The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a city in China, in Shensi Province. Population, 70,000 (1956). Hsienyang has a railroad station. It is the trade center of a cotton-growing region and one of the centers of the cotton industry.

Beginning in 350 B.C., Hsienyang was the capital of the Ch’in state. In 221 B.C., after the unification of China by Ch’in Shin-hunangti, it became the capital of the Ch’in empire. After its fall in 207 B.C., the city was destroyed by fire and lost its importance as an economic and cultural center.

Excavations conducted between 1959 and 1961 revealed remains of the city wall, remains of several buildings with fragments of frescoes, potters’ workshops, and fragments of ceramic pipes, possibly from a water conduit. North of Hsienyang are numerous burial vaults of the Han emperors, including Wu-ti, and of military leaders. There are nine famous stone sculpture groups around the burial site of Huo Ch’ü-ping, a military commander of the second century B.C., including Horse Trampling a Hun.


Viatkin, R. V. Muzei i dostoprimechatel’nosti Kitaia. Moscow, 1962.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Born into a wealthy family, he received an excellent education and obtained his doctoral degree in the Sung civil service examination system; appointed military commissioner of a frontier region bordering the Chin kingdom of the Jurchen people (May 1206); conducted a skillful, vigorous, and resolute defense of the city of Hsienyang (Xianyang) against a huge Jurchen army (December 1206-February 1207); his defensive measures included raising a citizen militia, building nearly 100 catapults and other war engines, and repeatedly sortieing to raid the besiegers' camp; his successful defense, coupled with a Jurchen reverse before Tean (De'an) and increased Mongol pressure from the north, led the Jurchen to make peace with China for the first time in over a century.