Old and New
The Temple of Hephaistos (Thiseion) is by far the best
preserved classical Greek building in Athens, 2,500
years old. Originally the fire god Vulcan was
worshipped here. But this temple owes its survival to
conversion as a Christian church for a thousand years
that followed under Roman/Byzantine control.
This relatively intact section best represents former
glory from the Temple of Olympian Zeus.
The Temple of Olympian Zeus was a Roman effort at
outdoing the Greeks. Completed in 131 A.D. by the
Emperor Hadrian, it was the largest temple in Greece,
with 104 marble pillars. Only 16 pillars remain,
making it a famous ruin beneath the Acropolis.
So few ancient buildings have survived in Greece
that it's customary to find attractive angles for
these remnants which are open to the sky.
Athens 1896 Olympic Stadium. My favorite "new"
monument in Athens, made out of marble. The modern
Olympic Games began here, reviving the Olympics of
ancient Greece. When the Olympics returned to Athens
in 2004, the Athenians built an entirely new stadium
complex. The modern Olympics had evolved into a
global pageant, far too large for this historic stadium.
Next we go back in time to Olympia itself, home of the
original, ancient Greek Olympic games.
If you have a high speed internet connection, watch the
Intrepid Berkeley Explorer's free video of this trip to Greece
by clicking on: I Follow Apollo