Terracotta Warriors

The current exhibit at the Pacific Science Center in Seattle is Terracotta Warriors Of The First Emperor. Yes, those terracotta warriors, so who could resist when they are so close?

So, here’s a little history. Qin She Huang became the king of his province when he was thirteen, then China’s first emperor in 221 BC when he was 38 after he had conquered all of the other warring states and unified China for the first time. He standardized language, weights and measures, and the currency. He connected the provinces through a series of highways and canals and even began construction of an early iteration of the Great Wall. In anticipation of his own death, Qin ordered work started on his necropolis soon after he became the first emperor.

This archeological site was discovered in 1974 by villagers digging a well when they unearthed a few terracotta pieces. The site now covers 38 square miles. The exhibit at the Pacific Science Center contains a sample of what has been discovered thus far: 8,000 warriors, 520 horses, archers, charioteers, generals, officials, acrobats, strongmen, and musicians.

Each of the figures has unique facial features and amazingly intricate detail down to their fingernails and the soles of their shoes.

Archeologists believe that this terracotta army was assembled to protect the emperor in the afterlife. A majority of the figures were found in a site called Pit 1 which is 750 feet long and 203 feet wide. They are arranged in 11 corridors which are 10 feet wide, paved with small bricks and covered with a wooden ceiling supported by large beams and posts.

Occasionally one of the warriors will pose for a sock photo.

All of the figures were originally painted but over time, the lacquer has disintegrated. Using currently available scientific methods, the curators have been able to reproduce the original colors.

This is how the statues would have looked when they were placed initially.

Photobomb!

After the exhibit we saw a movie, Mystery China, in the IMax theater which really enhanced the overall experience. The show closes in Seattle on September 4, then travels to Philadelphia. If you have the opportunity, you should try to go!

Lorette outside the Pacific Science Center

No adventure would be complete without a couple of food photos so off we went to Elliott’s Oyster House to locate some subject matter.

Dungeness Crab after some oysters on the half shell.

A grilled seafood salad.

What, no dim sum around here?

Comments

Terracotta Warriors — 5 Comments

  1. So glad you posted this. The imagined colors (how do they do that?) and the detail are amazing. If I’d known, I would have gone to it while it was in NYC. Maybe Philly?

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