How tall were ancestral Chinese?

How tall were ancestral Chinese?

In the Qin dynasty (221 B.C. – 206 B.C.) there was a general named Ong Zhong.  He was said to be “1 zhang 3 chi”.  In the Qin dynasty, “1 zhang” is equivalent to today’s 2.3 meters, and “1 chi” is equivalent to 23 centimeters.  So 230 cm + 3 x 23 cm = 230 + 69 cm = 299 cm or 2.99 meters.  That is about 9 feet tall.

In the year 23 A.D., a man called “The Giant” was over 3 meters tall, and he was able to communicate and command tigers, leopards, rhinos and elephants.

Currently on exhibit at the Nanjing Municipal Museum known formerly as Chao Tian Gong, are Sung and Ming dynasty clothing.   A male reporter of average height stretched out his arms, and his fingertips could not even reach the cuffs of a robe on display.  A pair of cloth shoes measured 28 centimeters long from heel to toe, that means that the person wearing these shoes would be 28 x 7 = 196 cm or 1.96 meters tall based on a ratio of 1 (cm of foot length) : 7 (cm of height).

A pair of curled earrings extends to a full length of 11 cm.


About masterchensays

Victor Chen, herbalist, alternative healthcare lecturer, Chinese affairs analyst, retired journalist
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