The Great Wall of China: Thesis-based Research Essay
Anyone can identify The Great Wall of China. It is considered to be the Eighth Wonder of the World, and it is also the only man-made structure that can be viewed from the Earth's orbit, contrary to the belief that it can be seen from the Moon. Silverberg states, "It is a monster of stone... It sprawls over valleys, up the steep mountainsides, through the thirsty deserts. It dances on the summits of towering peaks, reaching for the highest pinnacles. It stretches on and on, a grayish-blue streak, a ribbon in the distance, striking toward the horizon." (x) The 1,850 mile long wall would run across the U.S. from Los Angeles to the banks of the Mississippi River in St. Louis, New York to Kansas, or from Rome to the shores of Portugal (Silverberg ix-x). The materials of the Great Wall built into an eight feet high, three feet thick barrier can also go around the world once, an equivalent of 25,000 miles (Silverberg x).
The wall can be considered as one of the dominant achievements during the Qin dynasty because of its purpose, the laborers, and its building process.
Known to the Chinese as "Wan-Li Ch'ang Ch'eng," directly translated as "10,000-Li Long Wall" (1 Li is about 500 meters), the construction of the Great Wall of China began in 221 B.C.E. under the rule of The First Emperor Qin Shi Huang-di (Lawton 1). Before Shi Huang-di was born, China was split into three states: Chao, Han, and Wei. The three states started building walls to keep the other states and nomads from attacking, yet still the states warred against each other. As the Era of Warring States went on, the Qin "ate up its neighbors as a silkworms devours a mulberry...