sign in a cave in Laos

8 May 2019

Prehistoric community discovered in Gia Lai, Vietnam

This is not cave related, but is still a very interesting piece of news.

On 8 April 2019 Vietnamnet reported :
"Discoveries made at the Go Da site, An Khe town, Gia Lai province, in 2014 are evidence that An Khe valley was the home of a prehistoric community. Over the past 5 years, Vietnamese and foreign archaeologists have unearthed and made public findings which have shocked many historians."

An Khe is in the Central Highlands in SE Vietnam.

"Archaeologist Phan Thanh Tung discovered the first stone axe at the Go Da site. Two top Vietnamese archaeologists, Doctor Nguyen Khac Su and Doctor Nguyen Gia Doi, came to An Khe to prove that prehistoric men lived here. 

The Vietnam Institute of Archaeology and Russia’s Novosibirsk Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology worked under a 5-year cooperative agreement which expires this year to excavate the Go Da and Roc Tung sites in An Khe town.

Discoveries of the early palaeolithic sites in An Khe are evidence that the upper Ba river in An Khe was the home of a prehistoric community about 1 million years ago. 

This is the oldest known trace of humans and their cultural relics ever found in Vietnam. 

It’s important proof that nearly 1 million years ago prehistoric men had appeared in Vietnam and Southeast Asia.

Discoveries of bifacial tools and handaxes in An Khe have also dispelled the view that in the West people had handaxes, indicating more advanced development, while in the East people had stone choppers, simpler tools suggesting a less-developed society.

Doctor Nguyen Gia Doi, acting Director of the Vietnam Institute of Archaeology, said “The An Khe site is one of a few rare relic sites in Southeast Asia and Asia, dating back more than 800,000 years. It creates a new notion of Vietnamese history. Previous findings at Nui Do are 300,000 to 400,000 years old. The An Khe findings have changed our conception of prehistory and man’s evolution.”

The excavation is still underway, but the preliminary findings have important value for writing Vietnam’s history, for exhibiting at museums, and for making An Khe an international center for the study of human cultural history."

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