Monday, September 12, 2011

Terracotta Warriors

We visited the infamous Terracotta Warriors recently, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and dubbed the Eighth Wonder of the World.  The scale is awe-inspiring.  A farmer found them while digging for a well in his field one day in 1974.  Wow.  

The statues start out like this - in pieces and shards.  Archeologists and restorers spend countless hours working what may be the world's largest jigsaw puzzle.

I found myself studying the details of their clothing, hair, and facial expressions.  The variety seems limited and the rumor is that they're modeled after real people.

The Terracotta Warriors are funery art in the burial tomb for emperor Qin Shi Huang, the man that (forcefully) unified China and therefore the first emperor of a unified state.  (I have to say it - what an ego!)
The life-sized warriors were orignally painted, as well, but over 2,000 years in "storage" and exposure to the air upon excavation deteriorated the color.
When in China, this is a must-do if you are anywhere near Xi'An.  Note that it is extremely popular and therefore crowded, but worth it.  Also visit the teahouse. 


Melanie said...

Awesome! This is what I'd want to see if I went to China.

Linda J. said...

I am enjoying traveling along with you! Thanks for sharing.

Time Traveling in Costume said...

One of my dream places to visit. How lucky you are to have seen it.

Angela McRae said...

Yes, I've long heard the sheer size of the display is staggering. Glad you got to see it! Am greatly enjoying armchair traveling with you!

Marilyn said...

Wonderful! Jim visited here 25 years ago. He will so want to hear more about it. Thanks for sharing your adventure with us.

Alex Zorach said...

This is fascinating; I had not heard of this before this post...thanks for sharing! Wikipedia also has a good page on it too, if anyone wants to learn more.

mep said...

Wow, just wow. I feel embarrassed that I've never heard of this eighth world wonder, but I wish I could seem those warriors. Amazing.