World Heritage #0441 – Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor

Last updated Sep 26, 2019 | Published on Mar 11, 1985China, North, Central and East Asia, World Heritage Sites

The terracotta soldiers in large numbers that we find in the central Chinese city of Xian are truly amazing, obviously an extension of a great ego-centric emperor.

The UNESCO World Heritage List includes over a thousand properties with outstanding universal value. They are all part of the world’s cultural and natural heritage.


Official facts

Country: China

Date of Inscription: 1987

Category: Cultural site

UNESCO’s World Heritage Centre’s short description of site no. 441:

“No doubt thousands of statues still remain to be unearthed at this archaeological site, which was not discovered until 1974. Qin (d. 210 B.C.), the first unifier of China, is buried, surrounded by the famous terracotta warriors, at the centre of a complex designed to mirror the urban plan of the capital, Xianyan. The small figures are all different; with their horses, chariots and weapons, they are masterpieces of realism and also of great historical interest.”


My visit

The title of this site may sound a bit cryptic but it deals with the terracotta army in Xian, China. I came there eleven years after their discovery and no doubt many more soldiers have been excavated since. Still there were a lot to see, leaving a question of who on Earth came up with the idea to make full-size statues of a complete army with individual facial characteristics, and why?

Read more about my visit. 

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