One of the new seven wonders of the world is the Great Wall of China. There is no doubt that it is "Great" - 8851, 9 km in length, taking into account the bends and branches, the average width of the walls is 5.5 m (6.5 m at the base), the height in different places reaches 10 meters. Watchtowers are located at a distance of up to 200 meters (this amount was taken for "arrow flight") from each other along the entire length of the wall. The main purpose of these towers was to signal the enemy's advance. So at night, an alert was transmitted from one tower to another with the help of a kindled fire, during the day with the help of smoke. Like a huge stone snake, the Great Wall of China emerges from the Yellow Sea and crawls right into the sands of the Gobi Desert, across all of northern China.
The history of the creation of one of the medieval wonders of the world goes back to the 3rd century BC. Emperor Qin Shi Huang came to power in China, uniting the warring states among themselves, establishing a single power in the Celestial Empire. At the end of the 3rd century BC. he ordered to build a wall in order to mark the borders of a single state and to protect China from the raids of northern nomads. Construction continued intermittently until the 1640s (end of the Ming dynasty).
The first 10 years of construction were a tragedy for many Chinese people. A third of the entire population of the Middle Kingdom was employed in jobs (several million people). Tens of thousands of people died from epidemics and excessive physical labor. Outrage at such a large-scale mobilization and discontent with thousands of lost lives led to a series of popular uprisings, which became one of the reasons why the Qin dynasty fell.
Archaeologists have repeatedly found human remains right in the masonry of the Great Wall. The builders who died during the construction or executed were buried right in it, not caring about a worthy burial. According to scientists, during its construction, the Great Wall of China became the grave of about 2 million people.
It is interesting that when laying stone blocks of the wall, sticky rice porridge with an admixture of slaked lime was used as a cement mortar.
Today the Great Wall of China is the pride of the inhabitants of the Middle Kingdom. As Mao Tse-Tung wrote at the entrance to the reconstructed part of the wall, "If you have not been to the Great Wall, you are not a real Chinese."
The Great Wall of China was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987 as one of China's greatest historical sites. In addition, it is one of the most visited attractions in the world - about 40 million tourists come here every year. In addition, the popular Great Wall track and field marathon is held here every year, in which athletes run part of the distance along the ridge of the Wall.
Despite popular myth, the Great Wall of China is not visible from space. According to NASA, the Wall is barely visible from orbit, and only under ideal accompanying conditions. However, it is no more visible than other artificial structures.