old Chinese started structure fortifications as early as the eighth century BC to assist in their armed forces efforts versus the nomads to the north. The first emperor that the Qin dynasty (221-206BCE) associated the present walls right into a solitary system, well-known as the an excellent Wall. The great Wall was periodically rebuilt, with many of the current wall dating to the Ming empire (1368-1644). The an excellent Wall extends about 7,300 kilometers (4,500 miles) from the Shanhai happen on the east shore to the Jiayu happen in contemporary Gansu province. Below is a map showing the good Wall"s starting point in ~ the Shanhai pass in the east and its ending allude at the Jiayu happen in the west.

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The route of the an excellent Wall, native Jiayu pass to Shanhai Pass

To the left is a snapshot of Shanhai pass (which way "the pass where the mountains meet the sea"). It is the easternmost point of the an excellent Wall. Which do you think proved much more difficult, the Wall"s construction and maintenance or the stationing that troops follow me it? Shanhai pass
SOURCE: Zhongguo dili congshu bianji weiyuanhui, Zhongguo zonghe dituji (Beijing: Zhongguo ditu chubanshe, 1990), p. 160.

SOME THOUGHTS: Peasants can be conscripted during the winter come build and also maintain the great Wall, whereas stationing troops follow me the wall required long-term garrisons of skilled soldiers.

listed below are two photos of the good Wall, one mirroring a ar in decay and the other one experience renovation come encourage tourism. How reliable do girlfriend think this kind of fortification would have remained in pre-modern times? What carry out you imagine would have actually been the most efficient method of interaction along the good Wall in times of war?

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SOURCE: Left, Beijing, Glimpse of history (Beijing: foreign Languages Press, 1994), p. 97. Right, China Reconstructs 34.3 (March, 1985), p. 12.

ANSWER: The wall proved quite reliable when maintained and also garrisoned; however, at various times transparent history, it to be breached due to the fact that of treachery, disrepair, absence of troops, and tactical blunders. The reasonably short distance in between towers permitted communication through such means as beacons and runners.
The picture to the left mirrors the Jiayu happen in Gansu province, the westernmost allude of the good Wall. The high mountains in the background mark the Tibetan Plateau.

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Jiayu happen
SOURCE: Zhongguo meishu quanji bianji weiyuanhui, Zhongguo meishu quanji, jianzhu yishubian (Beijing: Zhongguo jianzhu gongye chubanshe, 1987), p. 163.