The Italian Renaissance was a period of Italian history that began in the 14th century and lasted until the 17th century. It peaked during the 15th and 16th centuries, spreading across Europe and marking the transition from the Middle Ages to Modernity; the French word renaissance means "Rebirth" and defines the period as one of cultural revival and renewed interest in classical antiquity after the centuries labeled the Dark Ages by Renaissance humanists. The Renaissance author Giorgio Vasari used the term "Rebirth" in his Lives of the Most Excellent Painters and Architects but the concept became widespread only in the 19th century, after the works of scholars such as Jules Michelet and Jacob Burckhardt; the Renaissance began in Tuscany, was centred in the city of Florence. Florence, one of the several city-states of the peninsula, rose to economic prominence by providing credit for European monarchs and laying down the groundwork for capitalism and banking; the Renaissance spread to Venice, heart of a mediterranean empire and in control of the trade routes with the east since the participation in the crusades and the voyages of Marco Polo, where the remains of ancient Greek culture were brought together and provided humanist scholars with new texts.
The Renaissance had a significant effect on the Papal States and Rome rebuilt by Humanist and Renaissance popes, who were involved in Italian politics, in arbitrating disputes between competing colonial powers and in opposing the Reformation. The Italian Renaissance is best known for its achievements in painting, sculpture, music, philosophy and exploration. Italy became the recognized European leader in all these areas by the late 15th century, during the Peace of Lodi agreed between Italian states; the Italian Renaissance peaked in the mid-16th century as domestic disputes and foreign invasions plunged the region into the turmoil of the Italian Wars. However, the ideas and ideals of the Italian Renaissance endured and spread into the rest of Europe, setting off the Northern Renaissance. Italian explorers from the maritime republics served under the auspices of European monarchs, ushering the Age of discovery; the most famous among them are Christopher Columbus who sailed for Spain, Giovanni da Verrazzano for France, Amerigo Vespucci for Portugal, John Cabot for England.
Italian scientists such as Falloppio, Galileo, played a key role in the scientific revolution and foreigners such as Copernicus and Vesalius worked in Italian universities. Various events and dates of the 17th century, such as the conclusion of the European Wars of Religion in 1648, have been proposed for the end of the Renaissance. Accounts of Renaissance literature begin with the three great poets of the 14th century: Dante Alighieri and Boccaccio. Famous vernacular poets of the Renaissance include the renaissance epic authors Luigi Pulci, Matteo Maria Boiardo, Ludovico Ariosto and Torquato Tasso. 15th-century writers such as the poet Poliziano and the Platonist philosopher Marsilio Ficino made extensive translations from both Latin and Greek. In the early 16th century, Castiglione laid out his vision of the ideal gentleman and lady in The Book of the Courtier, while Machiavelli cast a jaundiced eye on "la verità effettuale della cosa"—the actual truth of things—in The Prince, composed, in humanistic style, chiefly of parallel ancient and modern examples of Virtù.
Historians of the period include Machiavelli himself, his friend and critic Francesco Guicciardini and Giovanni Botero. The Aldine Press, founded by the printer Aldo Manuzio, active in Venice, developed Italic type and portable printed books that could be carried in one's pocket, as well as being the first to publish editions of books in Ancient Greek. Venice became the birthplace of the Commedia dell'Arte. Italian Renaissance art exercised a dominant influence on subsequent European painting and sculpture for centuries afterwards, with artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Giotto di Bondone, Fra Angelico, Piero della Francesca, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Perugino and Titian; the same is true for architecture, as practiced by Brunelleschi, Leon Battista Alberti, Andrea Palladio, Bramante. Their works include, to name only a few, the Florence Cathedral, St. Peter's Basilica in Rome, the Tempio Malatestiano in Rimini, as well as several private residences; the musical era of the Italian Renaissance was defined by the Roman School and by the Venetian School and the birth of Opera in Florence.
