Conspiracy Theory: The Great Chinese Hoax?
“There are roads that do not go; there are armies that are not attacked; there are fortresses for which they do not fight; there are localities for which they do not fight; there are commands of the sovereign, which are not carried out. "
"War Craft". Sun tzu
This topic is very popular on the Internet. Of course, it is similar to the "conspiracy theory", but there are a lot of facts that seem quite logical.
In China, they will tell you about a majestic monument several thousand kilometers long and about the founder of the Qin dynasty, thanks to whose command the Great Wall of China was built more than two thousand years ago in the Middle Kingdom.
However, some modern scholars very much doubt that this symbol of the power of the Chinese empire existed until the middle of the 20th century. So what do they show tourists? - you will say ... And tourists are shown what was built by the Chinese Communists in the second half of the last century.
According to the official historical version, the Great Wall, intended to protect the country from the raids of nomadic peoples, was erected in the 3rd century BC. at the behest of the legendary emperor Qin Shi Huang Di, the first ruler who united China into one state.
It is believed that the Great Wall, built mainly in the era of the Ming dynasty (1368-1644), has reached our days, and three historical periods of active construction of the Great Wall are distinguished: the era of Qin in the 3rd century BC, the Han era III century and the era of Min.
In essence, under the name "The great Wall of China»Unite at least three large projects in different historical epochs, which according to expert estimates, in total, comprise a total length of walls of at least 13 thousand km.
With the fall of Ming and the establishment of the Manchu Qin dynasty in China (1644-1911), construction work ceased. Thus, basically the wall was preserved, the construction of which was completed in the middle of the XVII century.
It is clear that the construction of such a grandiose fortification required from the Chinese state to mobilize enormous material and human resources, at the limit of possibilities.
Historians claim that at the same time, up to a million people were employed in the construction of the Great Wall and the construction was accompanied by monstrous loss of life (according to other sources, three million builders were attracted, that is, half of the male population of ancient China).
It is not clear, however, what the final meaning was perceived by the Chinese authorities in the construction of the Great Wall, since China did not have the necessary military forces, not just to defend, but at least reliably control the wall along its entire length.
Probably due to this circumstance nothing is specifically known about the role of the Great Wall in the defense of China. Nevertheless, the Chinese rulers for two thousand years stubbornly built these walls. Well, it must be that we simply cannot understand the logic of the ancient Chinese.
However, many Sinologists are aware of the weak persuasiveness of the rational motives proposed by the researchers of the subject, which should have prompted the ancient Chinese to create the Great Wall.And to explain the more than strange history of a unique structure, philosophical tirades are pronounced of approximately the following content:
“The wall was to serve as the extreme northern line of the possible expansion of the Chinese themselves; it was supposed to protect the subjects of the“ Middle Empire ”from the transition to a semi-nomadic way of life, from merging with the barbarians. The wall was supposed to clearly fix the boundaries of Chinese civilization, to promote the consolidation of a single empire, just made up of a number of conquered kingdoms. ”
Scientists were simply struck by the glaring absurdity of this fortification. The Great Wall can not be called an ineffective defensive object, from any sane military point of view it is blatantly absurd. As you can see, the wall passes through the ridges of inaccessible mountains and hills.
Why build a wall in the mountains, where not only are nomads on horseback, but also a foot army hardly dolezet?! .. Or did the strategists of the Celestial Empire fear the attack of the tribes of wild climbers? Apparently, the threat of invasion of the hordes of angry climbers really terribly frightened the ancient Chinese authorities, because with the primitive construction technique available to them, the difficulties of erecting a defensive wall in the mountains increased incredibly.
And the crown of fantastic absurdity, if you look closely, you can see that the wall in some places of intersection of mountain ranges branches, forming mockingly meaningless loops and ramifications.
It turns out that tourists are usually shown one of the sections of the Great Wall, located 60 km north-west of Beijing. This is the area of Mount Badaling (Badaling), the length of the wall is 50 km. The wall is in excellent condition, which is not surprising - its reconstruction on this site was carried out in the 50s of the 20th century. In fact, the wall was rebuilt, although it is argued that the old foundations.
There is nothing more to show to the Chinese; no other credible remnants of the supposedly existing thousands of kilometers of the Great Wall are available.
