The Terracotta Warriors

from the mausoleum

After becoming a UNESCO heritage site in 1987, the Terracotta Soldiers have become almost synonymous with archaeology and ancient art itself.

what are the terracotta warriors?

These sculptures hail from as far back as 250 BCE, and are known for their lifelike appearance and precise level of detail, taking around 40 years to produce.

their history

There are two stories packed into the broader history of the Terracotta Soldiers. One has to do with the way it was accidentally discovered, while the other has to do with how and why were the Terracotta Soldiers created.


These Terracotta Soldiers were housed in a massive tomb designed and constructed for the emperor. The archaeologists who first began professional expeditions at the site had no idea of this.


The production history of the Terracotta Soldiers also involves the many artisans and laborers who exerted great effort to construct both the clay figures and the emperor of China’s large and complex tomb.


Historians remain perplexed about how a project of this magnitude was possible at this point in history, especially since archaeologists have found little evidence of workshops near the site.

warriors today

Today, the Terracotta Soldiers are housed at the Qin Museum of the Terracotta Warriors and Horses, just outside of Xi’an city.

warriors today

Estimates suggest that only a quarter of the Terracotta Army has been uncovered, let alone the entire tomb complex.