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The Eternal Army: The Terracotta Soldiers of the First Emperor (Timeless Treasures) [Hardcover]

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Item description for The Eternal Army: The Terracotta Soldiers of the First Emperor (Timeless Treasures) by Roberto Ciarla...

A vast "army" of over 7,000 terracotta statues of soldiers surrounds the tomb of the first emperor of the Qin dynasty in the Shaanxi province in northwestern China. These vigilant soldiers have been on duty for 2,000 years, but does anyone know what sort of ruler Qin Shi Huang was? Why did his tomb have to be guarded by a mysterious army? Was Qin Shi Huang so power-hungry he sought control even over the spirit world? Why did he feel compelled to defend himself even in the next life? Using the mausoleum structure as a key, the splendidly illustrated book answers many of the questions that have intrigued travelers, archaeologists, and students of Chinese culture since the site was discovered in 1974.This lavish, powerful volume explores the life and times of the man who founded a dynasty that would continue to the dawn of the 20th century. It gathers the most recent archaeological data with photographs taken on site expressly for this book-accompanied by essays from archaeologists and experts in Chinese art and history. What emerges is a profile of one of China's most powerful, legendary figures and a new view of one of Asia's most spectacular tourist attractions.
Roberto Ciarla, born in Velletri, Italy, has participated in numerous expeditions in Italy and Asia. Since 1985 he has worked with the Museo Nazionale d'Arte Orientale in Rome as a curator of the East Asian art collections. Araldo de Luca, one of the world's leading art photographers, has published his photographs in White Star's The Treasures of the Pyramids (2003) and Pompeii (2004), among others.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   288
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 14.3" Width: 10.5" Height: 1.1"
Weight:   5.15 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Oct 18, 2005
Publisher   White Star
ISBN  8854400823  
ISBN13  9788854400825  

Availability  0 units.

More About Roberto Ciarla

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Roberto Ciarla is an Orientalist and archaeologist and has directed and participated in numerous excavations in Asia. Since 1982 he has been curator of the Far East section of the National Museum of Oriental Art in Rome. He is a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Italian Institute for Africa and the Orient and numerous cultural and scientific associations, and has chaired conferences on the art and archaeology of the Far East and Southeast Asia.Araldo De Luca has always worked for important cultural institutes, architectural firms, museums, and prestigious publishers. He is currently considered one of the world's finest art photographers.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Arts & Photography > Art > Art History > Regional > Asian
2Books > Subjects > History > Ancient > China
3Books > Subjects > History > Asia > China > General
4Books > Subjects > History > Asia > General

Reviews - What do customers think about The Eternal Army: The Terracotta Soldiers of the First Emperor (Timeless Treasures)?

It's a hit!  Mar 8, 2008
I bought the book for the friend to give as a gift. I thought she had given it for Valentine's Day, but here's what she said when I asked her for a review: I didn't give it to him - I decided to wait til his b-day in Nov but yes, the book is excellent - exactly what he wants - the pictures are beyond excellent and extremely detailed - it's an excellent book!
A "Lavish" 10-Star Treasure  Dec 11, 2007
I bought THE ETERNAL ARMY to learn more about its discovery, the reason for its creation, and above all, for its many incredibly stunning/revealing photographs. So closely are the soldiers shown, for example, that one can clearly see the different facial expressions of each. But I was even more amazed by how detailed and different the backs of their heads are, especially the ones with braided hair. And that each soldier's armor is made up of a myriad plates absolutely astonished me.

In addition to the famous soldiers and bronze chariots (also shown in incredible detail), the camera treats the reader to close-ups of the chariot driver, archers, functuaries and the scantily clad figures now thought to perhaps be gymnasts or wrestlers "ready to engage in an exercise of martial arts." Shown too are many artifacts, such as bronze birds, that were found along with the army. But perhaps most mind-boggling of all are the photographs of finds yet to be reassembled, for they attest to how monumental the task has been to excavate and restore but a fraction of the emperor's army.

Had the above, including the fascinating information about the army, been all that was in this book, I still would have gladly spent every dollar I did to purchase two copies. But much to my amazement, there was even more: approximately 90 pages of background about ancient China and the Qin empire--pages laced with stunning photographs of related artifacts and watercolors, pages so interesting that I learned much about a period that I'd had absolutely no interest in. And as an added bonus, the entire book is written in prose not the least bit pedantic. For these reasons, there are neither superlatives nor stars enough to convey how highly I recommend this book. --B. Evans, 12/11/07

Incidentally, photographs from this tome were used to make the four jigsaw puzzles of the terracotta army in a slim, $6.99 remainder book with the same title that currently is available at Border's.
Spectacular big photos of the Emperor's Army  Dec 27, 2005
The striking feature of this book is its inclusion of unusually large photos of close-ups of some individual soldiers. Two individual chariots, in addition, receive in-depth illustration of various aspects. If you really want to have a taste of what it feels when seeing as different each of the soldiers' faces, you will never be disappointed with this book in hand.

Several historical incidents that happened in this period also attract elaboration from this book. How the Emperor burnt thousands of scholars and books in order to take control of people's mind, is something that is explained through a model of the scene by the authors.

At the end of the book, the authors also explain how they, with the help of the Chinese officials, took the photos, with equipment weighing over 1000 pounds.

In the middle of the book the authors also attempt to delineate the long tradition of the Chinese philosophical thought as expressed in different schools, that preceded the rule of the Emperor over the unified China, which lasted only for 15 years!
While the discussion of the philosophical thoughts might not be deep enough, I guess the readers who are interested in this book would not count this as any issue. For overall each of the faces of the soldiers that feature in the photos already tell thousands of different stories, given the reader's own imagination.

I would recommend this book as a highly collectible gem!


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