Theseion : Michelin's recommendations
Crowning a hill 66 m high, this Doric temple of the 5C B.C., one of the best preserved in the Greek world, overlooks the Agora, the centre of Athenian public life in antiquity. Called the Theseion (the temple of Theseus), it is in fact the Hephaisteion mentioned by Pausanias: a place of worship to Hephaistos, the god of blacksmiths and metalworkers, of whom there are many in the neighbouring district (contemporary Ifestou Street). In the Byzantine epoch it became St George's Church and then a cemetery in the open countryside until last century: the Athenian people came to dance near here on Easter day, and the last religious office was celebrated in 1834, when it received the first collections of the National Archaeological Museum. Surrounding it, pomegranate trees and myrtles call to mind the ancient epoch. Slightly older and smaller than the Parthenon, built of stone and not marble, and painted in ancient times, its proportions are harmonious: 31.77 m by 13.72 m and 26 lateral columns for 12 frontal ones. The mutilated sculptures of the outer frieze evoke the adventures of Heracles and Theseus. The eastern portico (pronaos) still has its coffered marble ceiling. It leads to the naos, comparable to the nave of a church with its portals and its cradle vault of the 5C A.D. On the northern wall are funerary slabs, one of which, in memory of G. Watson who died in Athens in 1810, bears an inscription attributed to Byron. From the terrace, lovely views over the Agora, the Monastiráki district and the Acropolis.
- Address : Av. Apostalou-Pavlou GR - 11851 Athína11851Athína
Read also our reports on: Theseion