The Wall site west of Yinchuan City District, June 25, 2007. (Photo by Frederic J. Brown | AFP | Getty Images):
Let us return to the question of why the Great Wall was led in the mountains. There are reasons here, besides those that may have been recreated and extended, possibly existing fortifications of the pre-Vanchurian era in the gorges and mountain defiles.
The construction of an ancient historical monument in the mountains has its advantages.It is difficult for an observer to ascertain whether the ruins of the Great Wall really go thousands of kilometers along mountain ranges, as they say.
Moreover, in the mountains it is impossible to establish how old the foundations of the wall are. For several centuries, stone buildings on ordinary soil, carried by sedimentary rocks, inevitably sink into the ground for several meters, and it is easy to check.
And on the rocky ground of a similar phenomenon is not observed, and the recent construction is easy to pass off as very ancient. And besides, in the mountains there is no large local population, a potential inconvenient witness to the construction of a historic landmark.
It is unlikely that originally the fragments of the Great Wall to the north of Beijing were built on a significant scale, even for China at the beginning of the 19th century this is a difficult task.
It seems that the few tens of kilometers of the Great Wall, which are shown to tourists, were mostly built for the first time atGreat Helmsman, Mao Zedong. Also a kind of Chinese emperor, but still it is impossible to say that it is very ancient
Here is one opinion: you can falsify what exists in the original, for example, a banknote or a painting.There is an original and you can copy it, which is what the falsifiers and counterfeiters do. If the copy is made well, it is difficult to determine the fake, to prove that this is not the original. And in the case of the Chinese wall, it’s not a fake. Because there was no real wall in antiquity.
Therefore, the original product of modern creativity of hardworking Chinese builders has nothing to compare. Rather, it is a kind of quasi-historically grounded grand architectural work. The product of the famous Chinese striving for order. Today it isGreat tourist attractionworthy entry in the Guinness book of records.
Remains of the 14th century fortress in Jiayuguan, September 15, 2009. (Photo by Sigismund von Dobschutz):
These are the questions I asked.Valentin Sapunov
1. From whom, in fact, was the wall supposed to protect? The official version - from nomads, Huns, Vandals - is unconvincing. China at the time of the creation of the Wall was the most powerful state in the region, and possibly the whole world. His army was well armed and trained. This can be judged very specifically - in the tomb of Emperor Qin Shi Huang, archaeologists unearthed a full-scale model of his troops.Thousands of terracotta warriors in full gear, with horses, carts, were to accompany the emperor in the next world. The northern peoples of that time did not have serious armies, they lived mainly in the Neolithic period. They could not represent the dangers for the Chinese army. There is a suspicion that, from a military point of view, the Wall was little needed.
2. Why is a large part of the wall built in the mountains? It runs along ridges, over cliffs and canyons, meanders over inaccessible rocks. So defenses are not built. In the mountains and without protective walls, the movement of troops is difficult. Even in our time in Afghanistan and Chechnya, modern mechanized troops are moving not through the crests of mountains, but only along gorges and passes. To stop the troops in the mountains, small fortresses dominating the gorges are enough. To the north and south of the Great Wall plains stretch. It would be more logical and many times cheaper to put a wall there, and the mountains would serve as an additional natural obstacle to the enemy.
3. Why does a wall with a fantastic length have a relatively small height - from 3 to 8 meters, rarely up to 10? This is much lower than in most European castles and Russian kremlins.A strong army equipped with assault techniques (ladders, mobile wooden towers) could, by selecting a vulnerable spot on a relatively flat stretch of terrain, overcome the Wall and invade China. This happened in 1211, when China was easily conquered by the hordes of Genghis Khan.
4. Why is the Great Wall of China oriented to both sides? All fortifications have teeth and curbs on the walls from the side facing the enemy. In the direction of their teeth do not put. This would be pointless and would make it difficult to service the warriors on the walls and to transport ammunition. In many places, the battlements and loopholes are oriented deep into their territory, some towers are also shifted to the south. It turns out that the builders of the wall assumed the presence of the enemy on their part. Who were they going to fight with in this case?
Let us begin our reasoning with an analysis of the personality of the author of the Wall - Emperor Qin Shi Huang (259 - 210 BC).
