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Greece: Temple of Apollo at Delphi - Research Paper Example

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Name University Course Instructor Date Greece: Temple of Apollo at Delphi Introduction Deep within the captivating landscape of central Greece lies the phenomenal work of architecture, the Sanctuary or Temple of Apollo at Delphi. The Temple of Apollo, which basks in majestic glory on the southern slopes of the Parnassus Mountain, was the most important sacred areas in the Greek history (Anderson and Spiers 91)…
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Download file to see previous pages In this regard, it was built by two famous architects known as Agamedes and Trophonios. In the 6th century B.C, it was reconstructed following a tragic fire and named in recognition to the noble Athenian family which was in charge of the reconstruction after soliciting for funds from foreign emperors and all the corners of Greece. To this end, it was known as the “Temple of Alcmeonidae” (Mikalson 95). The temple was linked to the Doric order whereby there were fifteen columns at the sides and the front had six columns (Mikalson 95). An earthquake in 373 B.C. led to the destruction of the temple once again, and it was reconstructed for a third time in 330 B.C. The architects this time round were from Corinth and known as Agathon, Xenodoros, and Spintharos (Mikalson 95). Evidently, the sculptures that line the pediment were sculpted by Androsthenes and Praxias from Athenia (Mikalson 95). Presently, the foundations of the temple are still evident and have become the basis for artist evaluation by archaeologists, artists and scientists. To this end, the subsequent section will delve into the historical context of the temple’s construction, the structural details and the artistic features found in the exterior and interior of the Temple of Apollo as well as their historical, socio-cultural and economic significance. Historical Context The excavations at Delphi offer incisive insight into its first inhabitants. Evidently, the cult of Apollo was brought to central Greece by Creatian priests in the 8th Century B.C. (Ching, Jarzombek, and Prakash 126). The god worshiped was in the form of dolphin and known as Apollo Delphinios (Ching, Jarzombek, and Prakash 126). The holy city adopted its name from the god’s name. To this end, Delphi was the economic and sacred home to Apollo where pilgrims visited from every part of the world. Political leaders and individuals from all over the ancient world came to seek Apollo’s counsel through the Oracle of Delphi. The range of issues included family, politics, love and war. To this end, a sacrifice was offered by the person seeking counsel. In this regard, an intoxicated priestess would make cryptic announcements which were recorded by a priest (Ching, Jarzombek, and Prakash 127). The present day Temple of Apollo is traced back to the 4th Century B.C. Evidently, it is the third version of the temples following earlier destructions by fire and earthquake. In this regard, evidence of the first temple can be noticed through the wall blocks and archaic wall blocks while pediment sculptures and numerous wall blocks offer evidence of the second temple (Ching, Jarzombek, and Prakash 128). One notable sporting activity that attracted people from all over the world was the Pythian Games which formed part of the Panhellenic games (Starr 42). To this end, evidence of the games can be seen through a great chariot race that can be seen at Delphi where it was held in the stadium. There were many treasuries which were constructed in the Temple of Apollo for storing the precious offerings by the pilgrims. In 393 AD, the oracle of Delphi was abolished by Emperor Theodosius when he introduced Christianity and imposed it as the sole religion in the Byzantine Empire (Starr 46). To this end, the Temple of Delphi was abandoned and subjected to plunder as the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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