Legendary mountain in Switzerland, 3970 meters high. It's a well-known tourist attraction in Berner Oberland. It is famous for its North Face, the Nordwand, which has taken many lives during the years. The face stands dark, flat and quiet in the valley, 1800 meters tall.
The mountain was first climbed in 1865 by Charles Barrington, but it took until 1935 before anyone dared trying the North Face of Eiger. After many attempts and accidents, finally in 1938 Heinrich Herrer (and three others; I'm trying to find their names) was the first one to conquer the wall. During the 1930s and the following decades there were many failed attempts at climbing the Nordwand, and the little town of Grindelwald - from where one has a great view of the wall - was packed with journalists and eager climbers. Several climbers were seen frozen to death, alternatively falling down, by the audience. The very first attempt resulted in that one man's frozen body could be seen on the mountain for over a year, before it could be removed.
Still in the 1940s and 50s, many lives were lost here. During the 60s new ways to the top were explored and what first took 85 hours, Reinhold Messner and Peter Habeler climbed in only 10 hours in 1973. This can also be compared with the 30 days it took a team using siege tactics in the 70s. Today you can buy a guided climb to the top via the Nordwand.
The highest situated railway station in Europe, Jungfraujoch, is located inside the mountain at 3300 meters, and has a spectacular view. There is also a Nordwand station with windows out of the north face of the Eiger. Theoretically you could start climbing there, but that wouldn't be fair, would it?
The movie Eiger Sanction with Clint Eastwood was filmed here, and shows some nice climbing on the wall.
Some facts from different sources such as: The White Spider by Heinrich Harrer (book) and various climbing web sites