Why do we not know about the pyramids in China?

When we think of the pyramids, our minds automatically go to the sandy deserts of Egypt. But what if someone told you that there is a mysterious giant pyramid that is believed to be higher than the Great Pyramid of Giza in China? Yes, you read that correctly. The pyramids in China may sound like an oxymoron, but surprisingly, it’s true. Outside the ancient city of Xian, dozens of pyramidal-shaped hills are covered with overgrown bushes and shrouded in mystery. A well kept secret from the rest of the world.

But how did the history books get around this? And most importantly, how did not everyone know about these pyramids in China?

How were the pyramids discovered in China?

Why do we not know about the pyramids in China?
Picture of the “White Pyramid” of 1947 (US Air Force).

References to these pyramids have been seen sporadically in accounts since the 17th century. But it was in 1912 that these pyramids were properly documented for the first time by Western merchants Fred Meyer Schroeder and Oskar Mamenet, who were traveling with a Buddhist guide around Xian. Schroeder recorded in great detail the description of a giant pyramid about 1,000 feet high, surrounded by smaller pyramids. He wrote in his diary that the experience was even more “strange” than if they had found it in the wild. The guide told them that the giant pyramid is over 3,000 years old and featured in ancient Chinese mythology.

But after World War II, the whole world learned about these pyramids. In 1945, USAF pilot James Gooseman was flying between India and China when he was dazzled by something below. As he looked toward the source of shimmering light in the plains of the heart of China, he saw a huge white pyramid, which seemed even bigger than the Pyramid of Giza. But what caught his attention was the Coronation Stone, a huge gem that was sparkling and looking like a crystal. He spread the word about his discovery, but it slowly got lost amid other important news of the season.

Two years after this discovery, Colonel Morris Sheehan, director of Trans World Airline, had the same experience. But this time, the New York Times broke the big story in pictures in 1947, and the entire world was fascinated by this groundbreaking discovery in archaeological history.

Much remains to be revealed. Were these pictures of this 1,000-foot-tall pyramid real? Has anyone even ventured inside these pyramids in China? Today, in the year 2022, almost 75 years later, the world still knows very little.

Where are these pyramids located in China?

Why do we not know about the pyramids in China?
Chinese pyramids on Google Earth.

All the pyramids are located in Shaanxi Province, a few miles outside the city of Xi’an. Some are large, while others are gigantic in size. If you have the correct coordinates, Google Earth will show you not only 40 known pyramids around that area, but about 40. They are a little hard to spot otherwise because they are covered in trees and grass, but most of the pyramids are located 16 to 22 miles northwest of Xi’an, in Guanzhong Plains.

Why do we not know about the pyramids in China?
Chinese pyramids on Google Earth.

Researchers believe that the Great White Pyramid spotted by Gusman, and the photo published in the New York Times, was the tomb of Emperor Wu of Han or the Pyramid of Maoling located in Xingping, Shaanxi Province. Others believe that the Great White Pyramid with a jeweled hat has yet to be discovered. They believe the structure is located within the rugged terrain of the Qin Ling Mountains, making it even more difficult to find. But the elusive large white pyramid with a dazzling crystal on top remains a mystery.

The tomb of the first emperor of China is amazing.

Why do we not know about the pyramids in China?
The Terracotta Army. Image credit: Tracy ben/shutterstock.com

In 1974, a huge discovery came to light when two farmers were digging outside the city of Xi’an. Discover the famous Terracotta Army of China’s first emperor, Qin Shi Huang. According to legend, Emperor Qin, who unified China as a single province, was buried with all the comforts of his life — inside a veritable little city built with palaces, carriages, treasures, and whatever else he might need in his afterlife. . But the site is so huge that archaeologists say they will be excavating forever, for centuries!

Why do we not know about the pyramids in China?
Terra cotta warriors Xian China

Even the emperor himself has not yet been found. Or, if he has, no one knows about it yet. The Life-Size Ghost Army Soldier stands guard for a secret everyone fears to discover. The excavation of Emperor Qin’s tomb has just begun, but the journey is not yet complete. Other tombs or pyramids are still being discovered.

What is the significance of these pyramids and what do they look like?

Why do we not know about the pyramids in China?
Qianling Mausoleum. Image credit: Jono Photography/shutterstock.com

Historians who have delved into Chinese history say that this area is rumored to have many remains of kings beneath its surface, and remains mostly undisturbed and unexplored. These tombs are symbols of power, wealth, and political legitimacy – the final resting place of China’s ancient emperors and other members of the royal family. What was buried in these pyramids may be largely unknown, but who is inside is no mystery. These are the tombs of emperors, generals, lords, ladies and the richest, who were the most powerful people who lived in China at that time.

Why do we not know about the pyramids in China?
Tomb of Xixia

Scientists, archaeologists, and historians tell us that the Chinese pyramids are built mostly of mud and dirt and resemble “mounds” compared to the stone pyramids in Egypt. These pyramids are shaped like a trapezoid with flat tops, different from the triangular shape of the pyramids in Egypt. They also think that the 1,000-foot height of the giant white pyramid is probably exaggerated, since most of the Chinese hills in that area are relatively low. But the site is in an area of ​​great archaeological interest, and very few pyramids have been discovered.

No one was allowed to investigate these pyramids.

Why do we not know about the pyramids in China?
Mausoleum of Han Yang Ling. Image credit: Brücke-Osteuropa/Wiki

As the whole world slowly learned about these mysterious pyramids in China, their mystery continued to grow. Chinese officials announced in 2000 that there were about 400 pyramids around Xi’an, with the exception of the Greater White Pyramid. A few of these pyramid sites, such as the Han Yang Ling Mausoleum, are now open to tourism. But revealing them is still not the plan. The Chinese government says it does not yet have the technology to explore and excavate the pyramids. They further concluded that clumsy excavation techniques could lead to damage, just as happened in the tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamun in Egypt. There are also rumors that shrubs were consciously planted in order to keep the pyramids a secret.

In the early 1990s, a German investigator, Hartwig Hausdorf, began searching for the pyramid Gaussman had spotted, but it was to no avail. Instead, he found that the Chinese army was patrolling the area. The people of China highly respect traditions in their culture. They may also simply wish to leave their kings as they are, in peace, without waking them up from their quiet slumber.

Whatever the reason, the pyramids in China remain a great mystery!


Tricare west is a global news publication that tells the stories you want to know.

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