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The Monument to the Great Fire of London that stands near the northern end of London Bridge is a pretty well known landmark. It’s a tall Doric column decorated with dragons near the base and topped with a golden orb. Its height—202 feet—corresponds to the distance from its base to the bakery in Pudding Lane where the fire started. On the inside of the hollow column is a spiraling staircase that stretches all the way to the top, and out on to a viewing platform.

Completed in 1677, the Monument was designed by the celebrated British architect Christopher Wren, and the famous scientist Robert Hooke. At that time, Wren was the Surveyor of the King's Works, and as such he was widely involved in rebuilding the city. Wren was personally responsible for the rebuilding of 51 churches including the St Paul’s Cathedral. Naturally, the responsibility for designing the Monument fell upon Wren.

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A massive wooden replica model of 17th century London was set ablaze on the River Thames on September 4, 2016 to mark the 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London. Photo credit: andrew/Flickr

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