Situated in Yanzhou Village (æØñ¶àò) in Dengta Prefecture of Liaoyang Prefecture in Liaoning Province in China, the castles was one of the scores of castles and fortresses of Goguryo Dynasty of Korea who defended Chinese invaders from the Middle Kingdom throughout its 900-year-old history.
The Baegam Castle (ÛÜäÜàò) was the classic example of Goguryo-style castles, which were so strong as to earn its nickname of impregnable castles.
Along with other famous Goguryo castles Baegam Castle endured and defeated countless number of Chinese and other invaders.
The powerful Goguryo Empire ruled the vast areas Northeast Asia including Manchuria for as long as 900 years, defeating the frequents invasions from Chinese Sui Dynasty (581–618) and Tang Dynasty (618–907). Sui Dynasty collapsed after it was defeated in four major wars with Goguryo Empire.
Goguryo also defeated the invasions from Tang Dynasty four times successively before it collapsed due mainly to its internal dispute and division.
The Baegam Castle, together with scores of other castles, played a major role in defending Goguryo from numerous invasions from China and other places.
The ancient city was the major battle place between the Tang Dynasty Chinese Emperor Taizong and the Goguryeo in the year 645.
The city dates to 403 AD and was built by the Goguryeo people who occupied much of the Liaodong Peninsula, modern Jilin province, Northern Korean Peninsula and part of the Primorsky Krai in modern Russia. Yanzhou was a major city at the frontier between the Goguryeo and Tang dynasty China.
In 642 AD, the Goguryeo had a war with the neighbouring land of Silla on the Korean Peninsula. The Silla appealed to the Tang Emperor for assistance and in 645, the Emperor Taizong attacked the Goguryeo. The Tang first captured nearby Liaodong City. Then in June, they attacked at Yanzhou led by Tang Jun and after fierce fighting and some notable heroics by the Emperor and his generals, won.
As with other Goguryeo forts, Yanzhou village was built on a hill adjacent to a river, with the river forming a natural barrier. Cliffs form the southern side of the city and a high defensive wall formed an arch around the west, north and east sides.
The land slopes such that the eastern side of the city is significantly higher than the west. The site is about 480 meters long and 440 meters wide.
The city walls, which are still visible today, cover some 1840 meters in length. The walls were 2 to 3 meters thick and between 5 and 8 meters high with towers at regular intervals along its length, and is comparable to the Great Wall of China in its dimensions.
At the top of the ridge are the remains of a square tower with a wall enclosed area to its east. The gate to the city was to the west, near the Taizi River. The construction is of rough-cut stone built dry without mortar.
The city walls in Yanzhou are a protected site of Liaoning province. Despite its protected status, some of the western sections of the city walls have been dismantled by the adjacent villagers and stones taken from the wall can be seen in various homes and fences throughout the village.
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