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New Seven Stone Wonders Of The World

NEW SEVEN STONE WONDERS OF THE WORLD

2021-09-15 10:09:27

The Marble Wonder – Taj Mahal

The Taj Mahal is an ivory-white marble mausoleum built in 1631-1654 in Agra, India. It is considered one of the most important works of Islamic shrine architecture.

It was built on the banks of the Yamuna River in Agra, the capital of the empire at that time, for Ercümend Bânû Begüm (Mumtaz Mahal), the wife of Shah Cihan, the 5th ruler of the Mughal Empire, who died at a young age on June 17, 1631. It houses the tombs of Mumtaz Mahal and the emperor Shah Jahan, who died in 1666.

 

The building represents the power and might of the Mughals, who lived their heyday during the reign of Shah Cihan. It is the symbol of the love between Shah Cihan and his wife Ercümend Bânû Begüm as well as the power and might of the dynasty. Ercümend Banu, who took the name Mümtaz Mahal after Shah Cihan ascended the throne, died while giving birth to her fourteenth child. It is said that the ruler found solace in art and architecture by having a magnificent mausoleum built in memory of his love for his wife.

It has been on UNESCO's World Heritage List since 1983. It is visited by an estimated 3 million people annually. The mausoleum consists of a mosque and a guest house built as symmetrical structures on both sides, as well as structures from the monumental entrance gate.

Architecture and Design
ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN

The work, which was started to be built in 1632, was completed in 1652 together with the landscaping and other structures. The emperor, who established a committee of architects and masters for the construction of the tomb, assigned local Indian masters along with Ottoman, Iranian, Syrian masters and artisans. Many opinions have been put forward about who the main architect of the Taj Mahal was. Some claimed that an Italian named Jeromino Veroneo from Venice or a Frenchman named Augistin from Bordeaux, others claimed that the Ottoman architect Mehmet Isa Efendi was the main architect of the building.

Shiny, white marble with fine blue veins was used in the construction of the Taj Mahal. The dome, which is made of the same marble and has a height of 82 meters from the ground, was built by Architect Ismail Efendi and was completed in 1648. There are four minarets mausoleum of white marble.

Located in a rectangular courtyard measuring 305x580 meters, the Taj Mahal surrounds a 75-meter-high monumental dome with 33-meter-high crown gates in the middle of its four facades.

Taj Mahal Mausoleum was included in the list announced on July 7, 2007, as a result of the competition launched by a Switzerland-based foundation called New 7 Wonders Of The World to determine the new seven wonders of the world as an alternative to the seven wonders of the world, with mobile phone and internet votes.

The Limestone Civilization of Mayans – Chichen Itza
THE LIMESTONE CIVILIZATION OF MAYANS – CHICHEN ITZA

Chichen Itza is a Maya city of Itza founded in the pre-Columbian era, located between Valladolid and Mérida in Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula. The Yucatán Peninsula is a limestone plain, with no rivers or streams.

It was probably the religious center of Yucatan for a time. Today it is the second most visited archaeological site in Mexico. It is one of the new seven wonders of the world, selected on July 7, 2007.

Kukulkan Temple
KUKULKAN TEMPLE

Kukulkan Temple or Kukulkan Pyramid, known as El Castillo (the castle): The Mayans built this pyramid with a certain system as if they wanted to reveal their knowledge of astronomy and mathematics. For example, there are 91 digits on each of its 4 sides, so when we add the top plain to the number of 364 we found with 4x91, we get 365, which is the number of days in the year.

They also orientated the pyramid in such a way that, at the time of the spring and autumn equinoxes, the sunlight coming into the pyramid casts a shadow, thanks to the protrusions of the pyramid, in such a way that the two snake-head sculptures at the bottom of the stair steps form an extension of the body that draws S's. (The two-headed serpent.) This serpent is the divine feathered serpent known as Kukulkan. (A feature of the snake is that its body can take the shape of the orbits of celestial bodies and draw S's.) 

While it is widely believed that this light-shadow effect was deliberately achieved to record the equinoxes, it is highly unlikely. It has been shown that the phenomenon can be observed around the equinoxes without major changes for several weeks, making it impossible to predict the equinoxes with light-shadow estimates alone.

El Caracol
EL CARACOL

Observatory called Caracol. This name was given to the building in the sense of "snail", probably because of the spiral stone staircase inside.

Akab Dzib, whose name means "house of mystical writings" in the Mayan language. The temple of the high priest, Warriors Temple, Ball court, The administrative palace, which was called the "convent of nuns" by the Spaniards. A group of "Ancient Chichen" structures that includes various temples.

In the late 1980s, some archaeologists put forward that Chichen Itza was ruled by a council with a “multepal system”, meaning governing together. In recent years, however, this system has begun to be questioned, if not discredited. The current trend of belief is towards the more traditional model of the Classical Period Maya kingdoms of the southern plains of Mexico.

