Terracotta Army Bingma Yong
In March 1974, when digging wells some 1·5km/1mi west of the Qin Shi Huangdi mausoleum, farmers found some clay pieces. This accidental find led to the most important archaeological find of the last few decades: the Terracotta Army, distributed over three large underground platforms and guarding the First Emperor's tomb towards the east. Originally, the warriors stood in vast underground chambers with wooden ceilings. During the plundering of the grave in 206 BC these were also robbed; then the rebels smashed the figures and burned down the chambers. The re-assembly of the figures and the securing of all the traces that are left of the original painting forms one of the most difficult tasks for archaeologists today. Although the faces of the warriors show individual features, parts of the figures were probably mass-produced in large workshops.
Opening hours: 9am-5pm
Entrance fee in CNY: Adult ¥90.00
Cave No 1
Cave No. 1, 1.26ha/3acres in area, contains the right wing of the underground army which is guarding the Emperor in his eternal rest. There are 6000 life-sized clay soldiers and horses, numerous chariots and weapons. During the Qin period an army was made up of three sections - the right wing, the left wing and the central unit; even this underground army had to follow the same battle order.
Cave No 2
Cave No. 2 A second section, quite near Cave No. 1 and measuring 600sq.m/6450sq.ft in area, was also uncovered. It contained the 1500 terracotta figures which comprised the left wing of the army - foot-soldiers, cavalrymen, horses, chariots, etc. The dig also brought to light 2000 weapons and other interesting items.
Cave No 4
A fourth Cave was opened up between Caves 1 and 2; this was the store of the central unit of troops and measured 4600sq.m/49,500sq.ft. Unfortunately, however, it was empty, and the opinion of the archaeologists is that work on this grave had to be interrupted because rebellious peasants were marching on the town.
Cave No 3
Cave No. 3 The third section, some 520sq.m/5600sq.ft in area, houses what is presumably the ''headquarters'' of the underground army. The finds here include 73 chariots, soldiers and horses, all made of terracotta.
More Terracotta Army Pictures