Home History 20 Interesting Great Wall of China Facts – Part 2

20 Interesting Great Wall of China Facts – Part 2

by Sankalan Baidya
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Great Wall of China Facts

We learned quite a few interesting facts about the Great Wall of China but believe us, we are not done yet. There are many more interesting facts that will amaze you. For instance, did you know that unemployed intellectuals were made to work as labors in the construction of the Great Wall? We believe that we have your attention now. So, let us start with another round of 20 interesting Great Wall of China facts! Shall we?

Interesting Great Wall of China Facts

Interesting Great Wall of China Facts: 1-10

1. The people or the labors who worked in the construction of the Great Wall were peasants, disgraced noblemen, frontier guards, convicts and unemployed intellectuals.

2. The Han and Qin dynasties came up with a special penalty in which those who were convicted of some crime were made to work in the construction of the Great Wall.

3. Chinese often compare the Great Wall with a dragon. A dragon in the Chinese culture is symbolic of vital energy, springtime and protective divinity. Chinese people believe that there was a time when Earth was roamed by dragons and that the dragons actually formed sinew of land and gave shape to the mountains.

4. The western section of the Great Wall has a chain of watchtowers that offer defense to Silk Road travelers.

5. Watchtowers can be found at a regular interval of the Great Wall. These watchtowers can be as high as 40 feet and served as fortresses and lookouts. Stockpiled supplies and garrisons were often housed in those watchtowers.

6. The watchtowers of the Great Wall are pretty diverse in the architectural style. This is because they were built during different dynasties.

7. Defensive moats can be found surrounding different parts of the Great Wall. These moats are either left as ditches or are water-filled.

8. The Great Wall was defended using several weapons that were pretty sophisticated for their times. Some of the weapons used by the Chinese soldiers included halberds, crossbows, sledge hammers and lances. Chinese also made use of gunpowder for defending the Great Wall and gunpowder was actually a Chinese invention.

9. The watchtowers of the Great Wall were often used as signal stations. Flags, smoke and beacons were the usual modes of exchanging messages.

10. At certain places the Great Wall is 15-30 feet wide and 25 feet high.

Interesting Great Wall of China Facts

End point of The Great Wall at sea level

Interesting Great Wall of China Facts: 11-20

11. At Heita Mountain in Beijing, the Great Wall reaches its highest point at 5,033 feet or 1,534 meters.

12. The lowest point of the wall is at sea level and is located at Laolongtou.

13. The Sino-Japanese war in 1938 saw the last battle being fought at the Great Wall of China. Several bullet marks on the wall are the testament of the battle. It was a bloody battle between the Empire of Japan and the Republic of China.

14. Numerous temples of God Guandi were built along the wall by the Chinese people. Guandi is their god of war.

15. Certain portions of the wall in the Ningxia and Gansu provinces (northwester sections of the wall) are subject to immense natural erosion and may be lost within 20 years.

16. Between 1966 and 1978 (years of Cultural Revolution in China), the Chinese people started looking at the wall as a sign of despotism. It was then that the leaders started encouraging people to take away bricks from the wall for using in their homes and farms.

17. The Great Wall became China’s common emblem between 18th and 20th centuries. The wall became symbolic to physical and psychological barrier maintained by China in order to exert control over its own citizens and to ward off any foreign influence.

18. The Great Wall was declared a Heritage Site by UNESCO in year 1987 and today, the wall is considered as one of the greatest architectural feats ever achieved by mankind.

19. The most well-preserved and well-known section of the wall is Badaling. It is located 70 kilometers to the northwest of Beijing. This section of the wall is rebuilt in year 1950.

20. Millions of people from around the world visit the Great Wall every year. The year 2004 holds the record for hosting the highest numbers of visitors from foreign countries. 41.8 million foreigners visited the wall that year.

Sources: 1, 2, 3

Image Credits: 1, 2, 3

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