Feature: The Colossus of Rhodes
A giant bronze statue of the sun god Helios, the Colossus of Rhodes was erected to celebrate the end of an unsuccessful siege of Rhodes. It took 12 years to build, was completed in 292 BC, and stood for less than a century, before being toppled by an earthquake in 227 BC.
The statue was considered one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. In legend, its two legs straddled the entrance to what’s now Mandraki Harbour, tall enough for high-masted triremes to pass underneath. Historians suggest that given the higher sea levels back then, however, it may have stood further up the hill, on the site of the modern Palace of the Grand Master.
After remaining in ruins on the waterfront for almost 1000 years, the Colossus was broken into pieces and sold by invading Arabs to a Syrian Jew in 654 AD. He supposedly transported it abroad on the backs of 900 camels. There has long been talk of recreating a colossal statue of Helios at Mandraki Harbour, but that looks no closer to happening than ever.