For many years, several compilations have been made to list out the world’s most remarkable sights and structures. Out of these lists, one continues to stand out, and that is the “Seven wonders of the ancient world.”
Hellenist sightseers compile these seven marvels of architecture in the ancient Greek antiquity as guidebooks for sightseeing.
Later on, they became a collective name for depicting great architectural and engineering monuments celebrated by artists, scholars, and writers all over the world.
What makes these seven classical antiquities special is the combination of artistic skills and engineering put together in their construction. The buildings demonstrate the ingenuity of the ancient world in a way that makes them the marvels of architectural designs.
Despite using manual tools and labors, these monuments rate high when compared to the jaw-dropping edifices we have today.
These magnificent ancient world masterpieces existed for a variety of purposes such as tombs of great and powerful kings, statues of deities, and mere technological prowess and ingenuity.
Although most of these monumental structures have shapeshifted or completely faded away, they leave a tell-tale mark of their scenic relevance in the evolution of engineering and architectural design.
Listed below are seven incredibly spectacular sights and structures of the ancient world.
The Pyramids of Giza:
Pyramids of Giza tops our list of the magnificent and scenic structures of the ancient world. Found in the present-day El Giza in Egypt, it’s one of the oldest ancient buildings that are still mostly intact today. Built around 2700 BC and 2500 BC, the Pyramids cover a whopping thirteen acres of land with over two-million blocks.
For a structure that preceded the invention of the sophisticated modern tools and equipment, the Pyramids of Giza is truly an epitome of exceptional architectural design that beats the imaginations of the modern men.
The Pyramids of Giza reigned supreme as the tallest human-made structure on earth for over 4000 years. It eventually surrendered its position as the tallest structure in the world to the Lincoln Cathedral in the thirteenth century.
The Hanging Gardens of Babylon:
The hanging gardens is the only wonder of the ancient world with a vague geographical location record. Many believe it is a myth. Some posited that the gardens existed in Babylon but couldn’t stand the test of time. There is another story that Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar II built the gardens alongside a palace called the Marvel of Mankind.
However, there are no extant Babylonian texts that mentioned these gardens and no geographical and archaeological evidence of its existence in Babylon.
Colossus of Rhodes (One of the tallest human-made statues of the ancient world):
Colossus of Rhodes was a giant bronze statue of the Greek sun-god known as Helios. It had a significant history as it symbolized the independence of the people of Rhodes from Cyprus around 305 BC.
The sculpture was erected on the Greek island in Rhode and measures 98.4 feet from the top downwards, making it one of the tallest man-made effigies of the ancient world. Colossus of Rhodes stood on a fifty-foot high basement and took about two years to complete.
Unfortunately, it could only last for fifty-six years as it fell victim to the devastating earthquake that ravaged the land in 226 BC.
The Lighthouse of Alexandria:
From the ages past, lighthouses hold great monumental value as one of the most symbolic structures in human history. From navigation to inspiration and breakthrough, their significance goes beyond the physical structure that you see.
Located on the islands of Pharos in Alexandria, Egypt to serve as Alexandria port’s landmark and a tower for navigational purposes. The project kick-started in 290 BC and lasted for about twenty years.
After completion, the building was the second tallest building in the world, right after the Great Pyramids of Giza which was the tallest building as at that time. The Lighthouse of Alexandria measures about 450 feet in height and is visible from a very far distance of 100 miles.
Sadly, the structure suffered from the devastating earthquakes that ravaged the land of Egypt during the medieval period. The quake destroyed a considerable part of the structure and left it in ruins.
Statue of Zeus at Olympus:
Sculpted by Phidias, a famous Greek architect and sculpture artist; the construction of this statue lasted for twelve years, that is from 430 to 422 BC.
At 42-ft tall, the statue represents honor and respect for Zeus, the leader of the ancient gods of the Greek. The statue was so magnificent it could rip the roof of the temple off if it took a standing position.
In the fifth century AD, fire engulfed the temple at Olympia and destroyed the statue, turning it into shambolic ruins.
Temple of Artemis:
The temple of Artemis, otherwise known as the temple of Diana, is located at the ancient city of Ephesus, (Modern Turkey). It symbolized the people’s loyalty to Artemis, one of three maiden goddesses of Olympus.
On more than two occasions, the people of Ephesus had to rebuild the temple from the ground up. This was as a result of damages caused by fire, flood and a group of people that didn’t want the temple to exist.
The temple took a new, bigger and more beautiful look every time it underwent reconstruction. After a while, the Goths invaded the temple again in 268 AD and left it in a state of permanent destruction.
Mausoleum at Halicarnassus( now Bodrum, present-day Turkey):
Designed by one of the most talented craftsmen in Halicarnassus, Mausoleum was a magnificent tomb built for Mausolus.
Mausoleum was 147 feet high and had a strategic hill-top location that gives off a scenic view of the entire city.
The Mausoleum survived a series of attacks and invasions until recurrent earthquakes swept the structure away in the 15th century. By 1522 AD, the Mausoleum was already a wreck. The Crusaders continued to attack and raid the tomb until there was nothing left.
Following a six-year-long global voting process with about 100 million voters, there is a new list of the wonders of the world for our contemporary time.
A new list became a necessity because many of the ancient structures are no longer in existence. The new list is equally as monumental as the old, demonstrating amazing human-made creations.
Great pyramids of Giza received an honorary status of the wonders of the world. The seven new wonders of the world are:
- The Taj Mahal
- Machu Picchu
- Colosseum in Rome
- Christ the Redeemer
- Great Wall of China
- Chichen Itza