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Wonders of the World Engulfed in Flames

Featured image of Words by: Vandini
30 January 2023 09:45:00 GMT

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Wonders of the World Engulfed in Flames


Time is a testament to how many times mankind had to witness the fall of a timeless architectural marvel at the hands of roaring flames.

In this blog, we’ll give you a rundown of some of the world’s famous architectural marvels that got engulfed in flames. 

While some ceased to exist and went down to make history others rose from the kindled fire to be rebuilt from the ashes of the past.

1. The Notre-Dame Cathédral: Paris, France


On April 15, 2019, the whole of Paris witnessed one of the most iconic structures in the world get slowly eaten away by throes of fire. Even though the fire managed to destroy the spire and most of the canopy but owing to the massive effort put in by the firefighters, the damage was contained which saved the infamous rose windows and main structure.

But, after every storm, there’s sunshine and a sense of calm much like in the case of the restoration project that was set up to rebuild what was lost in this unfortunate fire.

2. The Torch Tower: Dubai, UAE


In 2015, 2017 and 2019, The Torch Tower had the misfortune of being caught on fire three times in the last ten years as a result of human error.

Fortunately, there was no collateral damage to human life and every inhabitant was safely evacuated using the fire safety passages that were within the establishment.

3. La Fenice: Venice, Italy


Teatro La Fenice translates to ‘The Phoenix’ and as fate would have it this marvel has literally risen from the ashes not just once but three times through the course of existence.

Often caused by some ill-fated error and by the hands of two electricians who purposely ignited the fire.

4. Windsor Castle: Windsor, UK


Dating back almost 3 decades, commencing in the private chapel of the iconic Windsor Castle, a fire fastidiously started to eat away at the royal residence one room at a time.

Most of the artefacts that were in the way of the fire were saved apart from two works of art namely, a painting by Sir William Beechey and a rosewood sideboard.

5. The Slane Castle: County Meath, Ireland


A stunning 18th-century mansion that rose to fame for hosting the infamous rock music festival back in the 1980s was inundated with flames.

With almost three-quarters of the establishment demolished, it nearly took a decade-long restoration to bring this marvel to its former glory.

The Slane Castle restoration project can easily be considered a project of rejuvenation and regeneration.

6. St Paul's Cathedral: London, UK


The mother church of London, St Paul’s Cathedral is a mighty architectural marvel that has had a very tumultuous history. From the Great Fire of London in the year 1666 to plenty of others - this mighty marvel has seen it all. 

What is probably the most iconic aspect of the restoration process is The Phoenix which sits beautifully over the south transept.

This can be seen as a deliberate move on the part of the man who shouldered the responsibility of the restoration of Sir Cristopher Wren to use The Phoenix figure as a symbol of life risen from the dearth of ashes much like in the case of the cathedral itself.   

7. Crystal Palace: London, UK


Brought to fruition by Joseph Paxton, this epic architectural marvel was the O2 Arena of that century. On 30th November 1936, what started from a tiny flicker of flame ended up eating away at the entire building by the time it was all over. 

Sometimes all it takes is one misfortunate event to change the course of history much in the case of Crystal Palace - once a mighty establishment and soon a heap of ash. 

These precedents are a constant reminder of how easy it is to let things perish at the hands of unfortunate occurrences. Owing to how dated some of these incidents are, it's true that there weren’t many fire safety-related breakthroughs possible back in the day. 

However, today with the advent of technology there’s a plethora of measures that can be put in place when it comes to both active and passive fire safety measures. 

How many of these architectural marvels have you been to? Drop us a comment below.

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