KOMPAS.com – The discovery of a giant stone jar is a mystery among researchers. The jars were found at four new locations in Assam, India.
Researchers suspect that the stone urn may have been used for burial rituals.
The study, which also involved researchers from the Australian National University (ANU), analyzed dozens of stone jars found in India.
Reported by PhysOn Saturday (02/04/2022) 65 newly discovered sandstone jars with different shapes and decorations are buried in the ground.
Similar stone jars there, up to three meters high and two meters wide, have also been previously found in Laos and Indonesia.
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“We still don’t know who made the giant stone urns or where they live. It’s all a bit mysterious,” said Nicholas Skopal, a student at ANU.
Another mystery of the discovery of this giant stone urn is the mystery surrounding the function or use of the giant urn.
Researchers believe the giant stone urns may have been used in morgues.
“There are stories of the Naga, a modern-day ethnic group of northeastern India, who have found Assamese urns containing cremated remains, beads and other material artifacts,” Skopal said.
The theory mentioned about the finding of a giant stone urn in India is consistent with finds at other ancient urn sites in other countries, including Laos, which are also associated with burial rituals.
The researchers say the aim of the new study was initially to examine ancient sites in Assam, India.
However, as researchers explored the site, they realized there was much more to discover at the site.
“Initially, the team only went in to survey three large sites that had not been officially surveyed. From there, a network was created to explore the dense forest area around it,” said Pak Skopal.
“This is the first time we are starting to find new urn locations. The team is only searching in a very limited area so there may be more, we just don’t know where they are yet.”
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The survey conducted by the research team is very important in terms of cultural heritage management in India.
“There doesn’t appear to be any ethnic group in India associated with the urns, which means it’s important to preserve cultural heritage,” Skopal said.
According to Skopal, the longer it takes for cultural heritage sites to be discovered, the more likely it is that these sites will be destroyed because the people in the area mainly engage in agriculture and deforestation.
Researchers are working with local local communities to uncover the sites of giant stone urns, and often through areas of montane forest that are difficult to navigate.
The study on the discovery of giant stone urns in India was published in Journal of Asian Archaeology.
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