The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World are a fascinating subject that captivates people’s imaginations even today. Sadly, none of these wonders remain, with the Great Pyramid of Giza being the only wonder that can still be visited. Throughout history, there were different variations of the Seven Wonders lists, compiled by various writers. The Hanging Gardens of Babylon, often considered the most mysterious wonder, may have never existed, but their legendary status is due to their mention in numerous ancient texts. The Seven Wonders were built over a period of six centuries and weren’t necessarily built for practical purposes. Despite their disappearance, they continue to inspire and intrigue people today.
10 Fascinating Facts About the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World
1. They Are All Gone
Sadly, none of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World remain today. The only one that could possibly be visited nowadays is the Great Pyramid of Giza, which is the only of the original Seven Wonders of the Ancient World that still exists.
2. The List of the Seven Wonders Had its Variations Over Time
Throughout history, there were different variations of the Seven Wonders lists. Although the most famous list is the one compiled by Philo of Byzantium around 250 BC, other lists also existed. For instance, the classic writer Antipater of Sidon compiled his own list of Seven Wonders a few years before Philo.
3. The Hanging Gardens of Babylon May Have Never Existed
The Hanging Gardens of Babylon are often considered the most mysterious and intriguing wonder of the ancient world. However, according to some historians and archeologists, the gardens may have never existed at all. Nonetheless, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon are still remembered among the Seven Wonders due to the fact that they are mentioned in numerous ancient texts, including the works of Herodotus and Strabo.
4. Pyramids of Giza Were Not the Only Pyramids of Egypt
Even though the Great Pyramid of Giza gets all the attention, it was actually one of many pyramids built in ancient Egypt. There were over 100 pyramids built in Egypt over several dynasties. The vast majority of them were meant to serve as tombs for important Pharaohs.
5. The Colossus of Rhodes Was not So Large
Contrary to popular belief, the Colossus of Rhodes was not as large as it is often depicted in art and movies. According to historical accounts, the statue was around 108 feet tall, which is still impressive but not as massive as some might imagine.
6. The Seven Wonders Were Not Necessarily Built for Their Functionality
The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World inspired awe and wonder, but they were not necessarily built for any practical purpose. For example, the Lighthouse of Alexandria was built to serve as a beacon to guide ships into the harbor, but it was also meant to demonstrate the wealth and power of the Ptolemaic dynasty.
7. The Wonders Were Not Simultaneously Built
The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World were not all built at the same time. They were constructed over a period of six centuries, from around 2700 BC to 200 BC. This shows that the idea of the Wonders was not a deliberate plan, but rather a gradual accumulation of awe-inspiring structures built in different parts of the ancient world.
8. The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus Was Built by a Grieving Wife
One of the most interesting facts about the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus is that it was built by a grieving wife in honor of her late husband, the ruler Mausolus. The woman’s name was Artemisia and she was not only the ruler’s spouse, but also his sister.
9. The Temple of Artemis Was Destroyed Multiple Times
The Temple of Artemis in Ephesus was destroyed and rebuilt not once, but multiple times. The first temple was built around 800 BC and was destroyed by a flood a few hundred years later. It was rebuilt, but was destroyed again in 356 BC by an arsonist name Herostratus. However, the temple was once again rebuilt, but was finally destroyed by the Goths in 262 AD.
10. The Seven Wonders Continue to Inspire Us Today
Even though the original Seven Wonders of the Ancient World have all disappeared, they continue to inspire and capture our imagination today. They represent a pinnacle of human achievement and serve as a reminder of the incredible things we can create when we set our minds to it. Additionally, their mystery and enigma will continue to fascinate people for years to come.