Japanese archaeologists excavating the Tawayama site in Matsue, Shimane Prefecture, found a stone with ink hieroglyphs. Initial research showed that the artifact was created a century or more before the advent of writing on the territory of the country.
The age of the discovered stone reaches about two thousand years. However, the hieroglyphs written on it in ink caused controversy among scholars. Archaeologists who have discovered the find suggest that this is the most ancient example of Japanese writing. But not all scientists agree with this theory: some are not sure that it is the hieroglyphs that are depicted on the stone, and not other symbols. Other experts believe that the inscription could have been made outside of Japan, for example, in China.
It turned out that the symbols were applied to the stone no later than the beginning of the 1st century AD. This fact is also a kind of discovery, since the most ancient writings were made on clay vessels, and not on stones. Researchers have suggested that the artifact may have been an inkstone - one of four essential items for Chinese calligraphers.
By the beginning of our era, the art of drawing was already widespread in the country.
Earlier, a ghost ship, a boat with human remains, was discovered off the coast of Japan. Presumably the boat is from North Korea. There are red inscriptions on board, similar to Korean characters.