(TibetanReview.net, May16’21) – The Tibetan civilization dates back thousands of years earlier than its currently known recorded history, according to recent discoveries made by Chinese archaeological at the Qulong (Tibetan: Khyunglung) Village Site in Zanda (Tsamda) County, Ngari Prefecture, western Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR).
In some tombs dating back 2800 to 2500 years, archaeologists unearthed 98 pieces and 16 types of perforated conch ornaments as of Aug 2020, marking the largest number of South Asian conches ever found on the Tibetan Plateau and in surrounding areas, reported China’s official news.cgtn.com May 16.
It was said to indicate frequent cultural exchanges between the western part of the Tibetan Plateau and ancient South Asia.
The report said that dating back to the 8th century BC, the Qulong Site, located at 4,400 meters above sea level, featured rich remains and cultural relics, including cave residences, courtyards, houses, stone relics, pagodas, grottoes and Buddhist temples.
The Qulong Site was stated to be composed of two large-scale ruins of concentrated settlements, covering more than 100,000 square metres.
Experts were also stated to have made headway in figuring out the significance of huge boulders scattered around the highland, including foundation stones for both camping and permanent residences, in the outlying area of the two concentrated settlements.
“Such ruins of stones and huge boulders can be found across the whole Eurasian continent. In the northern steppes, they are especially common. In Tibet, we found that most of them are in the north of the Qiangtang and Ngari regions,” Zhang Jianlin, an archaeologist and professor from Northwest University, has said.
The archaeologists were also stated to have learned more about the array of boulders on the banks of a nearby lake. The structures, which could be traced back nearly 3,000 years, were believed to be a sign of the region’s earliest links with grassland tribes in the north.
Archaeologists from the TAR Cultural Relics Protection Research Institute, Shaanxi Provincial Archaeological Research Institute and Northwest University were reported to have spent over four years conducting a series of archaeological excavations and research at the prehistoric Qulong Site.
The site is located southwest of Mount Kailash, with Kyunglung Ngulka (“Silver Palace of Garuda Valley”) located in the upper Sutlej Valley, being the capital city of the ancient Tibetan kingdom of Zhangzhung.