Gustave Eiffel was considered to be the mad hatter of 1889. To celebrate the French revolution, the engineer decided to build a giant tower made of metal – the Eiffel Tower.
Supposed to last for 20 years, the monuments celebrated its 126 birthday last march. The Eiffel Tower serves an important role in television and radio in France and is also one of the most famous attractions in the world. But, here are a few little facts that maybe you didn’t know about France massive iron monument.
One of the most popular monuments in France, seen from most of Paris. It is possible to see the tower at night or day as there are many different ticket and tour options available. Today the tower welcomes almost 7 million people a year, making it the most visited paid-for monument in the world.
1. In 1889, the monument was painted in bright yellow for a short period, before they decided to paint it in a brownish-red. In total, the monument has been painted 23 times.
2. The Eiffel Tower was also the object of greed of all kinds. The most famous was a con man named Victor Lustig also known “as the man who sold the Eiffel Tower”. He took advantage of the difficulties met by the State to finance the maintenance of the Eiffel Tower, to deceive a man named André Poisson, who paid for a monument that would never belong to him. After Mr. Poisson realized his mistake, he bribed several journalists to bury the story.
3. The Eiffel Tower has so much value, that a piece of its stairs was sold for 220,000 euros. That’s one expensive staircase.
4. In the winter, the tower loses between 4 and 8 centimeters that it gains back when the sun returns. Weird.
5. Franz Reichelt, as known as the Birdman, one of the first base jumpers of the world. He decided to jump from the first floor of the Eiffel tower in 1912 and kill himself in front of thousands of journalists. Bravo…
6. Paris is a city of romance. So what better (and slightly cliché) place to ask someone to marry you. At least two proposals happen a day at the Eiffel Tower.
7. The tower was build in only 2 years and a lot of artists from Paris were against the project, they start protesting vigorously and asked the state to destroy the monument. Gustav Eiffel said: “I will only answer by saying that the tower will have its own beauty and to every artists accusing us of destroying the beauty of the city, just so you know, this is not because we are engineers that beauty does not count for us. The tower will resist the wind and be elegant at the same time.”
8. In 1960, Charles de Gaulle wanted to rent the Eiffel tower to Canadians, to celebrate their own revolution but the idea was refused by engineers, fearing the states would not rebuild the tower again.
9. During the first world war, the Eiffel Tower guided the French Army all over the country.
10. It’s forbidden to post pictures of the Eiffel Tower by night online, the SNTE can ask you to pay for copyrights