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Great Wall in Shanxi

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  • Shanxi Guguan Pass
    Shanxi Guguan Pass
  • Yanmenguan Pass
    Yanmenguan Pass
  • Niangziguan Pass
    Niangziguan Pass
  • Great Wall in Datong
    Great Wall in Datong
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 Shanxi Great Wall:     
Yanmenguan Pass   Niangziguan   Pianguan   

Shanxi is among the leading provinces in China in terms of the number of its great walls. People are still finding relics in over forty of its counties. Many of the wall segments are very famous including Yanmenguan, Niangziguan, and Pianguan Passes.  The wall near Pianguan Pass stands on the cliff near the banks of the Yellow River in contrast to the other walls that were built on mountain ridges. Niangziguan Pass is also one of the most famous passes. It got the name because Princess Pingyang of the Tang Dynasty (618 - 907) once led an all-women army to defend against enemy forces here.  (Niangziguan means "women's army").

For centuries Shanxi's border served as a line of defense against marauding nomadic northern invaders. It is recorded that approximate 3,500 km (2,175 miles) of walls were built in order to forestall the invading tribes. These walls were constructed during the years between the Warring States Period (476 - 221 BC) and the Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911). 

Shanxi Great Wall is comprised of an inner and an outer walls. The 380-kilometer outer section is located at the border separating Shanxi and Inner Mongolia. The 400-kilometer inner section is located between Qinxian County and the Yanbei area in the province. According to the different construction times, the walls can also be divided into 8 parts: Wall of the Warring States Period, the Eastern Wei (534 - 550) , the Northern Qi (550 - 577), and the Northern Zhou (557 - 581), the Sui (581 - 618), Song (690 - 1279), Ming (1368 - 1644) and the Qing Dynasties, among which the wall of the Song Dynasty in Kelan County is the only Song-dynasty wall in China. The emperors in the Ming Dynasty considered these defensive fortifications to be a critical national priority. So much so that they renovated all of the walls in the province.

Shanxi Great Wall Map
Shanxi Great Wall Map
Guguan Pass Great Wall Map, Shanxi
Guguan Pass Great Wall Map

Traveling along Shanxi Great Wall one can not only see beacon towers but also many ancient villages and towns, where there are age-old commercial streets and well-preserved city walls with their strategically placed towers. One can also learn about many famous generals and the glorious military accomplishments in ancient China. Among them are such luminaries as Lian Po in the Warring States Period, Wei Qing, Huo Qubing and Li Guang in the Han Dynasty (206 BC - 220 AD) and Yuchi Gong and Xue Rengui in the Tang Dynasty.

  Shanxi Great Wall Photos:     Niangziguan       Guguan 

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