Seven Wonders of the Ancient World – History & Facts

You are surely familiar with the Seven Wonders of the Modern World and you can name them fast. How about the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, then? Can you also name them all?

For those who are not familiar with them, these are magnificent constructions of classical antiquity that prove the endurance and inventiveness of mankind who lived during the earliest civilizations.

To freshen up your memory, take a look at them:

Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt

Egypt’s Great Pyramid of Giza is the largest and oldest of the three pyramids of Giza. It is also the oldest among the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. This was built during the rule of King Kufu during 2584 to 2561 BC. The grand tomb was meant to serve as the home of the powerful pharaoh and all the things he would require to thrive during his life after his death. What is most amazing is that the Great Pyramid happens to be the sole wonder of the ancient world that continues to exist and stand tall to this day and age.

Pyramid of Giza, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world

Hanging Gardens of Babylon in Iraq

There was a generally belief that these olden gardens can be found close to Babylon’s royal palace, about 80 kilometers south of Iraq’s modern Baghdad. There were numerous speculations regarding the precise location and construction of this wonder. Τhe most prevalent is that created by the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar II  between 605 and 562 BC. He created it in favor of his wife Queen Amytis, because she missed the valleys and the green hills of her homeland. While there were beliefs that these gardens hang, some insisted that the gardens were high up in the air.

hanging gardens of Babylon

Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, Greece

The Temple of Artemis was once dubbed as the ancient Mediterranean’s most magnificent temple during the time of its completion. This was mainly because of its sheer size of 110×55 meters as well as the intricate artworks that adorned it. This was constructed by the king of Lydia, Croesus, in about 550BC to honor Artemis, one of Olympus’ three maiden goddesses. A madman named Herostratus deliberately destroyed it in a narcissistic act of arson. His goal was for his name to go down in history and that is exactly what happened.

temple of artemis

Statue of Zeus in Olympia, Greece

A majestic statue of the Greek god of thunder and the sky, Zeus, used to glitter in ivory and gold in a temple in Olympia, the origin of the Olympic Games. This made by the Greek sculptor Phidias around 435 BC and effigy standing tall at 12 meters showcases the king of the Greek gods, with his chest bare while sitting on his wooden throne. Precious stones were used as elaborate decorations but everything, including the Statue and the temple itself, was reduced to ashes when a fire broke out in year 462.

zeus statue

Mausoleum at Halicarnassus in Turkey

As implied by the name, the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus was a tomb constructed for Asia Minor’s Hellenistic ruler, Mausolus of Caria. After he passed away in 353 BC, Artemisia, his beloved wife, ordered the monument’s construction as a way of honoring him. According to the legend, the widow of Mausolus who was filled with grief decided to drink a potion made using the ashes of her husband and she became the living tomb herself. She was respected for the devotion she had towards her husband and after her death, she was also buried in the same mausoleum.

mausoleum of halikarnasos, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world

Lighthouse of Alexandria in Egypt

Standing more than 100 meters tall, the Lighthouse of Alexandria served as the epitome of every lighthouse ever since. Created by Sostratus of Cnidus, possibly for Ptolemy I Soter, it was finished in about 280 BC. It was able to withstand several earthquakes but a strong tremor during 1375 AD razed this to the ground. After being lost for years, some French archaeologists were able to rediscover its remains on the seafloor of the harbor of Alexandria in 1994. The minister of antiquities of Egyptian announced the plan of building an underwater museum that will display of sunken ruins.

Colossus of Rhodes in Greece

The colossal statue of Helios, the sun god with a glorious towering height of 33 meters can be found in the ancient city of Rhodes. Colossus of Rhodes was constructed to pay respect to the victorious protection of the Rhodians of the island against the siege in 305 BC under the rule of a Macedonian leader. Unfortunately, it only stood tall for about 50 years as it was topple by an earthquake that hit some areas of the city of Rhodes during 226 or 225 BC.

colossus of rhodes, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world


History – Sevens Wonders of the Ancient World – List & Timeline

Britannica – Seven Wonders of the World | List & Pictures

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About the author

I have been working in the tourism industry more than 10 years, gaining experience in tour operating, transportation and accommodation. As a seasoned tour leader, I am passionate about developing tourist services and making them unique experiences. In addition to tour leader job, I am also involved in digital marketing and article blogging. Outside of the office, I enjoy travelling, photography and enriching my knowledge with new skills.

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