Leaning Tower of Pisa : A marvelous architectural flaw
Italy is best known for its delectable and cheesy pastas and pizzas. But aside from being famous on food, the country is also well known for its magnificent tourist spots and landmarks. Take for example the Leaning Tower of Pisa. This famous tourist attraction never fails to mesmerize and mystify millions of voyagers across the globe. For about hundreds of years, the beautiful and intriguing Leaning Tower of Pisa continues to maintain its architectural mystery and historical significance with its rich and vibrant beginnings, which will be discovered and unraveled by this travel article in the most detailed manner. For your intellectual visualization pleasure, let me take you to a personal glimpse of the towering greatness and cultural heritage of this insurmountable landmark. Let your colorful and interesting voyage begin.
History of the Leaning Tower of Pisa
“Nobody is perfect”. In the records of ancient history, there was one particular architectural flaw that seemed to be a blessing in disguise for Italy. Therefore, it had to be regarded by the author of this article as one exemplary mistake. The said architectural error of miscalculation, which had been honestly committed during the 11th century, had given birth to the “Leaning Tower of Pisa”. Thus, it became a phenomenal symbol of the magnificent civic pride of Italy.
Who was the real architect of The Leaning Tower of Pisa?
Torre pendente di Pisa or otherwise known as the Leaning Tower of Pisa had many architectural debates as to who was the real architect of this famous reclining masterpiece in Italy. There were actually several famous Italian architects, who had claimed they had created and designed this most sought after tourist attraction. Among the notable names who had rightfully possessed the credits for the Leaning Tower were Guglielmo and Bonanno Pisano. They are world-renowned 12th century residing artists of Pisa, who were widely recognized for their incomparable bronze castings.
The next legendary name in the architectural construction of the “Leaning Tower of Pisa” was Diotsalvi. His name became prominent in relation to the historical construction of the tower, because of its close compatibility with his other well-received art works, specifically the “Bell Tower of San Nicola” and the the Baptistery. But the claim of architectural ownership by him, was later disregarded because the “Leaning Tower of Pisa” did not bear his authentic signature, unlike his other works of art. As to whom the exemplary credit was really due, remains to be a clout of mystery up to this very day for the lavishing exquisiteness of this Medieval Age architecture in Italy.
Construction of The World Famous Leaning Tower of Pisa
The architectural construction of the Leaning Tower of Pisa had officially begun in 1173 of August 9. Originally, the said leaning tower was designed as a bell tower. In its early years, the tower actually stood upright for five long years. However, after its third construction, the tower had began to lean the year 1178. As this unfortunate undertaking had occurred unexpectedly, some concerned citizens of Italy had started to worry for the fate of Pisa’s tower of civic pride and cultural magnanimity.
The Architectural Foundation of The Leaning Tower of Pisa
With respect to its foundations, the Leaning Tower of Pisa was built using a dense mixture of clay and an impacted kind of soil. As the key builders of the tower were doing their job, it had turned out to be that the clay was not adequately solid to make the overpowering structure, which would strongly sustain the tower in an upright stance. Consequently, the weight of the tower had started to show a downward diffusion until it had reached its weakest mark. After the aforementioned architectural setback, the construction of the Leaning Tower in Pisa was temporarily held in abeyance. But, after 100 years in hiatus, Pisa’s leaning tower had begun to resume its much awaited creation.
After almost 100 years in hibernation, Giovanni di Simone had come forward in 1272, to add more lavishing floors to the much controversial tower in the history of the world. According to historical accounts, this man was the one who was allegedly responsible for the leaning tower’s slanted characteristic and appearance. Actually, Giovanni di Simone had attempted to compensate for the tower’s original lean; by making one side of the upper floors taller than the other.
Brief Timeline of the Leaning Tower of Pisa
Below, is a short timeline of the construction of the spectacular and magnanimous Leaning Tower of Pisa.
- 1284 – The construction of the tower was halted again, due to the “Battle of Meloria”
- 1319 – It’s 7th floor was already completed.
- 1372 – To make it more astonishingly beautiful, the genius artisans of the leaning tower had added a bell-chamber
- 1838 – Alessandro Della Gherardesca had carefully dugged a passageway, in order for the tourists and the citizens of Italy, to see the beauteous and intricately crafted base of the tower. In effect, the Leaning Tower of Pisa had leaned even more, because of its minimal amount of support which should have been available for the structure’s soil
The Most Challenging Year
When the year 1964 had ushered in, the Leaning Tower of Pisa had begun to experience, the most difficult part of its architectural creation. The Italian government had asked for some generous help from its counterparts to prevent the tower from being toppled, by those adversaries who wanted to destroy the tower for their own ulterior motives and vested interests.
As far as the Italian government was concerned, they had wanted to preserve the Leaning Tower of Pisa, in terms of its deflected feature. As a result, a team of dedicated and prolific engineers had gathered together to talk about this very crucial issue in architectural history. In this connection, they had come all the way from Azores, to eventually come up with the best solution to the uncertain fate of the leaning tower of Pisa. Temporarily, the historical tower was given a leaden counterweight of approximately 800 tonnes.
Despite of all these trials, the Leaning Tower of Pisa was cited by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 1987, along with the rest of the Piazza Del Duomo historical artworks. In the modern day world, this leaning tower in Pisa was reopened to millions of tourists which had been enigmatically reborn with incomparable sturdiness and ensured safety.
Best Features of The Leaning Tower of Pisa
The crowd-pleasing Leaning Tower of Pisa exemplifies to the world of artistic history, the following salient features which remain to be beyond compare in relation to expression, historical significance and unprecedented popularity all these years. For those of who wanted to know the reasons why the Leaning Tower is one of the most visited tourists attractions in the world, take a look at these artistic facts
- The Leaning Tower of Pisa was made of gleaming white and pastel marbles
- The famous bell tower of Pisa’s leaning tower overshadows the magnificent architecture which is an exceptional example of the Romanesque style. In addition, the round tower is made from three multi-colored marbles and had eight stories in totality. These remarkable and long- lasting marbles are surrounded by arcaded galleries
- Speaking of the bottom register of this tower in Italy, it has a blind arcade which has an ornately carved portal, displaying the beautiful grotesque animals’ sculptures
- It has repeating registers which have arches that provide the tower an exceptional, harmonious and rhythmic appearance
- Its second storey has open-arcaded galleries
- The eight storey keeps the exquisite bell chamber
- It has medieval bells, which are no longer used for stability reasons
- The interior part is a 294-step staircase, which excitingly leads millions of visitors to the mystery and elegance of the bell chamber
Most Interesting Trivia
This section reveals some of the most sought trivia regarding this magnificent tower.
- The Leaning Tower of Pisa took over 800 years prior to its full completion.
- It weighs about 14,500 tonnes
- The most popular tower in the world is only 55.86 meters tall making it the world’s smallest tower
- It was almost torn down due to wars and senseless orders to American soldiers, to destroy all buildings which might serve as potential nests for deadly snipers, which nearly destructed the most historical edifice in Europe