The World’s Most Spectacular Obelisks

The World’s Most Spectacular Obelisks

Notable obelisks from around the world.

Obelisks were built in order to honor or commemorate important people or events in history. Here’s a list of the most notable obelisks from around the world.

Cleopatra’s Needles

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Cleopatra’s Needle from the River Thames, London

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Cleopatra’s Needle in Paris at the Place de la Concorde

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Cleopatra’s Needle, Central Park, New York

Three of the most popular obelisks in the world are the so-called Cleopatra’s Needles. They are a trio of obelisks in London, Paris, and New York City. Each is made of red granite, stands about 21 meters (68 ft) high, weighs about 180 tons and is inscribed with Egyptian hieroglyphics. They were originally erected in the Egyptian city of Heliopolis on the orders of Thutmose III, around 1450 BC. The inscriptions were added about 200 years later by Ramesses II to commemorate his military victories. The obelisks were moved to Alexandria and set up in the Caesarium – temples built by Cleopatra in honor of Mark Antony – by the Romans in 12 BC, during the reign of Augustus, but were toppled some time later. This had the fortuitous effect of burying their faces and so preserving most of the hieroglyphs from the effects of weathering.

Obelisk of Pharaoh: Egypt

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Ancient Egypt had built numerous obelisks but most of them were either destroyed or transported elsewhere in the world. One of the few that remained is the Obelisk of Pharaoh Senusret I. It is located in Al-Masalla area of al-Matariyyah district in Heliopolis, Cairo.

Obelisk of Thutmosis III: Turkey

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30 Comments
Unofre Pili, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

They are imposing and stunning. Nice article as usual bro.

Bozsi Rose, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

I feel silly not knowing there were this many! Thanks for the article.

BC Doan, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

This is just incredible collection, and very informative.

swapna, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

nice collection…

valli, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

Nice collection.

Glynis Smy, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

Interesting article thanks for sharing

Verniel Cutar, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

I enjoyed it very much! (bro, hinde mo sinama yung obelisk sa rotonda sa quezon city? Tsaka yung sa quezon memorial park? hehehe)

Lauren Axelrod, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

Interesting piece. I’ve never seen these before.

Mary Contrary, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

Very nice article, and very informational! Thank you!

Mark Gordon Brown, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

One mans obelisk is another mans phallic symbol..

sorry..it had to be said.

B Nelson, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

There used to be a Tree on One Tree Hill…. they chopped it down, I beleive they added the monument because of the outcry against the falling of the tree.

Ruby Hawk, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

These are amazing especially King Ezana’s Stele. great work.

PR Mace, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

Good article. I love it when you teach me new things. My husband and I where stationed in D.C from 1984 until 1988. We have been inside the Washington Monument it is a wonder.

MMV Abad, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

I thought this was about snake- obelisk not basilisk, LOL, how silly of me. Another great article… informative… nice pictures, too.

claris, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

amazing obelisks

Melody Arcamo Lagrimas, posted this comment on Sep 27th, 2008

Tama si Verniel, I thought the one in Quezon City cicle is included LOL.:-) Great article, Nobert, I never thought there were several of these structures in the world.

Judy Sheldon, posted this comment on Sep 28th, 2008

Fascinating. You have written a beautiful and informative article as usual. Teaching is in your blood.

Denny Lyon, posted this comment on Sep 29th, 2008

Enjoyed this one! The Washington monument is so familiar that we sometimes fail to truly see it. This article was a great idea to remind folks of what went before us, memorable moments in the lives who preceeded ours. ~ d

Darlene McFarlane, posted this comment on Sep 30th, 2008

Thank you, nobert. I didn’t know there were so many.

Allison Jae, posted this comment on Oct 6th, 2008

Wonderful article and the pictures are breathtaking. I love ancient Egypt, especially the architecture. It’s amazing how we in the modern world are still inspired by the past. Great job.

jelly ace, posted this comment on Oct 21st, 2008

nice piece again… i enjoy it…

b chandra, posted this comment on Feb 11th, 2009

Just to clarify a fact the obelisk in Aucklands One Tree Hill was there before the tree was cut down, ive lived in Auckland for 28 years

afromama, posted this comment on Mar 4th, 2009

People, dont you know what all these obelisks mean? Doesn´t it strike anyone strange that ALL the major cities in the WORLD, have similar structures with similar surroundings? Does anyone know what Obeliskes were used for in ancient times? Please wake up folks!!!!! Our engergies are being sapped from us, while we stupidly believe we are being cared for by our governments…..

eva ziegler, posted this comment on Mar 23rd, 2009

I simply loved this article. It is informative and fascinating that you could gather all of it and make it available to share with us the public. Thank you.

Pharaoh RAMSES-4, posted this comment on Nov 29th, 2009

Thnx for sharing this amazing collection with us!

steve, posted this comment on Dec 14th, 2009

the illuminati do rule the world after all

vince, posted this comment on Dec 15th, 2009

do you think guys, there is a geometrical formula where
they exactly placed these obelisks around the world?

kingfugazi, posted this comment on Jan 23rd, 2010

L.A. City Hall is a big one and Pasadena Civic Auditorium has 4 atop it.

Jorge, posted this comment on Mar 29th, 2010

Flag monument Rosario, Argentina. 75 mts high. 15.000 square mts. base.

Jeffrey, posted this comment on Jan 27th, 2011

Afromana has said it right, people need to wake up. Look at the writings on the Obelisks and if you can read it you will get the message.

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