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The incredible story of the leaning tower of Pisa. Photo

Невероятная история Пизанской башни. ФотоThe famous leaning tower in the Italian city of Pisa.

The leaning tower is a wonderful architectural structure of medieval architects, which is in the list of “must visit” every traveller in Italy. Amazing that this building has survived until now, despite many difficulties and the vicissitudes of history.

Невероятная история Пизанской башни. Фото

Piazza dei Miracoli in Pisa’s historic centre.

In the historic centre of Pisa is Piazza dei Miracoli (Square of miracles), on which rise four monuments of Italian medieval architecture: the Cathedral, the bell tower, the baptistery (a place for baptism) and the cemetery. The unique architectural ensemble listed as a world heritage site by UNESCO.

Невероятная история Пизанской башни. Фото

Tourists love to be photographed next to the leaning tower of Pisa, “supporting” it or “resting” on the monument.

Italian sculptor Bonanno Pisano was the first architect who began the construction of the leaning tower of Pisa in 1173. The project is supposed to be the bell tower near the Cathedral. The architecture of the tower is a wonderful combination of Byzantine and classical elements. The main material is white marble. In our days, the height of the 8-tiered structure is 56.7 meters.

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Pisa Cathedral and the leaning tower of Pisa.

The architects have provided for everything except the “substrate” – what the building will stand. As it turned out, North side tower built on the solid ground, and South on soft, silty clay. This was enough to complete the construction of the third floor showed a tilt to the side.

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The government was in a panic, believing that the building will collapse. But at this moment started another war between the Italian States, and about the tower for a long time forgot – almost 100 years. During this time the earth under it a little bit sat down and compacted.

In 1272, after the war, the engineer Giovanni di Simone continued construction. Under his leadership, has built four more floors. Di Simone tried to compensate for the tilt by making one side of the upper floors higher than the other. However, the additional weight of the new floors made the slope of the tower even more.

The second time the construction was suspended during the sea battle of Meloria (1284), when pisanty lost its entire fleet and a lot of people captured in battle with Genoa.

Невероятная история Пизанской башни. Фото

The bells on the leaning tower.

Невероятная история Пизанской башни. Фото

The bell on the top of the leaning tower of Pisa.

Later the construction resumed, and the last floor was completed in 1350. The eighth bell level executed in the Gothic style, in contrast to the Romanesque style of the rest of the building. Its walls also built of unequal height. So, if you look closely, the tower has a curved, bananabrandy form.

Still in the building built two spiral staircases leading to the rooms with bells. All of them set up seven, most weight – 3600 kg.

Невероятная история Пизанской башни. Фото

The leaning tower of Pisa in Piazza dei Miracoli. Figure 1830.

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Невероятная история Пизанской башни. Фото

The leaning tower of Pisa in the photo, 1897.

For years the tower stood in the part of the architectural ensemble of the Square of miracles, with every year more and more deviating from the vertical axis.

During the Second world war, when the Allied forces landed in Italy, the Americans issued an order to destroy any large building for fear of snipers, saboteurs who used high buildings, to secretly attack. But before the tower in Pisa was destroyed, the order was canceled. But still many monuments of Italian architecture, was blown up.

Невероятная история Пизанской башни. Фото

Lead counterweights installed at the base of the leaning tower of Pisa.

In 1990 the tower was closed for tourists, and a lot of engineers put a lot of effort to save her. Under construction special technology has removed the ground and the concrete was poured. The process of falling towers tried to stop, to “balance” it by installing lead counterweights.

From the tower to the top took all the bells. After all, they could potentially aggravate the situation and lead to an increase in slope.

The leaning tower of Pisa was reopened for tourists in 2001. It is so qualitatively strengthened, which, according to calculations of scientists, its reconstruction is possible not to intervene the next 200 years. But if the slope still increase, this will only add interest to this most interesting architectural monument.

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