The city of Kobe presented Shogo Sano, 12, with a letter of appreciation as he donates a fragment of an ancient mirror to the city. The mirror, identified to be more than 1500 years old, is a designated national cultural asset.
The 5×3 cm blue-green fragment was discovered by Sano in a park close to his family’s home in January 2009. “When I found it, I thought it was a mysterious object,” Sano said. Despite being just a fragment, the sixth grader still decided to keep it in his desk drawer. It was in May this year when Sano was reminded how the fragment looks like an ancient bronze mirror he learned about in school. He decided to bring it to his history class to confirm his suspicion.
When the fragment was examined by experts, it was confirmed to be part of the bronze mirror unearthed in a 3rd century burial mound in 1986. The city of Kobe thanked Sano for preserving the artifact, which will be on display in the city museum later this month.
Other artifacts mistaken for something simpler were also discovered this year in Japan. Back in August, items thought to be grinder stones dug from the Kamei excavation site in Osaka Prefecture turned out to be Japan’s oldest measurement weights. In July, the oldest hiragana writing was recovered from the site of an old residence of an aristocrat in Kyoto.
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