, a member of China Sculpture Society.

He suggested naming the statue "The Goddess of the Huaihe River," since the ruins were found on the bank of the Huaihe, which is located in the midway of China's two largest rivers, the Yangtze and Yellow rivers.

Shuangdun culture appears in the same period as the late Neolithic group known as the Yangshao, which originated from the middle reaches of the Yellow River, and Majiabang culture where archaeologists excavated 6,000-year-old rice grains in the lower reaches of the Yangtze in present-day Shanghai.

In the museum, the statue's caption says "pottery human head portrait with facial tattoos."

Wang Jihuai, a researcher with the academy, said although a consensus had not been reached, those involved with Shuangdun archeological research tend to believe that the civilization was a matriarchy with a sorceress dominating the community.

[ Editor: Xueying ]