INFLUENTIAL CITIES IN HISTORY
Added on: 23rd Dec 2015
Formerly known as Edo, Tokyo has been Japan’s most important city
for nearly five hundred years. What’s even more impressive is that
its incredible rise to an elite global metropolis was driven by its
remarkable recovery from the ruins and ashes of World War II.
Japanese companies and their famously hard-working staff were
responsible for an “economic miracle” that by the end of the 1980’s
had turned Japan into one of the richest nations and Tokyo into
the high-tech capital of the world.
Timbuktu, city of gold and an ancient centre of learning, is unfortunately
slowly turning to dust. The Sahara desert is stifling life, but residents
know the blame lies not only with natural forces but because of human
neglect, war, and greed. However, the city’s glorious past makes it one
of the most important and influential ever in history.
Tenochtitlán was an Aztec city that flourished between 1325 and
1521. Built on an island on Lake Texcoco, it had a system of canals
and causeways that supplied water and food to the hundreds of
thousands of people who lived there. It was largely destroyed by
Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés in 1521. Modern-day Mexico City
now lies on top of much of its glorious remains.
In the western Peloponnese, in the “Valley of Gods,” is the most
celebrated sanctuary of ancient Greece, and the birthplace of the
most important athletic event of all time: the Olympic Games. Olympia
is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Greece, and one of
the most powerful brand names worldwide, with billions of people
focusing on the city during the ceremony of the lighting of the Olympic
flame before each Olympics. With a population of about 13,500 Olympia
is without doubt one of the most influential small places in the world.
Moscow gradually grew around the Kremlin, beginning in the fourteenth
century. It was the capital of Great Russia from 1340 to 1547 and then
the Tsardom of Russia until 1712, when the capital was moved to
Saint Petersburg. It also became the capital of the Russian Soviet
Federative Socialist Republic from 1917, which then became the Soviet
Union (1922–1991), and since 1991 has served as the capital of the
London was the capital of the vast British Empire that lasted for over
three hundred years, bringing more disparate parts of the world under
European power than any other city. Home of the Royal Society and
modern science, London has been one of the most influential cities
in the world for the past half millennium.
Florence, capital of Italy’s Tuscany region and birthplace of the
Renaissance, is home to masterpieces of modern art and architecture.
One of its most iconic sites is the Florence Cathedral, which is
considered one of the most gorgeous man-made constructions
in the world.
The earliest recorded mention of Dubai is in 1095 in the Book of
Geography by the Andalusian-Arab geographer Abu Abdullah al-Bakri.
It is believed that the city was covered with sand for over five
thousand years. During the twentieth century, however, the city became
one of the most powerful economically speaking, and has also become
known for its skyscrapers and high-rises, in particular the world’s
tallest building, the Burj Khalifa.
Delhi has seen the rise and fall of many empires that have left behind
a plethora of monuments to the grandeur and glory of bygone ages.
It hasn’t always been India’s capital, but it has played a pivotal part
in Indian history. It has always been a gateway city, built on the
plains initially near a fording point on the Yamuna River and on the
route between western and central Asia and Southeast Asia. It’s also
believed to be the site of the fabled city of Indraprastha, which
featured in the Mahabharata over three thousand years ago.