Seven Wonders Of The Classical World
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Basic Information

The Seven Wonders of the Classical World (that is, the seven most impressive artificial structures known to the Greco-Romans) are generally defined as:

Of these only the Great Pyramid remains standing - the Hanging Gardens may never have existed, the Colossos collapsed during an earthquake and was sold for scrap, the Pharos also collapsed and its site is not confirmed into the modern era. The Mauseleon also collapsed and its stones were used to build a medieval castle, the Artimesion was lost to arson and the statue of Zeus either looted or destroyed in a temple fire.

Variations to this list exist - some as a result of popfinition1, but others due to a genuine debate contemporary to the first drawing up of the list: all seven structures only coexisted for about sixty years and many sources replace some or all of them with other wonders such as the Walls of Babylon (or at least Babylon's Istar gate).



Game and Story Use

  • Fancy epic locations for a game set in the ancient world.
    • Any of these would make a great set for the climactic fight scene at the end of a campaign or adventure.
    • And given how PCs tend to recklessly endanger the landscape, it may well prove to be your party of heroes that were the arsonists who destroyed a major monument of the ancient world.
  • In a classical mythology game, these may have powerful auras or enchantments. Or it may have taken enormous magic to create them, in addition to (or instead of) the staggering financial resources and dedication it took in the real world.
  • A pulp genre game with adventurer archaeologists may feature a globe-trotting race to find the ruins or artifacts of one of the lost places on the list. Whatever happened to the left hand of the colossus?
    • Visiting all the sites where they once stood would take your characters to what is modern-day Egypt, Greece, Iraq and Turkey.
  • If designing your own fantasy world, you may want to consider coming up with a similar list of places. It will be a nice bit of world-building, and may inspire the PCs to travel and explore.
    • Especially for a "missing" wonder.
    • Makes a good, valuable but content free book for PCs to find as treasure - essentially a big, shiney and well illustrated work, perhaps prepared by an explorer for the benefit of his patron after a tour of all of the sites. This may be useful for someone who needs to know about something else the explorer did on his travels… the footnotes, trivia and marginalia from the voyage might turn out to be more interesting that the chapter heading material of the great sites.
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