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Jiayuguan Museum showcases full sense of the Great Wall's unique history


10:41, July 19, 2012

In inscription at the entrance describes the great wall as "the soul of the Chinese nation."

There may be no better place than Jiayuguan to embark on a Great Wall journey. But getting a full sense of the wall's history will require a trip to the Jiayuguan Museum of the Great Wall. A first of its kind, it opened up in 1989.

The museum's main building mimics a typical beacon tower from the Great Wall, except that this one covers more than 12,000 square meters. In inscription at the entrance describes the great wall as "the soul of the Chinese nation." And the museum aims to prove that.

Xie Shengliang, museum interpreter, said, "The Great Wall dates from when the Qin Dynasty unified China. It stretches a hypothetical ten thousand Li from East to West. Different parts of the wall have been constructed over the course of numerous dynasties over 2000 years. The different parts of wall stretch from here in Jiayuguan in the West all the way to the pass called Shanhaiguan in the East. Here visitors can learn about the Great Wall through a variety of mediums, such as authentic artifacts, charts, models, diagrams, texts and pictures. The exhibits also provide rich information for Great Wall researchers."

On display are archaeological findings and artifacts related to the Great Wall, in particular those unearthed at Jiayuguan.

Xie Shengliang, museum interpreter, said, "This unicorn is the star exhibit of our museum, and also its largest bronze piece. It's very ancient, dating back to as far as 1700 years. It was unearthed at a huge tomb complex in Jiayuguan, just 31 kilometers from here. It was made to ward off the evil spirits and protect the tomb chamber from collapse. In the late Eastern Han Dynasty, it was also a symbol of the judicial fairness of the imperial court."

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