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Monday, June 04, 2001, updated at 09:06(GMT+8)

Ancient Buildings Found in Fuxian Lake

Chinese television on the morning of June 3 broadcast live the investigation by a team of archeologists of a group of ancient buildings in an area of 2.4 sq km at the bottom of Fuxian Lake in southwest China's Yunnan Province.

According to carbon dating, the site dates back 1,750 years, to he Eastern Han Dynasty.

This was China's first such underwater archeological probe.

The 212-sq-km lake is the deepest plateau freshwater lake in China, with a maximum depth of 157 meters.

Sonar surveying has verified that the buildings stretch 1,200 meters from east to west and 2,000 meters from north to south.

This morning an underwater robot transmitted TV images of divers searching the site and bringing out samples of pottery and a piece of stone carved with flower designs.

Li Kunsheng, director of the Yunnan Provincial Museum, said that the buildings slid into the lake during an earthquake.

Zhang Zengqi, an archeologist with the Yunnan Museum, said that official records of the Han Dynasty say that a city named Yunyuan was located by the side of the lake. It disappeared from the official records after the Han Dynasty.

Further investigations of the underwater buildings are scheduled for later this year.

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