Terracotta Warriors

Terracotta Warriors

In 1974 a group of farmers stumbled across one of the world’s greatest archaeological finds whilst digging a well. Over 40 years later, a huge subterranean necropolis covering an area of 22-square-miles has been unveiled, with 16 pits and thousands of figures, all surrounding the huge burial mound. All this creates a representation of the court of Qin Shi Huang, the emperor who united the warring factions and bought about what is pretty much the China we know today.

What the farmers revealed that day was just one section of a huge terracotta army, created to protect Qin Shi Huang in the afterlife. Each warrior is exquisite, with a unique facial expression, hair styles, their height determined by their rank, their own weapons, all standing in battle formation alongside horses and chariots. You can visit the original three pits to gaze over the sentinel rows and learn more about the more recent excavations that have been taking place.

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Five Facts About The Terracotta Warriors

Emperor Qin spent his life searching for a way to make himself immortal, including taking mercury tablets which eventually killed him

It is estimated that there are about 8,000 warriors in total – many haven’t been excavated yet

The average height of the soldiers is 5 foot 8 inches – some are as tall as 6 foot 7 inches

It took more than 700,000 labourers to construct the warriors and necropolis complex

More recent digs have uncovered terracotta acrobats and musicians

The Terracotta Warriors were designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987

The construction of the complex began in the year that Emperor Qin came to power, at the age of 13

The fact that the terracotta horses are saddled shows that saddles were around before 210BC

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