Originally painted in bright colors, four columns of warriors line 11 passageways in Pit 1, stretching back 600 feet. Each of the 7,000 faces is unique, each man a distinct individual and perhaps most amazing of all, archeologists believe what they found so far is just scratching the surface of what China’s first emperor had prepared for the afterlife.
Qin Shihuang’s army came from all over his empire, and this ethnic diversity is reflected in the hairstyles, headwear and facial expressions of his fragile clay battalions. The level of detail is striking, down to the layering of armor and the studs on archers’ shoes.
Something to ponder as you wander up and down one of the ancient wonders of the world is that when not busy erecting a secret underworld army for the afterlife, Qin still found time to unify China, standardize its currency, weights and measures, build a road network, burn books, bury scholars and create a great big wall. He was emperor for 11 years.