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2,400-Year-Old 'Soup' Discovered In China

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Here's something that'll make you think twice before complaining about those week-old Thanksgiving leftovers: a team of Chinese archaeologists have unearthed what they believe is a 2,400-year-old pot of soup with its contents still liquid, the BBC is reporting.

The group discovered the soup, contained in a three-legged bronze cauldron, near a tomb under excavation in Xi'an, Shaanxi Province, a Shaanxi-based archeologist confirmed. The vessel, 20 centimeters tall and 24.5 centimeters in diameter, contains several bones soaked in liquid whose surface is covered in patina, a fine green film that forms on bronze due to natural oxidation. According to the Global Times, the bones appear green due to being immersed in the patina.

"The vessel has been sealed again after we took some samples. We are contacting specialist institutions to analyze the ingredients of the soup," Liu Daiyun, an archeologist from the Shaanxi Provincial Institute of Archaeology who led the excavation, is quoted by the Times as saying. "It's the first discovery of bone soup in Chinese archeological history. The discovery will play an important role in studying the eating habits and culture of the Warring States Period (475BC- 221BC)."

According
to the AFP, scientists are expected to test the ancient liquid to try to determine the ingredients. Meanwhile, the archaeologists also dug up another bronze pot that contained an odorless liquid believed to be wine in the tomb, which could belong to either a member of the land-owning class or a military officer, the report said.