via China Daily, 21 May 2023: Two ancient shipwrecks from the mid-Ming Dynasty were discovered in the South China Sea, with one containing over 100,000 cultural relics and the other containing wooden logs and ceramics, marking a significant archaeological find for the history of Chinese overseas trade and navigation.
Two ancient shipwrecks, probably from the mid-Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), were found from about 1,500 meters under the sea level in South China Sea, the National Cultural Heritage Administration announced in the coastal city of Sanya, Hainan province, on Sunday.
A scientific research team of Institute of Deep-sea Science and Engineering with the Chinese Academy of Sciences first found the two shipwrecks on a continental slope in October. It is also the first time that China discovered a site of large-scale ancient shipwreck in deep sea.
The two are named by researchers as Northwest Continental Slope No 1 and No 2 Shipwrecks in South China Sea.
According to Yan Yalin, director of archaeology department of the National Cultural Heritage Administration, preliminary investigation showed relics from the No 1 shipwreck were scattered across about a 10,000-square-meter area. It is estimated that over 100,000 cultural relics, mainly porcelains, are sealed on the spot. Most of the shipwreck is still buried in sand, and some parts are covered by a 3-odd-meter-thick layer of relics.