The ancient capital of the Huns, Tongwancheng becomes a national heritage site

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Chinese government will designate the ancient capital of the Huns, Tongwancheng a national heritage site reported the Chinese media.

The 1,600 year-old Hun city is the only Hun cultural heritage site that has been preserved for posterity in relatively good condition. The Huns, a nomadic warrior tribe lived in northern China, from where they spread out into other parts of Asia and the west.

Shaanxi provincial cultural heritage bureau deputy-head Kuo Xi-Zeng said they would enlarge the cultural site by building an underground museum as well; the goal is to expand visitors' historical knowledge and draw attention to the importance of protecting culture.

The heritage site is expected to be completed in five years. Experts also indicated that they would like to see the park to be proclaimed as a World Heritage site.

The Hun Kingdom's capital city was built by the great Hun leader Helian Popo (381-425) on a twenty thousand square kilometers stretch of land. Historians believe that around 431 AD forty thousand Hun and Han nomadic shepherds lived in the city and its surroundings.

Historical records indicate that the break up the nomadic kingdom triggered the north (or black) Huns' western migration - the Southerners on the other hand remained in the old kingdom and slowly assimilated into the surrounding population.

Tongwancheng is located about 500 kilometers from the provincial capital city of Hsian. According to Chinese experts, Tongwancheng is the largest city ever built by a minority in the Chinese empire, which has remained relatively intact. They also noted that the site is threatened by desertification and it enjoys government-level protection since 1996.

Last summer, at the 1600th anniversary of the establishment of the city, Hungarian historian and orientalist Borbála Obrusánszky attended a conference in Tongwancheng. Obrusánszky who regularly visiting the region said to Hungarian News Agency MTI that Chinese provincial officials indicated that they wish to make the capital of the southern Huns as a place of pilgrimage to Hungarians that relate to the Huns.

(MTI –


Anonymous said...

According to Chinese scholars, Tongwancheng was known by its Hun name of Bai Cheng or White City. This name is not unique in the vast geography of the Eurasian Steppe, indeed we can find many capitals that are known as "White city" strewn across Eurasia.
The origin of the name may be connected with the Huns, who are known to have used this expression. As we can see from the Inner Asian steppe tradition, white is considered a blessed colour, this may indicate that these cities were built not only for civil or military purposes, but that they may have also been regarded as sacred centres. Tongwancheng was functioned this way under the Xixia reign (11-13th century).Description of the city
According to cartographical data, Tongwan city is situated in Shaanxi province, Jinbian country at the central point of Ordos plateau. It had been a strategic and commercial centre for centuries. Historical sources speak of two rivers -- Hong Liu and Wu-ding -that flew through this area, nowadays however only the latter remained. In the ancient times it could be a fertile land as Helian Bobo said:"The hill is beautiful, in front of it the plain is wide, and around this there is a lake of pure water. I wandered so many places, but I haven't seen a country, whose beauty can compare with that of this place".Inside the city there had been a big lake, but at some point it had dried up. The city was immense, with outer walls that were 6 km long, 16-30 meters wide, and with watchtowers constructed on each of the four corners.
Sand, soil and water were mixed, yielding a strong building material, which is known as "white earth"Probably, inside the city wood was another important building material. We can observe traces of beams on the sides of the palace and some watchtowers. The investigations of the Chinese archaeologists revealed that the city had been divided into two main partan outer segment and an inner one. Additionally the inner city was further subdivided into western and eastern sections. The western segment contains remnants of a palace, the houses of officers and other leaders, and various governmental offices. South of the palace two ruined towers can be found, one of which was a drum tower, and other a bell tower. Together these towers performed a very important function: providing information to the habitants.
The Chang'an Tower stood in the centre of the western section, guarding the road to Chang'an, the ancient Chinese capital, that was once part of the Da Xia Kingdom. The eastern part was the industrial and commercial centre and some houses remain in good condition. In some ways, these houses differed from the houses of nobles. While a noble house have had two or more rooms, and the "garden" in front of it, the house of an ordinary family would have had only two rooms and usually no "garden".
Considering the more ten-thousand inhabitants of the city there are only few houses remained. so, it is likely that "temporary" houses such as tents (yurts) or wooden houses existed inside and outside the city. However, the arrangement of the houses were much the same: like the yurts of the nomadic people who moved mainly through Mongolia and Tibet, as Hou stated, and the typologies that developed in early cities in Mongolia, the central point of these houses was the fireplaces. The smoke was lead through an aperture in the ceiling, providing a secure and liveable home for the inhabitants.

Anonymous said...

Southern Huns
When the Southern Huns became the vassals of Han-dynasty, they established many cities and capitals in what is now present-day Northern-China. After their separation at the end of the 1stcentury AD, and Hun nobles established independent states with own centre or "ordu". Only in the end of 3rdcentury did they become united again, under the rule of Liu Yuan. From this time onward, in the areas around the Yellow-river, only a few Hun dynasties such as the Han, Zhao, Da Xia and Northern-Liang are recorded, known to us today by their Chinese appellations. Previously, scientists thought they were Chinese dynasties, but later research into historical sources revealed that they were indeed Huns.

Anonymous said...

Tomb of Atilla the Hun discovered in Hungary's Capital Budapest
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Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

Mondák a magyar
Kilenc Magyar Kutyafajta: komondor, kuvasz, puli, pumi, mudi, vizsla, agár, erdélyi kopó
Kiche maják, az akhal-teke(szkíta ló) orosz kézre kerülésének következményei
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Anonymous said...

Bai Cheng or White City of the HUNS.
Shaanxi provence,+China/@35.5715036,103.8765531,6z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m2!3m1!1s0x36637a6013eba79f:0x41c96e6fcb615716

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