La Tour Eiffel
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La Tour Eiffel
Une Tour Magnifique!

Worksheet     Sign

The Eiffel Tower (La Tour Eiffel) was designed by architect Stephen Sauvestre and built by the construction company of Gustave Eiffel between 1887 and 1889.  

It is an iron tower standing over 300 metres high beside the River Seine in Paris.   Until 1930, it was the tallest building in the world.  Today, it is the tallest building in Paris. 
It has a total weight of 10,100 tons. 

It was originally built as a 'temporary gateway' to L'Exposition Universelle: - a fair to celebrate the centenary of the
French Revolution.   A competition had been held to find the best design for the special event and it was La Tour Eiffel that was the winner!  In fact, the tower had permission to remain standing for no longer than twenty years, so it was designed to be easily dismantled.

Below is an image of the Eiffel Tower standing as the gateway to the 1889 fair.

 At first, many people considered it to be very ugly.  The famous French writer
 Guy de Maupassant hated the tower.   However, when it was discovered that the tower made an excellent radio antenna, the city of Paris decided to keep it!  
It is still used for radio transmission and has an aerial mast at the very top.


 La Tour Eiffel is cleaned all year round by a team of cleaners.  Each year they consume 4 tons of paper wipes, 10,000 doses of detergent, 400 litres of metal cleaner and 25,000 rubbish bags.
                               Je suis très occupé!

The re-painting of La Tour Eiffel begins every seven years and lasts for about 18 months.  It requires around 60 tons of paint in
three different shades of brown.
painting Eiffel Tower

There are seventy-two names engraved on the tower.  The names can be found along all four sides of the tower, just under the first balcony.  The names belong to great French scientists and engineers.  Only the surnames are engraved because there
was not enough space to include the full names.
An interesting fact:  all the names belong to men!  No ladies' names are included!

Another interesting fact:
The Statue of Liberty - La Statue de la Liberté - was a gift from France to America in 1886. The internal part of the statue was designed by Gustave Eiffel - the designer of the Eiffel Tower! 
In October 2014 a new glass floor was installed on the first floor.  It is 57 metres from the ground below, making it seem that you are walking on air!  It is a very scary experience!  This special floor is called le plancher transparent.

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