It has been said in China that a city without a wall would be as inconceivable as a house without a roof. Even the smallest village invariably had some form of defensive wall, while the Great Wall of China was an attempt to build a barrier along the most vulnerable border of the entire country. Yet the finest examples of walled communities were China's walled cities, whose defensive architecture surpassed anything along the Great Wall. This book traces the evolution of the walled city from the 3,000 year old remains of the beaten earth walls of the Shang dynasty to the huge stone fortifications of the Ming dynasty. Stephen Turnbull, expert military historian, reveals the defensive structures from all the major ancient Chinese cities, and discusses how they protected entire communities, and not just castle dwellers, with color artwork reconstructions, maps and archive photographs.
"This is one of the best books in the series on the Orient." -J.E. Kaufmann, Site-O - www.siteo.net (July 2009)
"The book covers the complete design and implementation of styles and shows how the various works were modified or improved to meet the needs of the areas in which they were placed... All of this is additionally enhanced by photos of the current sites, period art work and the illustrations of Steve Noon. Though some of the fortifications are either gone or inaccessible, many are still extant and those areas are shown and discussed. In all, a superb addition to the Fortress series and a book that I believe you will find interesting." -Scott Van Aken, www.modelingmadness.com (August 2009)
"This intriguing book is an outstanding introduction to fortifications and siege warfare in Asia over 20 centuries. In addition, it offers suggestions and advice for those interested in seeing these city walls for themselves, as tourism in China has opened so much in recent times. For those interested in fortifications beyond the European culture, this book is highly recommended." -Bolling Smith, Coast Defense Journal (March 2010)
Chinese Walled Cities 221 BC - AD 1644 by Stephen Turnbull