The Parthenon

The Parthenon...enjoys the reputation of being the most perfect Doric temple ever built. Even in antiquity, its architectural refinements were legendary, especially the subtle correspondence between the curvature of the stylobate, the batter, or taper, of the naos walls and the entasis of the columns. The temple stands on the conventional three steps, below which the foundation platform originally created for its predecessor remained visible on the west, south and east sides of the building...The cella consisted of two rooms end to end with hexastyle prostyle porches...Inside the colonnades, towards the end, there stood the gold and ivory statue of Athena Parthenos, the work of Phidias, representing Athena fully armed with spear, helmet, aegis and, accompanied by a snake, and holding in her extended right arm a statue of victory. The ceiling was of wood, with painted and gilded decoration. Light was admitted, as normally in Greek temples, only through the doorway when the great doors were opened. (Photo)

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