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How the Great Wall Was Guarded

The Great Wall of China used to be guarded in different ways. In general, there are both some similarities and differences when it comes to the defense of the Great Wall. One of the most representative sections of the Great Wall was constructed during Ming Dynasty. The defensive administration of Ming Dynasty Great Wall was operated directly by the government, but there were some changes over time. At the beginning of Ming Dynasty, the defense of the Great Wall was always accompanied with the military operations as the whole country was still in chaos. At the time, the defense of the Great Wall was in charge of the generals. For example, during Hongwu reign of Ming Dynasty, generals Xuda and Fengsheng were responsible for the defense of the Great Wall and engaging battles at the same time. On one hand, they were responsible for restoring and administrating the Great Wall to build a complete defensive system.

Great Wall Guarded

Afterwards, as Ming Dynasty had officially consolidated its rule over the whole country, the administration and defense of the Great Wall changed. The then military administrative system was called Dusi Weisuozhi. Dusi was the local administration center, the Wei and Suo were its subjective institutions. In Ming Dynasty, there were 16 dusi, 5 xingdusi. There were dozens of dusi set up along the Great Wall, which were responsible for the defense and administration of the Great Wall. The Ming Dynasty Great Wall starts from Yalu River from the east and ends at Jiayuguan, with a large number of guarding passes scattered along the Great Wall. Back then the defensive system had become very complete and advanced. And the defensive system was controlled by the central government and the emperors.

The administration system of the military in Ming Dynasty includes: Wujun Dudufu – headquartered in the capital, with the leader called Dudu; Bingbu - leader called Shangshu; Dusi and Xingdusi headquartered in the provinces, leader called Duzhihushi; Weishihuisi, leader called Zhihuishi; Qianhu Zhihuisi, leader called Qianhu; Baihusuo, leader called Baihu; Zongqi, leader called Zongqi; Xiaoqi, leader called Xiaoqi. The administration and defense system of the Great Wall in Ming Dynasty is the most advanced compared with the former times.