I vividly remember my first trip to Xi’an to view the Terracotta Warriors a few years ago.  We took a public bus from Xi’an about an hour away to the site and I remember seeing dozens of factories lining the highway that showed off their wares: phony but authentic looking Terracotta warriors!  This got me thinking, “if they can make fake ones look so authentic, would it be such a stretch to think that the whole Terracotta Warriors site is a big fake?” My thinking is that prior to this amazing discovery, nobody outside of China had ever heard of the city Xi’an but now not only is it world famous, the region reaps in billions of dollars every year showing off their prized clay army.  I discussed it with my travel buddies at the time who dismissed the idea outright as pure nonsense.  Remember my visit was well before the well documented piracy and fake products that pepper news headlines coming out of China today.

Then I came across this story  today that some phony Terracotta Warriors may have been sent to Germany.  I wonder if they were produced by those same factories lining the highway to the famed site.  We may never know the real truth.

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About Dezza

Having served his time in China and the China blogging world, Dezza retreated to the relative comforts of Hong Kong. Dezza has travelled extensively throughout the Mainland and Hong Kong and has written and photographed his experiences since day one.

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  1. Any thing is possible with the Chinese. The terracotta warriors in Germany look also most the same as the ones in China so why are they complaining.

  2. nah, i assure you, those terracotta warriors in the grave are genuine. We don’t mess around with our own history, we’re not Korean.

  3. Casamia? Do you read the same history books as the rest of us? The 20th Century is defined by China’s destruction of all things cultural and historic. Now in modern China there’s not a historical spot that isn’t simply utilized to bring in tourist dollars – nothing wrong with that if it’s not done with a flavour of exploitation but as a way to preserve the sites – but not once have I ever felt that was the case in any of the many sites I’ve visited while living here.

    So, what are you on about?

  4. In the 20th century China suffered many years of war – revolution, invasion, civil war – but the most destructive period occurred from the 1960s to the 1970s when the leaders ordered all the ‘4 olds’ to be destroyed. The scale of official vandalism was beyond anything previously known. Now that some sanity has returned to the country it is now having to reinvent everything which was destroyed during the 20th century.

    During the years when I worked in China I visited many historical sites and buildings and every one of the shrines, temples, towers etc was built with bricks and reinforced concrete. Many were replicas of what had once been there and some were honest enough to advertise the fact that they were modern replacements [eg Leifung Tower, Hangzhou] but some were just fanciful concoctions put up for the tourists, Chinese and foreign. Was anyone messing around with history?

  5. If the terracotta army is fake then it it took more work to pull that off than it would have to have made the original army. Take a good, good look. Look at the excavating in SLOW progress, read about it, compare the crap on the road with the ‘real” ones. Not even close. The terracotta army is awesome and it is real. Certainly not a bunch or replaced bricks.

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