His personality was extraordinary and in many respects typical of the autocrat. He combined brilliant organizational talent and state thinking with pathological cruelty, suspiciousness and self-indulgence. As a very young 13-year-old, he became the prince of the state of Qin.It was here that the technology of ferrous metallurgy was first mastered. Immediately she was applied to the needs of the army. Possessing more advanced weapons than neighbors equipped with bronze swords, the army of the principality of Qin quickly conquered much of the country. From 221 BC. a successful warrior and politician became the head of the united Chinese state - the empire. Since that time, he began to bear the name of Qin Shihuang (in another transcription - Shi Huang). Like any usurper, he had many enemies. The emperor surrounded himself with an army of bodyguards. Fearing the murderers, he created in his palace the first magnetic control of a weapon. On the advice of experts, he ordered to put at the entrance an arch of magnetic iron ore. If an iron weapon was hidden at the entrance, magnetic forces would pull it out from under their clothes. Immediately she was able to keep up with the guards and began to find out why the incoming one wanted to enter the palace armed. Fearing for power and life, the emperor fell ill with persecution mania. He saw conspiracies everywhere. The method of prevention he chose the traditional - mass terror. At the slightest suspicion of disloyalty, people were seized, tortured and executed.Squares of cities in China were continuously announced by the cries of people who were cut into pieces, cooked live in boilers, fried in pans. Hard terror pushed many to flee the country.
Constant stress, a wrong lifestyle shattered the health of the emperor. The duodenal ulcer has developed. After 40 years, symptoms of premature aging appeared. Some sages, but rather, charlatans told him the legend of a tree growing over the sea in the east. The fruits of the tree, allegedly, cure all diseases and prolong youth. The emperor ordered to immediately provide an expedition for the fabulous fruits. Several large junks reached the shores of modern Japan, founded a settlement there and decided to stay. They rightly decided that the mythical tree does not exist. If they return empty-handed, the steep emperor will swear very hard, and maybe he will come up with something worse. This settlement later became the beginning of the formation of the Japanese state.
Seeing that science is unable to restore health and youth, he attacked scientists. “Historical”, or rather, the hysterical decree of the emperor read - “Burn all the books and execute all scientists!”.Some of the specialists and works related to military affairs and agriculture, the emperor still amnestied under public pressure. However, most of the priceless manuscripts burned down, and 460 scientists who constituted the color of the intellectual elite of that time ended their lives in cruel torment.
It was to this emperor, as noted, that the idea of the Great Wall belonged. Construction work did not start from scratch. In the north of the country were already defenses. The idea was to combine them into a single fortification system. What for?
This photo was taken in 1998 in the mountains of Yinshan. A 200-kilometer stretch of the Great Wall of China, built during the Qin dynasty (221-207 BC), was discovered by archaeologists in (Photo by Wang Yebiao, Xinhua | AP):
The simplest explanation is the most real.
Let us resort to analogies. Egyptian pyramids had no practical meaning. They demonstrated the greatness of the pharaohs and their power, the ability to force hundreds of thousands of people to do any, even if meaningless, action. There are more than enough such constructions with the goal of only exalting power.
Similarly, the Great Wall is a symbol of the power of Shihuang and other Chinese emperors, who took up the baton of a grandiose construction.It should be noted that, unlike many other similar monuments, the Wall is picturesque and beautiful in its own way, in harmony with nature. Talented fortifiers who know a lot about Eastern understanding of beauty were brought to work.
There was a second need for the Wall, more prosaic. Waves of imperial terror, the tyranny of feudal lords and officials forced the peasants to flee en masse in search of a better life.
The main route was to the north, to Siberia. It was there that the Chinese men dreamed of finding the land and the will. The interest in Siberia as an analogue of the Promised Earth has long stirred up ordinary Chinese, and for a long time this nation has tended to spread around the world.
Historical analogies suggest themselves. Why did Russian settlers go to Siberia? For the best share, for the earth and will. They were saved from the royal rage and lordly tyranny.
