Athens and Attika

.

Map of Attika (800 KBy)

.

The Stones of Athens

In 1953, when my brother and I arrived in Athens for the first time, the city was a dusty provincial place. We were swept away by the beauty of the ancient architecture.. - Last year (2005) the city had become trruly beautiful: a new subway, clean streets. Between those two visits lies an enduring love affair with Greece which the encreasing urbanisation of Athens (more than half of the population of Greece lives there - 4.5 Million) has not destroyed. These pages record the beauty I have seen over those 50 years. .

.

Entrance to the Acropolis (1953) The stairs, the Propylea, the Nike temple, and the Parthenon. Since 1953 the vegetation, planted after World War II, has grown considerably.

.

View West from the Propylea. The city, Piraeus and Salamis. The Nike temple on the left. (1954)

.

The only still standing ionic high-column in the Propylea. The western face of the Parthenon in the distance. .(1954)

View back from the Parthenon pediment on the Propylea. Gerhard is seen standing way on the left. (1953)

.

Western and northern sides of the Parthenon (1953)

.

The Pentelikon seen through the northern side of the Parthenon. (1953) In those days one was permitted to enter the building.

.

The Lykavitos from the Parthenon (1954)

.

The Hymettos in the evening from the southeastern corner of the Parthenon (1953).. The south-side was shot out by a German artillerist in British employ. The Turks kept a munitions depot in the Parthenon.. An attempt is now being made to restack the columns - the drums of which lie at the bottom of the Acropolis' southface.

.

Southeast corner and the breach in the south wall.

.

The Parthenon from the east. On this side the second row of columns is missing giving the temple a transparency which helps seeing its sophisticated proportions. (1953) - However, its architecture is best appreciated in comparison with another Greek temple from the same time. - The Parthenon was erected on the remnants of two previous temples by Iktinos and Kalikrates between 447 and 431 BC.

Paestum, Italy, eastern aspect of the temple dedicated to Hera (socalled "Poseidon Temple") On our return from Greece in 1953 we visited Naples and the Greek city of Paestum, 100 km to the south. The "Poseidon temple" is the best preseved Greek temple (450 BC) in existence. - Comparing it with the Parthenon shows Iktinos' superior achievement.

.

Athena Nike temple above the entry stairs to the Acropolis. (1985)

.

Southeastern corner of the Nike temple (1953)

 

.

View of the Erechtheion throught the northern side of the Parthenon (1954)

.

Erechtheion from the west at noon. (1953)

.

Erechtheion from the south. The hall of the Kore and the Poseidon vestibul, between the two stands the sacred olive tree of Athena. An instant phototgrapher had his stand in the shade of the Kores. . (1953)

.

The hall where Poseidon's trident was kept (1953)

.

Erechtheion from the West. (1982)

.

Corner column of the east side on the Erechtheion (1982)

.

The Erechtheion in late October light (2004)

.

Stone storage above the Acropolis Museum, and the Hymetos in the evening light (2004)

.

The Dionysos Theater on the south side of the Acropolis (1971)

.

Athens from the Philopappos Hill at sunset. (1953)

.

The Agora, the Acropolis, and the Areopag from the "Thesion" (Hephaisteion Temple) (1953) The houses have since been removed.

.

Barbara before the Byzantine church of Agh. Apostolii in the Agora (1996)

.

Modern Athens from the Lykavitos Hill (1996)

.

Athens at night (1985)

 

Sounion

At the southern-most tip of Attika, on a steep promontory above the sea stand the columns of the Temple of Poseidon. (1985)

.

Eaten clean by the salt spray of the sea, it is the only white temple. (1954)

.

Barbara at Sounion in 1982

.

Sounion with Cornelius in 1985

.

In 1994 we went to Grecce at Orthodox Easter, and the Poseidon temple was surrounded by fields of poppies.

.

The flowers of Persephone...

.

Sunset at the Bay of Sunion (1953)

 

Aphaia Temple on the Island of Aigina

View from the Aphaia Temple on the southern tip of the island of Aigina and the Saronic Gulf (1953). Strictly not a part of Attika the is land lies half-way between the Attika and the coast of the Peleponnisos, an hour by boat from Piraeus. (1953). .

The temple of the Nymph Aphaia. The relatively early, and well preserved temple (480 BC) was excavated by Adolf Furtwängler (father of the music director). The sculptures from its freeze are in the Glyptothek in Munich. .It stands on two earlier foundations.. (1953)

 

The Monastery of Daphni

In a northwestern suburb of Athens along the former Sacred Way to Eleusis (Elevsis) - today the highway to Korinthos - lies Daphni Moni famous for its Byzantine mosaics. It's varied history goes back to 1080 AD, with the mosaics soon after this date. These two photos (1953) have become historical documents. The moni has been thoroughly renovated (restored) recently and has lost many details. Apparently the Ministry of Culture has forgotten to make an exhaustive photographic documentation of the building before the changes.

In any case, in 1991 I was begged to send the ministery a copy of this photo, because the charming classical column has been removed and no picture of it has survived.... (1953)

.

The eyes of Christ Pantokrator behind the scaffolding. (1991)

.

Chjrist Pantocrator in the main dome. This is an interesting mosaic/painting. Christ is shown in his mystical incarnation (Capella Palatina in Palermo; Norman dome in Cefalú, Constantinople), but he is surrounded by prophets and church fathers not by neo-platonic angels (unless the angels have been replaced later). The date of the church and the mosaics is 1080 AD! By comparison with the other places (1030-50) this is the exact cut-off date for the neoplatonic images - likein the years between the Capella Palatina (1030) and Monreale (1080)

Four scenes from Christ's life have survived in the corners of the dome: The Baptism, Metamorphosis (Transfiguaration on Mt. Tabor below), an Annunciation, and the Nativity. The last two are unusual. Because of the restauration work I could not photograph them.

 Metamorphosis (or Transfiguration)

.

Moni Kaiseriani in the Hymettos above Athens.

 The buildings of the monastery flock around its church Panagia Kaiseriani (Katholikon: 11th cent AD, Parekklesion and

campanile 17th cent). The murals (16th cent) are worth seeing. But most beguiling is the location far from the noisy city surrounded by woods.

.

 Part of the Katholikon.

.

 Ceiling frescoes: Entry into Jerusalem

.

 

.

Cornelius asleep (1985) 

  .

The famous antigue spring Kaiseriani Pigi outside the south wall (1996)

.

Barbara walking down from the Hymettus Mountain. (1996)

.

Best Essay Writers for Hire. Top Academic Essay Writing Services