Terracotta Warriors

One of the must-see sights in China is the Terracotta Warriors. It is really an almost unbelievable story. Way back, well over 2000 years ago, the first emperor of China make the most elaborate tomb in the history of time. The tomb itself was the size of a small city covering many square miles. He decided to protect his soul in the afterlife, that he wanted to be surrounded by an army of his best servants. So he put all of his people to work to create life size replicas of his army.

Flash forward to 1974, and researchers were speculating that there must be untold treasures in this city size tomb of gold, art, and other valuables. They did not find that, but they found close to 8000 life size warriors, chariots, horses and so on. Although the discovery happened over 35 years ago, they are still working to unearth many of the warriors. It is a pain staking process because they must be careful not to break the warriors when excavating and then they must restore what time has damaged.

It really made me wonder what it was like to be a Chinese Emperor. I really marvel at someone that decides to build a city just for his tomb. Maybe they were going through a recession and it was his way of stimulating the economy and putting the people back to work. On the other hand, the same guy that did all of this was also the one that made the Great Wall of China. No doubt about it, that this guy (Qin Shi Huang) thought really big. If you look carefully at the warriors, each face is different. The amount of time to do this project must have been stunning.

I also learned a lot about photography. The lighting is not very good, and then on top, you need to zoom to get close to the warriors. This is really pushing the limit of what a point and click camera can do. Some of the photos are blurry because you need a perfectly steady hand or the picture will distort. Solange bought a new expensive camera and maybe that will take better pictures in tough conditions like this. Anyway, I still think that the photos give a pretty good flavor of what the Terracotta Army looks like in Xian, China.