Story of Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China was built by The Ming dynasty to save China from Barbarian's attacks. It took over a thousand year period to build this great wass. Then it expanded under different dynasties. Although the Wall couldn’t keep anybody out of China, yet if someone wanted to invade China the wall was a hurdel that could slowed down the march of enemies and Chinese forces had enough time to get proper preparation for war. In fact, in most places the Wall wasn’t even manned—to do so would have been prohibitively expensive. The main purpose was to stop the marauding bands of Mongols. But we just said that the Wall couldn’t stop people from coming in—all they had to do was scale it. Anybody could come in, and they could also leave, but they couldn’t carry anything back with them. After all, if a burglar knows he can get into your house, and get back out, but that everything of value is nailed down and he can’t get anything out, then he won’t be too likely to rob you. It did slow invaders, though. The Chinese used elaborate signals, setting fires atop the wall with straw and dung. One column of black smoke meant a small raiding party, while four columns meant as many as 10,000 men were approaching.

Originally spanning the steppes and keeping Mongol cavalry from marauding sweeps into China, the Wall was later expanded through the Gobi desert around the northwest corner of China. This was a perilous task—building thousands of miles of wall through a huge, forbidding desert. It was done though, and done well. Over time, huge sections of the Wall suffered from decay and lack of maintenance, so in the 1400’s, someone decided that something needed to be done.

That someone was Ming, and that something was a huge restoration and addition project. The Ming dynasty built the additions in a most interesting and sturdy manner. They sandwiched earth between two walls of kiln-fired bricks and created sections of wall up to 25 feet thick and 20 feet high. The Ming wall is an incredible feat of engineering—rising at angles of 70 degrees in places. And yes, it can be seen by radar images from space, but not by the naked eye.

This 10,000 mile long wall would extend from Miami, Florida to the North Pole. Or, to give a better picture, if you laid out all the bricks to form a wall around the equator you’d end up with a wall five feet high and three feet wide. Such a massive project cost a modern-day equivalent of $360 billion—about the same as we’ve spent on our nation’s highway system in the last 40 years.

Cannons were poisisioned on all strategic places along the top of the wall. Later, as its usefulness finally began to die, people began to take bricks and granite from the wall to build houses and other buildings, weakening its structure. Fortunately, that’s the equivalent of taking a water hose to a forest fire. The Great Wall still remains, and it likely will remain for another thousand years.

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