The Terracotta Army of Ancient China

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The Terracotta Army is a piece of the enormous tomb that was constructed for Emperor Qin Shi Huang, the first Chinese emperor. Along with the monarch, there are more than 8,000 life-size statues of troops interred.

Qin Emperor’s Tomb

Emperor Qin desired eternal life. He devoted a large portion of his life and wealth to the pursuit of eternal life and the “elixir of life”. He also invested a large sum of money in creating for himself the biggest single mausoleum ever constructed for a sovereign in human history. He believed that this sizable army would defend him and aid him in maintaining his dominance in the hereafter. Over 2000 years ago, in 210 BC, he passed away and was buried.

The Soldiers

The Terracotta Army’s soldiers are life-size statues. The average soldier is about 5 feet 11 inches tall, although some can reach 6 feet 7 inches. Even though there are numerous statues of soldiers, no two are exactly same. There are troops of all ages, with a variety of face characteristics, hairstyles, and ranks. While some of the soldiers appear composed, others appear enraged and prepared to fight.

Even the troops’ armor and attire were built with variety in mind. Compared to foot soldiers, men in the cavalry are clothed differently. Some soldiers are unarmored. They might have been intended as spies or scouts.
Even while the warriors are stunning today, they were probably even more so 2,000 years ago. The troops were lacquered after being painted to make them appear even more lifelike. Additionally, they were armed with actual weapons like crossbows, daggers, maces, spears, and swords.

How did they build so many soldiers?

The construction of 8,000 life-size statues must have required a sizable workforce. According to archaeologists, the undertaking required the labor of approximately 700,000 artisans over a number of years. The soldiers’ bodies were produced on an assembly line. For the legs, arms, torsos, and heads, there were molds. After putting these pieces together, special embellishments like ears, mustaches, hair, and weaponry were added.

For the soldiers, there are eight to ten distinct head shapes. The various head shapes depict people from various regions of China as well as the troops’ various characteristics. The bodies were joined to the heads after they had been modified from molds.

Various Statues

There were many additional statues present in the tomb to follow Emperor Qin in the afterlife, although its long rows of warriors are its most recognizable feature. Along with the troops, there were 130 chariots pulled by 520 horses and 150 life-size cavalry horses. Government leaders and entertainers’ figures have been discovered in different parts of the tomb.

When did the army come to light?

Farmers uncovered the Terracotta Army in 1974 while digging a well, more than 2,000 years after Emperor Qin’s burial buried it. The army was about a mile away from the emperor’s tomb.

The Terracotta Army: Interesting Facts

The army’s horses are saddled. This demonstrates that the saddle was created by the Qin Dynasty.

The army is housed in four main pits. They go down around 21 feet.

The warriors’ bronze weapons were discovered in perfect condition because they had been preserved for countless years by a thin covering of chromium.

The majority of the statues were discovered in parts, many of which needed to be carefully pieced back together by archaeologists over a long period of time.

A typical variety of hard-baked clay is terracotta. Wet clay would have been used to form the soldiers, which would have been allowed to dry before being baked in a very high oven known as a kiln to harden the clay.

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