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Emerald City _TOP_

In the 1950s, the tag "Jet City" was often used for Seattle, although Renton officially claimed this moniker. Beginning in 1975, Harper's Magazine and other urban observers dubbed Seattle "America's most livable city," which soon became an unofficial municipal motto.

Emerald City

In the summer of 1981, the Convention and Visitors Bureau ran a contest for a slogan for an advertising campaign. Sarah Sterling-Franklin of Carmel, California, came up with "Seattle, the Emerald City. Seattle is the jewel of the Northwest, the queen of the Evergreen State, the many-faceted city of space, elegance, magic and beauty" (Seattle Post-Intelligencer).

The logo was used until 2001, when it was retired in favor of a rebus combining a stylized eye, the email "@" symbol, and the capital letter "L" to phoneticize "See-at-L." The new trademark was designed by the local firm Hornall Anderson and won several awards. It is now the official city "brand" for the Seattle Convention and Visitors Bureau (which dropped King County from its name) with the slightly tongue-in-cheek pitch, "Seattle: soak it up."

The Emerald City, is the largest and most relevant city in the magical Land of Oz. It stands in the very center of Oz, being the official imperial capital of the entire country. It's founder is L. Frank Baum, aka the Royal Historian of Oz and the author and creator of the Oz legacy. It first appeared well over one hundred years ago in Baum's first Oz book titled The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, published in 1900. It is introduced in the eleventh chapter of the novel titled The Wonderful City of Oz, and is often referred to as the "City of Emeralds" in the original text.

When a little Kansas farm girl named Dorothy Gale and her pet dog called Toto are swept away by a cyclone and transported to the undiscovered realm called "Oz", Dorothy becomes determined to find a way back to her beloved guardians; Uncle Henry and Aunt Em. The only one believed to be powerful enough to send Dorothy home where she belongs is Oz's most dominant ruler, the great and wonderful, yet mysterious and reclusive Wizard who resides in an emerald encrusted city.

The original look of Emerald City in the book was much different than the look of the city in the iconic 1939 The Wizard of Oz musical by MGM. Popular artist and close friend to L. Frank Baum, W. W. Denslow was known for being a rather successful children's illustrator in the late 1800's. John R. Neill would later illustrate the rest of Baum's Oz stories in the early 1900's, which were sequel books to his first Oz novel. But Denslow's artwork is more well known for being the original drawings to the story that started it all. Denslow's Oz interpretations are still more popular compared to John's later Oz interpretations.

When collaborating with Baum, Denslow used many different bits and pieces taken from various different structures from places all around the world. It is very likely that the late "White City" was the main inspiration. This real life city was once a recreational center and famous for it's 1893 world's fair and was also a place L. Frank Baum himself visited and was truly inspired by. The White City of Chicago was originally envisioned to be like "Luna Park" and "Dreamland ", both state of the art American amusement parks built to entertain the general public in the late 1800's and early 1900's.

Denslow gave the Emerald City a very futuristic and elaborate look, combining both of these inspirational establishments while adding hints of a 19th/20th century Spanish and Nouveau manner of Spaniard, Antoni Gaudi. The themes and architecture of the city buildings also seemed to channel the "Crystal Palace" at Sydenham in the circa 1800's. In the later Oz books It is highly likely that the hotel known as "Hotel Del Coronado" in California, influenced Baum's description as well as in the artwork by Neill. Del Coronado was built in 1888 and has a rather glamorous history as many iconic Hollywood celebrities and notable people have visited or stayed there, such as L. Frank Baum, Marilyn Monroe and Lucille Ball.

The City of Emeralds can be found at the very end of Oz's famous Yellow Brick Road. The road stops right at the emerald studded gates which is connected to the green marble wall that surrounds the entire city. The city is a magnificent place indeed, being described as stately, statuesque, imposing and even intimidating. The equal of which has never been seen or discovered, (even in other enchanted realms and fairylands.) In fact, it is so magnificent that a bright green glow can be seen far off into the distance many miles away that shines brightly high up, above the city and into the sky even in broad daylight. The closer you get to the city, the more its glow intensifies, and becomes brighter and brighter until everything surrounding the city, including the rays of the sun appear to be of a greenish tint.