In philosophy, thinkers such as Galileo, Giordano Bruno and Pico della Mirandola, emphasized naturalism and humanism, thus rejecting dogma and scholasticism. By the Late Middle Ages, the former heartland of the Roman Empire, southern Italy were poorer than the North. Rome was a city of ancient ruins, the Papal States were loosely administered, vulnerable to external interference such as that of France, Spain; the Papacy was affronted when the Avignon Papacy was created in southern France as a consequence of pressure from King Philip the Fair of France. In the south, Sicily had for some time been under foreign domination, by the Arabs and the Normans. Sicily had prospered for 150 years during the Emirate of Sicily and for two centuries during the Norman Kingdom and the Hohenstaufen Kingdom, but had declined by the late
The Ionic order forms one of the three classical orders of classical architecture, the other two canonic orders being the Doric and the Corinthian. There are two lesser orders: the Tuscan, the rich variant of Corinthian called the composite order, both added by 16th-century Italian architectural writers, based on Roman practice. Of the three canonic orders, the Ionic order has the narrowest columns; the Ionic capital is characterized by the use of volutes. The Ionic columns stand on a base which separates the shaft of the column from the stylobate or platform. Since Vitruvius, a female character has been ascribed to the Ionic; the major features of the Ionic order are the volutes of its capital, which have been the subject of much theoretical and practical discourse, based on a brief and obscure passage in Vitruvius. The only tools required to design these features were a straight-edge, a right angle, string and a compass. Below the volutes, the Ionic column may have a wide collar or banding separating the capital from the fluted shaft, or a swag of fruit and flowers may swing from the clefts or "neck" formed by the volutes.
The volutes lay in a single plane. This feature of the Ionic order made it more pliant and satisfactory than the Doric to critical eyes in the 4th century BC: angling the volutes on the corner columns ensured that they "read" when seen from either front or side facade; the 16th-century Renaissance architect and theorist Vincenzo Scamozzi designed a version of such a four-sided Ionic capital. The Ionic column is always more slender than the Doric. Ionic columns are most fluted. After a little early experimentation, the number of hollow flutes in the shaft settled at 24; this standardization kept the fluting in a familiar proportion to the diameter of the column at any scale when the height of the column was exaggerated. Roman fluting leaves a little of the column surface between each hollow. In some instances, the fluting has been omitted. English architect Inigo Jones introduced a note of sobriety with plain Ionic columns on his Banqueting House at Whitehall Palace and when Beaux-Arts architect John Russell Pope wanted to convey the manly stamina combined with intellect of Theodore Roosevelt, he left colossal Ionic columns unfluted on the Roosevelt memorial at the American Museum of Natural History, New York City, for an unusual impression of strength and stature.
Wabash Railroad architect R. E. Mohr included 8 unfluted Ionic frontal columns on his 1928 design for the railroad's St. Louis suburban stop Delmar Station; the entablature resting on the columns has three parts: a plain architrave divided into two, or more three, with a frieze resting on it that may be richly sculptural, a cornice built up with dentils, with a corona and cyma molding to support the projecting roof. Pictorial narrative bas-relief frieze carving provides a characteristic feature of the Ionic order, in the area where the Doric order is articulated with triglyphs. Roman and Renaissance practice condensed the height of the entablature by reducing the proportions of the architrave, which made the frieze more prominent; the Ionic anta capital is the ionic version of the anta capital, the crowning portion of an anta, the front edge of a supporting wall in Greek temple architecture. The anta is crowned by a stone block designed to spread the load from superstructure it supports, called an "anta capital" when it is structural, or sometimes "pilaster capital" if it is only decorative as during the Roman period.
In order not to protrude unduly from the wall, these anta capitals display a rather flat surface, so that the capital has more or less a rectangular-shaped structure overall. The ionic anta capital, in contrast to the regular column capitals, is decorated and includes bands of alternating lotuses and flame palmettes, bands of eggs and darts and beads and reels patterns, in order to maintain continuity with the decorative frieze lining the top of the walls; this difference with the column capitals disappeared with Roman times, when anta or pilaster capitals have designs similar to those of the column capitals. The ionic anta capitals as can be seen in the Ionic-order temple of the Erechtheion, are characteristically rectangular Ionic anta capitals, with extensive bands of floral patterns in prolongation of adjoining friezes; the Ionic order originated in the mid-6th century BC in Ionia, the southwestern coastland and islands of Asia Minor settled by Ionian Greeks, where an Ionian dialect was spoken.
