Twelve Metal Colossi

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Dates of Conquered States
Year Event
230 BCE
  • Han was conquered by Qin.
228 BCE
  • Zhao was conquered by Qin.
225 BCE
  • Wei was conquered by Qin.
223 BCE
  • Chu was conquered by Qin.
222 BCE
  • Yan and Dai were conquered by Qin.
  • Wuyue was conquered by Qin.
221 BCE
  • Qi surrendered to Qin.
  • China was unified under the Qin dynasty.

12 Jin Ren (Chinese:) were twelve huge bronze Colossi made by the order of Shihuangdi, the first Emperor of China. During the Qin's wars of unification, Shihaungdi defeated the six major states of China: the Han, the Zhao, the Yan, the Wei, the Chu and the Qi. After the wars, he collected the weapons of the conquered states and had them cast into statues.[1]


Dong Zhuo, in his efforts to finance a personal castle in Mei County near Chang'an, melted bells and bronze statues, among which were nine of the Colossi,[2] and recast them into coins. This influx of bronze coins flooded the market and caused a serious inflation, rendering the currency useless.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ 收天下兵,聚之咸阳,销以为钟镣,金人十二,各重千石,置廷宫中.Records of the Grand Historian (rendering: collect the weapons of tianxia, to amass them to Xianyang, melt them to cast 12 colossus, each weighs thousand Dan (mass unit), and put them in the palace)
  2. ^ 西汉五铢