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Great Wall just became even greater
(China Daily)
Updated: 2009-09-23 08:53

CHANGCHUN: A newly discovered section of the Great Wall shows the ancient wonder stretches further east than previously thought.

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Chinese archeologists found the well-preserved site nearly 11 km away from what they believed was the end of the Wall.

The 172-m section was built about 2,000 years ago during the Qin and the Han dynasties in northeast China's Jilin province.

Zhao Hailong, head of the Great Wall resources research team in Jilin, said the team's research was part of a national project to measure the length of the Great Wall during the Qin (221 BC - 206 BC) and Han (206 BC - 220) dynasties.

Zhao said the site was probably a fortification of the ancient city of Chibosong, about 28 km away.

"It is important evidence of the Han Dynasty's administration of the northeast part of the country," said Zhao.

A large quantity of Han Dynasty earthenware was unearthed at the site.

Zhao said there might be more forts in the 11 km between the new site in Tonghua county and what was previously thought to be its ending in Xinbin.

"However, it is a sparsely-populated area covered by dense forest and it is difficult to conduct archaeological surveys there," he said.

The project is jointly sponsored by the State Administration of Cultural Heritage and the State Bureau of Surveying and Mapping.

After conducting the first phase of a national survey of the Wall, the two departments said in December that the Great Wall built during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) measured 8,851 km.

The two departments are expected to announce the results of the second phase of the survey by the end of this year. It focuses on the measurement of the total length of the Great Wall built in the Qin and Han dynasties based on the latest discoveries. Archaeologists worldwide have generally agreed this part is about 6,000 km.