To stop the uncontrolled migration to the north, undermining the unlimited power of the emperor and the nobility and created the Great Wall. She would not hold a serious army. However, the Wall could block the way for peasants walking along mountain paths burdened with unpretentious belongings, wives and children.And if the men went further on the breakthrough, headed by a sort of Chinese Yermak, they were greeted by a rain of arrows because of the battlements turned towards their own people. Analogues of such sad events in history are more than enough. Recall the Berlin Wall. Officially built against the aggression of the West, it set a goal to stop the flight of the inhabitants of the GDR to where life was better, or at least it seemed so. In Stalin's times, with a similar goal, tens of thousands of kilometers created the world's most fortified border, nicknamed the Iron Curtain. Maybe not by chance, the Great Wall of China in the minds of the peoples of the world acquired a double meaning. On the one hand, it is a symbol of China. On the other - a symbol of Chinese isolation from the rest of the world.
This is also part of the Great Wall of China in the Jiayuguan City District, built during the Ming Dynasty (1372). Photograph of 2003. (Photo by Goh Chai Hin | AFP | Getty Images):
There is even an assumption that the Great Wall is a creation not of the ancient Chinese, but of their northern neighbors..
Back in 2006, the president of the Academy of Basic Sciences, Andrei Alexandrovich Tyunyaev, in the article “The Great Wall of China was built ... not by the Chinese!”made an assumption about the non-Chinese origin of the Great Wall. In fact, modern China appropriated the achievement of another civilization. In modern Chinese historiography, the task of the wall was also changed: it initially defended the North from the South, and not the Chinese south from the "northern barbarians". Researchers say that loopholes of a large part of the wall are facing south, not north. This can be seen in the works of Chinese drawing, a number of photographs, on the most ancient sections of the wall not modernized for the needs of the tourist industry.
According to Tyunyaev, the last sections of the Great Wall were built similarly to the Russian and European medieval fortifications, whose main task is to protect against the effects of guns. They began to build such fortifications no earlier than the 15th century, when guns were widely spread on the battlefields. In addition, the wall marked the border between China and Russia. At that time in history, the border between Russia and China passed along the "Chinese" wall. On the map of Asia of the XVIII century, which was made by the Royal Academy in Amsterdam, there are two geographical formations in this region: Tartary in the north and China in the south,the northern boundary of which was approximately along the 40th parallel, i.e., exactly along the Great Wall. On this Dutch map, the Great Wall is marked with a bold line and is signed “Muraille de la Chine”. From French, this phrase is translated as "The Wall of China", but can be translated as "a wall from China", or "a wall delimiting from China." In addition, the political significance of the Great Wall is also confirmed by other maps: on the 1754 “Carte de l’Asie” map, the wall also runs along the border between China and Great Tataria (Tartary). In the academic 10-volume World History there is a map of the Qing Empire of the second half of the XVII-XVIII centuries, which shows in detail the Great Wall, which runs exactly along the border between Russia and China.
We are located 180 km north of Beijing. Unlike most other sites around the capital, restored for tourism, this part of the Wall, dating back to the times of the Ming dynasty (approximately 1368), was left intact. May 24, 2006. (Photo by Frederic J. Brown | AFP | Getty Images):
The following are the evidence:
ARCHITECTURAL style of the wall, which is now in China, is captured by the features of the construction of "handprints" of its creators.Elements of the wall and towers, similar to fragments of the wall, in the Middle Ages can be found only in the architecture of the old Russian fortifications of the central regions of Russia - the “northern architecture”.
Andrey Tyunyaev suggests comparing two towers - from the Chinese wall and from the Novgorod Kremlin. The shape of the towers is the same: a rectangle, slightly narrowed upwards. From the wall inside both the one and the other tower leads the entrance, covered with a round arch, lined with the same brick as the wall with the tower. Each of the towers has two upper "working" floors. In the ground floor and the one and the other tower made round arched windows. The number of ground floor windows in both the one and the other tower is 3 on one side and 4 on the other. The height of the windows is about the same - about 130-160 centimeters.
The loopholes are located on the upper (second) floor. They are made in the form of rectangular narrow grooves about 35–45 cm wide. The number of such loopholes in the Chinese tower is 3 in depth and 4 in width, and in Novgorod it is 4 in depth and 5 in width. On the top floor of the "Chinese" tower on the very edge of it are square holes. There are similar openings in the Novgorod tower, and from them the ends of the rafters protrude, on which the wooden roof rests.
