The world is full of natural beauty as well as man-made wonders and a number of monuments that are equally beautiful and world-class examples of architecture. One of the Swiss companies put on the online contest of the modern list of seven wonders of the world. They launched a campaign in 2000 to select the wonders of the world.
The plan was to choose the few wonders from 200 existing monuments of the world. The Swiss company led the voting and multiple voting options were given to the audiences, so they can vote conveniently. All these sites and monuments come from four continents. The medieval and ancient empires built these fine epitomes of architecture. Besides that, these are the most visited tourist sites all over the world.
The jurists selected the seven wonders of the world from the 21 candidates and further shortlisted from the number 77 in 2006 by a panel. The company established the foundation of the new seven wonders of the world in 2001. There were private donations behind the foundation initially.
Anyhow, here are the seven wonders of the world.
The Great Wall of China
The Great Wall of China tops this list of seven wonders of the world. The word great though doesn’t justify the magnificent monument. It is one of the world’s largest buildings. As the tourists report, it is 5500 miles which makes it around 8850 km long.
However, a disputed study in China also claims the length is around 21,200 km. It was in the 7th century, for the first time, that the construction of the great wall got initiated. Its construction remained on for the next two millennia.
The structure has two parallel walls with lengthy stretches. The main agenda behind the construction of the wall as the historians report was the security reasons and to avoid invasions.
However, historians further reported that the wall failed to serve the purpose and rather was more likely political propaganda. So, its construction did not bear any fruitful results and was not effective as expected.
The preserved area of the wall dates back to the Ming dynasty (1368-1644). As the wall snakes along the Chinese countryside, the hills, and mountains are clearly accessible for sightseeing. About one-fourth of the wall comprises natural barriers such as mountains and hills.
However, the remaining 70 percent of the wall is a constructed wall with two walls parallel to each other. The extensive and lengthy sections are more into ruins now, and most of the parts have disappeared.
However, it is considered one of the extravaganza monuments of the world. The Great Wall of China was also included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987.
Read Also: How Many Languages are Spoken in China?
Mayan tribe Itza gets the credit of the Chichén Itzá. The Mayan people flourished in this city on the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico. They developed the space around the 9th and 10th centuries BCE. Mayan tribe Itza was under the influence of the Toltecs, and they built a significant number of temples and monuments in their reign.
The most notable monument among all these stands to be the stepped pyramid El Castillo also known as the castle which is 79 feet above the main building. Mayan tribe believed in astronomy a lot.
Hence, the structure consists of the 365 steps, which represent the number of days in the solar year. The shadow of the sun setting during springs and autumns used to give the illusion of an appearance of a serpent going to the northern stairway.
Besides, the base gives the impression of a stone snakehead. Mayan people, however, were not always into work and science only. Itza was also home to one of the largest tlachtli which is a kind of sporting field in America. This was a dedicated field for playing a traditional ball game which was quite popular among pre-Columbian people.
Petra is an ancient city in Jordan. It is in a remote valley, and it stands still among sandstones, cliffs, and mountains. As per the Moses followers, this was also one of the places where Moses hit some rock and the water gushed on. An Arab tribe, Nabataeans, took over the city later.
The Petra city flourished and progressed under their reign. It was the capital city and became a trade center and was mainly known for the spices. The prominent carvers from the Nabataeans tribe worked on many carvings and dwellings on the temples, tombs, sandstones.
They had the special additional feature of changing the color with the sun shifting. The tribe also worked for the gardens and farming and allowed a water system for the proper flourishing of plants.
The maximum population reported in Petra is said to be around 30,000. Since Petra was the main trade center and started getting to heights because of the route, later as the traders discovered the new routes, the city started moving towards its decline.
It prospered for more than 400 years until there was a change in the routes. A big earthquake around 363 CE created more trouble for the city and the inhabitants. Another terrible hit in 551 caused the ultimate nail in the coffin for the city. The city was later re-discovered by archeologists in 1912.
Machu Picchu is an Incan (Inca which refers to South American Indians) site near Cuzco, Peru. Hiram Bingham discovered the site around 1911. He had the belief that Vilcabamba was a secret Incan designated area.
According to his belief, the people used it during the 16th century against Spanish rule. However, this claim was later rejected. The main purpose of the Machu Picchu has quite flabbergasted the scholars.
Bingham also believed that this place was home to the nuns and women of the convent who had vowed to chastity. Many others took it as a pilgrimage site and, according to a few historians, it was something a royal retreat. In 2000 a crane that was functional around the place fell, demolishing the monumental site.
However, as per the recent findings, the Machu Picchu is one of the few ruins from the pre-Columbian era. This isolated place features agricultural terraces, residential areas, temples, and plazas.
Christ the Redeemer
Christ the Redeemer is a statue of Jesus that stands tall on the top of Mount Corcovado in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The origin of the statue dates back to the times of World War I. Few Brazilians assumed that there is a feeling of ‘godlessness’ in society.
They proposed a suggestion of placing a statue. The statue was designed by Heitor da Silva, collaborating with French engineer Albert Caquot. Gheorghe Leonida, a Romanian sculptor, helped design and fashion the face. The construction of the sculptor lasted for five years, starting in 1926.
The monument’s height is 98 feet, its base is separately 26 feet high, and the stretched arms are around 92 feet high. They consider it one of the largest Art deco sculptures in the world. The statue is built of six million tiles. The status has stood like a rock all these years, however, the right thumb of Jesus got damaged in 2014 due to a storm.
The emperor Vespasian in the first century built the building Colosseum in Rome. It measures 620 by 513 feet and has a composite system of vaults. It is present on the east of Palatine Hill on the grounds of Nero’s golden house.
They drained an artificial lake which was there in the center and the foundation of the Colosseum was laid there. More than 50,000 spectators could see and watch a variety of the events.
Gladiator fights were popular of all. Additionally, men’s fight with animals was also quite common in those days. Few historians report that Christians were martyred in the complex by throwing them in front of lions. However, others find this debatable.
Some historians estimate that about 500,000 people died in the Colosseum and many animals were also captured and later brutally killed, making certain species extinct. Unlike the previous amphitheaters, the Colosseum was a freestanding structure. The material used for the construction included concrete and stones.
Taj Mahal, a Mughal monument in the Agra, city of India is considered one fine example of Mughal architecture and the world’s most iconic building. Mughal emperor Shah Jahan who reigned in the subcontinent from 1628 till 1658 built this tomb for his wife Mumtaz Mahal.
Mumtaz died while giving birth to their 14th child. The construction of the Taj Mahal took 22 years with 20,000 workers to build the complex which consists of a garden with a reflecting pool. The tomb is built with white marble that has geometric and floral patterns carved on it.
There is one majestic dome followed by four smaller domes. As historians report shah Johan wanted a tomb for himself made of black marble however, he could not rule that long as his own son deposed him. He was later interred in the Taj Mahal next to his wife, Mumtaz.
The world is full of wonders, however, it is not possible to feature each of them. Hence, a list of seven wonders of the world as chosen by the relevant foundation has been shared here for the readers’ knowledge and interest. These are great tourist sites and travelers across the world visit these wonders.
All of these sites are part of the UNESCO world heritage list. The basic details of the seven wonders, with the estimated date of construction, are also there for avid readers.
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