The real 'Temple of Doom'

Are there real booby traps protecting the long deceased occupants of ancient tombs thousands of years old? Most scholars would say no, that there is no evidence to suggest there were any such traps, and if there were, they would long have become useless through time and dust. Imagine the Indiana Jones movies with no booby traps... boring. Is everything I ever believed about giant boulders and crossbows triggered-by-light just a fairy tale? Perhaps not.

'Mummy 3: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor' has been showing recently. I haven't seen the film, but the historical truth behind it is perhaps stranger than fiction.

Ever heard of the Terricotta Army? The 8,000 soldiers, 130 chariots with 520 horses and 150 cavalry horses (all life-sized and unique) were made to protect the tomb of Qin Shi Huang, the First Emperor of China.

According to historical record, Qin's subterranean chambers are protected by huge underground ramparts. There are rivers of mercury and a jewel-encrusted domed ceiling representing the universe. Booby traps are set to trigger mechanically, firing a volley of arrows toward any unsuspecting graverobber. It is rumoured that 100 of the Emporer's favorite concubines were entombed alive (so as to start a new imperial family in the next world). It has also long been decided that hundreds more (the designers, architects, engineers, builders etc.) were sealed inside the mausoleum... anyone who knew the way in would be forced to stay forever.

The tomb has never been escavated, and although it would unlock great mysteries and reveal great treasures, it may never be opened.

It's stuff like that that makes me believe again, like I did when I was 10 (Indiana Jones theme starts now).


Fifi said...

That's awesome! Maybe you should be an explorer...Ooh I want to know whats in the tomb! Probably a couple of Nephalim and Big Foot having a tea party!