On the Acropolis, during this period only the Parthenon, the Propylaea and the Erechteum still exist from the ancient structures. The hill is refortified with the addition of towers. The monuments are converted either to churches or to fortresses. The hill changes image depending on who owns the city (Byzantines, Franks, Catalans, Venetians). Herein, the monuments are depicted as they were during the short Venetian occupation (1395-1403).
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The Parthenon had suffered fire damages possibly from the Heruli invasion in 267 A.D. It was in this fire that the roof collapsed and the inner double colonnade was destroyed. In the repairs that followed, it was economically impossible to restore the roof as it was. Therefore, a new one was constructed that covered only the cella leaving the outer colonnade uncovered. With the order to convert the ancient temples to christian churches, the Parthenon was dedicated (possibly in the 6th century) to the Holy Wisdom and later to Mary the Mother of God in Athens (Panagia i Athiniotissa). On the east facade, the entrance was blocked in order to create an arch for the Sanctuary. The interior was richly decorated with frescoes and mosaics, the most famous of which, the one of Mary on the cupola of the Sanctuary. In the first years of the Latin Domination (13th c.), a tower (probably a bell tower) is built in the south part of the opisthonaos and the temple becomes a catholic church of Notre Dame.
The Propylaia met many different phases of conversion to a fortress. In here, the building is presented in its later form. At a great extent, these fortifications and the towers were still visible until 1835 when were torn down in "favour" of the neoclassical movement that was dominating Europe at this time.
The Erechteum had multiple conversions. It begun as a Christian basilica church. After the roof collapsed, new buildings were constructed in the interior, while the rest of the area served as a court.
For other monuments of
Medieval Athens click below:
For other monuments of Medieval Athens click below:
SOUTH SLOPE OF ACROPOLIS