In architecture, what is the difference between a gargoyle and a grotesque?
A gargoyle is humanlike, while a grotesque is animalistic.
A gargoyle serves a function, directing water away from the side of a building, while a grotesque is merely ornamental.
Gargoyles and grotesques look similar - usually featuring frightening faces - but only gargoyles have spouts that direct water away from the side of a building. Gargoyles that have features of several different animals are called chimeras.
Which two architects are most frequently referred to as the "Father of the Skyscraper"?
William Le Baron Jenney and Louis Henri Sullivan.
Jenney incorporated steel in his taller designs. He designed the Home Insurance Company Building in Chicago. Sullivan contributed new functional design for tall buildings. He designed the Wainwright Building in St. Louis.
Which popular catalog company, based in Chicago, sold kits for building houses, including bungalows, Colonials, Cape Cods, and other styles?
Sears kit homes were built between 1908 and 1940. To identify a house as a Sears kit home, look for shipping labels on the back of millwork and moldings. Plumbing and electrical systems were sold separately.
Which man-made structure held the record for being the tallest, for almost 4,000 years?
Chichen Itza in Mexico.
The Leshan Giant Buddha in China.
The Great Pyramid of Giza.
The Great Pyramid of Giza held the record for being the tallest man-made structure for 3,871 years, until 1311, when the Lincoln Cathedral in England was built. The pyramid is currently about 455 feet tall, due to erosion, but it probably stood 480 feet when it was built.
A coffered ceiling has a cut-out design in the middle.
A coffered ceiling is sloped, following the roof line.
A coffered ceiling has a bumpy texture.
A coffered ceiling has sunken panels, which are square, rectangular, or octagonal.
A coffered ceiling has sunken panels, which may be square, rectangular, or octagonal. Such a design can provide a sense of order to crowded public spaces. The word "coffer" originally meant "basket" or "hollowed container."
What architectural marvel was known only to local peasants until it was discovered by archaeologist Hiram Bingham in 1911?
Petra in Wadi Musa, Jordan.
Chichen Itza in Yucatan, Mexico.
The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus.
Machu Picchu in Cuzco, Peru.
Experts believe Machu Picchu was probably a royal estate or religions site. It was abandoned in the 16th century, following an invasion by the Spanish. The stones of Machu Picchu were fitted together without mortar.
Which skyscraper, completed in 1973, was sheathed in Italian Carrara marble that later cracked and bowed, and a slab detached and landed on the roof of a neighboring building?
One of the Seven Sisters of Moscow.
The Jin Mao Tower in Shanghai.
The Messeturm in Frankfurt.
The Aon Center in Chicago, originally the Standard Oil Building.
The Aon Center, originally called the Standard Oil Building, was resurfaced with granite after the marble started to fail. The renovation cost more than $80 million. On a side note, the loose marble slab hit the roof of the Prudential Center.
Which architectural wonder has mortar made with sticky rice?
Machu Picchu in Peru.
The Grand Mosque of Dakar.
The Great Wall of China.
The Great Wall of China has mortar made with sticky rice. Amylopectin makes rice sticky and, conveniently, makes mortar strong. During construction of the Great Wall, as many as 400,000 people died, and many were buried within the wall. Mourners brought roosters to help guide souls away from the wall.
Riser, nosing, and newel are all components of what?
Riser, nosing, and newel are all components of a staircase. A riser is a vertical board that determines the height of each step; a nosing is the edge of the tread that hangs over the face of the riser; and a newel is the post at the base of a banister.
False statistics about the dimensions of skyscrapers and monuments, meant to increase tourism.
The standard height requirement for countertops.
A branch of tourism that focuses on the world's tallest buildings and monuments.
The difference between a building's highest usable space and its pinnacle.
Without vanity height, or unusable space at the top of skyscrapers meant to improve their appearance and stats, many buildings would drop down the list of the world's tallest. For example, about 29% of Dubai's Burj Khalifa is vanity height.