Museum (Tel: 346.35.52)
Entrance is from 148, Ermou Street. It contains some beautiful finds from the ancient cemetery, largely in the form of tombstones ("Stelae") and a notable collection of vases.
This is located outside the western entrance to the Roman Market. It was constructed in the 1st century B.C. by the astronomer Andronikos from Kyrrhos in Macedonia and is shaped like an octagonal tower. It served as a form of meteorological station since it combined a sundial and water clock and also had a weathervane to show the direction of the wind. Each face is adorned with a relief representing the wind blowing from that direction, hence its nickname in Greek "aerides" meaning "the winds".
The church of the Holy Apostles is one of the oldest Christian churches (early 11th century A.D.) in the area of the ancient Greek Agora. It stands a little South of the Stoa of Attalus. A minute church, it has four apses and a narthex with the lower part of the walls built of massive blocks and the upper section in stone masonry, lined with bricks.
Built on the ruins of Roman Baths in the 11 century A.D., formed an important monastic group, till its destruction from the Turks. Later the church was restored and bought from the Russian colony in Athens, being in use up today. It stands in Filellinon St. and belongs to the octagonal style with dome.
This church stands in the middle of the street about half way up Ermou Street and dates back to the end of the 11th century A.D. Originally, it had been built in the cruciform style with dome supported on four pillars. Later, the small porch was added on the southern side and also the chapel on the northern side and the external narthex with the watershed roof on the western side.
This is the most ornamental of the small Byzantine churches in Athens. Built in the 12th century A.D. in what is now Cathedral Square (Platia Mitropoleos) in Athens, it is made of marble architectural sections, blocks and reliefs which originally belonged to various ancient buildings. Over the doorway, on the western side, there is a marble frieze with a symbolic representation of formal festivals in Attica.
This is also one of the more attractive Byzantine churches in Athens. It stands in Klafthmonos Square, at the lower end of Dragatsaniou Street and, according to an inscription, was built in the middle of the 11th century A.D. but the belfry was a later addition.
Only 7 km out of Athens, Kessariani is one of the oldest and most important monasteries in Attica. It was built in the 11th century A.D. close to the ruins of a temple of Aphrodite. Apart from the cruciform church with dome, set upon four pillars, the monastery has a refectory, a mill and bakery as well as a bath house. Later additions were the narthex, the chapel of Saint Anthony and the belfry. The narthex contains paintings by the Peloponnesian painter loannis Ypatios while the rest of the church is adorned with murals by painters of the Cretan School of Art.
This is the most important surviving Byzantine monument within a short distance of Athens. It stands 10 km out of town at the junction of lera Odos and Leoforos Athinon (also known as Leoforos Kavalas). The monastery, within its fortified enclosure, was built in the 6th century A.D. on a site formerly occupied by a temple dedicated to the Dafnios Apollo whence it got its present name Daini. The church, dedicated to the Dormition of the Virgin, was built in the 11th century A.D. in the octagonal cruciform style with narthex. Later, an outer narthex was added with a second story which housed the library or the abbots living quarters. Both externally and internally, the church has been built with exceptional craftsmanship. Its mosaics, which are among the best to be seen anywhere in Greece, are inspired by the classicist ideal. In the narthex and in the main church next to representations of the Passion, is a representation of the life of the Virgin Mary. One of the finest of all the mosaics at Dafni is that of the Crucifixion. The dome is dominated by an austere countenance of Christ the Almighty against a gold background. The drum of the dome shows various saints and prophets. The apse shows the Virgin Mary surrounded by Archangels.
MUSEUMS AND ART GALLERIES
No 1, Tossitsa Street, Tel: 821.77.17
The Museum displays finds from all parts of the ancient Greek world which date from Neolithic times to the last years of the Roman Empire.
Art of the Pre-historic Period up to 1100 B.C.
This includes four Pre-historic collections from Thessaly (mainly ceramics and clay figurines), the Cyclades Islands (mainly marble figurines and vases), Thera or Santorini (mainly frescoes) and the Mycenaean period (treasures from royal tombs; cups from the Vafio beehive tomb, stelae from graves, frescoes, arms, miniatures, etc.).
Art from the Historic Period
Sculpture and ceramics make up the main branch of the art of this period but there is also a variety of miniature arts, coins and goldsmiths work. Next to the originals of works, mainly of the classical period, are copies from the Hellenistic and Roman times.
There is pottery of the Protogeometric and Geometric periods (mostly Attic vases), Orientalising pottery (mainly Protoattic and Cycladic vases), Corinthian and Attic vases of the Black Figured style (a special category among these is formed by the Panathenean amphorae) and Red Figured white Attic vases.
Metalwork and Miniatures
The main core of the collection is formed by the Karapanos collection of small bronze objects. There are figurines, armor, tripods, mirrors and articles used for decorating such objects (griffins, miniature idols etc.)
The finest and most rare specimens are contained in the Heleni Stathatos collection of necklaces, earrings, diadems, buckles, funeral wreaths, etc.
