People today can only marvel at what ancient builders were able to create with primitive equipment and engineering techniques; pyramids, lighthouses, huge statues...
Awesome is the best word to describe the seven wonders of the ancient world. People today can only marvel at what ancient builders were able to create with primitive equipment and engineering techniques; pyramids, lighthouses, huge statues…
Great Pyramid at Giza
The Great Pyramid brings to mind visions of Cleopatra and the pharaohs. Indeed, the 480-foot tall pyramid is the tomb of Pharaoh Khufu, whose subjects considered him a living god. This primarily limestone pyramid was built around 2560 BC and for centuries was the world’s tallest building. Women may enjoy shopping for a cartouche ring or pendant as they are said to bring good luck to the wearer.
Hanging Gardens of Babylon
The Hanging Gardens of Babylon was built like a fortress, but also was an amazing tourist attraction in its day. The wall was wide enough to allow two four-horse chariots to drive on it at the same time but scenic enough with its gold statues and the Tower of Babel rising above. The gardens, which were located in present day Iraq, were destroyed by an earthquake in the second century BC. Recall the aromas of Iraq by taking home a mabhara and some incense.
Statue of Zeus at Olympia
Greece has been hosting the Olympic Games since 773 BC, drawing athletes from throughout the region. A shrine to Zeus, king of the Greek gods, was part of the games’ site. The shrine started out simple but soon grew to encompass a 40-plus-foot high ivory- and gold-plated statue of Zeus, created by the sculptor of the statue of Athena in the Parthenon. Key chains featuring the five rings of the modern Olympic Games will bring back memories of visiting this ancient site.
Temple of Artemis at Ephesus
The temple of Artemis, also known as Diana, the goddess of fertility, was only around for a few centuries. Still, travelers who had visited other wonders of the ancient world described it as the most magnificent of them all. The original temple was built around 800 BC; a replacement temple was destroyed by fire nearly 500 years later by a man who wanted to make history. Since Diana was the goddess of fertility, baby clothes from here would make a good gift for a pregnant woman.
Mausoleum at Halicarnassus
Mausolus was a king of Halicarnassus who incorporated Greek culture and architecture into his kingdom in what is now Turkey. When he died in 353 BC, his queen, who was also his wife and sister, decided to build the most magnificent tomb to honor him. In a nutshell, this is how tombs became known as mausoleums. Turkish carpets would make a great souvenir, though carpet cleaning may be needed back home.
Colossus of Rhodes
Trivia buffs may be interested in knowing the Colossus of Rhodes served as the model for New York City’s Statue of Liberty. The original Colossus stood in the harbor at Rhodes. Build around 280 BC to celebrate a war victory, the 110-foot high statue was destroyed by an earthquake in 226 BC. When it comes to buying souvenirs, Rhodes is famous for its jewelry and pottery.
Lighthouse at Alexandria
The lighthouse at Alexandria was considered one of the most technologically advanced structures when it was built in the Third Century BC. Founded by Alexander the Great, Alexandria was a great port city for its day and needed something to guide ships through the busy harbor. It was the first lighthouse in the world. It was destroyed by an earthquake in 1303. Packets of papyrus paper will be a surefire hit with travelers who make their own greeting cards or want special stationery.
These wonders left behind a great legacy, remnants of a glorious past. It is unfortunate that today only the Great Pyramid at Giza remains standing. This means today’s citizens must use their imaginations to visualize the greatness of centuries ago.
Author bio: Jennifer Livingston is a freelance writer who specializes on topics related to health, fitness and family. When she is not writing she likes to bake, read and travel.