Read e-book online Chinese Walled Cities 221 BC-AD 1644 (Fortress) PDF

By Stephen Turnbull

ISBN-10: 1846033810

ISBN-13: 9781846033810

It's been acknowledged in China urban and not using a wall will be as impossible as a home and not using a roof. Even the smallest village perpetually had a few type of shielding wall, whereas the good Wall of China used to be an try and construct a barrier alongside the main weak border of the whole kingdom. but the best examples of walled groups have been China's walled towns, whose protective structure passed whatever alongside the good Wall. This booklet strains the evolution of the walled urban from the 3,000 yr previous continues to be of the overwhelmed earth partitions of the Shang dynasty to the large stone fortifications of the Ming dynasty. Stephen Turnbull, professional army historian, finds the protective constructions from the entire significant historical chinese language towns, and discusses how they safe whole groups, and never simply fort dwellers, with colour art reconstructions, maps and archive pictures.

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Additional info for Chinese Walled Cities 221 BC-AD 1644 (Fortress)

Sample text

Towns did not therefore become a magnet for the population as in the West. Rebels chose to take refuge in villages, and we frequently hear of a rebellion beginning with an attack on a town, rather than rising within the town itself. Within the city or town the lives of its inhabitants were – theoretically at least – strictly controlled, a matter given physical expression in the medieval period when the insides of towns and cities were squared off into the wards called fang, which were then subdivided into alleyways.

The first was the sending of messages into the city promising rewards for any traitors. The second occurred when the besiegers exhibited the commander’s son whom they had captured, and threatened to kill him. The records tell us that to show his great resolve the commander loosed an arrow at the boy himself! Hou Jing was suitably impressed and let the boy go. Hou Jing then detached a force to capture the nearby town of Dongfu, which was treacherously betrayed when some defenders allowed Hou Jing’s men to sneak over the wall.

One authority recommends that in the case of a sizeable incursion the civilians should be encouraged to flee the city. Booby traps could be arranged for the incoming enemy, as was done in AD 1277 when Guilin in Guangxi province, one of the last outposts of Southern Song resistance to the Mongols, lay under siege. When the main tower fell a truce was arranged so that the garrison could receive supplies prior to an honourable surrender. During the interregnum some Mongol soldiers climbed up on to the now undefended walls, when suddenly there was an enormous explosion which brought down the wall and the Mongols with it.

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Chinese Walled Cities 221 BC-AD 1644 (Fortress) by Stephen Turnbull

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