The Ionic order column was being practiced in mainland Greece in the 5th century BC. It was most popular in the Archaic Period in Ionia; the first of the great Ionic temples was the Temple of Hera on Samos, built about 570–560 BC by the architect Rhoikos. It stood for only a decade. A longer-lasting 6th century Ionic temple was the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, one of t
An entablature is the superstructure of moldings and bands which lies horizontally above columns, resting on their capitals. Entablatures are major elements of classical architecture, are divided into the architrave, the frieze, the cornice; the Greek and Roman temples are believed to be based on wooden structures, the design transition from wooden to stone structures being called petrification. The structure of an entablature varies with the orders of architecture. In each order, the proportions of the subdivisions are defined by the proportions of the column. In Roman and Renaissance interpretations, it is approximately a quarter of the height of the column. Variants of entablature that do not fit these models are derived from them. In the pure classical Doric order entablature is simple; the architrave, the lowest band, is split, from bottom to top, into the guttae, the regulae, the taenia. The frieze is dominated by the triglyphs, vertically channelled tablets, separated by metopes, which may or may not be decorated.
The triglyphs sit on top of the taenia, a flat, horizontal protrusion, are finished at the bottom by decoration of drops, called guttae, which belong to the top of the architrave. The top of the triglyphs meet the protrusion of the cornice from the entablature; the underside of this protrusion is decorated with mutules, tablets that are finished with guttae. The cornice is split into the soffit, the corona, the cymatium; the soffit is the exposed underside. The corona and the cymatium are the principal parts of the cornice; the Ionic order of entablature adds the fascia in the architrave, which are flat horizontal protrusions, the dentils under the cornice, which are tooth-like rectangular block moldings. The Corinthian order adds a far more ornate cornice, from bottom to top, into the cyma reversa, the dentils, the ovulo, the modillions, the fascia, the cyma recta; the modillions are ornate brackets, similar in use to dentils, but in the shape of acanthus leaves. The frieze is sometimes omitted—for example, on the portico of the caryatides of the Erechtheum—and did not exist as a structure in the temple of Diana at Ephesus.
Neither is it found in the Lycian tombs, which are reproductions in the rock of timber structures based on early Ionian work. The entablature is an evolution of the primitive lintel, which spans two posts, supporting the ends of the roof rafters; the entablature together with the system of classical columns occurs outside classical architecture. It is used to complete the upper portion of a wall where columns are not present, in the case of pilasters or detached or engaged columns it is sometimes profiled around them; the use of the entablature, irrespective of columns, appeared after the Renaissance. Classical order Classical architecture Subdivisions of the entablature: Architrave Frieze Cornice
The Parthenon is a former temple on the Athenian Acropolis, dedicated to the goddess Athena, whom the people of Athens considered their patron. Construction began in 447 BC, it was completed in 438 BC, although decoration of the building continued until 432 BC. It is the most important surviving building of Classical Greece considered the zenith of the Doric order, its decorative sculptures are considered some of the high points of Greek art. The Parthenon is regarded as an enduring symbol of Ancient Greece, Athenian democracy and Western civilization, one of the world's greatest cultural monuments. To the Athenians who built it, the Parthenon and other Periclean monuments of the Acropolis were seen fundamentally as a celebration of Hellenic victory over the Persian invaders and as a thanksgiving to the gods for that victory; as of 2007 the Greek Ministry of Culture was carrying out a programme of selective restoration and reconstruction to ensure the stability of the ruined structure. The Parthenon itself replaced an older temple of Athena, which historians call the Pre-Parthenon or Older Parthenon, destroyed in the Persian invasion of 480 BC.
