1. Xian, the first emperor and the Terra Cotta Warriors
From this Discovery Channel program on the Seven Wonders of China, we learn that there are 55 ethnic groups and 235 living languages. The first of the seven wonders is near Xian, which was the capital of thirteen of China’s Dynasties.
In 1974, Chinese farmers digging a well near Xian discovered the first of the terra cotta warriors guarding China’s first emperor, Shi Huangdi, of the Qin Dynasty (221 – 207 BC).
The terra cotta warriors are one of China’s most popular tourist attractions. About 10 million tourists visit annually. No two terra cotta soldiers look alike.
The first emperor centralized the government, standardized the written language, currency, and weights and measures. With these changes, he created China’s national identity. Forcing hundreds of thousands of workers, he also had The Great Wall completed.
Most Chinese believe in the immortality of the spirit and life after death.
It is tradition that the Chinese believe there is continuity between life and death, and people may take things with them for comfort in the spiritual world, which explains why the first emperor had such an elaborate tomb built.
Continued on February 12, 2013 in The Seven Wonders of China: Part 2
Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.
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