The Great Wall

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We traveled by bus 61 kilometers to Badaling, our entry point to the Great Wall.  The massive building project began in separate strategic sections between 403-221 B.C.  During the reign of China's first Qin emperor, Qin Shi Huangdi, some 3,000 men were put to work connecting segments into one huge, snaking fortification.  Archeologists estimate that the wall once ran for 6,200 miles through an expanse that now covers 16 provinces.  Today, the wall is still impressive at 3,700 miles in length - from the Bohai Sea to the Gobi Desert.

In addition to being a barrier, it served as a elevated highway linking the defensive forces along China's rugged northern frontier.  The roadway atop the wall provided a means of rapid communications and deployment of troops, arms, and food.   

Click on a picture to enlarge.

Copyright 2000 by John Walter.  All rights reserved.  The web site content may not be copied, published or duplicated without consent.