Author(s): Stephen Turnbull
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.
Stephen Turnbull took his first degree at Cambridge University, and received a PhD from Leeds University for his work on Japanese religious history. He has traveled extensively in Europe and the Far East and also runs a well-used picture library. His work has been recognized by the awarding of the Canon Prize of the British Association for Japanese Studies and a Japan Festival Literary Award. He currently divides his time between lecturing in Japanese Religion at the University of Leeds and writing.