Thursday, January 16, 2014

The Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China – one of the Seven Wonders of the medieval World - was built to protect the Chinese Empire from other military groups. It is made of stones, bricks, earth and other materials. It is built along an east-to-west and stretches from Shanhaiguan in the east, to Lop Lake in the west. The length of all Chinese defense walls built is approximately 31,070 miles.

Facts about Chinese wall:

  • It is the longest man-made structure in the world.
  • Several walls were being built as early as the 7th century BC and later joined together, made bigger and stronger, and are now called as the Great Wall. Especially famous is the wall built between 220–206 BC by the first Emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang. Little of that wall remains. Since then, the Great Wall has been rebuilt, maintained, and enhanced; the majority of the existing wall was reconstructed during the Ming Dynasty.
  • It was used for border controls, the imposition of duties on goods and the control of immigration.
  • The Great Wall has watch towers, troop barracks, garrison stations, signaling capabilities through the means of smoke or fire, and the fact that the path of the Great Wall also served as a transportation corridor.
  • Most of the ancient walls have eroded away over the centuries, and very few sections remain today.
  • It is said that hundreds of thousands, if not up to a million, workers died building the Qin wall.
  • In 2009, an additional 180 mi of previously undetected portions of the wall, built during the Ming Dynasty, were discovered. The sections had been submerged over time by sandstorms which moved across the arid region.
  • The Chinese invented the wheelbarrow and used it extensively in building the Great Wall.
  • Numerous temples were built along the Great Wall for the worship of the war god, Guandi
  • The Great Wall of China is 25 feet high in some places and ranges from 15-30 feet wide.
  • The highest point of the Great Wall is in Beijing at Heita Mountain (5,033 feet). The lowest point is at Laolongtou (sea level).
  • As early as 1346, the North African traveler Ibn Battuta, reported about the wall.



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