The Acropolis: the sacred hill

art & culture
The Acropolis: the sacred hill

Standing at 156 metres, with temples that include the Parthenon and its 360-degree views, the Acropolis is the universal symbol of Athens.

Imagine what those ancient Greeks not of Athenian origin felt when they arrived in Athens. From a distance, the first thing they would see was the Acropolis.

Originally, this hill, more than 100 metres high, was surrounded by a wall and served as a refuge for the population in case of attacks. Gradually, the Acropolis was turned into a place of worship and covered with votive offerings and monuments, including a temple to its patron goddess, Athena. In the second half of the 5th century BC, to celebrate his victory over the Persians, the establishment of democracy, and the supremacy of Athens, Pericles decided not to build a temple, but a whole group of buildings whose dimensions were gigantic.

He entrusted the architect Phidias with the construction of the Parthenon, but did you know that it has a number of architectural peculiarities that correct the visual distortions of the eye, and that make it seem grandiose, whatever the distance? Thus, the horizontal surface is not flat but slightly concave, the columns get thinner near the top, and those on the angles are wider. Restoration began here in 1975, but has yet to be completed.

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