URUMQI, March 21 (Xinhua) -- Archaeologists have recently discovered an ancient stone architecture dating back around 3,000 years in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.
The regional cultural relics and archaeology research institute said Thursday that the large prehistoric stone architecture was found in Nilka County in Kazak Autonomous Prefecture of Ili.
The stone platform is around 120 meters square, surrounded by polished stones. Stone walls and ashes mixed with coal blocks, as well as pottery, stone artefacts and animal bones were unearthed within the platform.
The platform is the largest and best-preserved prehistoric stone structure ever found in Xinjiang, according to Wang Yongqiang, of the institute.
The structure is part of the Jartai Pass Site, which dates back to 1,600 BC to 1,000 BC.
Two excavations had been conducted in Jartai Pass Site between 2015 and 2016, leading to the discovery of 17 house sites, two kiln sites, two tombs, as well as 200 sites of ash pits, coal piles and smelters, and more than 1,000 items.
The latest excavation was carried out by the regional cultural relics and archaeology research institute and Renmin University in 2018.
The platform is about 1,000 meters to the south of the housing sites. Archaeologists believe they both belong to the Bronze Age.
"The new findings are very important to study the history of the Kax River basin in the Bronze Age," said Wang.