Cultural Postcards + [Southern Europe]

Heritage: Ancient temple to be buried under apartment block
Residents of Thessaloniki (northern Greece) are outraged by a decision to build an apartment block on top of a recently discovered ancient Greek temple in the heart of the city, as GreekReporter online writes today.

Ancient temple to be buried under an apartment blockAncient temple to be buried under an apartment block

Ancient temple to be buried under an apartment block
Remains of the Aphrodite temple in Thessaloniki 
[Credit: Temple of Venus]

The temple of goddess Aphrodite, which was brought to Thessaloniki from the city of Aenea in the 6th century B.C., is said to be priceless in value thus the locals named it 'Parthenon of Thessaloniki.' The temple lies in an area now called Dioikitirio (administrative centre).

Ancient temple to be buried under an apartment block

Ancient temple to be buried under an apartment block
Artist's rendition and diagram of the Temple of Aphrodite in relation to it's urban 
setting in the Square of Antigoninon, near the central circular fountain 
[Credit: Temple of Venus]

In Roman times the area was known as the Square of the Sacred Ones, as most of the city's temples were concentrated there. The ancient Greek temple was brought to light in 2000 after the demolition of a two-storey building. The archaeologists found the eastern part of the temple's 'krepis', statues of Greek and Roman times, and numerous fragments of architectural parts.

Ancient temple to be buried under an apartment block
Temple of Aphrodite exhibit in the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki 
[Credit: Temple of Venus]

While most of the temple remains in Dioikitirio, some parts including the columns of the temple, as well as many of the other remains, are currently being exhibited in the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki.

According to the school of Architecture of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Antigonidon square can be reformed in two levels, so that the temple would be rebuilt and become visible in its entirety.

Source: ANSA [July 16, 2014]