The temple of Hephaestus

“Marble, I perceive, covers a multitude of sins.” ― Aldous Huxley

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With its Doric columns and ancient glory streaming out of the marble, the temple stands a symbol for the God of metal working and craftsmanship- Hephaestus. From all the archaeological sites in Athens that I’ve seen, this is the most well- preserved temple, considering the destruction of Ancient Athens through the centuries.

It’s in the area of Theseion/ there is a belief that the bones of the Greek hero Theseus were buried there/, in the heart of the Athenian Agora, with a view to Acropolis. Pomegranates, myrtle and laurel trees, surrounding the temple, make your visit there equal to a promenade in an enchanting garden.

According to Wikipedia and the book I purchased at the entrance of the temple, ” in the 700 AD, the temple was turned into a Christian church, dedicated to Saint George. For the first time, the temple is mentioned as an official Christian temple in 1690 and until 1834, it was the church of “St. George Akamates”. One of the explanations about the name Akamates, which I personally like best, states that it probably derives from the name of the son of Theseus and Feadra, Akamantas. The last Holy Mass that took place in the temple was in 1833, during the celebrations for the arrival of Otto in Greece.”

Today, the temple is only a reminder that Athens has a very deep history and that modern Athenians know how to carry the importance of that history through modern days. To me, a visit to Theseion and the temple of Hephaestus, it’s a day well spent and cherished, without limitations upon the muses, where inspiration can go no further!

* Note- about the second image, Hephaestus skies, the building top it’s not symmetrically laid into the sky simply because I had the sun in my eyes and I couldn’t really see what I was photographing exactly!

The temple of Hephaestus

Hephaestus skies

Doric columns

Hephaestus and myrtle

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© 2013  Broken Sparkles

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Tower of the winds

“What is history? An echo of the past in the future; a reflex from the future on the past”~ Victor Hugo

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I’ve been to Acropolis area so many times that I’ve lost count and after 11 years in Athens, only last December, I discovered that there is a Tower of the winds, underneath Acropolis, where the Ancient agora/forum/ is. It’s quite a spectacular little building that I plan on visiting again, as soon as I can! Give me stones and ruins, and tell me that they have years and years of history and I need nothing else to be happy, as long as I hold my camera and I have the time to absorb the view and imagine a story or two!

Bath house of the winds

Bath- house of the winds and Ancient agora

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© 2013  Broken Sparkles

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To a stranger- letter 5

”They did not speak, they did not bow, they were not acquainted; they saw each other; and, like the stars in the sky separated by millions of leagues, they lived by gazing upon each other.” ― Victor Hugo

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It was one of the days without public transport, I had to walk on my way back home from the coffee morning with a friend. It was unusually warm day for this time of the year, despite the cloudy skies, I had my camera with me and the walking was pleasant. Instead of taking the shortcut to my neighborhood, I decided to wander a little and I found myself standing in front of Kallimarmaro stadium/ Greek: Καλλιμάρμαρο, meaning the “beautifully marbled”- the athletic stadium in Athens that hosted the first modern Olympic Games in 1896/. And there he was, dressed in black, with style and male elegance, holding one of those fancy cameras I’d like to have too. He seemed so absorbed in exploring the stadium, carefully choosing what to photograph and I was absorbed by the invisible, yet, so bright, positive energy that surrounded him. The moment he turned around and walked away from the fence of the stadium, the only thing I remember from that moment is his blue, happy eyes. I didn’t find the courage to try and talk to him, I stayed watching him for a little while and then I left.

Dear, blue-eyed stranger, if you ever see this post, know that your eyes made you the most perfect stranger I’ve ever seen. Shame they will remain only a sapphire memory, the brightest memory ever  …

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And you, dire soul in broken, sunrise flames,
between white-rock stairs and swan-feathered winds,
you pace over the death of glory and névé,
and savour the warmth in the eyes of a stranger,
holding the last rays of the Olympian lights
and desires, and bitter taste of kismet,
and the screams of the miles and the time difference.

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Dire soul in broken, sunrise flames

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© 2013  Broken Sparkles

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