The conservation of live cinder and collective use of fire laid a foundation for lamp.
One million seven hundred thousand years ago, the first fire human ancestors ignited could be called the first artificial light source—lamp.
In the site of Haiyuan Stone Age in Ningxia (about 30,000 years ago), lamp hole, similar to wall lamp, was found, which was left consciously by primitive men for the purpose of illumination. It shows the primal modality of lamp.
Spring and Autumn Period and Warring States (770 B.C.—221 B.C.):
Literature, recordation and unearthed objects in Spring and Autumn (475 B.C.—221 B.C.)Period and Warring States show lamp has already become an indispensable lighting utensil in people’s daily life in Warring States at the latest.
Lamp originated from fire and shaped as a bean. In Jin Dynasty, Erya•Explanation of Utensils by Quo Puzhu said, ‘Wadou (bean) is called Deng (lamp)’. The earlier bean lamp made of pottery and the later one made of bronze probably was the earliest shaped lamp in China.
In periods of the Xia, Shang and Zhou Dynasties ( 22nd cent 256BC), the fire made by the earlier primitive human species gradually evolved into lamps called ” Zhu ” and ” Liao “, which were designed to lighten. Then came the birth of lamp. In an ancient book it was recorded a story, which says ” During the time of King Mu of Zhou in the Zhou Dynasty there appeared ‘ Longevity Lamp’ ‘ Phoenix Head Lamp’ “. In addition, the pottery wares unearthed in the back city of Wuxing in Zhejiang Province were recently supposed to be the earliest pottery lamps of the Chinese primitive society (8,0002,100 B.C.). According to the historical recordings and unearthed cultural relics, by the time of the Warring States Period the lamp has been a common and indispensable lightening tools in the daily life of the people at that time.