The temple is archaeoastronomically aligned to the Hyades. Like most Greek temples, the Parthenon served a practical purpose as the city treasury. For a time, it served as the treasury of the Delian League, which became the Athenian Empire. In the final decade of the sixth century AD, the Parthenon was converted into a Christian church dedicated to the Virgin Mary. After the Ottoman conquest, it was turned into a mosque in the early 1460s. On 26 September 1687, an Ottoman ammunition dump inside the building was ignited by Venetian bombardment; the resulting explosion damaged the Parthenon and its sculptures. From 1800 to 1803, Thomas Bruce, 7th Earl of Elgin removed some of the surviving sculptures with the alleged permission of the Turks of the Ottoman Empire; these sculptures, now known as the Elgin Marbles or the Parthenon Marbles, were sold in 1816 to the British Museum in London, where they are now displayed. Since 1983, the Greek government has been committed to the return of the sculptures to Greece.
The origin of the Parthenon's name is from the Greek word παρθενών, which referred to the "unmarried women's apartments" in a house and in the Parthenon's case seems to have been used at first only for a particular room of the temple. The Liddell–Scott–Jones Greek–English Lexicon states that this room was the western cella of the Parthenon, as does J. B. Bury. Jamauri D. Green holds that the parthenon was the room in which the peplos presented to Athena at the Panathenaic Festival was woven by the arrephoroi, a group of four young girls chosen to serve Athena each year. Christopher Pelling asserts that Athena Parthenos may have constituted a discrete cult of Athena, intimately connected with, but not identical to, that of Athena Polias. According to this theory, the name of the Parthenon means the "temple of the virgin goddess" and refers to the cult of Athena Parthenos, associated with the temple; the epithet parthénos meant "maiden, girl", but "virgin, unmarried woman" and was used for Artemis, the goddess of wild animals, the hunt, vegetation, for Athena, the goddess of strategy and tactics and practical reason.
It has been suggested that the name of the temple alludes to the maidens, whose supreme sacrifice guaranteed the safety of the city. Parthénos has been applied to the Virgin Mary, Parthénos Maria, the Parthenon had been converted to a Christian church dedicated to the Virgin Mary in the final decade of the sixth century; the first instance in which Parthenon refers to the entire building is found in the writings of the 4th century BC orator Demosthenes. In 5th-century building accounts, the structure is called ho naos; the architects Iktinos and Callicrates are said to have called the building Hekatompedos in their lost treatise on Athenian architecture, and, in the 4th century and the building was referred to as the Hekatompedos or the Hekatompedon as well as the Parthenon. Because the Parthenon was dedicated to the Greek goddess Athena, it has sometimes been referred to as the Temple of Minerva, the Roman name for Athena during the 19th century. Although the Parthenon is architecturally a temple and is called so, it is not one in the conventional sense of the word.
A small shrine has been excavated within the building, on the site of an older sanctuary dedicated to Athena as a way to get closer to the goddess, but the Parthenon never hosted the cult of Athena Polias, patron of Athens: the cult image, bathed in the sea and to, presented the peplos, was an olivewood xoanon, located at an older altar on the northern side of the Acropolis. The colossal statue of Athena by Phidias was not related to any cult and is not known to have inspired any religious fervour, it did not seem to have any priestess, cult name. According to Thucydides, Pericles once referred to the statue as a gold reserve, stressing that it "contained forty talents of pure gold and it was all removable"; the Athenian statesman thus implies that the metal, obtained from contemporary coinage, could be used again without any impiety. The Parthenon should be viewed as a grand setting for Phidias' votive statue rather than a cult site, it is said in many writings of the G
Ancient Egypt was a civilization of ancient North Africa, concentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile River in the place, now the country Egypt. Ancient Egyptian civilization followed prehistoric Egypt and coalesced around 3100 BC with the political unification of Upper and Lower Egypt under Menes; the history of ancient Egypt occurred as a series of stable kingdoms, separated by periods of relative instability known as Intermediate Periods: the Old Kingdom of the Early Bronze Age, the Middle Kingdom of the Middle Bronze Age and the New Kingdom of the Late Bronze Age. Egypt reached the pinnacle of its power in the New Kingdom, ruling much of Nubia and a sizable portion of the Near East, after which it entered a period of slow decline. During the course of its history Egypt was invaded or conquered by a number of foreign powers, including the Hyksos, the Libyans, the Nubians, the Assyrians, the Achaemenid Persians, the Macedonians under the command of Alexander the Great; the Greek Ptolemaic Kingdom, formed in the aftermath of Alexander's death, ruled Egypt until 30 BC, under Cleopatra, it fell to the Roman Empire and became a Roman province.
