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Underwater Archaeological Discovery Yields Korean Artifacts Updated: 2012-12-01 00:00:00 KST

Here off the southern coast of Korea near Jindo Island, Korean archaeologists have made a significant find, one that provides a glimpse of Korea's rich cultural history.
Rare artifacts were uncovered deep on the ocean floor, perfectly preserved for centuries.

The National Research Institute of Maritime Cultural Heritage recently revealed their finds to the public, with 16th-century Korean guns as the showcased centerpiece.

[Interview : Im Gyeong-hee, Curator
Cultural Heritage Administration] "This is the first discovered firearm identified as Sososeungja Chongtong . The craftsman's name and date of production are all perfectly preserved, and this has high historical significance."

Over 70 fragments of pale blue-green ceramics were also found in the underwater wreckage.
Estimates date them back to the late 12th century and early 13th century during the Goryeo Dynasty.
The animal-shaped incense burners are of such high quality that they are believed to have been used by the royal family or nobles.

[Interview : Sung Nak-jun, Director
National Research Institute of Maritime Cultural Heritage] "When compared to current national treasures and relics, these excellent pieces of Goryeo celadon are just as good. It's assumed that they were lost along the waters of Oryu while they were being transported from Gangjin."

The institute says they've merely scratched the surface with the preliminary survey.
They plan to begin a full survey of the area next year in order to reach deeper into Korea's past.
KOGL : Korea Open Government License
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