The Parthenon was ordered designed and built by the great Greek leader Pericles as a temple for Athena—the goddess of learning, arts, writing, and war—but it may not have been the first effort to house the deity. There is evidence that during Pericles' time there was already a large stone structure on the site that had been used for religious purposes.
Athena was one of the chief deities of Ancient Greece and the goddess of wisdom and craftsmanship. She was also believed to be the protector against mice and insects. Her image in gold and ivory was very popular among ancient Greeks. A famous statue of her stands in the center of the Acropolis museum in Athens.
Parthenon means "virgin's house" in Greek and it was originally constructed as a temple to the virgin goddess Aphrodite. But after years of use it became known as a temple to the main Greek god Zeus (who had many titles including Phoebus, Apollo, and Ares). So over time its purpose changed from a temple to a virgin to a temple to Zeus.
The building of the Parthenon was begun in 447 B.C. and it was completed in 432 B.C. It was burned down in 480 B.C. but was rebuilt within eight years. In 356 B.C. another fire destroyed almost all of it except for the central pediment.
Pericles directed the construction of numerous prominent temples on the Acropolis in ancient Athens. Among these was the Parthenon, often regarded as the best example of Greek architecture. The Erechtheion is another famous Doric temple that stands on the site where once stood a prehistoric shrine to Athena. There are many more examples around Athens.
Athens was not the only city with a cultural influence far beyond its size. Many other cities across Greece also had significant populations including Corinth, Mycenae, Argos, Sicyon, Epidauros, Phlius, Lindos, Ithaca, Metapontum, Drepanum, Carystus, Leuctra, Mantineia, Orchomenus, Pheneus, Tiryns, Aegina, Methoni, Pagasae, Malis, Astypalaia, Apollonia, Nicopolis, Patras, Volos, Rhodos.
In conclusion, the artistic and architectural center of ancient Greece was located in Athens.
The Acropolis of Athens The Parthenon is regarded as the most important remaining classical Greek structure and the pinnacle of Doric Order architecture. It is a former temple dedicated to Athena, the patron goddess of Athens, on the Athenian Acropolis. The Parthenon's construction began in 447 BCE, during the height of the Athenian Empire. It was completed in 432 BCE, only nine years after it was started. The scale of the building is such that it could be used by thousands of people without them even knowing it. The size of the enclosure itself is about the same as that of St Paul's Cathedral in London. Inside, the walls are covered in sculptures by various artists including Phidias, Praxiteles, and Myron.
Other significant ancient buildings include the Temple of Zeus at Olympia, the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, and the Library of Celsus at Ephesus. In addition, there are many other ruins across Greece that date from the Ancient Greek period including the Theatre at Epidauros, the Odeon at Metapontion, and the Stadium at Aigio. Some of these sites are still in use today for events such as athletics competitions or music festivals.
The legacy of Greek culture has had an enormous impact on Europe and the world at large. The Greeks invented many concepts such as democracy, philosophy, mathematics, economics, medicine, and science.
Get ready to experience six amazing, large-scale copies of the Parthenon, from Regensburg's Walhalla to Nashville's Parthenon. Athens' Acropolis Parthenon was a temple dedicated to Athena Pallas. It was constructed as part of Pericles' building scheme that entirely changed the Acropolis in 447–432 BCE. The original is now a world-famous symbol of Ancient Greece and its culture. No one knows for sure how many parts actually made up the original structure, but estimates range from 20 to 30. It has been suggested that the best way to imagine it is as a giant triangle with its apex at the top of its roofline, which was covered in gold tiles. There are several theories about why the Athenians wanted to build such a magnificent temple on their sacred site. Some say it was meant to be a reminder to visitors of the power and glory of Athens itself. Others believe it was only built to replace the old one that had been destroyed by the Persians years before. Still others think the new temple was designed to compete with the other great temples of Asia Minor for prestige and donations. No matter why they were built, these were important symbols of Athens' greatness at the time.
The Nashville Parthenon was built between 1856 and 1859 by Greek immigrants for $150,000. It stands on Cresent Street near 16th Avenue North in downtown Nashville. This area was then called "Shiloh" and was home to religious pioneers who helped establish the city.