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  • [suspenseful magical music]

  • [dramatic music]

  • I'm now more than 230 miles west

  • of the fortress of Jiayuguan.

  • I'm here in the Kumtag Desert.

  • It's one of the harshest environments

  • I've ever been in in my life.

  • Very little grows here.

  • The temperatures are literally below freezing.

  • It's a hell of a place to imagine finding archeology.

  • Sarah's guiding me to faint traces of what

  • looks like an even older wall that she

  • spotted on the satellite data.

  • [epic adventurous music]

  • If I get up here, I think I can get my first glimpse.

  • Wow, this is cool.

  • And it's not exactly what I expected.

  • And it looks kind of primitive.

  • I want to see more.

  • I want to get up closer.

  • Here, in the middle of nowhere, a stretch of ancient wall.

  • And it looks very different from anything I've seen so far.

  • This is a very distinctive kind of material.

  • We have rammed earth, packed down, with a reed foundation.

  • These are reeds.

  • This is actually a type of thick grass

  • pressed in there to serve as a foundation

  • to hold the wall stable.

  • This framework is an ingenious way

  • of building even with the desert's loose sand and gravel.

  • But if the Ming didn't build this, then who did?

  • To find out, I'm meeting Jang Joon Min, the head of a team

  • from the Gansu Institute of Relics and Archaeology,

  • who are digging for answers.

  • Wow, this is so cool.

  • Tell me what you have here.

  • [non-english speech]

  • TRANSLATOR: These are two arrowheads we found nearby.

  • One is bronze, and one is iron.

  • You can see, it's still sharp.

  • I've never seen this shape to an arrowhead before.

  • You know, where it's basically three-sided like this.

  • Is that common?

  • [non-english speech]

  • TRANSLATOR: We found lots of these along the wall

  • in this area.

  • These arrowheads are very typical of the Han Dynasty.

  • [mysterious music]

  • [dramatic music]

  • 1,500 years before the Ming, before the Roman Empire formed

  • in the West and Cleopatra ruled Ancient Egypt,

  • the Han Dynasty rose to power.

  • They oversaw a golden age of art, culture,

  • and economic prosperity.

  • They're so well preserved.

  • I'm just amazed.

  • Look at that edge.

  • It's just incredible.

  • The form is just so clear and beautiful.

  • These tiny arrowheads reveal something momentous--

  • that the wall here is more than 2,000 years old.

  • It's an even earlier Great Wall of China that once

  • stretched for over 6,000 miles.

  • Much of the famous Ming Dynasty wall

  • was simply built right on top 1,500 years later.

  • Battered by desert winds for over two millennia, what

  • remains of this ancient stretch of Great Wall

  • are just fragments of what was once a mighty barrier.

  • It's kind of hard, just looking at these ruined sections

  • of the wall, to get a sense of what it looked like originally.

  • So using historical sources and archaeological evidence,

  • we've made this pretty phenomenal

  • digital reconstruction of what the wall

  • might have looked like.

  • It's just amazing.

  • Whoa.

  • Look at that.

  • [dramatic music]

  • When it was first built, the wall would

  • have stood up to 20 feet high.

  • This thing was enormous.

  • I can only imagine being part of an invading nomad army,

  • and coming up against this wall, and thinking,

  • maybe it's better to just go home,

  • because this was formidable.

[suspenseful magical music]

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B1 中級

漢代の万里の長城|上から見た古代中国 (The Han Dynasty's Great Wall | Ancient China from Above)

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    林宜悉 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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