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06-11-2009, 12:26 AM #1
New Terracotta Warriors to resurface
China has just announced that it will start a 3rd excavation to unearth more Terracotta Warriors at the tomb of the Emperor Qin Shi Huang, the first emperor to make China a unitary nation, outside Xian. This project was delayed for many years because they did not then have the technology to ensure that all the original colours of the Warriors could be kept intact, until now. The current Terracotta Warriors that are on show now have all lost their original colours after being exposed to air.
The Terracotta Warriors in Xian are a must see in one's lifetime, just like the Great Wall of China. It takes your breath away.
06-11-2009, 02:15 AM #2
..as created with this thread:
06-13-2009, 02:47 AM #3
yeah great stuff. saw the news.
06-13-2009, 03:32 AM #4
The 3rd big dig or excavation starts today and it is open to the public. Tourists are now flocking to Xian, hopefully to witness a Terracotta general being unearthed. This time the diggers better be sure they don't mess up and can guarantee that the lacquer in all its original coloured splendour does not fade away.
The real big dig is the very tomb of the emperor which is surrounded by rivers of mercury, but they will leave this to future generations. An earlier investigation by a joint US/China University study did find high concentation of mercury deep down the emperor's tomb.
06-13-2009, 05:26 AM #5
That is fascinating. The Chinese have been very patient to wait until technology advanced enough to be able to preserve things properly.
I saw a traveling display of some of the statues in Atlanta this winter. Impressive to see a few statues up close. But it must be so much more impressive to see row upon row.
06-13-2009, 07:52 AM #6
Archaeologists should check all terracotta warriors thoroughly.
Maybe one of them is holding racket instead of weapons.
06-13-2009, 08:52 AM #7
06-13-2009, 11:16 AM #8
No doubt, these are archaeological marvels.
But they are also evidence of ancient China's extreme cruelty.
The Terracotta Warriors conceal a horrific tale of people killed after their likenesses were cast.
I suggest some extended reading on this.
It is bound to quite a sobering experience
06-13-2009, 11:44 AM #9
06-13-2009, 11:45 AM #10
06-13-2009, 07:10 PM #11
(my chemistry degree was a long time ago. But if you want to graduate from Geek to UberGeek, browse this website: http://www.periodicvideos.com/ )
06-13-2009, 11:37 PM #12
The first day"s dig unveiled a warrior with most of its colors intact, 2 chariots, each driven by 4 horses, and a spear. What they are hoping to find is a General. So far, out of the 8,000 Terracotta warriors they have dug up, only 10 were Generals.
This dig is specifically authorised to test how well the new preservation coating and other works/techniques work to prevent any oxidation. If the new preservation technology works, then larger areas will be opened up for excavation.
The rivers of mercury in his tomb reflect's the Emperor's quest and lifelong search for immortality. His medical advisors fed the Emperor with mercury in the mistaken belief that it would bring him immortality. Instead it brought him an early death at age 50.
The Emperor's tomb is a massive structure, covering an area of 56.25 square kilometers, all underground. In fact it is an underground city or palace with stables, an inner city plus an outer city. He was both a cruel and a unifying ruler. He brought all the warring nations then under one China. Without him, there would not be a China as we know it today. Not many people realize that he alone integrated Chinese writing, money, weights and measures into a centralized and standardized bereaucracy.
He also set the stage for the later Han Dynasty, from which the general name 'Han Chinese" is derived from, to embrace a common culture known as 'Han' by so many ethnic groups in China then. The state doctrine of 'Confucianism' was the tool the Han Dynasty used to unify the various ethnic tribes. Today all these hundreds of former ethnic peoples are collectively referred to as Han Chinese. The other less known ethnic groups like the Tibetans, Uighers, the Koreans, Vietnamese, Mongolians, and the hundreds of tribes in Yunnan, were then at the fringe of the Chinese empire and, although they were under Chinese rule, they were not as 'Han' as the early ethnic groups that formed the cradle of China's first empire. For the western reader, there is no such thing as a Han Chinese in a racial sense-it is more a cultural sense. For example Fujianese and Cantonese were never Han Chinese in the early days. The Han Chinese then considered the Fujianese barbarians. This is why in China today you can find many spoken languages that are not well understood by Chinese of another village or province. But the written language is the same. This is the work of the first emperor of China. One written script unites the country with hundreds, perhaps thousands of different spoken languages that are mutuallly exclusive to each other. Contrast this with India. That is why in India you cannot have a national language-it is too sensitive. That is why in India the defacto national language is English.
Now more about the tomb of the first emperor. The tomb was built to hold numerous treasures within, rivers of mercury, constellation of pearls and gems embedded into ceilings (for the Emperor's eyes), plus an assortment of valuables the emperor would require in his afterlife, including live soldiers (Terracotta Warriors), concubines and servants-including the artisans who worked on the mauusoleum lest they reveal its secrets.
We don't know how many warriors there are. So far only 8,000 have been unearthed, 10 are Generals. The warriors consisted of infantry soldiers, archers, cavalrymen and chariots arranged in battle formation, ready to defend their Emperor's immortal soul. Everyone of the Warrior's face was individually sculpted from the likeness of the soldier and artisan, showing a high level of artistry with individualized facial expressions, hairstyles and clothings and were once painted with black armor, colorful red scarves and green pants-but all those colors are now lost from exposure to air. Let us hope this will not happen with this new dig.