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The Great Wall of China
To the northwest and north of Beijing, a huge, serrated wall zigzags it's way to the east and west along the undulating mountains. This is the Great Wall, which is said to be visible from the moon. This massive wall has not only been one of the Ancient Seven Wonders of the World, but it has also been inspiration for many artists, and writers. The building of the Great Wall is one of the biggest tragedy?s, but through this tragedy arose triumph with the wall, being so much to so many people. The Great Wall of China is much more than a wall, and was built for many reasons that are hidden to most.
Construction of the Great Wall started in the 7th century B.C. The wall states that under the Zhou Dynasty in the northern parts of the country each built their own walls for defense purposes. After the state of Qin unified China in 221 B.C., it joined the walls to hold off the invaders from the Xiongnu tribes in the north and extended them to more than 10,000 li or 5,000 kilometers. This is the origin of the name of the "10,000-li Great Wall". (Karls, Robert 10,000-li Great Wall)
To understand everything about the Great Wall it is necessary to know the many components of the wall, and their purposes. The Great Wall was renovated
from time to time after the Qin Dynasty. A major renovation started with the founding of the Ming Dynasty in 1368, and took 200 years to complete. The wall
we see today is almost exactly the result of this effort. With a total length of over 6,000 kilometers, it extends to the jiayu Pass in Gansu Province in the west and to the mouth of the Yalu River in Liaoning Province in the east. What lies north of Beijing is but a small section of it. (Karls)
The Badaling section of the Great Wall snaking along the mountains northwest of Beijing was built at the beginning of the Ming Dynasty in the 14th century. Being 7.8 meters high and 5.8 meters wide at the top on the average, it has battle forts at important points, including the corners. (Karls)
Located 10 kilometers south of the Badaling section of the Great Wall and built in an 18.5-kilometre-long valley, the pass has always been an important gateway northwest of Beijing. The name is believed to have its origin in the workers and slaves conscripted to build the Great Wall in ancient times. Cloud Terrace, built in 1345, was originally the base of a pagoda over looking the main road of the town of the pass. The arched gate of the terrace and the walls inside the arch are decorated with carvings. Of elephants, lions, birds, flower and heavenly kings as well as charms in six languages-Sanskrit, Tibetan, Phats pa (Mongolian), Uygur, West Xia and Han. (Karls)
The Mutianyu section of the Great Wall, 70 kilometers northeast of Beijing, is linked to the Gubeikou section on the east and the Badaling section on the
west. The Mutianyu section of the Great Wall is crenellated for watching and shooting at the invading enemy. Some of the battle forts on the wall are as close
as 50 meters apart. It is one of the best sections of the Great Wall. (Karls)
Located in Miyun County northeast of Beijing, the Jinshanling division of the Great Wall, like the Simatai division, belongs to the Gubeikou section of the colossal defence barrier. The battlements in the Jinshanling division of the Great Wall are built along the ridge of a mountain, where the soldiers can resist the invading enemy by taking advantage of the high terrain. (Karls)
Located to the east of Jinshanling, the Simatai division of the Great Wall is 3,000 meters long and has 35 battle forts. The wall rises and falls with the precipitous mountain ridge, while the battle forts are located high up the hills.
From the Beakon Tower alarm was raised by means of smoke signals, at night by fire. Smoke was produced by burning a mixture of wolf dung, sulfur and saltpeter. Shots were fired at the same time. Thus an alarm could be relayed ... more
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College and high school
A Changing Lifestyle
Last August, as a high school senior, I made a big transition in my life. Not only did I pack up my things and move to another city, I moved with the intention of acquiring higher education. I made the next step in my life by beginning college. High school life as I knew it was over, and my life would be new and different upon my arrival at school. My room, schedule, motivation, school life, money availability and parental influence has changed greatly.
A major transition to make was that of adjusting to living in a dorm with a roommate. In high school, my room was decorated and filled with things from my life. The furniture arrangement and room size left plenty of extra room. I had a queen-sized bed as well as a large vanity with a full mirror. The other furniture in my room held trinkets and picture frames. My room had plush carpet and two big windows with curtains. It was not necessary to lock my bedroom door as I left. To be alone, all I had to do was retreat to my bedroom and turn up my favorite song. College rooms differ greatly from this description. One half of my dorm is full of things to which I cannot relate. Furniture lines the walls of the room and the small rectangle of space in the middle provides room for walking. My bed is twin-sized and is almost six feet in the air. The remainder of my furniture is tucked beneath my bed and holds many books and a few framed pictures of friends. The carpet is thin and puckered in certain spots. Leaving the door unlocked is not safe because of amount of people who bypass it daily. My window is thin and tall, commonly referred to as suicide-proof because it is not big enough for a person to fit through. The curtain rod holding the small fabric cut to be our curtain falls almost daily. I seldom enter the room when my roommate is not there. When Im tired, she usually is watching television or is talking loudly on the phone. When Im in the mood for television or listening to music, she is often asleep.
My schedule allows me to sleep more than I did in high school; however it tends to be at random hours of the day. In high school I had a set schedule. School began at the same time every day and I had the same activities after school. Then I came home, ate dinner, worked on some homework, and went to bed. Staying out late only occurred on weekends when I could sleep late the next day. I had to be at my house by midnight, so my bedtime was not altered greatly. Currently my classes begin at two different times of the day and end in the same way. Twice a week I have my entire afternoon free for sleeping and the other two days I spend my entire afternoon in classes. I am not as interested in extra-curricular activities, so I spend that time watching movies, exercising, or catching up on homework. I can stay out as late as I please and usually catch up on lost sleep during the next day.
Parental supervision is a huge part of high school. Curfews, chores, and family time seemed to be the worst of it. I always had to ask permission to leave the house and I would have to call home from my destination to assure my safe arrival. Not doing the dishes or neglecting to clean my room would take away my privilege to go out. Arguing happens almost daily because by the time you have lived with someone for eighteen years, their every move can spark an outburst. At school curfews only exist for the opposite sexs time in your room. Chores happen when things get too gross to handle, and family time at school does not exist. When I leave to go out, I dont have to have anyones permission or approval. I can come and go as I please. Resident Assistants are the only source of authority and they ... more
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