Meng Tian-First General of Chin

Era Information
Time: 221 B.C.-207B.C.
Location of Capital: Xianyang City in Shanxi Province, not far from Xian
Emperors: Ying Zheng, Fushu, Zi Ying
Replaced by: Han Dynasty

Mengtian in Chin's dynasty Meng Tian (蒙恬) ( ?-210 BC) was a general of the Qin Dynasty who distinguished himself against the Xiongnu and in the construction of the Great Wall of China.He descended from a great line of military generals and architects. By the time the Qin Dynasty conquered the other six states and began its reign over a unified China in 221 B.C., the nomadic ethnic Xiongnu had grown into a powerful invading force in the north and started expanding both east and west.

Qin Shihuang, the first emperor of the Qin Dynasty, sent a 300,000-strong army headed by General Meng Tian to drive the Xiongnu northward for 350 km and built the Great Wall to guard against its invasion. Meng Tian's ingenuity can be seen in the efficient (though inhumane) building policy, the consideration of topography, and the utilisation of natural barriers.

Meng Tian supervised the construction of a road system linking the former Yan, Qi, Wu and Chu areas, as well as number of roads especially for imperial use. The system eventually formed played an extremely important role in ancient transportation and economic exchanges.

He is also regarded as the inventor of "Ink brush" and is memorized at "Huzhou Pen Festival". When the emperor Qin Shi Huang died, Meng's death was brought about through the plotting of Zhao Gao. He was forced to commit suicide, and his family was killed. Three years after his death, the Qin Dynasty collapsed.