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  Rhodes Seeks To Rebuild Colossus

The Associated Press
Thursday, Oct. 21, 1999; 10:42 a.m. EDT

RHODES, Greece –– The Colossus of Rhodes, a huge statue considered one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world, may once again rise above the island.

A project made public Thursday seeks to construct a new giant sentinel for the millennium dedicated to international peace and cooperation at a historic crossroads between Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

"There was an unanimous decision ... for the idea to go ahead with the construction of a monument for the new millennium," Rhodes Mayor George Yiannopoulos said.

He said he wants the new statue to "draw inspiration" from the original Colossus, which was believed destroyed by an earthquake 2,200 years ago.

However, no one has any precise idea what the original looked like. It's been portrayed by modern artists and filmmakers as straddling the island's main harbor. But that design has been questioned as improbable considering ancient construct methods, experts said.

Historical records suggest the Colossus was about 100 feet high. It was completed around 290 B.C. from melted down weapons left by enemies who tried to capture the island, documents say.

Officials on Rhodes have presented their idea to Greek officials and plan a worldwide fund-raising effort.

The government must give final approval for the new creation, which supporters hope to have finished before the 2004 Olympics in Athens.

Of the Seven Wonders listed by ancient Greeks, only the pyramids of Egypt remain.

© Copyright 1999 The Associated Press

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