Monday, March 30, 2009

The Pisa Tower

The leaning tower of Pisa or simply the tower of Pisa is the campanile or freestanding bell tower, of the cathedral of the Italian city of Pisa. It is situated behind the cathedral and is the third oldest structure in Pisa's cathedral square after the cathedral and baptistry.

Although intended to stand vertically, the tower begin leaning southeast soon after the onset of construction in 1173 due to a poorly laid foundation and loose substrate that has allowed the foundation to shift direction.The height of the tower is 55.86m from the ground on the lowest side and 56.70 on the highest side.The tower has 294 or 296 steps because the seventh floor has two fewer steps on the north-facing staircase. the towel leans at angle of 3.97 degrees.

The construction of the tower of Pisa was performed in three stages over a period of about 200 years. Construction of the fist floor of the white marble campanile began on August 9, 1173 a period of military success and prosperity. This first floor is surrounded by pillars with classical, leaning blind arches. Today it is still unscarred from centuries of weather and age.