The Great Wall of China is truly one of the greatest architectural achievements in recorded history. The longest structure ever built, it is about 6,700 kilometers (4,163 miles) long and made entirely by hand. This wall is said to be visible from the moon. It crosses Northern China, from the East coast to Central China (Karls, 1). This massive wall is not only one of the ancient wonders of the world, but it also has been the inspiration of many writers and artists. With a history of more than 2,000 years, some of the sections of the Great Wall are now in ruins or even entirely disappeared. However, it is still one of the most appealing attractions all around the world, because of its architectural greatness and historical significance.
The Great Wall's construction began in 221 BC under the emperor Meng Tien, of the Chin Dynasty (Twitchett, 2). Continual invasions and wars from the barbarians to the North drove the emperor to order its construction to protect the newly unified China. It started at Lintao and extended to Liaotung, reaching a distance of more than 10,000 Li. After crossing the Yellow River, it wound northward, touching the Yang Mountains (Twitchett, 2). Although the wall is considered to be well under 10,000 Li (one Li is approximately a third of a mile) it was truly an amazing accomplishment (Twitchett, 2).
Meng Tien employed some 300,000 men in the creation of the original section of the wall. The building of such a massive wall would definitely be a huge task. A wall that stretches through the wilderness is not easily accessed by supply lines, unlike a highway that creates its own supply line (Delahoye, 3). There was also a massive loss of lives during the construction of the wall, due to widespread disease and injury (Delahoye, 3). In fact it is an Ancient Chinese myth, that each stone in the wall stands for a life lost in the wall's construction (Delahoye, 3). It is recorded that Meng Tien's section of the wall... [continues]
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