Interior Architectural Structure of the Great Wall

By Simatai Great Wall

Internal building structure of the Great Wall (2021-08-11) by Wu QiangSimatai Great Wall

Although the external structure of the Great Wall is highly similar, the internal structure of each watchtower is different. There are domes, corridor roof, square roof, hollow roof and so on.

Internal building structure of the Great Wall--circular arch (2021-08-11) by Wu QiangSimatai Great Wall

Dome

The dome is rare in the construction of the Great Wall watchtower as it's a complex and extremely difficult construction technology. It is also one of the criteria for judging the building level of the watchtowers. 

Internal building structure of the Great Wall (2021-08-11) by Wu QiangSimatai Great Wall

Corridor roof

The design of a corridor roof inside a four-way watchtower demonstrates exquisite craftsmanship. 

Internal building structure of the Great Wall--circular arch (2021-08-11) by Wu QiangSimatai Great Wall

There are four door openings around the dome, corresponding to the four directions of East, West, South, and North respectively. The center of the circle is the center of the watchtower. 

Internal building of the Great Wall, Wu Qiang, 2021-08-11, From the collection of: Simatai Great Wall
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Detailed building structure of Great Wall, Wu Qiang, 2021-08-11, From the collection of: Simatai Great Wall
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Compared with the external structure, the internal structure of the Great Wall has more strict requirements and a higher technology level. It's also one of the reasons that makes the the Great Wall unbreakable and stands strong for a long time.

Internal building structure of the Great Wall (2021-08-11) by Wu QiangSimatai Great Wall

Multi-layer door openings

Usually, the Great Wall watchtower has three corridors and six door openings extending in all directions. It is convenient for rapid position changes, immediate operations and mobility of the soldiers. 

Internal building of the Great Wall--Long corridor (2021-08-11) by Wu QiangSimatai Great Wall

The long and thin exterior passageway and arched roof

The combination of a long and thin interior corridor and multiple door openings enabled soldiers to run, transfer, and set up defense equipment at a sharp speed. 

Internal building structure of the Great Wall (2021-08-11) by Wu QiangSimatai Great Wall

Protective measures for arched roof

Given its long history, the inner arched roof has been penetrated by rain. To protect the internal building structure, we use steel cables and other measures for reinforcement during maintenance.

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