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Erechtheum

The Erechtheum of Acropolis

The Erechtheion, is a temple of Ionic style on the Acropolis in Athens, it was built between 420 to 406 BC . The design probably goes back to Pericles,who died atthe beginning of the construction . Builders of the temple was the architects Philokles and Archilochos under whose supervision the temple was completed around 406.

The Erechtheion or Erechtheum was originally was the palace of the mythical king Erechtheus I. The temple combines in a complex architectural form several ancient figures of gods and heroes. In the antiquity the temple included the allegedly fallen from the sky wooden image of the city goddess Athena, near by it was the mark of Poseidon's trident, the salt source, and the Olive tree of Athena as reminders of the mythical contest of the two gods. Within the temple it was believed that the holy snake of Athens was lived. It also included the grave of the mythical king Cecrops I.

The Erechtheum is known mainly through its porch, its columns instead of pillars had six girls (korai) known as the Caryatids (named after the city of Karya in the Peloponnese), but it is not known exactly who they represent. One of the six Caryatids was brought in 1811 by Lord Elgin to Britain (now in the British Museum), the remaining five were replaced by replicas to prevent further damage from the smog (the originals are in the Acropolis Museum).

Erechtheum

 caryatids

Erechtheum of the Acropolis

  

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