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Terracotta army

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Social Studies Middle School

Terracotta Army

In 221 B.C., China was unified for the first time, by Qin Shi Huang Di, who declared himself its emperor. During his rule, he had workers build thousands of life-sized statues of soldiers using terracotta, or baked clay. He believed that these soldiers would protect him in the afterlife. Each one of the 7,000 statues is unique, which makes scientists scratch their heads and ask: Who were the soldiers modeled after? Listen to learn more about what these mysterious statues reveal about China’s first emperor.

Ancient Civilization Ancient China

Story Length: 4:44

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National Public Radio © 2009 National Public Radio, Inc. Used with the permission of NPR. All rights reserved.

AIR DATE: 11/15/2009

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