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Parthenon Historical Facts and Pictures

Located in the Athenian Acropolis, Greece, the temple of Parthenon is dedicated to Athena, the goddess of courage, wisdom and inspiration, according to Greek mythology. Constructed in 438 BC, it is considered as the most important surviving structure of Classical Greece. The present structure replaced an earlier temple of Athena, which the historians have named Older-Parthenon or Pre-Parthenon.

Parthenon

Parthenon

Parthenon Pictures

Parthenon Pictures

Architectural description of Parthenon

The temple exhibits octastyle peripteral version of Doric architecture with Ionic features. Standing on top of a three-stepped platform, the structure consists of twenty-five columns of Doric order, of which eight are situated at the façade and the rest at the flanks. The colonnade encircles a large inner masonry structure, known as the cella, which housed the huge statue of goddess Athena. The gable of the building at either end is concluded with a triangular pediment, filled with sculptures.

Parthenon Metopes

Parthenon Metopes

Parthenon Images

Parthenon Images

Parthenon Photos

Parthenon Photos

Parthenon at Night

Parthenon at Night

Parthenon at Night

Inside of Parthenon

Inside of Parthenon

Inside of Parthenon

Parthenon Inside

Parthenon Inside

Parthenon Interior

Parthenon Interior

The Statue of Athena at Parthenon

Situated inside the temple, the chryselephantine statue of the goddess Athena, known as Athena Parthenos, was sculpted by Phidias. It features extensively-colored decorative stonework. The statue features the head of Medusa on her breast, which was carved in ivory. She holds a spear and a 4-cubit high figurine of victory in her hands and a serpent lies at her feet. There is a relief of the birth of Pandora on the pedestal.

Athena Statue

Athena Statue

Statue of Athena

Statue of Athena

The temple had undergone several religious conversions in the course of history. Initially it was used as a treasury like other Greek temples. However, in the 5th century AD, the temple was transformed into a Christian church, dedicated to Virgin Mary. It was also converted into a mosque after the Ottoman Conquest in the early 1460s. In 1687, the structure of the temple and many of its sculptures were severely damaged by an explosion that resulted from the Venetian bombardment. The surviving sculptures, known as the Parthenon Marbles or Elgin Marbles, are now placed in the British Museum in London.

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Greece

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Quick Info

Athens, Greece

438 BC

Temple
Greek government
Classical
Iktinos, Kallikrates
Phidias
13.72 m
Goddess Athena