On my last day of my business trip to London at the end of January, I noticed from a tour bus the striking structure in the photograph. Its official name for the last couple of years, following one of those execrable sponsorship deals, has been the EDF Energy London Eye. But when I showed the photo to a colleague who lives in the area, she immediately referred to it as “The Eye,” and I suspect that most people would use that or the slightly longer “London Eye.”
In any case, when it was built in 1999 (giving rise to yet another name, the Millennium Eye), it was the tallest Ferris wheel in the world. Since then, it’s been surpassed in size by a couple in Asia, but I suspect that natives will continue to regard it as a fine bankside adornment of the Thames, the way that New Yorkers still fondly behold the Chrysler Building years after it was superseded as the world’s tallest building.