History: Ancient Athens – Hadrian’s Arch (Greece)
This post is part of a new category named “history” where I will be publishing quick overviews of historical locations (mainly in Greece) along with photographs and brief descriptions.
This first post will be about Hadrian’s Arch which is currently located at the center of Athens but it used to separate the new with the old city in ancient Greece. Below is a map of Ancient Athens I found here which is very convenient for this post.
And here is a photograph I took a couple of months ago.
In the above photograph, through the Hadrian’s Arch you can clearly see the Acropolis of Athens which we will discuss in another blog post.
Hadrian’s Arch was a triumphal arch made of Pentelikon marble in honor of Emperor Hadrian for his numerous benefactions in Ancient Athens. The arch was constructed in 131-132 A.D. and it has height of 18m and width of 13m. The monument was built using corinthian order (the upper part). The inscription of the West side says:
“ΑΙΔ’ΕΙΣΙΝ ΑΘΗΝΑΙ, ΘΗΣΕΩΣ Η ΠΡΙΝ ΠΟΛΙΣ” (This is Athens, the old city of Theseus)
While the East side has the below inscription:
“ΑΙΔ’ ΕIΣΙΝ ΑΔΡΙΑΝΟΥ, ΚΟΥΧI ΘΗΣΕΩΣ ΠΟΛΙΣ” (This is the city of Hadrian, and not of Theseus)
At this point something notable is that the arch can be easily separated in the lower and upper part where the lower has the Ancient Roman Arch design while the upper one has the previously mentioned Ancient Greek architecture (Corinthian Order). This was to honor both the Roman Hadrian as well as the mythical Greek founder of Athens, Theseus.
I can write huge blog posts for such subjects but the whole idea is to provide small overviews. You can continue the research on your own. :)
Below are a few additional photos.