Culture Tourism

700-km-long Great Wall found in NW China

By Ma Lie (China Daily Shaanxi Bureau)
Updated: 2010-02-09 18:55
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XI'AN – More than 700 km of ancient Great Wall has been discovered in Gansu and Shaanxi provinces, as a result of the third national survey on cultural relics started in April, 2007 and will end in December, 2011.

"We found 15 sections with a total length of 26 km of ancient wall and three beacons built in Western Han Dynasty (206 BC - AD 24) in our county recently during the nationwide survey," said Liang Shilin, deputy director of the culture bureau and director of the Museum in Jinta county,Gansu province.

The ancient wall was built in the north part in the county and the newly discovery made the archaeologists clear the exact location and distribution of the ancient wall in the north part of the county, Liang said.

The wall was built since Warring States Period (475 - 221 BC) as a defensive way to prevent the invasion from the other states in Chinese history.

According to Liu Yulin, archaeologist in Jinta Museum and his colleagues went into the desert many times for the survey and found the wall in remote places without human habitation.

"As the ancient buildings were built in the remote mountainous and desert areas, the remains of the wall were well protected without being destroyed by human activities. They were only partly destroyed by flood and sandstorm," Liu said.

Archaeologists considered that the newly found ancient wall in Jinta county was the one of the best preserved walls built in Western Han Dynasty.

And in Shaanxi, some 700 km of ancient wall built in Qin (221 - 206 BC), Western Han and Sui (AD 581 - 618) was also found over the past year in the national cultural relics survey.

According to Wang Weilin,deputy director of Shaanxi provincial archaeology research institute, his institute formed a survey team with some professors from Northwest University for the survey since 2009 around 16 counties and districts in Yan'an, Yulin and Weinan in the province.

"We found some 200 km of ancient wall built by Qin Kingdom in Warring States Period and some 500 km of that ancient building built in Sui Dynasty in those counties," Wang said.

At present, totally 1,700 km of ancient wall built in Warring States Period, Western Han and Sui dynasties in Shaanxi province had been discovered, providing scientific and detailed information for further implementation of the ancient wall protection and utilization, Wang said.