The iconic clock of Big Ben
Big Ben is an iconic clock tower located in London, England. The tower was completed in 1859 and has served as a symbol of British culture ever since. The clock itself is over 150 years old and still functions as one of the most accurate timepieces in the world.
History of the clock tower and its chimes
The clock tower was designed by English architect Augustus Pugin and built by the firm of E. Dent & Co. The tower is 315 feet tall and has become one of the most recognizable landmarks in the world. The chimes of the clock are also famous, with the melody of the Westminster Quarters being played every 15 minutes.
What are the words written beneath the clock?
The words written beneath the clock are "DOMINE SALVAM FAC REGINAM NOSTRAM VICTORIAM PRIMAM", which translates to "O Lord, keep safe our Queen Victoria the First". These words were added to the clock in 1859 to honor the newly crowned Queen Victoria.
Who decided on the inscription?
The inscription was decided upon by the then Prime Minister, Benjamin Disraeli, and the Home Secretary, Sir George Cornewall Lewis. They chose the inscription as a way of expressing their loyalty to the new queen.
How many dials does the clock have?
The clock has four dials, one on each side of the tower. The dials are made of opal glass and are 23 feet in diameter.
What is the size of the clock face?
Each of the four clock faces is 23 feet in diameter, making them one of the largest clock faces in the world.
How is the clock maintained and repaired?
The clock is maintained and repaired by a team of dedicated professionals who work year-round to keep it in perfect working order. The clock is cleaned and oiled regularly, and any damaged parts are replaced as needed.
What happens during maintenance work?
During maintenance work, the clock is stopped and the hands are removed. The clock is then disassembled, and each part is cleaned and inspected. Any parts that need to be replaced are replaced, and the clock is then reassembled and restarted.
What is the significance of the clock’s accuracy?
The accuracy of the clock is of utmost importance, as it is used to set the time for the rest of London and the surrounding areas. The clock is so accurate that it only loses about two seconds per week.
How has the clock tower been used in popular culture?
The clock tower has been used in many movies and television shows, and is often shown as a symbol of London and British culture. The tower has also been used as a backdrop for many important events, including the New Year’s Eve celebrations in London.
Conclusion: The timeless appeal of Big Ben
Big Ben is an iconic symbol of London and British culture, with its massive clock face and chimes known throughout the world. The clock tower and its inscription serve as a reminder of the rich history and traditions of the United Kingdom.
References and further reading.