|A C-shaped jade dragon artifact from the Hongshan culture.|
Credit: Nopira | Wikimedia Commons
The first known Chinese kingdom may have been destroyed when its lands rapidly transformed into deserts, possibly driving its people into the rest of China, a new study finds.
This new finding suggests that the kingdom may have been more important to Chinese civilization than experts had thought, researchers say.
Prior research suggests the earliest Chinese kingdom might have been Hongshan, established about 6,500 years ago. This was about 2,400 years before the supposed rise of the Xia Dynasty, the first dynasty in China described in ancient historical chronicles. The kingdom's name, which means "Red Mountain," comes from the name of a site in the Inner Mongolia region of China. [...] livescience.com