2. The Character of Chinese Pyramids
A report from Expedition 5-19 of January, 2008
Location: Chinese pyramids are located in the center of Shaanxi province. They surround Xi’an from different directions and some smaller pyramids are even located in the city. There is a long valley of the pyramids in the northern vicinities of Xianyang, the city which is very close to Xi’an. Stretched from the East to the West for 50 km. long the valley looks like a Milky Way
There are many absolutely unknown pyramids located in the Northwest region from Xi’an and one of them is the legendary White Pyramid. We can expect new pyramidal objects to be found in other regions of Shaanxi province in the future.
Let us define similarities of pyramids in central China.
What is in common: General characteristic of all pyramids is the material of construction – high quality pressed clay with local soil. Being in Shaanxi we didn’t find natural rock hill or any other stone formation only the soil, consisting of clay of mustard color. Ancient builders used clay because it was available construction material in that area. Every pyramid looks like one solid monolith without any evidence of the clay blocks or slides. Clay material of pyramids is strong like concrete.
Base: The majority of pyramids have square base but some pyramids have rectangular base reminding huge cone-shaped artificial hills but as their parallel sides are equal we shall consider them as separate type of pyramids. There are pyramids which lay on large square foundations up to 3 meters high.
Top: Flat-topped pyramid is the most widespread type of the pyramid. Some plateaus on the tops of the pyramids have impressive sizes of 50 x 50 m. All of them resemble Mexican pyramids. There are also pyramids with the top like Egyptian pyramids but they are no more than 20 meters high.
Shape: Chinese pyramids can be divided into step and non-step pyramids. Step pyramids are also divided into multistage and one-step. Pyramid steps represent terraces of 1-2 meters high. Pyramids with one step (terrace) are relatively small - not higher than 10 meters. Pyramids with pointed top are generally non-step, while flat-topped pyramids can be with many terraces or without any. Therefore we can see that Chinese pyramids have some similarities with Mexican pyramids in shapes - they have terraces on each face and flat tops.