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The Seven Wonders Of The Ancient World - A.W.

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I n ancient times, monuments and structures with the power to redefine environments or landscapes gained renown. The classical era (roughly 8th century BCE to 5th century CE) produced seven of these, noted by travellers and sightseers of the times who roamed the shores of the Mediterranean. The ancient Greek poet Antipater of Sidon included the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World in a poem written around 140 BCE and is thereby credited with naming them: the Great Pyramid of Giza, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, the Statue of Zeus at Olympia, the Mausoleum of Mausollos at Halicarnassus, the Colossus of Rhodes, and the Pharos or Lighthouse of Alexandria. Of these seven, only the Great Pyramid of Giza remains. The Great Pyramid of Giza Built by the Egyptians between 2650 and 2500 BCE and therefore the oldest of the Seven Wonders, the Great Pyramid of Giza is the only one that still stands. It is believed to be the tomb of the pharaoh Khufu or Cheops, who ruled between 2589 and 2566 BCE, the second pharaoh of Egypt?s Fourth Dynasty. This dynasty is known for pyramid building, with its founder Sneferu?Khufu?s father?commissioning at least three pyramids during his reign. At a height of 480 feet, the pharaoh Khufu?s tomb remained the tallest structure in the world until 1300 CE, when it was surpassed by the soaring spire of the Lincoln Cathedral in England. ...read more.


The Greeks put him to death and rebuilt the temple. Some histori-ans claim that the temple was destroyed and rebuilt as many as seven times. Around 400 CE, the temple was eventually demolished. The Statue of Zeus at Olympia The Greek statesman Pericles, a general who led the city during the Peloponnesian War, commissioned this wonder of the ancient world from the Greek sculptor Pheidias circa 440 BCE: the Statue of Zeus at Olympia, Greece. Olympia was one of four Greek sanctuaries, centers of culture and Greek life. Along with the sanctuary Delphi, Olympia hosted games and contests every 4 years in which the best Greek athletes would compete. As they did with Delphi, the games elevated Olympia?s political prestige, and it became one of the most important sanctuaries in all of Greece and considered sacred to Zeus. Although the only artistic representation of the Statue of Zeus that remains is on ancient coins, from them and from historians of the times it is known that Pheidias created the god Zeus in ivory on an ornate throne accented in gold. The statue was huge?40 feet tall?and crowded the temple that was built to house it. The construction was chryselephantine: built up on a wooden frame using ivory and gold leaf to form the image. ...read more.


Egyptian sultan Al-Ashraf Sayf used the remaining rubble to build a fort in 1480, and these stones can still be seen in the walls of Fort Qaitbey. Likewise, stones from the collapsed lighthouse have been discovered in the sea just off the coast of Alexandria by archaeologist Jean Yves Empereur, director of the French Center for Alexandrian Studies. The New Seven Wonders of the World In 2007, a nonprofit organization dubbed New7Wonders conducted an extensive poll via the Internet and cell phone text messaging to update the Seven Wonders of the World list. Whereas the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World represented a consensus of Greek travel-ers who toured the rim of the Mediterranean Sea, today’s newly named wonders represent locations around the globe. The New Seven Wonders are 1. Great Wall, China 2. Petra, Jordan 3. Chichén Itzá (Mayan pyramid), Mexico 4. Colosseum, Italy 5. Machu Picchu, Peru 6. Taj Mahal, India 7. Statue of Christ Redeemer, Brazil The people of Egypt protested the idea that the Great Pyramid of Giza needed to compete with modern wonders. The sponsors of the new list agreed, and the Great Pyramid retained its status as a wonder, remaining the oldest and only surviving member of the original Greek list. Important Note: This work is owed to the ‘Encyclopedia of Time, Science, Philosophy, Theology, Culture’ in an entry attributed to ‘C. A. Hoffman’. Please do not forget to acknowledge this if you are to use this work for any of your writings. ...read more.

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