Standing on a very high outcrop in the city of Athens, Greece, is the Acropolis of Athens. An acropolis is a “high city on the edge”. The Acropolis is a city so high that visitors always feel as if they are living with the stars. What makes the Acropolis of Athens even more breath-taking are the sequence of temples and monumental buildings constructed by a statesman of the 5th Century called Pericles. So what really makes the Acropolis of Athens worth exploring? Let’s find out!
Fun Facts about the Acropolis of Athens Greece
The hill of the Acropolis is 490 ft (150m) above the sea basin and covers a surface area of 7.4 acres. It is so rare to find someone who climbs to the top of the Acropolis without stopping to catch a breath. This “city on the edge” harbors a number of ancient monumental buildings constructed around 5 BC. The buildings on the Acropolis are the Parthenon, the Propylaea, the Erechtheion, and the temple of Athena Nike. It is amazing how the buildings have survived that long and still stand strong. Another name for Acropolis is Cecropia. Cecrops was the first Athenian King mythically believed to be part serpent and part man.
All Were Welcome
Buildings at the Acropolis were used for spiritual roles by more than one religion. The Parthenon was constructed to honor the goddess known as Athena, whom the city was also named after. It is believed that the site where the Parthenon was constructed had been a temple before it was brought down to pave the way for the Parthenon. The Acropolis has been attacked several times and served as sacred grounds for religions. For example, in 1456 it served as a mosque for the Ottomans.
A Perfect Location to Hunt for Treasure
Persians destroyed the Parthenon in 480 BCE and buried a big chunk of the monuments under the rubble. During special ceremonies, precious items were buried under the surrounding caves to complete certain rituals. Sacred objects lie beneath the mound ready to be discovered, although archeologists have done a good job of uncovering the treasures and sending many of them to museums for display. One thing that stands out about the Acropolis is that all of the treasures at the site were carried out by the best artisans, sculptors, and architects of the ancient times.
A Safe Zone: Acropolis
Originally, the acropolis acted as a fortress to protect Athens from invasion by its enemies. Defending territories from higher ground was a strategy used by various governments including the Greeks and Romans. Ancient people of Athens saw the monumental beauty of the Acropolis and decided to use it as a beautiful symbol of Athens instead of its intended purpose. Millions of tourists still come to the site today. Standing at the Acropolis is a magnificent sight to behold because it provides a beautiful view of the city of Athens, and the sea far away.
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