Newsroom: Panama is to build the highest statue in the world to
mark the celebrations of the discovery of the South Sea and the
installation of the first Catholic diocese on the continent.
The image of Santa Maria la Antigua will be
"higher than the Statue of Liberty" and represent an icon for
the city, said President Ricardo Martinelli on Tuesday, August
The financing of
the statue, will be done “with the help of all, with the state
and private contributions." he said.
The president also reported that construction has
begun of a new Metropolitan Cathedral which will be able to
accommodate about 10,000 the the Cathedral in Casco Viejo is
Panama’s first lady, Marta Linares de Martinelli, said the
statue project has been underway for a year in conjunction with
representatives of the Catholic Church and a model will soon
become a reality. The height of the statue, without the plinth
is 34 meters.
European sighting of the South Sea was by Vasco Nunez de Balbao,
when in the course of his journey across the isthmus of Panama.
on September 25, 1513 he first sighted a great sea far away to
the south. Two days after the sighting, he and his men reached
the coast and waded into its waters, claiming possession of the
sea for Spain.
met a bloody end in 1519, but news of his discovery had already
spread to Europe, and revived hopes of finding a westward route
to the Spice Islands in the Indies and led to Magellan’s setting
sail and reaching the South Sea which he renamed the Pacifico
(peaceful), and his ship completing the first circumnavigation
of the world.