Archaeological traces presumed to be East Asia's oldest remains of an agricultural field have been found on South Korea's east coast, a national research institute said Tuesday.
The National Research Institute of Cultural Heritage said it has discovered the traces dating from the Neolithic period after two years of archaeological survey on a historic site in Goseong, 466 kilometers east of Seoul.
No remains of an agricultural field from the Neolithic period have been found in any East Asian country before, the institute said, adding that the discovery reveals that the history of agricultural cultivation at least began during the period on the Korean Peninsula.
Also found along with the remains were pieces of pottery and stone arrowheads, both of which appear to have been made during the Middle Neolithic period (3,600-3,000 B.C), and traces of a house from the same period, it added.
Archaeologists have presumed based on farming-related stone tools and carbonized grain found in other remains from the Neolithic period that agricultural fields may have existed on the peninsula during that time. But no traces supporting the presumption have been found before, the institute said.
The oldest remains of farming fields ever found on the peninsula date back to the Bronze Age, according to the institute.
The institute said it will use Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS) as well as Optically Stimulated Luminescence (OSL) to more precisely date the remains. (Yonhap)