Have you ever been watching a tv show or a movie that showed Big Ben or wanted to travel to London but you know pretty much nothing about it? Have you ever wondered Who, What, Where, Why, and When about Big Ben. Now you can with the info below, it tells you some of the basic info on Big Ben. Now when you ever travel to London to visit you know some facts.

When was Big Ben built, and how long to did it take to build?

Big Ben was built in 1858, it celebrated it 150th anniversary on May 31 2009("Big Ben" Wikipedia). The construction of the tower started in 1843 and it was finished in 1858, thats a long time to build a tower("Big Ben" , London). It took so long because they were deciding on who should build the clock portion of the tower("Big Ben" - UK Parliment).

What's some basic info on Big Ben?

The clock tower rises 316ft high and consists of a 200ft high brick shaft topped by a cast iron framed spire. The clock faces are 180ft above ground level("Big Ben" , London).Unfortunately the clock tower is not publicly accessible.The clock was the largest in the world and is still the largest in Great-Britain(Big Ben).There were two bells cast as the clock tower's hour bell(Big Ben).

Has Big Ben ever broke down or malfuntioned?

Yes it has, numerous times. one of the first incidents was in 1916: for two years during World War I, the bells were silenced and the clock face darkened at night to prevent attacks by German zeppelins("Big Ben" Wikipedia). The one and really only major incident was in August 5 1976 when the air brake speed regulator of the chiming mechanism broke after more than 100 years of torsional fatigue causing the fully wound 4-ton weight to spin the winding drum out of the movement, causing a large amount of damage. The Great Clock was shut down for a total of 26 days over nine months, it was reactivated on 9 May 1977 ( Big Ben).


Why is it called Big Ben?

The nickname was applied first to the Great Bell("Big Ben." Wikipedia). The hour bell was probably named after Benjamin Hall,the First Commissioner of Works. Some sources however claim the bell was named after Benjamin Caunt, a British heavyweight boxing champion("Big Ben.", London). Now Big Ben is mostly referered to the clock, tower, and the bell as one("Big Ben." Wikipedia).

Whats the name of the tower, St. Stephan or The Clock Tower?


The name of the tower is the Clock Tower, not St Stephen's Tower. It was called St Stephen's Tower by Victorian journalists. They referred to anything to do with the House of Commons as news from 'St Stephens', as originally MP's used to sit in St Stephen's Hall("Big Ben." - UK Parliament). It is often confused with St. Stephan's tower which is a part of the Palace of Westminster.




Works Cited
"Big Ben." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 06 Dec. 2009. Web. 12 June 2012. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Ben.

"Big Ben." , London. N.p., 2012. Web. 12 June 2012. http://www.aviewoncities.com/london/bigben.htm.

"Big Ben." - UK Parliament. N.p., 2012. Web. 12 June 2012. <http://www.parliament.uk/bigben>.