The same situation in comparison of the Chinese tower and the tower of the Tula Kremlin. The Chinese and Tula towers have the same number of loopholes in width - there are four of them. And the same number of arched openings - by 4. On the top floor between the large loopholes are small - by the Chinese and Tula towers. The shape of the towers is still the same. In Tula tower, as in the Chinese, used white stone. The vaults are equally executed: at the Tula gate, at the “Chinese” - entrances.
For comparison, you can also use the Russian towers of the Nikolsky Gate (Smolensk) and the northern fortress wall of the Nikitsky Monastery (Pereslavl-Zalessky, XVI century), as well as the tower in Suzdal (mid-XVII century). Conclusion: the design features of the towers of the Chinese Wall reveal practically exact analogies among the towers of the Russian Kremlin.
And what does the comparison of the surviving towers of the Chinese city of Beijing with the medieval towers of Europe say? The fortress walls of the Spanish city of Avila and Beijing are very similar to each other, especially in the fact that the towers are very often and practically have no architectural devices for military needs. Beijing towers have only the upper deck with loopholes, and they are lined up with the rest of the wall.
Neither the Spanish nor the Beijing towers show such high similarity with the defensive towers of the Chinese Wall, as the towers of the Russian Kremlin and the fortress walls show. And this is an occasion for reflection by historians.
Time does not spare anyone and nothing. These hills are in fact also remnants of the Wall in the urban district of Yinchuan, China. (Photo by Kim Siefert):
But the arguments of Leksutov Sergey Vladimirovich
In the chronicles it is written that the wall was built two thousand years. In the sense of defense - absolutely meaningless construction. Is it that while the wall was built in one place, in other places nomads freely walked around China for two thousand years? But the chain of fortresses and ramparts can be built and improved over two thousand years. The fortresses are needed to defend the garrisons in them from superior enemy forces, as well as to quarter the mobile cavalry detachments in order to immediately go after the squad of robbers who crossed the border.
I thought for a long time who and why built this meaningless cyclopean structure in China? Besides Mao Jie Dong there is simply no one! With his usual wisdom, he found a great tool, how to adapt to the work of tens of millions of healthy men who had fought for thirty years before, and were not able to fight anything.It is unthinkable to imagine what a mess in China would have started if such a number of soldiers were demobilized at the same time!
And the fact that the Chinese themselves believe that the wall has been standing for two thousand years is explained very simply. A battalion of demobles comes to the open field, the commander interprets them: “Here, on this very spot, stood the Great Wall of China, but the evil barbarians destroyed it, we have to restore it.” And millions of people sincerely believed that they did not build, but only restored the Great Wall of China. In fact, the wall is composed of even, clearly cut blocks. This is what, in Europe they did not know how to cut a stone, but in China they were honored? In addition, they sawed stone of soft rocks, and it is better to build fortresses of granite or basalt, or of something no less solid. And granites and basalts learned to saw only in the twentieth century. Throughout four and a half thousand kilometers, the wall was made of uniform blocks of the same size, and after two thousand years, the methods of processing stone inevitably had to change. Yes, and construction methods are changing over the centuries.
From this part of the Great Wall of China in the urban district of Jiayuguan, erected in the 16th century, almost nothing remained, but it was restored in 1987. (Photo by Greg Baker | AP):
Of particular interest is the version of A. Galanin, a famous botanist who has completed dozens of expeditions, including to China.
This researcher believes that the Great Wall of China was built to protect the Ala-Shan and Ordos deserts from the sandstorms. He noted that the map drawn by P. Kozlov, a Russian traveler at the beginning of the twentieth century, shows how the Wall runs along the border of mobile sands, and in some places has significant branches. But it was near the desert by researchers and archaeologists that several parallel walls were found. Galanin explains this phenomenon very simply: when one wall was covered with sand, another was erected. The researcher does not deny the military mission of the Wall in its eastern part, but the western part of the Wall served, in his opinion, the function of protecting agricultural areas from the elements.
