Pagamento – La Lanterna – Lighthouse of Genoa | Genoa Tango Marathon

Lanterna - Faro di Genova

The Lantern of Genoa
Symbol of the city of Genoa, located on the Cape of Faro headland, the Lantern, with its 77 meters high, is the highest lighthouse in the Mediterranean, second in Europe. The building dates back to 1543, but since the twelfth century there was a tower of similar structure, which was born as a watch tower to announce the arrival of suspicious boats and in time also a lighthouse, on whose summons burned charms to signal to sailors access to the harbor. In 1326 the first olive oil lantern was installed, whose light was concentrated in a beam thanks to transparent crystals produced by Ligurian and Venetian glassmasters. The probably oldest representation of this first Lantern dates back to 1371 and appears on the cover of a register of maritime authority of the time. In the fifteenth century the tower was used as a prison and, among other things, the king of Cyprus. At the beginning of the sixteenth century, the fortress of Briglia was built, designed by Louis XII for the troops that ruled the city: the Genoese, fought against the French, bombed it, damaging the Lantern, reduced to “half-tower”. In 1543 it was rebuilt and the old merlature was replaced. Since then, the Lantern surpassed the naval bombardment of the Sun at the end of the 17th century, the fights of 1746 after the Portoria uprising, the bombings of the Second World War, as well as innumerable moments of natural weather (until in 1778, it was not equipped with a lightning rod). In recent times, the headlight power increased considerably, both for the introduction of more modern optical systems (1840 the rotating system with Fresnel lenses) and for the introduction of new fuels: acetylene gas (1898), then pressurized oil (1905), until the electrification of 1936.