ancient Greece

Karyatides Everywhere/Καρυατιδες Παντου

 

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A historical building located in downtown Athens with Karyatides as the decor

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A copy of Karyatid outside of at a museum in Athens

The word Karyatides comes from the ancient Greek word ‘Kariates’ which means daughter. The daughters are said to have come a town outside of Sparta called ‘Karyes’. It is believed that they were very strong maidens who danced together in a circle with baskets on their heads. These women influenced Greek architecture and even the architecture beyond Greece.

Last year, all of Greece have been abuzz with the excavations of the large burial mound at Amphipolis in the region of Macedonia.  some of the things that have been discovered include a large mosaic depicting the abduction of Persephone  have been found and recently skeletons have been found. Whether the skeletons are that of Alexander the Great or one of his generals remain to be seen. In the second chamber be Karyatids were found that appeared to be guard at the entrance to the tomb chamber. The discovery of the Karyatides had every Greek talking about these mysterious women. What is the story behind them? Why are they everywhere? There are five of them at the Erechtheum at the Acropolis, the sixth one is in the British museum in London.  In 525 B.C there used to be Karyatides at a temple in Delphi with ionic style clothing. We can find them a many national banks in Western Europe as well.

The Magic of Epidaurus/Η Μαγεια της Επιδαυρου

It was my first time at Epidaurus theatre, and I was awe-struck by this massive theatre that seats up to 13,000 people. It was built in 350 B.C by Polykleitos and it was dedicated to Asclepius the god of healing and t is the best preserved ancient theatre in Greece. It’s in an isolated region of the country side of Argolid for good reason. This place was a sanctuary for the sick from all over who arrived here to get closer to nature and to be healed by the natural surroundings. They stayed at the nearby temples just few metres from the theatre where they could exercise, relax and consult the priests. The reason for the theatre being here was because it was thought that the sick people would be healed by watching the tragedies as it would be a very cathartic and therapeutic experience for them. Also, the theatre is famous for its great acoustics and many tourists like to stand in the middle of the stage and clap or talk loud. The noise can be heard all the up to the last row of seats.  Ancient theatre is still performed here and many famous actors and actresses have performed at this sacred spot.

Underground City/Υπόγεια Πόλη

Entrance at Zara

Ancient Stone Structure

The ancient city of Athens is littered with ruins. The famous of all ruins, the Acropolis,  is the most visible of all. But, there are buildings underneath our feet that many people do not know are there. Although I know that the ruins are everywhere, especially in the downtown area, I was pleasantly surprised when I saw some ruins at the entrance of the clothing store Zara at Panepistimiou Street. At the entrance and underneath a large sheet of plexiglass is what appears to be a stone archway of a home or some other structure. I didn’t notice it when I walked in but when I walked out I saw it and I took some photographs.

Η αρχαία πόλη της Αθήνας είναι γεμάτη με ερείπια. Το διάσημο από όλα τα ερείπια, την Ακρόπολη, είναι το πιο ορατό από όλους. Αλλά, υπάρχουν κτίρια κάτω από τα πόδια μας, ότι πολλοί άνθρωποι δεν γνωρίζουν ότι υπάρχουν. Αν και ξέρω ότι τα ερείπια είναι παντού, ειδικά στο κέντρο της πόλης, εξεπλάγην ευχάριστα όταν είδα κάποια ερείπια στην είσοδο του καταστήματος ενδυμάτων Zara στην οδό Πανεπιστημίου. Στην είσοδο και κάτω από ένα μεγάλο φύλλο του πλεξιγκλάς είναι αυτό που φαίνεται να είναι μια πέτρινη καμάρα ενός σπιτιού ή κάποια άλλη δομή. Εγώ δεν το προσέξει αυτό, όταν μπήκα μέσα, αλλά όταν μπήκα έξω το είδα και πήρα μερικές φωτογραφίες.

Gods and Mortals/Θεοί και Θνητοί

One of my favourite things to take pictures of are statues. Both Gods and mortals have been the subjects of the talented ancient sculptors.  These artisans with their skilled and caring hands have captured the beauty of the Gods and Goddesses and the burdens of the mortals.  Skilled hands that have carved such realistic eyes that seem as though they are looking right at you.  Skilled hands that have carved such realistic mouths that seem like they could speak to you. During their two thousand-year existence these statues have seen it all.  If only those statues could speak. If they could what would they say?

Helios In The Shade

 

The Mortal Womans’ Gaze