The western edge of the Great Wall of China near Jiayuguan County, May 30, 2007. (Photo by Michael Goodine):
FIGHTERS OF THE INVISIBLE FRONT
Perhaps the answers - in the beliefs of the inhabitants of the Middle Kingdom? It is difficult for us, the people of our time, to believe that our ancestors would begin to erect barriers to repel the aggression of imaginary enemies, such as disembodied otherworldly entities with evil intentions.But the fact of the matter is that our distant predecessors considered evil spirits to be completely real beings.
The inhabitants of China (both today and in the past) are convinced that the world around them is inhabited by thousands of demonic creatures. Dangerous for man. One of the names of the wall sounds like "a place inhabited by 10 thousand spirits."
Another interesting fact: the Great Wall of China stretches not in a straight line, but along a winding road. And the features of the relief have nothing to do with it. If you look closely, you may find that it even “dodges” on flat areas. What was the logic of the ancient builders?
The ancients believed that all these creatures can move exclusively in a straight line and not able to bypass the obstacles in the way. Could it have been that the Great Wall of China was erected to block their way?
Meanwhile, it is known that Emperor Qin Shihuang Di constantly consulted astrologers during construction and consulted with soothsayers. According to the legend, the soothsayers told him that a terrible sacrifice could be brought to the lord and provide a reliable defense to the state - the bodies of the unfortunate people who were killed during the construction of the structure buried in the wall.Who knows, perhaps these nameless builders are still on the eternal guard of the borders of the Middle Kingdom ...
Of course, these are not all versions, but which one do you stick to?
Let's look at the photo of the wall:
The old part of the Wall in Longkou County (Shandong Province). (Photo by Kim Siefert):
Wall to the northeast of Beijing, December 29, 1999. This part also did not spare time. (Photo by Greg Baker | AP):
And this is already the "tourist" part of the Great Wall of China near Beijing. (Photo by Saad Akhtar):
The Wall section on the outskirts of Beijing called Badalin, June 1, 2010. (Photo by Liu Jin | AFP | Getty Images):
The Department of Culture of China periodically makes measurements of the Great Wall of China, March 14, 2006. (Photos by China Photos | Getty Images):
Well preserved part of the Wall near the village of Dongjiakou. (Photo by Kim Siefert):
Some sections of the Great Wall of China were consumed by nature ... (Photo by Kim Siefert):
A relatively new photograph of the Walls from Hebei Province, July 17, 2012. (Photo by Ed Jones | AFP | Getty Images):
Some tourists set up tents on the Wall. Badalin Plot, September 24, 2010. (Photo by Frederic J. Brown | AFP | Getty Images):
Another section of the Wall, merged with nature. 80 km from Beijing, September 30, 2012. (Photo by David Gray | Reuters):
Arch of the former watchtower, September 30, 2012. (Photo by David Gray | Reuters):
As the Wall goes through mountains, deserts and rivers, there are portions when it rises almost vertically upwards. Hebei Province, July 17, 2012. (Photo by Ed Jones | AFP | Getty Images):
The "tourist" part of the Great Wall of China, 80 km from the center of Beijing, on May 7, 2011. (Photo by Jason Lee | Reuters):
Autumn landscapes at the Great Wall of China. (Photo by Kim Siefert):
Old photo. This is the US President Richard Nixon standing on the Great Wall of China near Beijing, February 24, 1972. (AP Photo):
Wedding photo session, October 18, 2009. (Photo by David Gray | Reuters):
Section Walls near Beijing. (Photo by Kim Siefert):
Section of the Wall "Badalin" and the mountains, September 24, 2010. (Photo by Frederic J. Brown | AFP | Getty Images):
Merging with nature, Qinhuangdao City District. (Photo by Kim Siefert):
Next to Beijing, July 8, 2007. (Photo by Ng Han Guan | AP):
Action in the watchtower on the occasion of the International Day against Drugs in Beijing, June 26, 2006. (Photos by China Photos | Getty Images):
Section of the Great Wall of Symatai. In 1987 he was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. (Photo by Bobby Yip | Reuters):
Chinese province Hebei, September 18, 2011. (Photo by Alexander F. Yuan | AP):
We conclude today's review with an interesting section of the Great Wall of China called “The Head of the Old Dragon” of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). This is the place where the Wall meets the sea. Located in Hebei Province, July 9, 2009.