Enticing Eiffel

What is it about this Puddling Iron grid structure that is so alluring? The 300m tall structure is iconic and makes it impossible to imagine Paris (or France) without it. Paris and Eiffel are now synonymous.

When you look at the Eiffel for the first time with your own eyes, after having seen its pictures in magazines, travel brochures and movies, you just can’t help being awestruck. A sigh escapes your being at the sheer marvel that it is. Actually, perhaps one is not really prepared for the grandiose, because the key-chain models and souvenir replicas that your relatives gifted you after their exciting Paris tour are poor replicas of the actual wonder.

The 7300 tons of iron make for an intriguing study in architecture and science. The Eiffel tower is the subject that inspires thousands of painters, artists and romantics throughout the world.

Eiffel up close
Eiffel up close

This June I was fortunate to visit Paris along with my husband. Just as we were about to leave after having our fill of the beautiful monument, my eye caught something that even tour guides fail to tell you. Just below the first balcony, I saw the names of famous physicists and mathematicians engraved on the sides of the tower. The physicist in me was mighty pleased to spot the names of Malus (Malus Law), Carnot (Carnot heat engine), Ampere (Ampere circuital law) and many more! In fact there are 72 names of French scientists, engineers, chemists and mathematicians engraved on the 4 sides with 18 names on each side of the tower. Gustave Eiffel got these names engraved in recognition of their contributions to society. The picture above was clicked by my dear husband; if you zoom the picture a bit , you could spot some of the names that feature on the North East side of the tower.

Into the Eiffel- Lift view
Into the Eiffel- Lift view

But what makes this gigantic structure so romantic?

Oh yes! If I may answer my own question- Its the beautiful landscaping around the tower, its visibility from various locations particularly the river Seine, the lights, and the sparkling lights at night, that lend an almost ethereal glow to the tower itself and the whole area around, transforming it magically. And the iron grid? Doesn’t the huge iron grid structure symbolize stability? Stable enough to last more than a century and still counting. Isn’t stability a trait that we all long for in lasting relationships? The promise makes Eiffel enticing!

All the photographs in this post are original clicks by the author and her husband, Anil Nanda.

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