Sunday, June 17, 2007

In An Octopus's Garden* (South Korea): Octopus Discovers Koryo Pottery

Kim Yong-chul, a 58-year-old fisherman from Taean, South Chungcheong Province, dreamed of swimming before going to work on May 18, which is believed to bring luck. To catch webfoot octopus, which like to hide in shells, he had scattered hundreds of spiny turban shell bait on the shore the day before. When he pulled in the bait, he found some pottery pieces stuck to the suckers of webfoot octopus. One animal was attached to a plate dating to the Koryo period.

Kim reported the find to authorities, and the National Maritime Museum conducted an urgent excavation. Around the spot where the octopus was caught, they found 30 pieces of 12th century Koryo pottery with chrysanthemum or vine patterns. “It seems that a ship carrying Koryo pottery in 12th century was wrecked there,” a spokesman with National Maritime Museum said on Monday. “The unearthed pottery is not of the highest quality made for royals, but it nonetheless shows the beauty of Koryo pottery.” The museum plans to start a full excavation at the beginning of July and assumes that the wreck will be found nearby.

The title of this post comes from the Beatles song, written by Ringo Starr.

No comments: