Wonders of the world – Part 1

In the year 2000, a Swiss organization began a search for the New Seven Wonders of the World. Given that the original Seven Wonders list was prepared in the 2nd century BCE, and that only one entrant (the Pyramids of Giza) is still standing, it seemed like a good time for a refresh.

More than 100 million votes were made on the Internet or via text messaging, indicating that people all across the world agreed. The final results, released in 2007, were greeted with both applause and jeers.

Below are three of the seven wonders of the world according to britannica.com.

The Great Wall of China

Great Wall of China

It’s possible that great is an understatement. The Great Wall of China, one of the world’s largest construction projects, is usually regarded to be roughly 5,500 miles (8,850 km) long; nevertheless, a disputed Chinese research states the length is 13,170 miles (21,200 km). The construction began in the 7th century BCE and lasted two millennia.

The building, despite being labeled a “wall,” really has two parallel walls for long periods. The barrier is also dotted with watchtowers and barracks. The wall’s effectiveness, on the other hand, was not that great. Despite being erected to deter invasions and attacks, the wall failed to offer adequate security. Scholars have concluded that it was more of a form of “political propaganda.”

Chichén Itzá

El Castillo, a Toltec-style pyramid, Chichén Itzá, Yucatán state, Mexico

Chichén Itzá is a Mayan metropolis in Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula that thrived in the 9th and 10th century CE. A number of notable structures and temples were created by the Mayan tribe Itzá, who were heavily influenced by the Toltecs. The stepped pyramid El Castillo (“The Castle”), which rises 79 feet (24 meters) above the Main Plaza, is one of the most prominent.

The construction has a total of 365 steps, which corresponds to the number of days in the solar year, and is a tribute to the Mayans’ astronomical ability. The setting sun casts shadows on the pyramid during the spring and fall equinoxes, giving the illusion of a serpent sliding down the north stairs; at the foot is a stone snake head.

However, life was not all work and science. The largest tlachtli (a type of sporting field) in the Americas is found in Chichén Itzá. On one field, the locals participated in a pre-Columbian Mesoamerican ritual ball game.

Petra

the Khaznah

Petra, Jordan’s ancient city, is hidden among sandstone slopes and cliffs in a lonely valley. It was said to be one of the locations where Moses smote a rock, causing water to gushe forth. Later, the Nabataeans, an Arab tribe, established it as their capital, and it flourished during this period, becoming a major commerce center, particularly for spices.

The Nabataeans were skilled carvers who carved buildings, temples, and tombs into the sandstone, which changed color with the changing light. They also built a water system that enabled them to grow lush gardens and farm. Petra had a population of 30,000 people at its peak. However, as trade routes altered, the city began to deteriorate.

A large earthquake in 363 CE added to the difficulties, and Petra was progressively abandoned following another seismic in 551. Although it was uncovered in 1912, archaeologists mostly ignored it until the late twentieth century, and many doubts regarding the city persist.

Watch out for part two.

Source: britannica.com

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