Day #9: What remains of Tangut

 We left our beloved Mongolia on a night train and headed towards the province of Ningxia. We arrived in the city of Yinchuan at 5 am after a long journey on interesting Chinese trains!



Dinner in the train
Dinner in the train

The founders of the old Tangut Kingdom chose this city as their capital as it is well placed between the Yellow River and the Helan Shan mountains, which are a natural barrier to the nearby Gobi Desert.

Grueber and d’Orville, often talk about the Tangut kingdom which at their time was flourishing in the region. In fact in their joinery they crossed much of its territory. Grueber, at the king’s order, drew a portrait of their king.

Also the dead Tangut King Han, whom the Jesuit report was worshipped like a god by the Tangut people, is drawn in the China Illustrata.

On the left side the King Han of the Tanguth
On the left side a likeness of the dead King Han of the Tangut. On the right side the drawing of the King.

Today what remains of such a kingdom, which was destroyed after Mongolian invasions, are the massive Western Xia Tombs.

Xia tombs
Xia tombs

In this site, nine imperial tombs and 200 normal ones are preserved where the kings of the Tangut Kingdom are also buried.

Tomb of the King Han of the Tanguth?
Tomb of the King Han of the Tangut?

The king drawn by the Jesuits might be enjoying his second life just under this large earthen core!