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The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and Ancient Rome


The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World were remarkable constructions known for their extraordinary architecture and cultural significance. They include the Great Pyramid of Giza, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, the Statue of Zeus at Olympia, the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, the Colossus of Rhodes, and the Lighthouse of Alexandria. Ancient Rome, known for its engineering prowess, also built iconic structures like the Colosseum and aqueducts.

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What are the Seven Wonders of Ancient Rome?

CIRCUS MAXIMUS.  Only the outline of what was perhaps the world's largest stadium is visible today. It could seat 250,000 people and was nearly as long as seven football fields.

TRAJAN'S FORUM.  Open to all Romans as a formal place to gather, it was the last imperial forum built, completed in 112 A. D. and designed by Apollodorus. It included a market space, library and public square, complete with marble floor and bronze ceiling.

AQUEDUCTS.  The first modern system of supplying fresh water was built in Rome and provided 200 million gallons of water daily for more than a million users.

CARRACALLA'S BATH.  This giant public bath was completed in 216 A. D. by the Emperor Carracalla. More than the length of two football fields, the bath could accommodate at least 2000 people and included a library, sauna, garden and meeting rooms.

ROMAN ROADS.  The Appian Way was the first modern road, constructed about 312 B. C., connecting Rome and Brindisi, in southern Italy. It was particularly useful for moving the vast Roman armies.

PANTHEON.  This temple to the gods was completed in 125 A. D., and it is the best preserved of all the ancient buildings in Rome. It was probably designed by Emperor Hadrian or Apollodorus and houses many statues of the Olympian gods and goddesses.

THE COLOSSEUM.  An elliptical amphitheatre, it was built in less than a decade and completed in 80 A. D. Five floors high, it could seat up to 80,000 people with 76 entrances.

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What are the Seven Wonders of the ancient world?

The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World were chosen by some unknown person of the Hellenistic world.  This was done some time around the third century BC.  The Seven Wonders did not all exist for very long.  In fact, there was only a period of about 60 years when all seven were in existence.  The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World were:

  • The Great Pyramid of Giza.  This is one of the famous pyramids of Egypt.  It was created in the 2500s BC and is the only ancient wonder that is still in existence today.
  • The Hanging Gardens of Babylon.  This was in Babylon, which is now in Iraq.  It was created in the 600s BC and destroyed early in the Common Era.
  • The Temple of Artemis at Ephesus.  This was in Turkey. It was built around 550 BC, destroyed about 200 years later, rebuilt, and destroyed again in 262 AD.
  • The Statue of Zeus at Olympus.  This was in Greece.  It was erected in the 400s BC and destroyed sometime in the 5th or 6th centuries AD.
  • The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus.  This was also in Turkey.  It was built around 350 BC and survived until the late 1400s AD.
  • The Colossus of Rhodes.  This was in Greece.  It lasted the least time of any of the ancient wonders.  It was finished in 280 BC and destroyed in 226 BC.
  • The Lighthouse of Alexandria.  This was in Egypt.  It was built around 280 BC and destroyed in the early 1300s AD.
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What are the Seven Wonders of the ancient world?

Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could visit each one? Sadly, only one still stands:

The Great Pyramid at Giza--built by Pharaoh Khufu around 2650 BCE; it is the largest of the three pyramids on the Giza plateau outside Cairo, Egypt

The Colossus of Rhodes--a huge statue that stood at the entrance of the harbor at Rhodes, in Greece; it was destroye by an earthquake around 226 BCE; in 654 CE, the Arabs disassembled what remained and sold it for scrap

The Hanging Gardens of Babylon--said to have been created by King Nebuchadnezzar to please his wife, who was homesick for Media

The Temple of Artemis in Ephesus--a magnificent temple with bronze statues sculpted by the greatest artists of the time; it is said that Alexander the Great was born the night the temple was destroyed by fire

The Statue of Zeus at Olympia--sculpted by Pheidias, one of the foremost artists of the time and who contributed statues to the Temple of Artemis. The Statue of Zeus is said to have been so large that people could not see much more than Zeus's throne

The Lighthouse at Alexandria--located on the island of Pharos, which is now a part of the city of Alexandria; with the exception of the Great Pyramid, the lighthouse was the last of the wonders to remain standing; it was destroyed by earthquakes in 1303 and 1323 CE

The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus--built for Maussollus by his wife, Artemisia; it was located in modern-day Turkey

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