The cellar, a rectangular pit about 100 cm long, 80 cm wide and 200 cm deep, was found in Shaanxi province, said researcher Sun Zhouyong of the Shaanxi Provincial Institute of Archeology.
Sun and his colleagues took 8 years to conclude that the pit, originally found in 2002 under the ruins of the Western Zhou dynasty (1046-771 BC), was a cellar to preserve fruits for aristocrats, Xinhua reported Sunday.
The site in Zhouyuan, where the cellar was unearthed, is 100 km from the provincial capital of Xi’an.
“We assume the cellar had something like a shade that was fixed on the four holes but had decayed over the years,” said Sun.
The cellar contained piles of nuts and seeds.
“We sorted them out with care, and found about 150 melon seeds, 10 plum seeds and 500 apricot nuts, of which 108 were complete with carbonized pulp,” said Sun. It also contained millet and grass seeds.