The Leaning Tower of Pisa

Intersting Facts About the Leaning Tower of Pisa

  • The leaning tower of Pisa weighs 14,500 tonnes - Although it took quite a long time for construction to be completed, the official estimated weight of the tower is just shy of 14,500 tonnes. No wonder the clay foundation couldn't handle the weight!
  • The tower took over 800 years to completely finish - With the final modifications to the tower made in the early 21 st century, the entire process took over 800 years. During this time it witness two great wars, civil war, change in religious governments, and a change in use. It was "completed" in 1350 (over 200 years after its initial construction), but has undergone constant additions and modifications since that date.
  • The leaning tower of Pisa is only 55.86 meters tall - With its low height, it's the smallest "tower" achieve worldwide recognition.
  • Europe 's most famous monument was the result of a slight miscalculation - Although many factors have contributed to the lean, the decision of where to build the tower resulted in the original tilt of the tower.
  • It is a symbol of national pride - What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word Pisa ?
  • It is located in the Piazza Dei Miracoli - The "field of miracles" is where the tower is located, along with a few other famous structures, such as the Duomo, the Camposanto, and the Baptistery.
  • It was upright for five years upon completion of its initial construction - Having only two floors, no one was aware of any problem with the tower. Upon the addition of the third floor the tower began to lean, and the result was thousands of confused people and hundreds of years of quick-fixes.
  • Construction was halted for 100 years - Once the tower began to lean the construction was halted for 100 years. During this time, engineers hopes that the clay beneath the tower would settle and harden enough to permit further construction.
  • A new architect resume construction - Giovanni di Simone continued where the tower had left off, adding four additional floors to the tower. Fortunately, and despite his efforts, he was unable to correct the lean.
  • A bad idea made the lean worse - Alessandro Della Gherardesca tried to show the world the intricately decorated base of the tower by digging a walkway around the base. You can imagine the resulting disaster when his workers struck water, flooding the ditches.
  • Mussolini tried to fix the tower - Embarrassed of the tower, and calling it a disgrace to national pride, he attempted to fix the tower by way of a cement counterweight drilled into the base of the tower. It didn't work.
  • The tower has 294 steps - How fast can you make it up?
  • The tower was almost torn down - American soldiers, under the orders to destroy all buildings that may act as a potential nest for enemy snipers, nearly destroyed the famous tower during World War Two.