Places of Interest in the Surroundings 80km/50 miles north-west of Xi’an, nearthetown of Qianxian, will be found the tombs of nineteen Tang emperors.
The Qianling Tomb dates from the heyday of the Tang dynasty and contains the mortal remains ofthe third Tang Emperor Gaozong (reigned 649-683) and of his Empress Wu Zetian. The seventeen further tombs are those of relatives and high dignitaries, including Prince Zhanghuai and Princess Yongtai. The road to the tombs is lined with statues of men and animals.
The tomb of Prince Zhanghuai, the second son of Emperor Gaozong, lies 3km/2 miles south-east of the Qianling Tomb.; it contains wall-paintings which give an insight into court life, such as that showing a game of polo. This tomb had been robbed and the archaeologists found only a few burial objects.
Close to the Zhanghuai Tomb lies that of Princess Yongtai, the granddaughter of Emperor Gaozong. It is 87m/285ft long and is also decorated with wall-paintings. Burial objects found here included gold and silver jewellery and China; these are now on display in the Qianlin Museum.
To the north-east of the town of Liquan lies the Zhaoling Mausoleum, built in the years 636 to 649 for Emperor Taizong and covering an area of 10,000ha/25,000 acres. The burial site includes 167 tombs of relatives, high officials and generals.
The finds made here – coloured clay figures, paintings and stone engravings – are in the Zhaoling Museum.