The Parthenon

The Parthenon in Athens is perhaps one of the greatest architectural achievements by the Athenians.After being repeatedly demolished, the Parthenon stood as a "symbol of Greek independence, culture, and pride"(111 Thames & Hudson). In 447 BC.Pericles promoted building the Parthenon on the remains of an earlier temple on the Acropolis.The proposal of the Parthenon pleased the Athenians because "it served as much as a celebration of Athens and her achievements as it did as a centre to worship the goddess Athena"(111 Thames & Hudson).The new temple to Athena was "sacked by the Persians"(187 Abrams), so Kimon of Athens hired Callicrates to again begin rebuilding the temple to Athena.But, Pericles temporarily halted construction to commission another architect, Ictinos.So, together Callicrates and Ictinos "made many subtle adjustments in the lines of the structure and the placement of columns to refine the design and possibly to counteract the effects of various opti!
cal illusions that would otherwise seem to distort its (The Parthenon) appearance when it was viewed from a distance"(188 Abrams). This is why the Parthenon is so achtecturaly amazing.Besides its shear size, the materials used were very heavy and difficult to work with, yet the Parthenon interior cella and exterior and astoundingly flawless.With the exception of the timber roof supports, the entire Parthenon was built from marble "from the quarries of Mt. Pentelicon"(112 Thames & Hudson).After such struggles, it is not hard to imagine why the Parthenon was so important to the Athenians.


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