Friday 26 December 2014


The Temple of Concordia (Greek: Harmonia), built c.440-430 BC, is an ancient Greek temple of the ancient city of Akragas, located in the Valle dei Templi in Agrigento. This temple, constructed like the nearby Temple of Juno on a solid base designed to overcome the unevenness of the rocky terrain, is considered one of the most notable examples of Ancient Greek architecture on account of its state of preservation.

The very well-preserved peristasis of six by thirteen columns stands on top of a crepidoma of four steps (measuring 39.44 metres x 16.91 meters). The columns are 6.72 metres high and carved with twenty flutes and harmonious entasis (tapering at the tops of the columns and swelling around the middles). The peristasis is surmounted by an architrave, a frieze of triglyphs and metopes, and a cornice. The tympana are also preserved in situ.

The naos, preceded by a pronaos in antis (mirrored by the opisthodomos), is entered through a step. The front walls of the naos, with integrated steps to the roof are preserved, as are the sockets for the wooden beams of the roof on the top of the walls of the naos and in the blocks of the entablature of the peristasis. The exterior and interior of the temple was decorated with polychrome stucco. The sima at the edges of the roof formed a gutter with lion protomes and the roof was covered in marble tiles.

The temple's transformation into a Christian church involved the removal of the ancient ornamentation, the demolition of the back wall of the naos, the closure of the space between the columns, and the creation of twelve curved openings in the walls of the naos in order to create the canonical three naves - the two lateral naves from the peristasis and the central nave from the naos. The classical altar was destroyed at that time and sacristies arranged in the corners, the whole building almost completely taking on the form of a basilica. Digging occurred inside and outside the church in relation to a High Medieval sepulchre, placed in close contact with the basilica in accordance with custom.

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme.

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