Eiffel tower

5 things you didn’t know about the Eiffel Tower

Here are five things you need to know about the Eiffel Tower, one of the most famous buildings in the world.

Her size

The Eiffel Tower was 312 meters high when it was built in 1889 and has long been considered the tallest tower in the world. Although it hasn’t been for a long time, the 324-meter tower as it stands today, antenna included, still dominates the landscape of the French capital. But its height is not immutable; it changes with temperature. With the summer heat, its metal structure expands and can gain up to 20 centimeters in height. Conversely, it can lose up to 10 centimeters in winter.

His painting

The tower has been repainted nineteen times since its construction, once every seven years on average and always by hand, according to the methods used in Gustave Eiffelit’s time. The tower was painted in red and ocher tones, and since 1968 it has been dressed in a light brown close to bronze, slightly nuanced from bottom to top for better visual integration into the Parisian sky. The painting alone weighs about 60 tons. The last news? The Iron Lady will be painted gold for the 2024 Olympics.

Its elevators

Installed and opened to the public shortly after its inauguration, the first five hydraulic elevators of the Eiffel Tower represented a major technical feat for the time. Still in operation, those on the east and west pillars, neither real lifts, nor funiculars, nor cable cars, but somewhere in between, give a hard time to the maintenance teams in charge of their renovation, because they do not meet any of the criteria. machines today. Each year, the cumulative distance traveled by the tower’s elevators is 103,000 kilometers, or two and a half times around the world.

Gustave Eiffel’s apartment

On the upper platform of the top floor of the tower, Gustave Eiffel had a 100 square meter space built with, of course, an open-air balcony, the majority of which, however, was occupied by an elevator cabin. More a place of reception for its visitors than a dwelling in itself, the apartment includes a living room, three offices, a bathroom and toilets, but no bedroom. The space has since been transformed into a technical room, but still retains a reproduction of Gustave Eiffeloffice. Three wax figures are visible there: Gustave Eiffelher daughter Claire and the inventor Thomas Edison.

A surprising marriage

While the Eiffel Tower is undoubtedly one of the most popular marriage proposal sites in the country, american Erika La Brie took it a step further. In 2018, this objectophile (objectophilia being defined as a form of sexual or romantic attraction to inanimate objects) indeed married the Iron Lady in a small ceremony on the second floor. After lengthy administrative formalities, she succeeded in having Eiffel’s name added to her official papers and visited the building once a year.

Translated by Freya Doggett

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