The Sandstone Wonder – Petra
THE SANDSTONE WONDER – PETRA

Petra is an ancient city located on the territory of Jordan between the Dead Sea and the Gulf of Aqaba. Between 400 BC and 106 AD, it was the capital of the Nabataeans. It continued to exist as the capital until it was occupied by the Roman Empire. 

After the 400s, the city fell out of favor due to earthquakes and economic problems and was forgotten over time. 

The purpose of Petra's construction could not be found by historians. However, in the latest researches, it has been discovered that there is a secretly buried section under the El-Hazne in Petra and that this section is the tombs of the kings.

The city was rediscovered in 1812 by the Swiss traveler Johann Burckhardt. The ancient city, which was included in the World Cultural Heritage list by UNESCO on December 6, 1985, was selected as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World on July 7, 2007.

In the ancient city of Petra, structures such as theaters, temples and houses were carved into limestone. El-Hazne and the amphitheater built during the Roman period are the most well-known structures.

The structure, which consists of temples, amphitheater, tombs and reliefs carved into rock blocks made of sandstone, is spread over an area of approximately 100 square kilometers.

The Limestone Wonder – The Great Pyramids of Giza
THE LIMESTONE WONDER – THE GREAT PYRAMIDS OF GIZA

Giza Pyramids 3 magnificent structures located in the Giza district of Cairo, the capital of Egypt: Cheops Pyramid, Khafre Pyramid, Mikerinos Pyramid. 

Of these three pyramids, only Cheops (also known as Khufu or the Great Pyramid) is one of the Seven Wonders of the World. It is also an honorary member of the list of the New Seven Wonders of the World. 

The general opinion is that all three of the Giza pyramids are included in the 7 Wonders, but the pyramid mentioned is the Great Pyramid, which was built by Egyptian Pharaoh Khufu from the 4th Dynasty in 2560 BC, according to scientific findings. Traditionally, pyramid construction was the product of a "platform-mastaba" culture in Ancient Egypt and was made for royalty.

The Great Pyramid was built by quarrying an estimated 2.3 million large limestone blocks with a total weight of 6 million tons. Most stones are not uniform in size or shape. Local limestone from the Giza Plateau was used primarily. Other blocks were imported by boat from the Nile: white limestone from Tura for the Kasa and granite blocks weighing up to 80 tons from Aswan for the King.

According to the past, new theories are being developed for the pyramids; An astronomical observatory, a temple for a special faith, a geometric structure made by an unknown ancient civilization, a special purpose place made by extraterrestrials... Whatever it is, today the giant pyramid and its two similar ones will be built towards the afterlife at first glance. They stand among the clouds of mystery on the west bank of the Nile as a symbol and memory of mystical journey.

Belgian-born engineer and pyramid researcher Robert Bauval made a really important discovery regarding the arrangement of the pyramids of Keops (aka Khufu), Khafra (Khafra) and Mikerinos (Menkaura) and mentioned the position of the stars Alnilam, Alnitak and Mintaka, which are the belt stars of the Orion constellation. He found that the subject is the projection of the arrangement of the pyramids. These three pyramids mark the constellation of Orion, and all three were built by successive kings Khufu, Khafra, and Menkaura, who are named after them.

In addition, the main differences that distinguish the Giza pyramids from the others are that there is no writing inside and how they were built is still not resolved. The pyramids are not unique to Egypt, either. Maya and Aztecs of South American origin also built pyramids. It is thought that the pyramids were built to study the sky.

The Travertine Wonder – The Colosseum
THE TRAVERTINE WONDER – THE COLOSSEUM

The Colosseum, also known as the Flavianus Amphitheater is an oval areana. It is located in Rome - the capital of Italy, and built of concrete and travertine. It is the largest amphitheatre ever built.

Its construction began in 72 AD by Vespasian, a master commander, and was completed in 80 AD during the reign of Titus. Later changes were made during the reign of Domitian.

Despite being devastated by earthquakes and having its stones stolen today, the Colosseum has long been considered an iconic symbol of the Roman Empire. Today it is one of the top tourist attractions in modern Rome.

It also has close links with the Roman Catholic Church. On the Friday before Easter, the Pope holds a lantern procession in the amphitheater.

Colosseum, Paris Bordone

The picture of the Colosseum was also printed on the back of the 5 cents/euro coin minted in Italy.

The Soapstone Wonder –  Christ the Reedemer
THE SOAPSTONE WONDER – CHRIST THE REEDEMER

Christ the Redeemer is a statue of Christ, one of the symbols of the city, located on Corcovado Mountain in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It is located in the lower part of the mountain in the Tijuca National Park. Corcovado is at an altitude of 710 m and offers a magnificent view of the city. The Corcovado mountain train follows a winding road until it reaches the top of the mountain. It was selected as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World on July 7, 2007.