The success of ancient Egyptian civilization came from its ability to adapt to the conditions of the Nile River valley for agriculture. The predictable flooding and controlled irrigation of the fertile valley produced surplus crops, which supported a more dense population, social development and culture. With resources to spare, the administration sponsored mineral exploitation of the valley and surrounding desert regions, the early development of an independent writing system, the organization of collective construction and agricultural projects, trade with surrounding regions, a military intended to assert Egyptian dominance. Motivating and organizing these activities was a bureaucracy of elite scribes, religious leaders, administrators under the control of a pharaoh, who ensured the cooperation and unity of the Egyptian people in the context of an elaborate system of religious beliefs; the many achievements of the ancient Egyptians include the quarrying and construction techniques that supported the building of monumental pyramids and obelisks.
Ancient Egypt has left a lasting legacy. Its art and architecture were copied, its antiquities carried off to far corners of the world, its monumental ruins have inspired the imaginations of writers for centuries. A new-found respect for antiquities and excavations in the early modern period by Europeans and Egyptians led to the scientific investigation of Egyptian civilization and a greater appreciation of its cultural legacy; the Nile has been the lifeline of its region for much of human history. The fertile floodplain of the Nile gave humans the opportunity to develop a settled agricultural economy and a more sophisticated, centralized society that became a cornerstone in the history of human civilization. Nomadic modern human hunter-gatherers began living in the Nile valley through the end of the Middle Pleistocene some 120,000 years ago. By the late Paleolithic period, the arid climate of Northern Africa became hot and dry, forcing the populations of the area to concentrate along the river region.
In Predynastic and Early Dynastic times, the Egyptian climate was much less arid. Large regions of Egypt were traversed by herds of grazing ungulates. Foliage and fauna were far more prolific in all environs and the Nile region supported large populations of waterfowl. Hunting would have been common for Egyptians, this is the period when many animals were first domesticated. By about 5500 BC, small tribes living in the Nile valley had developed into a series of cultures demonstrating firm control of agriculture and animal husbandry, identifiable by their pottery and personal items, such as combs and beads; the largest of these early cultures in upper Egypt was the Badari, which originated in the Western Desert. The Badari was followed by the Amratian and Gerzeh cultures, which brought a number of technological improvements; as early as the Naqada I Period, predynastic Egyptians imported obsidian from Ethiopia, used to shape blades and other objects from flakes. In Naqada II times, early evidence exists of contact with the Near East Canaan and the Byblos coast.
Over a period of about 1,000 years, the Naqada culture developed from a few small farming communities into a powerful civilization whose leaders were in complete control of the people and resources of the Nile valley. Establishing a power center at Nekhen, at Abydos, Naqada III leaders expanded their control of Egypt northwards along the Nile, they traded with Nubia to the south, the oases of the western desert to the west, the cultures of the eastern Mediterranean and Near East to the east, initiating a period of Egypt-Mesopotamia relations. The Naqada culture manufactured a diverse selection of material goods, reflective of the increasing power and wealth of the elite, as well as societal personal-use items, which included combs, small statuary, painted pottery, high quality decorative stone vases, cosmetic palettes, jewelry made of gold and ivory, they developed a ceramic glaze known as faience, used well into the Roman Per
A temple is a structure reserved for religious or spiritual rituals and activities such as prayer and sacrifice. It is used for such buildings belonging to all faiths where a more specific term such as church, mosque or synagogue is not used in English; these include Hinduism and Jainism among religions with many modern followers, as well as other ancient religions such as Ancient Egyptian religion. The form and function of temples is thus variable, though they are considered by believers to be in some sense the "house" of one or more deities. Offerings of some sort are made to the deity, other rituals enacted, a special group of clergy maintain, operate the temple; the degree to which the whole population of believers can access the building varies significantly. Temples have a main building and a larger precinct, which may contain many other buildings, or may be a dome shaped structure, much like an igloo; the word comes from Ancient Rome, where a templum constituted a sacred precinct as defined by a priest, or augur.
