Archaeologists brushing through an 8,000-year-old settlement in China chanced pots which they say contain remnants of what could be the earliest alcohol discovered till date. The discovery was made on Friday (December 17) at the Peiligang cultural site in China’s Henan Province.
The archaeologists found large large quantities of fermented starch grains from rice, along with monascus hypha (a type of mold in fermented foods) and cleistothecia (a kind of fruit body found in some fungi) in the remnants of two clay pots from the Peiligang cultural site.
As per archaeologists, the finding is the earliest evidence of people using alcohol using monascus.
Li Yongqiang, an assistant researcher at the Institute of Archaeology, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said that the discovery indicates that the people in the ancient settlement used the pots to brew and store alcohol.
One of the most ancient ruins of a settlement found in China, Peiligang dates to around 8,000 years ago.
The big discovery is also expected to help advance the knowledge of the origin of not just alcohol making but also pottery, agriculture and textile in the early stages of human civilization.
In 2017, another similar artefact was discovered from Jiahu Neolithic Village in the same Henan province where archaeologists had found the oldest chemical evidence of an alcoholic beverage dating back to around 7000 BC.