During his time in the ring, professional wrestler Andre The Giant was frequently called the “Eighth Wonder of the World.” Standing an alleged 7 ft 4 inches tall and weighing 520 pounds, it is easy to see why this star seemed larger than life.
Unfortunately for Mr. The Giant, he was never officially sworn in as a wonder of the world. I am not sure if he died before an official vote could take place or what happened. Actually I have no clue about how all that works. In fact, I can’t even name the Wonders of the World.
I am surprised it has taken me this long to wonder about the wonders. Apparently I have been too busy wondering about more important things like carbo-loading and quicksand. But that all changes in today’s Wonder Why Wednesday:
What Are The Seven Wonders Of The World & How Were They Picked?
The Seven Wonders of the Ancient world are the following:
- Great Pyramid of Giza
- Hanging Gardens of Babylon
- Temple of Artemis at Ephesus
- Statue of Zeus at Olympia
- Mausoleum at Halicarnassus
- Colossus of Rhodes
- Lighthouse of Alexandria
There is much debate over whom compiled this list of wonders. Some say Callimachus of Cyrene drafted the list in the third century B.C. Others think it was Herodotus, who lived from around 484 to 425 B.C. Still other accounts attribute the list to Philo of Byzantium in 130 B.C.
Whomever it was, it happened along time ago and unfortunately, of the seven, only the Great Pyramid still exists. The others are in unrecognizable ruins, and scholars doubt that the Hanging Gardens existed at all.
This has led to new versions of the list. In 1994, the American Society of Civil Engineers created the following list of Seven Wonders of the Modern World, paying tribute to the “greatest civil engineering achievements of the 20th century”:
- Channel Tunnel
- CN Tower
- Empire State Building
- Golden Gate Bridge
- Itaipu Dam
- Delta Works/Zuiderzee Works
- Panama Canal
In 2001, New7Wonders Foundation, a Swiss corporation, decided to create the New7Wonders of the World from a selection of 200 existing monuments. Twenty-one finalists were announced January 1, 2006 and the results were announced on July 7, 2007, in Lisbon, Portugal:
- Great Wall of China
- Christ the Redeemer
- Machu Picchu
- Chichen Itza
- Taj Mahal
Egyptians were not happy that the only surviving original wonder, the Great Pyramid of Giza did not make the cut, so New7Wonders decided to add it as the honorary 8th wonder.
And if that weren’t enough, Iin November 2006 USA Today and Good Morning America revealed a new list of New Seven Wonders as chosen by six judges. Their list included:
- Potala Palace
- Old City of Jerusalem
- Polar ice caps
- Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument
- Mayan ruins
- Great Migration of Serengeti and Masai Mara
And because 7 was just not enough for USA Today and Good Morning America, the Grand Canyon was selected as the viewer-chosen 8th wonder.
Sources: How Stuff Works, Wikipedia
Photo credit: Wikipedia