The sculpture was designed by Heitor Silva Costa and produced over five years by French sculptor Paul Landowski. The construction of the statue was started in 1922 in Rio de Janeiro. The 30 m tall colossal statue stands on an 8 m high pedestal and weighs 1,145 tons. Only its head is 3.75 m high and weighs 30 tons. The width of its outstretched arms is 30 m. Concrete was used as the construction material and soapstone was used as a layer on it. Today, about 1 million tourists visit the monument annually.

 

The Granite Wonder –  Machu Picchu
THE GRANITE WONDER – MACHU PICCHU

Machu Picchu is an Inca ancient city that has been well preserved until today. It was selected as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World on July 7, 2007.

Machu Picchu is a 15th-century Inca citadel located high in the Peruvian mountains. The underlying rocks are mostly ~ 246 million year old granite (igneous rock) and at lesser extent limestone (sedimentary rock).

The city was built around 1450 by Pachacutec Yupanqui, an Incan ruler. While the Spanish invaders occupied these places in 1532, this city, which was between dense mountains, was not noticed by the invaders and thus was not damaged. Shortly after the construction of the city was completed, the city had to be abandoned due to the smallpox epidemic that spread.

Machu Picchu consists of stone structures connected by a system of more than 200 stairs. The city's 3000 steps are still in good condition today. It is thought that the special stones used in the construction of the city were carried from the valley to the summit by a rail rope system.

The purpose and meaning of its establishment is the subject of debate until today. Since there are not many clues with scientific evidence that have survived to the present day, only guesses can be made. Therefore, the city, whose name was unknown at that time, took its name from a mountain peak that is nearby today. The parts of the city consisting of terraces used as agricultural areas are at the foot of the mountain called the Old Peak (in Quechua: Machu Picchu). At the end of the city rises the Young Peak (in Quechua: Wayna Picchu).

More than 50 tombs, containing more than 100 human skeletons, were discovered in the city. Based on this discovery, the theory was developed that the city was the place of cultivation and discipline of the Incas. However, in our time, this theory has lost its validity. The more accepted theory today is that the city was home to more than 700 Inca nobles and clergy.

Machu Picchu is one of South America's top tourist attractions. According to the season, the number of visitors per day is limited to 2000 people due to the risk of collapse. The number of daily visitors to Huayna Picchu is limited to 400 people.

The Stone Wonder – The Great Wall of China
THE STONE WONDER – THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA

The Great Wall of China is the longest defensive wall in the world, stretching along northwest China. Its ruins begin on the seashore at Po Hay bay. It runs west through Beijing and runs southwest, dividing the Huang-Ho River in two. It continues from the south of the Gobi Desert, heading west.

The length of the Great Wall with its destroyed parts is 8851.8 kilometers. The part that stands today is the 2,500-kilometer embankment from the Ming Dynasty. However, the actual construction was done between 221 BC and 608 AD. According to another archaeological study, it has a total length of 21,196 km with all its branches.

The Great Wall of China is a good example of the strategic use of local natural land. The stones of the mountains were used when the contractors were building on the mountain ranges. In the plains, earth compacted into solid blocks was used, while in the desert branches or reeds and red willows were covered with sand. In the following years, when the brick making technique emerged, brick was used. The stone used was carved into rectangular shapes mainly to support the foundation, inner and outer edges and passages of the Great Wall of China.

During the Warring States period of China (403 BC - 221 BC), the foundation of the Great Wall of China was laid by more than 20 individual kingdoms. The Kingdoms of Chu, Qi, Yan, Wei, Han, Zhao, Qin built the first barriers on their borders to protect them from each other. Qin, Zhao, Yan kingdoms were also built to stop the attacks of XiongNu, DongHu, LinHu, Hiung-nu and to protect the northern borders of the country. The first Emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang, decided to enclose this place with an impenetrable defensive wall.

Historians have put forward different opinions about the purpose of entering this gigantic construction. Some of those:

-To defend the country's borders against the attack of the "Mongol" and "Turkish" tribes against China from the north, especially the Hiung-nu (Great Hun Empire).

-To punish the captive rulers of the principalities that he destroyed at the end of long wars by exile and hard work.

-To prevent escaping from the country.

-To show inside and outside that the country is united under one rule.

Qin Shi Huang extended the walls built by previous kingdoms in 221 BC by joining them. From the 3rd century BC to the 17th century AD, the Chinese continued to extend the Great Wall. The last dynasty to repair the Great Wall and use it for defensive purposes was the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).

The thickness and height of the Great Wall varies from place to place. Contrary to popular belief, the Great Wall of China is not all made of bricks. Some parts are made of very weak materials, and these walls are very short. The purpose of these weak walls is not to protect the state from attacks, but to slow down the enemy. Horses and cars can go on thick places. There are visors and archer holes along the thick walls. There is a watchtower or castle at 200 meters and a lighthouse at 9 kilometers. There are also palaces and temples on the wall. In some places, the sets are built in several rows to allow gradual defense.

This historical building was selected as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World on July 7, 2007.

 

YESIM YILMAZ
Interior Design ve Natural Stone Enthusiast

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