The First Emperor, China’s Terracotta Army

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The High Museum of Art in Atlanta has a spectacular archaeological discovery currently on exhibit — 15 soldiers from China’s Terracotta Army. We were all lucky enough to go over Christmas break and see first hand this ancient marvel.

The famed Terracotta Army was first discovered in 1974. Since then, there have been over 8,000 soldiers, 130 chariots with 520 horses and 150 cavalry horses unearthed. In addition to the army, archaeologists have uncovered vast underground rivers, along with bronze animals, pottery and more.

All this work stems from The First Emperor’s obsession with the afterlife. He believed he was not only ruler of the earth, conquering and unifying all of China, but was also convinced he was overlord of the entire universe.

The exhibit itself was crowded and a little hard to navigate, but was punctuated by fascinating facts — “China” is thought to stem from this First Emperor ‘Qin’ pronounced “Chin” — and other ancient artifacts — Knife and spade money was on display, showing how important a standardized coin was in unifying the nation. All in all a highly recommended stop!

We also quickly breezed through the rest of the museum, with the highlight being a Roy Lichtenstein sculpture on the front lawn:

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