April 14
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Archaeologists have discovered a snake-shaped artifact made around 4,000 years ago that was possibly used in ancient rituals, Newsweek reports.

A team of researchers from National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan uncovered the item at a sand dune site on the island's northwest coast, located within Guanyin District in western Taoyuan city.

The ceramic object, several inches long, resembles a cobra with its head up and mouth open. The artifact was probably attached to a vessel, possibly a bowl, and served as a handle.

Also, this snake-shaped pottery handle may have come from a sacrificial vessel for shamans in ancient tribal societies to perform rituals, according to the researchers.

"This reflects that ancient societies incorporated animal images into ritual sacrificial vessels to demonstrate their beliefs and cognitive systems," said Hung-Lin Chiu, an associate professor with the Institute of Anthropology at Tsing Hua.

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