The Terracotta Army set up to protect the Emperor Qin in his tomb probably included around eight thousand life-size figures. All the figures carry real swords, spears or bows and the metal weapons were still sharp when discovered.
In the eleventh century the Chinese learnt how to bake their pottery at temperatures high enough to produce porcelain. When this pottery came to Europe it was called 'china' and that was the name kept when European potters learned how to make it themselves.
The Chinese discovered how to make silk thousands of years ago. The trail travelled by the merchants who brought it to Europe for the Romans and others was called the Silk Road.
Two European monks were sent to China in the sixth century to discover the secret of silk. They managed to steal some silkworm eggs which they hid inside a hollow bamboo and brought the silk moth to Europe.
A Chinese ship, estimated to be eight hundred years old, was raised from the bed of the South China Sea in December 2007. The 30-metre wooden junk, built during the Song Dynasty (960-1279 AD), could provide evidence of an ancient maritime trade route linking China and the West.
During the Ming Dynasty China began to turn inwards, following isolationist policies.
Kung fu was practised by the Shaolin monks who took twenty years to become masters in the art.
China's oldest mosque is in Canton and dates back to trade with merchants from the Middle East who brought Islam to China.
Every Chinese Year is named after one of twelve animals, such as monkey, horse, etc. People born in a particular animal's year are believed to have some of that animal's characteristics.
Tea drinking began in China about 1,800 years ago. Tea houses are a popular meeting place for men who go there to play games such as Go or cards.
Traditional Chinese medicine uses many herbal remedies.
Ginseng has been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years. A wild ginseng root is worth much more than a cultivated root.