Top Ten Obelisks

Top Ten Obelisks


       An obelisk is a tall, four-sided, narrow tapering monument which ends in a pyramid-like shape at the top. Like Egyptian pyramids, which shape is thought to be representative of the descending rays of the sun, an obelisk is said to resemble a petrified ray of the sun-disk. A pair of obelisks usually stood in front of a pylon. Ancient obelisks were often monolithic, whereas most modern obelisks are made of several stones and can have interior spaces. The term stele (plural: stelae) is generally used for other monumental standing inscribed sculpted stones.

  1. Obelisk of Thutmose I (Akheperkare) at Karnak (Thebes, Egypt)
  2. The ‘Lateran’ Obelisk, Rome
    The Lateran Obelisk, which currently resides in St. John’s Lateran in Rome, originally adorned the temple of Amon in Karnak, Egypt. Erected by Seti I, the obelisk stands 106 ft high and ways an astonishing 330 tons. Although the obelisk was once the most prominent in all of Egypt, in 40 AD the Roman emperor Caligula had the stone dragged to St. John’s Lateran. There are 13 obelisks in Rome
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  3. Washington D.C. Obelisk
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  4. Luxor Obelisks, Luxor, Egypt and Place de la Concorde, Paris, France
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  5. Heliopolis Obelisk, Egypt
  6. Obelisk of Thutmosis III, Rome
  7. Obelisk of Queen Hapshetsut
  8. Cleopatra’s Needle
    Cleopatra’s Needle is the popular name for each of three Ancient Egyptian obelisks re-erected in London, Paris, and New York City during the 19th century. The London and New York ones are a pair, while the Paris one comes from a different original site, where its twin remains. Although the needles are genuine Ancient Egyptian obelisks, they are somewhat misnamed as they have no particular connection with Queen Cleopatra VII of Egypt, and were already over a thousand years old in her lifetime. The London “needle” is one such example, as it is originally made during the reign of the 18th Dynasty Pharaoh Thutmose III but was falsely named “Cleopatra’s needle.” The Paris “needle” was the first to be moved and re-erected and the first to acquire the nickname.
  9. Obelisk of Tuthmosis III, Istanbul, Turkey
    Thutmose III (sometimes read as Thutmosis or Tuthmosis III, and meaning Thoth is born) was the 6th Pharaoh of the 18th Dynasty. During the first 22 years of Thutmose’s reign he was co-regent with his stepmother, Hatshepsut, who was named the pharaoh. While he is shown first on surviving monuments, both were assigned the usual royal names and insignia and neither is given any obvious seniority over the other. He served as the head of her armies. After her death and his later rise to being the pharaoh of the kingdom, he created the largest empire Egypt had ever seen; no fewer than 17 campaigns were conducted, and he conquered from Niya in North Syria to the 4th waterfall of the Nile in Nubia. Officially, Thutmose III ruled Egypt for almost 54 years, and his reign is usually dated from April 24, 1479 BC to March 11, 1425 BC; however, this includes the 22 years he was co-regent to Hatshepsut, his stepmother and aunt. During the final two years of his reign, he appointed his son-and successor-Amenhotep II, as his junior co-regent. When Thutmose III died, he was buried in the Valley of the Kings as were the rest of the kings from this period in Egypt.
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  10. Obelisk of Buenos Aires, Argentina
            Obelisco de Buenos Aires is a national historic monument and icon of Buenos Aires. Located in the Plaza de la República, in the intersection of avenues Corrientes and 9 de Julio, it was built to commemorate the 4th centenary of the first foundation of the city. In order to enrich the surroundings of the iconic monument, the government of the city started the project Punto Obelisco, creating a zone full of LED signs. Since the Obelisk of the city is always associated with the night and entertainment of Buenos Aires, this project creates a zone similar to Times Square in New York and Picadilly Circus in London.
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  11. Monumen Nasional, Jakarta, Indonesia
           The National Monument is a 433 ft. (132 m) tower in the center of Merdeka Square, Central Jakarta, symbolizing the fight for Indonesia. Construction began in 1961 under the direction of President Sukarno and the monument was opened to the public in 1975. It is topped by a flame covered with gold foil. The monument and the museum is open daily from 08.00 – 15.00 Western Indonesia Time (UTC+7), everyday throughout the week, except for the last Monday of each month, when the monument is closed.
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  12. The Unfinished Obelisk, Aswan, Egypt

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  13. Black siltstone obelisk of King Nectanebo II
           This is the Black siltstone obelisk of King Nectanebo II, which According to the vertical inscriptions he set up this obelisk at the doorway of the sanctuary of Thoth, the Thrice-Great, Lord of Hermopolis. Nowadays it is placed in the British Museum, London.
  14. Tell Obelisk, Peru
           The prehistoric Tello Obelisk, found in 1919 at Chavín de Huantar in Peru, is a monolith stele with obelisk-like proportions. It was carved in a design of low relief with Chavín symbols, such as bands of teeth and animal heads. Long housed in the Museo Nacional de Arqueología, Antropología e Historia del Perú in Lima, it was relocated to the Museo Nacional de Chavín, which opened in July 2008. The obelisk was named for the archeologist Julio C. Tello, who discovered it and was considered the “father of Peruvian archeology.” He was America’s first indigenous archeologist.
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  15. Obelisk at the Plaza Francia, Caracas, Venezuela
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  16. Independence Monument Obelisk in the Maha Bandula Park, Yangon, Myanmar
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  17. King Ezana’s Stele, Axum, Ethiopia
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  18. Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser the III
  19. Obelisk of Byzantine in Sultanahmet Square, Turkey
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