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China's Ancient Terracotta Warriors on Display in NYC

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Published on Apr 25, 2012

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An army of life-size terracotta warriors was created over 2200 years ago for the burial site of China's first emperor. Some of these figures will now be on display at the Discovery Times Square Museum in New York, starting Friday, April 27.

The Discovery Times Square Museum is hosting a display of China's ancient terracotta warriors starting Friday, April 27.

The life-size clay figures were created over 2200 years ago for the mausoleum of China's first emperor, Qin Shi Huang, who began preparations for his burial many years before China's unification in 221 BC. The Terracotta Army, or Qin's Army, as it is called, is said to have been built to protect the emperor after death.

Kristin Romey, a curator for the exhibit, said the warriors are "an extraordinary feat of human accomplishment."

[Kristin Romey, Curatorial Consultant for Discovery Museum]:
"This is one of the most important archaeological treasures ever discovered in China and it was only discovered about 35-40 years ago. So right now the Chinese government only lets out a limited number of warriors for display outside the country. We have 10 here, three which have never been seen inside the United States before."

The army was discovered in March 1974 by local farmers who were drilling a water well in Shaanxi province. Around 8000 figures have been found surrounding Qin's burial site.

The Terracotta Warriors and Horses were placed on the World Heritage List by UNESCO in 1987. The UNESCO website says each figure is different, and "they are masterpieces of realism and also of great historical interest."

The exhibition at the Discovery Museum features over 200 additional artifacts from ancient China, many of which were found at Qin's tomb. The display will be open throughout the summer.

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