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What Kind of Equipments Were Used to Build the Great Wall

As we all know the construction of the Great Wall is an enormous engineering feat, therefore it is next to impossible to build the Great Wall all by manpower, then what kind of equipments or tools were used to build the Great Wall in ancient times?

Great Wall in China

According to historical documents, there are some equipments and tools which were used while building the Great Wall. However, they are very simple and crude. The equipments for building the Great Wall are mainly for transportation, like the hand-pushed wagon. The little wagon is made of wood with only one wheel. It is said that the wagon was invented by the famous militarist Zhugeliang. According to legends, Zhu invented a wagon-like transportation to carry the supplies. Some researchers confirmed that what he invented is just the single-wheel wagon. When the Great Wall was built in Ming Dynasty, the single-wheel wagon was only used to carry construction materials on gentle slopes, and when the slopes got steep, the workmen used the so-called Flying Basket and Ropeway. Back then, the workmen would set up some ropeway between two mountains with some baskets hooked on the ropeway (equipped with pulleys) to carry the materials up the hill.

Moreover, when the enormous stone materials were needed to be carried up the hill, the workmen used the rolling logs and crowbar. With the help of the rolling logs and crowbars, the large amounts of stone materials were transported up the hills. In addition, when the slopes got stepper, the workmen would use capstan to carry the heavy materials up the hill, in this way, it was easier and safer and under the circumstance of the time, it was pretty sophisticated. The simple and crude tools aside, there were some animals involved to carry the materials up the hills, like the donkeys and goats alike. According to legends, when Badaling section was built, a large amount of donkeys and goats were driven up the rugged hills, carrying loads of bricks.

All in all, while these simple and crude equipments and tools may seem out of date from architectural perspective of the current time, but they did contributed a whole lot in the construction of the Great Wall. Even for the recent restoration of the Great Wall, there were some donkeys used to carry the construction materials up the hill.

Strategies Used to Defend Great Wall

The Great Wall has been used as a defense for the capital and inner land for quite a long time. But to send soldiers and build the wall higher are not the only way to defend the Great Wall. There are some other strategies which were used to defend the Great Wall from being invaded by the Mongolian tribes.

Great Wall

In the beginning of Han Dynasty, the state was in no condition to build the Great Wall to defend the inner land from Mongolian invaders as the construction of the Great Wall costs a sizeable amount of money and labor. Therefore, the Han emperors decided to send some women to the Mongolian leaders to prevent the Mongolian invaders attacking the Great Wall. In this way, the Great Wall was void of being engaged in blood and war. This way of dealing with the invaders had been used till the Han dynasty was ready to attack back the Mongolian tribes. In later times, the dynasties also used this strategy to defend the wall. During Han and Sui dynasties, peace marriages were used to keep the Mongolian tribes attacking the Great Wall. Back then, the women played a key role in softening the ambition of the Mongolian tribes.

Moreover, the trade and granting titles to the Mongolian leaders were other way of keeping the Mongolian tribes attacking the Great Wall. The reason why the Mongolian tribes tried to attack the Great Wall lies in the lack of sources and respect from the Han people. If the Mongolian tribes could get what they want without war or blood, they would be more than happy to accept those offers. The most famous records are about the Ming dynasty. Back then, the Mongolian leader Anda Khan was granted imperial titles by the Ming emperor and decided not to attack the Great Wall. And the peace between the two leaders lasted for a long time. To make the peace last longer, the Ming emperor also gave orders to set up a few passes for trade between the Mongolian people and Han people. Afterwards, the Khan died, but his wife continued his legacy and kept peace with the Han emperors. Ever since then, Han dynasty and Mongolian tribes maintained a peaceful relation with each other.

To sum it up, there are plenty of other strategies used to defend the Great Wall in a peaceful way.

Starting and Ending Points of the Great Wall

The Great Wall is the ancient military construction built to resist invasion of the northern nomadic people in different periods. The Great Wall stretches thousands of miles across northern China, so also known as the Great Wall. Extant ruins of the Great Wall were mainly built in Fourteenth Century on the Great Wall in Ming Dynasty, starting from Jiayuguan in the west, and ending in Liaodong Hushan.

Great Wall of China

According to the 2012 State Cultural Relics Bureau, the Great Wall features a total length of 21196.18 km. And the State Cultural Relics Bureau also released in 2009, according to the Great Wall of Ming Dynasty survey data, the Great Wall of Ming Dynasty features a total length of 8851.8 km. The Great Wall is a great engineering feat created by Chinese people, enjoying a long history and an important influence on Chinese history. Together with Terracotta Army, it is seen as symbol of China. In the December of 1987, the Great Wall was listed as world cultural heritage site. According to historical records, the construction of the Great Wall covers more than 5000 kilometers and started in the three dynasties: one is the Badaling Great Wall built by Qin Shihuang starting from west of Lintao, ending at Liaodong in the east of the Great Wall; second starts from the Hexi Corridor built in West Han dynasty, east to Liaodong with the Great Wall stretching for the 10000 km.

The Great Wall in China today covers a number of areas, including Beijing, Gansu, Ningxia, Shaanxi, Shanxi, Inner Mongolia, Hebei, Xinjiang, Tianjin, Liaoning, Heilongjiang, Hubei, Hunan and Shandong - more than 10 provinces, cities and autonomous regions. Only the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region has a section that covers more than 1.5 kilometers. Since ancient times, each time the Great Wall was rebuilt and not very complete, now best section to preserve the integrity of the Great Wall was built in the Ming dynasty. So people usually talk about the Great Wall, mainly refers to the Great Wall of Ming dynasty. The length of the Great Wall, also refers to the length of the Great Wall of Ming Dynasty, Ming Dynasty Great Wall starts from West Jiayuguan and ends at east of Yalu River.

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