Over 8,000 km long (including man-made walls and natural moats / barriers), built by about 800,000 people over a period of 2000 years, the Great Wall was built with the desire to shield long, protecting China from invaders’ attacks.
The first emperor to have unified China – Qin Shihuang (259 BC-210 BC), linked the wall works built earlier, then continued to build the wall into a unified strip. first along the entire northern border, in order to repel the inherent threat from the North and the invasion attacks of the Huns.
The secret of “Wall of Genghis Khan”
That is what the history book records. However, according to the new 2-year study published in the journal Antiquity by archaeologist Gideon Shelach-Lavi of the Department of Asian Studies, Jerusalem Jewish University: The Great Wall also has another function.
“Before our study was published, most people thought that the purpose of this 8,000 km wall was to stop Genghis Khan’s army. However, when mapping the complete Northern Route, 740 km long of the Great Wall, we discover new functions of this work: The northern part of the Great Wall was built not to prevent invading armies but to monitor the civil movement and collect moving taxes. “ – Author of the research speech.
Images from the drone capture the remains of the “Wall of Genghis Khan”. Source: Gideon Shelach-Lavi
Centuries before that, a wall was built in the north. This northern route runs along the west to east through northeastern Mongolia, pouring into Russia, then ending in the Inner Mongolia region of Northeast China.
Unlike the stone fortress built under the famous Ming Dynasty, the Northern Line was built from a mound and used compression techniques, so it became very hard. The remaining wall is about 1 meter high (although it may initially have been 2 meters), mainly in Mongolia, near the aisles, which proves it is non-military.
In the north there is a ditch about 2 meters deep, which, according to archaeologists, may have been dug for soil. There were no watchtowers or fortifications around.
Based on radiocarbon dating, the team suggested that the wall was built between 1000 and 1100, meaning that it was before the birth of Genghis Khan, circa 1162.
“The Northern Line allows Chinese emperors to control the movement of the Mongols. The wall will allow China to control the number of Mongols in and out, or tax them when they enter China.” – Gideon Shelach-Lavi said.
Although not related to Genghis Khan, this Northern Route is named “Genghis Khan Wall” – referring to the legendary Mongol conqueror.
Ink drawings from the 15-16 century show the greatest military power of the Mongols: Agile, powerful and skillful archers. Source: BRIDGEMAN / ACI.
Thousand year works
In the 13th century, after becoming Mongolian Khan, Genghis Khan became the name that caused fear not only in China, but in many countries throughout Eurasia.
The fear of Chinese wingmen became a real nightmare one day in 1211 when Genghis Khan brought troops into northern China to massively attack and quickly capture the capital in 1215, establishing a The new dynasty is called the Yuan Dynasty. Yuan Dynasty quickly shorted after that.
The construction of the Great Wall is divided into sections with a total length of thousands of kilometers, first starting in the 3rd century BC and continuing for centuries afterward.
The new Chinese dynasty of the Ming Dynasty (after the fall of the Yuan Dynasty, which lasted from 1368 to 1644) continued to embark on building / fortifying the fortress in the 16th and 17th centuries.
The gigantic walls built by the Ming are best preserved to this day. Because the Ming emperors ordered the walls built to meet the most severe conditions to successfully defend against the nomadic invasion as well as the ravages of time and weather conditions. hundreds of years.
During more than 2000 years of construction, the Great Wall witnessed the fall of hundreds of thousands of people during the construction process, which turned it into the “longest cemetery in the world”. In 1987, UNESCO recognized the Great Wall of China as a World Heritage Site.
Archaeologist Gideon Shelach-Lavi and a team of researchers in Israel, Mongolia and the US have used drones, high-resolution satellite imagery and traditional archaeological tools to map walls and find artifacts to help determine specific dates. According to Shelach-Lavi, the Northern Line has been overlooked by contemporary scientists, so he and his team of international experts continue to explore this massive piece of construction.
Posts using source: AFP / Sciencealert, Newscientist