The Leaning Tower of Pisa and it’s balustrades

One of the most incredible structures in the world is that of the leaning Tower of Pisa. It is a huge tourist attraction in Italy that also draws pilgrims to this religious site. It acts as the bell tower or campanile to give it it’s proper name, for the Cathedral at the city of Pisa itself. The Cathedral itself is an impressive structure full of white marble gothic work and formidable balustrades. The coverings and archways on the tower act as kind of Brise Soleil, much like those by Alusystems.

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It is the Tower that is the main draw because it is literally leaning by some four degrees. The reason it leans is due to the foundations of the tower being unstable. However it has never completely fallen. It was soon apparent when it was started in the twelfth century that it was going to start to tilt but the builders carried on regardless. It was finished in the fourteenth century when it was at a full four degree tilt but seemed to be stable. However the visiting tourist and worse conditions meant that by the late twentieth century the lean had increased to over 5 degrees and was evidently worsening. It was corrected and brought back to a healthy four degrees.

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The architect is greatly debated amongst historians just as it is debated whether the lean was intentional! It has been the site of many scientific tests. Galileo dropped two cannonballs from it to show that mass not distance determined whether the balls would land equally. It was almost blown to bits by the US Artillery in the Second World War.

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