It has the same root as the word "template", a plan in preparation of the building, marked out on the ground by the augur. Templa became associated with the dwelling places of a god or gods. Despite the specific set of meanings associated with the word, it has now become used to describe a house of worship for any number of religions and is used for time periods prior to the Romans; the temple-building tradition of Mesopotamia derived from the cults of gods and deities in the Mesopotamian religion. It spanned several civilizations; the most common temple architecture of Mesopotamia is the structure of sun-baked bricks called a Ziggurat, having the form of a terraced step pyramid with a flat upper terrace where the shrine or temple stood. Ancient Egyptian temples were meant as places for the deities to reside on earth. Indeed, the term the Egyptians most used to describe the temple building, ḥwt-nṯr, means "mansion of a god". A god's presence in the temple linked the human and divine realms and allowed humans to interact with the god through ritual.
These rituals, it was believed, sustained the god and allowed it to continue to play its proper role in nature. They were therefore a key part of the maintenance of maat, the ideal order of nature and of human society in Egyptian belief. Maintaining maat was the entire purpose of Egyptian religion, thus it was the purpose of a temple as well. Ancient Egyptian temples were of economic significance to Egyptian society; the temples stored and redistributed grain and came to own large portions of the nation's arable land. In addition, many of these Egyptian temples utilized the Tripartite Floor Plan in order to draw visitors to the center room. Though today we call most Greek religious buildings "temples," the ancient Greeks would have referred to a temenos, or sacred precinct, its sacredness connected with a holy grove, was more important than the building itself, as it contained the open air altar on which the sacrifices were made. The building which housed the cult statue in its naos was a rather simple structure, but by the middle of the 6th century BCE had become elaborate.
Greek temple architecture had a profound influence on ancient architectural traditions. The rituals that located and sited Roman temples were performed by an augur through the observation of the flight of birds or other natural phenomenon. Roman temples faced east or toward the rising sun, but the specifics of the orientation are not known today. In ancient Rome only the native deities of Roman mythology had a templum; the Romans referred to a holy place of a pagan religion as fanum. Medieval Latin writers sometimes used the word templum reserved for temples of the ancient Roman religion. In some cases it is hard to determine whether a temple was an outdoor shrine. For temple buildings of the Vikings, the Old Norse term hof is used. A Zoroastrian temple may be called a Dar-e-mehr and a Atashkadeh. A fire temple in Zoroastrianism is the place of worship for Zoroastrians. Zoroastrians revere fire in any form, their temples contains an eternal flame, with Atash Behram as the highest grade of all, as it combines 16 different types of fire gathered in elaborate rituals.
In the Zoroastrian religion, together with clean water, are agents of ritual purity. Clean, white "ash for the purification ceremonies is regarded as the basis of ritual life," which, "are the rites proper to the tending of a domestic fire, for the temple fire is that of the hearth fire raised to a new solemnity". Hindu temples are known by many different names, varying on region and language, including Alayam, Mandira, Gudi, Koil, Kovil, Déul, Devasthana, Deva Mandiraya and Devalaya. A Hindu temple is the seat and dwelling of Hindu gods, it is a structure designed to bring human gods together according to Hindu faith. Inside its Garbhagriha innermost sanctum, a Hindu temple contains a Hindu god's image. Hindu temples are magnificent with a rich history. There is evidence of use of sacred ground as far back as the Bronze Age and during the Indus Valley Civilization. Outside of the Indian subcontinent (India
The Athenian Treasury at Delphi was constructed by the Athenians to house dedications and votive offerings made by their city and citizens to the sanctuary of Apollo. The entire treasury including its sculptural decoration is built of Parian marble; the date of construction is disputed, scholarly opinions range from 510 to 480 BCE. It is located directly below the Temple of Apollo along the Sacred Way for all visitors to view the Athenian treasury on the way up to the sanctuary. Pausanias mentions the building in his account of the sanctuary, claiming that it was dedicated from the spoils of the Battle of Marathon, fought in 490 BCE against the Persians; the Battle of Marathon can be seen in some of the images of the metopes which compare their victory to mythology. By using the founder of Athens, Theseus, to show the victories of Athens, the treasury established Athens as one of the most powerful, city-states of Greece. According to archeological records, the Athenian treasury metopes display the earliest known presence of Theseus in a large-scale sculpture.
