Eiffel Tower

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Gustave Eiffel, 1832–1923

Paris, France; 1889

The Eiffel Tower was the tallest building in the world when it was constructed in Paris for the Universal Exposition of 1889. Although it was originally envisaged as only a temporary structure, it has remained in place ever since.

Gustave Eiffel was an experienced engineer of bridges by the time he made the design, and the shape that he came up with is the result of a threefold concern: for rigidity, for stability in the face of winds, and for minimizing the mass of the tower itself.

No building is less hidebound by tradition. A modern material – iron – was used without reference to ...

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