The Tomb


1898605_344731755721379_1097717872654782644_oThe Terracotta Warrior Museum is one of the most fascinating sites you can visit in the world. Comprised of several different pits, the site that’s open to the public is the pit originally discovered in the 1970s.

Also called “The Tomb of 10,000 Warriors,” the actual count is close to 6,000. Each warrior is approximately 6 ft. tall, and is uniquely carved, meant to protect the emperor in the afterlife.

The Qin Emperor’s Tomb itself is located at Mt. Li, and the team is well aware of where it is.

China’s Grand Historian, Sima Qian, wrote of the tomb:

In the ninth month, the First Emperor was interred at Mount Li. When the First Emperor first came to the throne, the digging and preparation work began at Mount Li. Later, when he had unified his empire, 700,000 men were sent there from all over his empire. They dug through three layers of groundwater, and poured in bronze for the outer coffin. Palaces and scenic towers for a hundred officials were constructed, and the tomb was filled with rare artifacts and wonderful treasure. Craftsmen were ordered to make crossbows and arrows primed to shoot at anyone who enters the tomb. Mercury was used to simulate the hundred rivers, the Yangtze and Yellow River, and the great sea, and set to flow mechanically. Above were representation of the heavenly constellations, below, the features of the land. Candles were made from fat of “man-fish”, which is calculated to burn and not extinguish for a long time. The Second Emperor said: “It would be inappropriate for the concubines of the late emperor who have no sons to be out free”, ordered that they should accompany the dead, and a great many died. After the burial, it was suggested that it would be a serious breach if the craftsmen who constructed the mechanical devices and knew of its treasures were to divulge those secrets. Therefore after the funeral ceremonies had completed and the treasures hidden away, the inner passageway was blocked, and the outer gate lowered, immediately trapping all the workers and craftsmen inside. None could escape. Trees and vegetations were then planted on the tomb mound such that it resembles a hill.

— Sima Qian, Shiji, Chapter 6 – Full article on Wikipedia

Soil readings at the location where the tomb is believed to be show incredibly high levels of Mercury. Is the legend true? Has the tomb already been raided? What’s inside?

In reality, it’s much more fascinating than any fictional story.