SUBSCRIBE TO TMCnet
TMCnet - World's Largest Communications and Technology Community

CHANNEL BY TOPICS


QUICK LINKS




Associated Press Featured Article

September 10, 2010

AP Interview: Acropolis' Nike temple rises again


ATHENS, Greece (AP) — After a decade–long facelift, the ancient Greek temple of Athena Nike is back up, patched up and unfettered on the Acropolis.

The slender marble building first erected in the 5th century B.C. was unburdened of its scaffolding in recent days — 10 years after being completely dismantled for repairs.

Unlike other ancient monuments battered by war or natural disaster, the four–columned temple near the entrance of the world–renowned Athens citadel fell prey to the best of intentions: Previous restorations simply hadn't stood the tests of time.


Athena Nike had two dates with restoration crews over the last two centuries — one in 1935, another in the 1830s — and the latest top–to–bottom refurbishment was aimed to fix mistakes from previous restoration efforts for good.

"We have used the latest technology, following successful experimentation with stress and aging," project head Dionysia Mihalopoulou told The Associated Press (News - Alert) on the Acropolis on Tuesday. "The choice and use of materials was the best possible, they will not corrode."

The 1935 restoration involved extensive use of concrete and iron joints to hold the marble blocks together. When the iron rusted, the marble cracked, threatening the temple's long–term survival. This time, the iron was switched for titanium — a metal as strong as steel, but much more resistant to corrosion.

"This third restoration was dictated by extensive damage and structural problems, both in the foundations and the upper structure," said Mihalopoulou, a civil engineer.

Starting in 2000, workers took down 315 marble sections weighing up to 2–1/2 tons, laying bare a concrete foundation slab that was replaced by a stainless steel grid. Crews replaced the concrete additions with sections of new marble from ancient quarry sites — whose brilliant white contrasts with the old stone's patina in places like the walls and columns to make clear they are modern additions.

Every block was returned to the original position selected by the temple's ancient architects.

Built between 427–424 B.C., while Athens was fighting Sparta for control of the Greek world, the building was dedicated to the city's patron goddess Athena in her revered capacity to bring victory in battle. The Athenians lost the war. But the compact little temple survived intact until the late 17th century, when it was demolished to provide material for a gun emplacement. It was rebuilt after Greece's independence from Ottoman rule in 1829.

The repairs were part of an Acropolis conservation and restoration project begun in the 1970s for all three of the site's temples, using funds from the Greek government and European Union. Work has already finished on the Erechtheion temple and the citadel's monumental gate, while scaffolding will remain on the Parthenon — the best–known of the three — for several years.

Related Images:


 The elegant marble temple of Athena Nike, fronted by four slender Ionic columns, stands free of scaffolding on the Athens Acropolis, Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2010. A ten-year restoration project has just been completed on the 2,400-year-old temple, which was dismantled to ground level and rebuilt to correct damage from ground subsidence and rusting internal joints. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

 The elegant marble temple of Athena Nike, fronted by four slender Ionic columns, stands free of scaffolding on the Athens Acropolis, Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2010. A ten-year restoration project has just been completed on the 2,400-year-old temple, which was dismantled to ground level and rebuilt to correct damage from ground subsidence and rusting internal joints. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

 In this photo taken Sunday, Sept. 5, 2010, the elegant marble temple of Athena Nike, distinguished by its four Ionic columns, is lit by the sun as the Propylaea gate is seen on the left and the Parthenon temple in the shade on the right, on the Athens Acropolis. A ten-year restoration project has just been completed on the 2,400-year-old temple, which was dismantled to ground level and rebuilt to correct damage from ground subsidence and rusting internal joints. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

 A copy of the original sculptured frieze is seen on the elegant marble temple of Athena Nike on the Athens Acropolis, Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2010. A ten-year restoration project has just been completed on the 2,400-year-old temple, which was dismantled to ground level and rebuilt to correct damage from ground subsidence and rusting internal joints. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

 In this photo taken Sunday, Sept. 5, 2010, visitors sit on a rocky outcrop looking out onto the Acropolis, with the newly-restored temple of Athena Nike, distinguished by its four Ionic columns, on a platform below and to the left of the Parthenon, in Athens, Sunday, Sept. 5, 2010. A ten-year restoration project has just been completed on the 2,400-year-old temple, which was dismantled to ground level and rebuilt to correct damage from ground subsidence and rusting internal joints. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

 In this photo taken Sunday, Sept. 5, 2010, the elegant marble temple of Athena Nike, distinguished by its four Ionic columns, is lit by the sun as the Propylaea gate is seen on the left and the Parthenon temple in the shade on the right, on the Athens Acropolis. A ten-year restoration project has just been completed on the 2,400-year-old temple, which was dismantled to ground level and rebuilt to correct damage from ground subsidence and rusting internal joints. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)



FEATURED ARTICLES

OTHER NEWS PROVIDERS







Technology Marketing Corporation

2 Trap Falls Road Suite 106, Shelton, CT 06484 USA
Ph: +1-203-852-6800, 800-243-6002

General comments: tmc@tmcnet.com.
Comments about this site: webmaster@tmcnet.com.

STAY CURRENT YOUR WAY

© 2020 Technology Marketing Corporation. All rights reserved | Privacy Policy