Prior to this treasury, Theseus had been depicted on vase paintings, but never before on architecture. Although Herakles was depicted in the metopes, the added heroic character showed the Athenian's increasing devotion to Theseus; the pairing of the two heroes was a metaphor alluding to the Battle of Marathon. The metopes show Athenian identity and how they viewed their enemies both domestic. Several other city-states built treasuries in the panhellenic site of Delphi. Among other firsts, the Athenian treasury was the first Panhellenic sanctuary, dedicated by Athenians; the building was excavated by the French School at Athens, led by Pierre de La Coste-Messelière, reconstructed from 1903–1906. The structure is still visible in situ; the thirty metopes of the treasury are 67 cm tall and 62–64 cm wide, nine along the long sides and six along the short, depicted the labors of Herakles and Theseus. This is the earliest surviving juxtaposition of the two. Many of these metopes were found in the surrounding area and it is disputed on the order to which they would have appeared.
Theseus was the mythical king of its founder. Thesean metopes include: Theseus and Athena Theseus and Sinis Theseus and the Crommyonian sow Theseus and Sciron Theseus and Cercyon Theseus and Procrustes Theseus and the Bull of Marathon Theseus and the Minotaur Theseus and the Captive AmazonHeroklean metopes include: Heracles and the Nemean Lion Heracles and the Ceryneian Hind Heracles and the Centaur Heracles and Cycnus Heracles and Orthrus Cows of Geryon Geryon The platform upon which the treasury stands has a prominent inscription on its south face. ΑΘΕΝΑΙΟΙ ΤΙ ΑΠΟΛΛΟΝΟΝ ΑΚΙΝΙΑ ΤΕΣ ΜΑΡΑΘΝΙ ΜΣ. The Athenians dedicated this to Apollo as first-fruits from the Persians at the Battle of Marathon; the Athenian Treasury in Delphi was built according to a typical distyle in antis design, with two antae framing two columns. The ancient writer and traveler Pausanias was “emphatic that the Athenian Treasury was built from the spoils from the landing of the Persian general Datis at Marathon”; this means that a date than 490 BCE, after the Battle of Marathon and accounting for time of construction would be acceptable to Pausanias.
Despite being a primary source, Pausanias on occasion may have been misguided or misinformed, classical scholars still maintain the great date debate. John Boardman notes that “on a purely archaeological and stylistic grounds the Treasury has appeared to many scholars to date around 500 BCE, some would put it earlier.” Recent findings compiled by University of Chicago professor Richard T. Neer, referencing excavations from 1989, advocates for the date:“A ledge of 0.30 meters in width projects from the Treasury’s stereobate along its south side only, that this ledge helps to support the Marathon base. In other words, the plan of the Treasury takes the base into account from the earliest phase of construction; the two structures are thus integral, both must date after the battle of Marathon in 490 BCE. With this archaeological datum, the chronology of the Athenian treasury must be considered settled. Pausanias was correct.”It is debated to have an earlier construction date due to the late archaic style used for the architecture.
The Doric style was modeled after the use of wood to create structures. The paintings inside the treasury were dated back to the 480's BCE making specialists believe construction started before the military win; the treasury was made to contain votive offerings such as spoils of war and Kouros. This is where the famous twin kouros statues and Bition, were found, they were made at the Temple of Athena in Argos, but were given to the Athenian Treasury as a mark of respect. Due to Athens being a super power at the time, many city-states paid them for protection; the treasury was not only an offering to the gods, but a statement of their power showing off armors and other pottery. The treasury was a statement about the wealth of their new government. After transitioning from a tyrant ruled city-state into a democracy, the Athenians sought to internationally display their increased military success and prosperity. Votive offerings were given after a great win, a prayer, or a funeral piece; these offerings were given by all Greeks to the gods in a sign of worship.
Having separate treasuries allowed Athens to show more of their prominent victories and achievements, establishing their identity as a people