What is currently China was occupied by Homo erectus more than a million years ago. Recent study demonstrates that the stone apparatuses found at Xiaochangliang site are magnetostratigraphically dated to 1.36 million years ago. The archeological site of Xihoudu in Shanxi Province is the most punctual recorded utilization of flame by Homo erectus, which is dated 1.27 million years ago. The unearthings at Yuanmou and later Lantian indicate early residence. Maybe the most renowned example of Homo erectus found in China is the purported Peking Man found in 1923–27. Fossilized teeth of Homo sapiens dating to 125,000–80,000 BCE have been found in Fuyan Cave in Dao County in Hunan.
The Neolithic age in China can be followed back to around 10,000 BC.
Early proof for proto-Chinese millet horticulture is radiocarbon-dated to around 7000 BC. The soonest confirmation of developed rice, found by the Yangtze River, is cell based dated to 8,000 years ago. Farming offered ascend to the Jiahu society (7000 to 5800 BC). At Damaidi in Ningxia, 3,172 precipice carvings dating to 6000–5000 BC have been found, "including 8,453 individual characters, for example, the sun, moon, stars, divine beings and scenes of chasing or touching." These pictographs are rumored to be like the soonest characters affirmed to be composed Chinese. Chinese proto-composition existed in Jiahu around 7000 BC, Dadiwan from 5800 BC to 5400 BC, Damaidi around 6000 BC and Banpo dating from the fifth thousand years BC. A few researchers have proposed that Jiahu images (seventh thousand years BC) were the soonest Chinese written work system. Excavation of a Peiligang society site in Xinzheng district, Henan, found a group that prospered in 5,500 to 4,900 BC, with proof of farming, developed structures, earthenware, and internment of the dead. With horticulture came expanded populace, the capacity to store and redistribute crops, and the possibility to bolster expert skilled workers and administrators. In late Neolithic times, the Yellow River valley started to build up itself as a focal point of Yangshao society (5000 BC to 3000 BC), and the main towns were established; the most archeologically noteworthy of these was found at Banpo, Xi'an. Later, Yangshao society was superseded by the Longshan society, which was likewise focused on the Yellow River from around 3000 BC to 2000 BC.
Bronze ancient rarities have been found at the Majiayao society site (somewhere around 3100 and 2700 BC), The Bronze Age is likewise spoken to at the Lower Xiajiadian society (2200–1600 BC site in upper east China.