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7 Wonders : legendary monuments

Everyone has heard of a notorious list of Seven Wonders of the World. Few people know all the monuments of the menu, but most have a country, a civilization or a contemporary copy in mind to create a link to the original list.

Around -140, the Greek Antipater of Sidon in September claimed to have looked splendid monuments of antiquity. His journey takes place in a context where Rome is still the dominant empire in the Mediterranean world. The three continents covered by the "wonders": Europe, Asia and Africa still retain their specificities, their cultures and the glory of their majestic monuments. From the statement of the author-traveler, the questions are many. Both the selection: why have chosen only seven monuments? why is only the "known world"?; on the state of monuments to the late second century BC: at the time of Antipater we know that some of them had already disappeared or were state of ruin.

Our tourist-old "he could really see these monuments to visit, meet the builders of their successors? As for the journey from Egypt to Greece through Mesopotamia, it was feasible, but under what conditions?

Pyramids of Giza

Constructed from - 2550, the pyramids are the symbol of Pharaonic Egypt. Tombs for kings and queens of the Nile countries, these buildings have disproportionately fascinated travelers from all eras and still retain many mysteries. Impressive in its dimensions (height of 146m to 230m square base), the greater was the tomb of Pharaoh Keops. The exact method of building the pyramids is so far an enigma. Damaged by erosion of the desert, the looting of its rooms and use them as a quarry limestone surface for Cairo, the pyramids have lost their former glory.

Temple of Artemis

Dedicated Artemis, Greek goddess of hunting, the temple of an unprecedented scale was constructed between -560 and -440 near the city of Ephesus. Famous for its large size and richness of its decoration, it was burned in 356 BC. BC by an inhabitant of the city, Erostratus who tried to immortalize his name.
Rebuilt, the building was destroyed by the Goths around 262 AD. JCIncendies and earthquakes will remove all traces of the mythical sanctuary until his rediscovery by a British archaeologist in the nineteenth century.

Statue of Zeusat Olympia

To mark their presence in Olympia in the Peloponnese, athletes from all over Greece also participated in the ancient religious site radiation. Among the temples included one dedicated to the greatest of the Greek pantheon of gods: Zeus. Built by Phidias in the middle of the fifth century BC. AD, the statue was carved in gold and ivory. The quality of the work also felt mass given by a height of 12m.
Moved and destroyed, all that remains now that generations of copies reduced to maintain an overview of his imposing stature.

Gardens of Babylon

Brought to - 600 for the simple visual pleasure of a queen in exile sore lush landscaping roof gardens are perhaps the most enigmatic wonders.

Nebuchadnezzar II would have built for his wife Amyitis the form of a gigantic complex of hills and terraced gardens. Part of the Euphrates? was channeled to irrigate the oases unreal between heaven and earth. No significant trace does now certify their location and especially the reality of their elevation.

Colossus of Rhodes

At the port of Rhodes, on the island of the same name, the inhabitants of the city had erected a monumental bronze statue of 30 m representing Helios (Greek god of the sun). Built to commemorate the victory over Rhodes Demetrius I of Macedon (-304), it was erected around -280 to protect the entrance access to the city. His forms as its function remain poorly known fault sources. He held a torch? The boats could they pass between his legs?

The colossus was destroyed after an earthquake occurred some 50 years later and his remains scattered in Asia.

Mausoleum of Halicarnassus

At his death Mausolus King satrap of Caria, was able to relax in the impressive tomb he had built in his city of Halicarnassus. Completed in at -355, the "shrine" was a monumental tomb stone and marble, decorated by the greatest sculptors of the time. At its peak a statue overlooking the Gulf of Cos, the king and his wife driving a chariot drawn by four horses.

Human destruction and earthquakes were a result of the work which fell into oblivion. Only a few foundations have crossed the time between homes in Turkish streets of Bodrum today.

Lighthouse of Alexandria

Built as to guide ships approaching the Nile delta as to establish the prestige of Egypt Macedonian, the lighthouse of Alexandria was the last of the "seven wonders" built. Greek engineers to construct -280 lighthouse on an island near Alexandria, the tower exceeds the 134 m to bring up the stake may be doubled by a reflection.

The lighthouse suffered invasions and earthquakes, it disappears completely in the fourteenth century. His recent rediscovery by archaeologist J. Yves Emperor could revive attempts recovery.



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