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Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Terracotta Army: Legacy of the First Emperor of China Exhibit at Cincinnati Art Museum Part One

Not Sponsored: Hey Everybody! I went to see the Terracotta Army: Legacy of the First Emperor of China Exhibit at Cincinnati Art Museum. Cincinnati Art Museum is a gorgeous museum nestled in Eden Park (also here). Cincinnati Art Museum has a number of galleries and also hosts several national and international traveling exhibitions each year.

Outside the museum, is a twelve-foot bronze sculpture of Pinocchio by native Jim Dine! I thought it was so cute. People stop to take pictures in front of it. Its truly an eye catcher and very commanding. You can read more about it here.

Inside, there's a gorgeous double marble staircase that takes you to the second floor (where the exhibit was located).

Below is the banner (Terracotta Army: Legacy of the First Emperor of China) that was located at the start of the exhibit. The exhibit had both a right and left side. It was organized beautifully and I found it easy to maneuver.

The exhibit was about the First Emperor of China Qin Shi Huang; He was born Ying Zheng (嬴政) or Zhao Zheng (趙政). Let me give you some background about him. Rulers prior to him were called Kings. The title King was not big enough for him, so he gave himself the title of First Emperor. He never named an empress, but had numerous concubines and children. He ordered a number of scholars to be killed/executed. It is said, he also banned and burned many books. There is truth and some elaboration of the facts (you can read about them here). There were also several assassination attempts on his life. So of course, all of those things don't shed a very pretty light on him. He's known for some "good" things such as the Unification of China, The Great Wall of China, a national road system, universal system of writing, national currency, standard unit for weights & measurements and a CITY-SIZE MAUSOLEUM GUARDED BY THE LIFE-SIZE TERRACOTTA ARMY. He had a little anxiety about death & dying. Well, a lot! Let me explain.

The First Emperor didn't want to die! He feared death and would do anything to prevent it! He was on a QUEST FOR IMMORTALITY! His alchemists came up with an elixir for immortality. Guess what it was? MERCURY (mercury pills). We all know mercury is poisonous & toxic. He became paranoid, delusional and eventually died. I must mention about his death. He died "out-of-town". The Prime Minister didn't want to announce his death, for fear of chaos "at-home". So they dressed his dead body everyday, propped him in the carriage and if anyone had questions, they pretended to give him messages. You guys, it took two-months to get him back. He decayed. But before his death, he had a city-sized mausoleum built with pits and all! The First Emperor wanted anything & everything buried with him and whatever he needed to be great in the next life. He had 8,000 LIFE-SIZE terracotta sculptures made of his army to be buried with him. Stay tuned tomorrow to see them...

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