The handsome wall that circles the city is described as being incredibly solid and immense. It is very thick and of the finest green marble, polished smooth and studded with a perfusion of giant sparkling emeralds and green gems. These countless gems all glisten and dazzle in the sun ever so brightly, it could blind one if they were not careful.

These four city gates also face each of the four vast quadrants in Oz. Surprisingly, the gate on the west wing of Oz, originally did not have any type of road of which lead to the Winkie Country of Oz like the others lead into their own directions they faced. This is because no one wished to ever venture west since the people of Oz were far too cautious to trespass on into the Wicked Witch of the West's turf. Because this Wicked Witch had already imprisoned and enslaved the natives of the Winkie Country called Winkies. And the Witch would not hesitate to do the same with any intruders, so people stayed far away, resulting in the Emerald City administrators not wanting to be responsible for the horrible fate of any Ozians. Thus, resulting in not having a legitimate way for people to travel into the western quadrant.

When the Emerald City was first built, the thick high wall of polished marble that surrounded the entire city was all green and covered with giant sparkling emeralds. However, the city itself, while mostly all green and still decorated with millions of big green jewels and precious gems was entirely not. Many other stones are used as decorations inside the buildings such as rubies, diamonds, and sapphires, yet outwardly only emeralds appear, which is why the place is called the Emerald City. But the Wizard still demanded that anyone who passed the city gates and entered into his emerald studded empire, wear green-tinted spectacles/eyeglasses. The glasses became mandatory by the Wizard's law and the people who became residents were all told they had to wear them for their own good. To keep the glasses in place, the glasses consist of two 24 Karat gold bands on each side that reach all the way around to meet at the back of the wearer's head. Then the two bands are securely locked on tight. As long as the gold bands are locked on the glasses are unable to be taken off, even if one wishes to do so. The citizens and visitors of Emerald City must wear them at all times, living with these spectacles on 24/7. They must eat, sleep, bathe and go about their daily routines while wearing them. Even the animals of Oz who come to Emerald City are expected to wear the green tinted eye wear. There is only one key that can lock/unlock these devices which the Guardian of the Gates wears on a thick solid gold chain around his neck.

When Dorothy and her friends first entered the city for the very first time, before walking into the city's streets they first found themselves all in an office-chamber. Much like a service entrance that is described as an all green room with a high bejeweled gothic ceiling. This chamber room is where the staff of administrators and servants work, this is also where the spectacles are held. Once visitors have the spectacles adorned, they are lead to a huge round circular door that resembles a large vault. This door/vault leads straight into the city.

To divide and separate the streets from the sidewalks, thousands of large emeralds are neatly lined up along the marble as curbs, making blocks and neighborhoods for the citizens. The authentic and elaborate buildings are of well kept houses, apartments, shops, beauty parlors, markets, restaurants, libraries, workshops, toy stores, theaters, dazzling jeweled palaces, plazas, pools, and hundreds of solid gold towers reaching over 100 feet high. Most of the buildings have spacious balconies which overlook the vast city below. The building windows consist of luxurious green stain glass, outlined with solid gold window panes encrusted with gems. Any one of which would be the pride and glory of a King's crown.

Most of the buildings all flaunt green silk flags at the very tip tops that flutter in the breeze and read OZ in golden embroidery. Green marble bridges run across many of the buildings to let the citizens cross from one establishment to the next. The city is also said to have dozens of gorgeous gardens, green glass solariums and private courtyards filled with blooming green flowers. To accompany the gardens many green marble statues, bird baths, marble sitting benches and emerald studded light post are placed all around to decorate the area. There are also multiple parks holding refreshing green ponds with electric marble water fountains placed in the center of these ponds that spray green perfumed water high into the air.

The Emerald City's citizens are rather sheltered people but also content, happy and at peace with their lives. There is a vendor on the streets selling green articles of every variety, and other vendors who sell green lemonade, beverages of which the city children purchase with green pennies. This contrasts with the later description of Oz, in which money does not feature nor even exist. When Ozma becomes ruler of Emerald City she eliminated money in general. Interpreters have argued that the Wizard may have introduced money into the city, and to the land of Oz, but this is not in the original text itself. Even though it is very likely that he did. In Gregory Maguire's Oz re-imagining Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, this is a idea that is used in his novel (the Wizard introduces the value of money to the people of Oz, among many other things). 041b061a72


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