The National Museum also houses:
22, Vassilissis Sofias Avenue, Tel: 721.10.27
The exhibits cover the early Christian, the Byzantine and the post-Byzantine periods and are divided into the following collections:
On the corner of Vassilissis Sofias Avenue and Koumbari Street: Tel.361.16.17. It is founded on the private collection of Anthony Benakis and has since been enriched with several other private collections. Items exhibited are:
No 17, Kidathineon Street, Tel: 321.30.18.
The Museum contains specimens of traditional arts and crafts which have their origins deep in Byzantine times. There are embroidered shrouds for the Good Friday bier, priests robes, wood-carved crosses, covers for Bibles, ornaments, carved wooden seals, carved wooden spoons, Greek embroidery generally and specimens of paintings by Greek popular artists.
This Museum is housed in what used to be the old Parliament building in Stadiou Street, Tel: 323.76.17. The Museum contains portraits of the heroes of the 1821 War of Independence, arms and other mementos of that war, the sword and helmet of Lord Byron, flags, historic documents, etc.
On the corner of Theorias and Panos Streets. Tel: 321.23.13.
The Museum houses a private collection and contains noteworthy exhibits which belong to two basic periods, pre-Christian and post-Christian. One of the most interesting groupings in the collection is that of Tanagra figurines in terracotta which represent various figures. They were discovered on the site of the ancient township of Tanagra and belong to the period 330 to 200 B.C.
On the corner of Vassilissis Sofias and Rizari Streets, Tel: 729.05.43/4. Weapons
of various periods are exhibited, also uniforms, regimental flags, medals and decorations, ships models, aircraft, etc.
NATIONAL PICTURE GALLERY
No 50, Vassileos Konstandinou Avenue, opposite the Athens Hilton. Tel: 721.10.10
The paintings, sculptures and engravings of Greek artists provide the visitor with a complete picture of the development of Greek art from the early 19th century to the present day. A selection of post-Byzantine icons as well as a collection of works by painters of the Ionian Islands, cover the transitional stage between Byzantine and Modern Greek Art. The hall where West European paintings from the Renaissance period through to creations by contemporary West European artists are exhibited contains masterpieces by Domenico Theotokopoulos (El Greco), Rubens, Jordaens, Tiepolo, Caravaggio and the latest acquisition of the gallery "Greek Mounted Warrior" by Delacroix. Also works by Picasso, Dayer, Magritte Brauner, Modigliani and others as well as Rodins statue of the "Prodigal Son". The open-air exhibition of sculpture consists of works by Greek sculptors of the 19th and 20th centuries. Finally, all periodical or retrospective exhibitions of the works of Greek and foreign artists are presented in a special hall throughout the year.
No 31 Harilaou Trikoupi, Tel: 452.15.98, 451.83.88
Exhibits include interesting finds of the Classical, Hellenistic and Roman periods. Of particular interest is the statue of Hermes of Kifissia, the bronze statue of Athena and two statues of Artemis.
This is located at Akti Themistokleous in the Freatida quarter of the port of Piraeus. Tel: 451.68.22. Exhibits include ships models from ancient to modern times, also busts, uniforms and clothes of heroes of the 1821 War of Independence, paintings of major naval engagements, etc.
This is located at 13, Levidou St., in Kifissia, the northern suburb of Athens. Tel: 808.02.54. The Museum is a research center for the flora, fauna, geology and paleontology of Greece. In Athens there are also: The Museum of the City of Athens at 7, Paparigopoulou St., (Tel: 323.01.68), the Center of Popular Art and Tradition at 6, A. Hatzimihali St., (Tel: 324.39.87) and the Cultural Center of the Athens Municipality at 50, Akadimias St. (Tel: 362.94.30).
There are several important archaeological sites in the rest of Attica. Among these are Cape Sounion (Tel: 0292 - 39.363) with its temples of Poseidon and Sounias Athena, Vravron with its sanctuary dedicated to the Vravronian Artemis and its museum (Tel: 0294 - 71.020) containing attractive finds. There is also Marathon with its burial mound containing the bodies of the 192 Athenian warriors who fell in the famous Battle of Marathon in 490 B.C. and a local museum (Tel 0294/55.155). At Oropos there is the Amphiaraeion sanctuary (Tel: 0295-62.144) dedicated to the hero and healer god Aphiaraos. At Ramnous there is the Sanctuary of Nemessis, (Tel. 0294 - 93.477). At Eleusis, in the province of Megara, there is one of the worlds most important ancient places of worship. It is the sanctuary of the goddess Dimitra and Kore, access to which is through impressive Propylaea. The enclosure includes the famous Telestirion or hall in which the Eleusinian Mysteries were performed, the temple of the Propylaean Artemis, the Kallihoron Well, various sacred houses and remains of walls of various periods. The sanctuary was linked to Athens by the Sacred Way ("[era Odos") which led right up to the Sacred Gate ("[era Pyli") at the Kerameikos in Athens. The Eleusis Museum (Tel: 554.60.19) contains important finds from the area of the sanctuary itself and from all the surrounding district.