Temple of Olympian Zeus description and photos - Greece: Athens (Topic)

Traval Articles » Travel » Temple of Olympian Zeus description and photos - Greece: Athens

Temple of Olympian Zeus description and photos - Greece: Athens

Temple of Olympian Zeus description and photos - Greece: Athens

Temple of Olympian Zeus description and photos - Greece: Athens. Detailed information about the attraction. Description, photographs and a map showing the nearest significant objects. The name in English is Temple of Olympian Zeus.

Photo and description

One of the main and most popular sights of Athens is undoubtedly the Temple of Olympian Zeus or the so-called Olympus. The ruins of the once majestic temple lie about 700 meters south of Syntagma Square and only half a kilometer from the legendary Athenian Acropolis.

Construction of the temple began around 520 BC. in the era of the tyranny of Peisistratus. The Temple of Olympian Zeus was supposed to become the most grandiose structure of the ancient world and surpass the famous Heraion on the island of Samos and one of the seven wonders of the world - the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus. In the original project, the temple was supposed to be built in the Doric order, on a colossal foundation (41x108 m) with a double colonnade surrounding the cella (8 and 21 columns each). Local limestone was used as a building material. In 510 BC. the tyranny regime was overthrown, and the construction of the temple was stopped. By this time, the foundation was erected and only partially the columns.

The construction of the temple was resumed only in 174 AD. by decree of the Syrian king Antiochus IV Epiphanes. Under the leadership of the Roman architect Decimus Cossutius, a new project was developed, which significantly differed from the first - in the front and rear of the temple in the new project there were three rows of columns (8 columns in a row), and on the flanks - two rows of 20 columns. The Doric order was replaced by the Corinthian one, and instead of limestone it was decided to use a more expensive but high-quality Pentelian marble. The temple was only half completed when construction, after the death of Antiochus IV in 164 BC, stopped again.

The temple was completed at the beginning of the 2nd century AD. by decree of the Roman Emperor Hadrian in the framework of the large-scale construction initiated by him in Athens. The inauguration of the temple took place in 132 during the second visit of Emperor Hadrian to Athens. As a sign of respect and gratitude, the inhabitants of Athens, at their own expense, ordered a colossal statue of the emperor himself, which was installed behind the temple. But the most impressive was the statue of Zeus, made of gold and ivory, and located in the central part intact (unfortunately, it has not survived to this day).

In 425, Emperor Theodosius II banned the service of the Roman and Greek gods , and the temple gradually fell into decay. Over the next centuries, the temple was systematically destroyed, both due to natural disasters and thanks to people, who actively used various architectural fragments for the construction of new structures. By the end of the Byzantine period, the temple was virtually destroyed. To this day, only 15 upright huge columns decorated with the Corinthian capital have survived, the height of which is about 17 m and the diameter is 2 m, and one collapsed column, which supposedly fell in 1852 during a strong hurricane.

Temple of Zeus Olympic is an important historical and architectural monument and is under state protection.

Image Image Image Image Image Image

We also recommend reading Casa Loma description and photos - Canada: Toronto

Topic: Temple of Olympian Zeus description and photos - Greece: Athens.Temple of Olympian Zeus description and photos - Greece: Athens

Author: Kelly Costine