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30 little-known facts about famous sights

We've already covered famous sights and their related facts, but never more abstract, like this list! Here are 30 interesting and little-known facts about some of the most beautiful and important places in the world.

See also: 10 Secret Rooms in the World's Most Famous Landmarks

10 The Beehive [19659004] 1. The Beehive (seat of the New Zealand Government's executive branch) was to be the last wing of the classically designed Parliament building However, due to the earthquake risk, a modern style was chosen.

. 2 The shape is so impractical (all interiors are wedge-shaped) that a square front had to be added to create a safety wing.

. 3 On the top floor is the Cabinet Room (where senior ministers meet) and the Prime Minister's Office on the floor just below. The basement houses a swimming pool for parliamentary purposes only.

9 Eiffel Tower

1. Gustave Eiffel had the designer of the tower (Maurice Koechlin) install a third floor apartment for his private use; Thomas Edison visited him there once. It is now open to the public.

. 2 The tower has its own official paint, the Eiffel Tower brown. It originally had a reddish brown color, but was later painted yellow! The tower is painted in three shades of brown in the Eiffel Tower – the higher you go, the brighter it gets to look the same against the changing background (this trick is also used in interior design!) Next fix.

. 3 The English, who did not want to be outdone by the French, built their own version, the Watkin Tower, which was to be built by Wembley Park. The first stage was completed, but it was unstable and remained incomplete until it was demolished.

8 Taj Mahal

1. 1,000 elephants were used in the construction of the Taj Mahal. They carried the materials needed for the construction.

. 2 The foundation is made of wood and there is a real danger that it will completely collapse. But the builders were wise and it was designed to collapse outwards so that the actual grave inside is not damaged.

. 3 There are duplicates in Dubai and Bangladesh. The Bangaldeshi Taj Mahal is a true to scale model with added color. It was created so that the poor of Bangladesh could see the Taj Mahal without visiting India.

7 The Sphinx

1. The sphinx is not a sphinx. A real sphinx has wings, a lion's body, and a woman's face. The "Sphinx" in Egypt has no wings and the face of a man.

. 2 It was originally painted light red, yellow and blue and may have a crown on it (see picture above).

. 3 The devout Muslim (Muhammad Sa'in al-Dahr), who tried to destroy the Sphinx (and the nose of the people who accuse Napoleon of having damaged), was lynched for his behavior.

6 The Statue of Liberty

. While it was partly a gift from the manufacturer in France (not the French nation), the Americans had to pay for the podium and contributed in part to the cost of the statue itself.

. 2 Boston and Philadelphia raised funds to gain the right to the statue – but ultimately it went to New York.

. 3 In 1985, the statue received a new torch and her face was moved half a meter because she was not in the middle! She also got a nose job and her arm was easily moved to a better position.

5 Big Ben

1. Big Ben is the bell – not the tower. The real name is Elizabeth Tower – since 2012, when it was renamed in honor of the current Queen. Formerly it was "the bell tower", but was referred to as St Stephen's Tower.

. 2 There is a prison in the tower and it was used in 1880 to incarcerate a parliamentarian who refused to swear allegiance to the Bible to the queen. His stay was short: one night.

. 3 On top of the tower is an additional light called Ayrton Light, which was installed so Queen Victoria could see when Members of Parliament were sitting for hours. It is currently being replaced.

4 The White House

1. Before Theodore Roosevelt called it the White House, it was sometimes called the Presidential House, the Presidential Palace, and the Presidential House.

. 2 The official resident of the White House (the president – duh!) Has to pay for the food eaten in the house out of his own pocket. The billing takes place monthly.

. 3 President Washington chose the location and approved the draft White House. , , and then he never lived there! John Adams and his wife Abigail were the first presidents to live in the place.

3 The Great Wall of China

1. In China, the wall is known as earth dragon or long wall.

. 2 The mortar used to hold the bricks together was made from sticky rice – most commonly in Chinese cooking.

. 3 The wall did not really do what it wanted: protect the nation. Ghengis Khan broke through and controlled parts of the wall during his reign.

2 Leaning Tower of Pisa

1. Mussolini attempted to repair the tower by drilling holes in the pedestal and filling them with cement. Unfortunately it got worse and the tower was still leaning! More scientific changes were made in 2008, and the incline of the tower has stopped deteriorating.

. 2 The tower originally leaned in the other direction, but as it got higher, the weight caused a shift. Once a north-facing tower, today it is a south-facing tower.

. 3 The tower is a bell tower. One of the bells had the vile task of ringing the execution of a traitor. The traitor's bell is called San Ranieri. Watch the video above, where the bells ring.

1 The Kremlin

1. The stars at the top of the five towers (decorated with rubies) were placed there by the communists instead of the imperial symbol, the two-headed eagle.

. 2 The Kremlin walls and towers were built in the 15th century by Italian masters. They were built to replace wooden walls. The Kremlin was originally a city of its own.

. 3 The largest bell in the world (The Tsar Bell) is located in the Kremlin. It has never rung, because it broke during construction.

<! – Jamie Frater ->
Jamie Frater

Jamie is the owner and editor-in-chief of Listverse. He spends his time working on the site, searching for new lists and collecting oddities. He is fascinated by everything that is historical, scary and bizarre.

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