Seven Wonders of the Ancient World


The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World

Abigail McCoy, Secretary

  • The Great Pyramid of Giza

The Great Pyramid of Egypt was made for King Khufu, who the people believed was a god living among mortals, blessing them with his guidance. It acted as a tomb for him, and it still stands to this day mostly intact. The structure stands nearly 500 feet tall and was supposedly built within 20 years using 10,000 slaves according to Greek historian, Herodotus.

  • The Hanging Gardens of Babylon

It is still hotly debated to this day whether or not these gardens were of myths or not. The gardens were tragically destroyed in an earthquake in second century B.C. Babylon. The garden was constructed for King Nebuchadnezzar’s homesick wife, Amyitis, who longed for the lush green of her birthplace. Terraces of gardens were built, walls were constructed approximately 80 feet tall, and water was irrigated from the nearby Euphrates River. Many interpretations exist but still no perfectly solid proof exists of the gardens.

  • The Statue of Zeus at Olympia

Standing at over 40 feet tall, the tribute to the king of the gods was created for the Olympics. Ivory and gold plates fit over a wooden frame to capture the grandeur of the mythical icon. Unfortunately, the statue was destroyed in a fire in the 5th century A.D. Greek citizens considered this a shrine dedicated to the mightiest god of the pantheon.

  • The Temple of Artemis at Ephesus

Built in approximately 323 B.C., this 425 foot long temple was made to honor the maiden goddess of the hunt, Artemis, and was made primarily out of marble. It was destroyed in 262 A.D. by Goths. It was a sight to behold at its peak beauty, supposedly putting every other wonder of the ancient world to shame.

  • The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus

140 feet high and pure white marble, this tomb was built in the mixture of Greek, Egyptian, and Lycian styles to honor the city king, Mausolus. It was damaged by earthquakes in the 13th century A.D., and the remains were demolished during the crusades in 1522. No expense was spared creating this tomb and now other tombs bear the king’s name, known as mausoleums.

  • The Colossus of Rhodes

Depicted as the patron god of the island of Rhodes, Helios was said to guard the island from intruders. Placed in the harbor, the 110 foot statue, not including the 50 foot bronze pedestal, was built to commemorate the war effort and victory. It was destroyed 226 B.C. by an earthquake.

  • The Lighthouse of Alexandria

This was said to be one of the only ancient wonders with a practical application. Made out of stone and marble, it was 430 feet tall and it guided ships into the harbor of Alexandria safely. As all of the wonders go, this one too was destroyed by an earthquake in 1303 A.D. Remains of the lighthouse were found on a marine excavation in the 1950’s and there is talks of rebuilding it.