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The Parthenon (ancient Greek. Παρθενών — virgin; pure) — a monument of ancient architecture, ancient Greek temple located on the Athenian Acropolis, the main temple in ancient Athens, dedicated to the patroness of this city and all Attica, the goddess Athena, the virgin (Ἀθηνᾶ Παρθένος). Built in 447-438 BC by the architect Kallikrates project Iktina and decorated in 438-431 years BC under the direction of Phidias during the reign of Pericles. Is currently in a dilapidated condition, under reconstruction.
The Parthenon remained as a temple of the goddess Athena for a thousand years. It is unknown exactly when he became a Christian Church. In the 4th century Athens had decayed and turned into a provincial city of the Roman Empire. In the 5th century the temple was robbed of one of the emperors, and all its treasures were transported to Constantinople. There is information that under Patriarch Paul III of Constantinople, the Parthenon was converted into a Church. Sofia.
At the beginning of the XIII century was destroyed statue of Athena Promachos in the period of the Fourth crusade. The statue of Athena Parthenos, probably disappeared in the 3rd century BC during the fire or before. Roman and Byzantine emperors repeatedly issued edicts banning of pagan worship, but pagan tradition in Greece was too strong. At the present stage it is considered that the Parthenon became a Christian Church in about the 6th century of our era.
In the Byzantine period it served as the Orthodox Cathedral of the Holy virgin, was the fourth largest pilgrim center of the Eastern Roman Empire after Constantinople, Ephesus, and Thessaloniki. In 1018 Emperor Basil II Bulgaroctonus arrived in Athens after a brilliant victory over the Bulgarians with the sole purpose to worship the Parthenon.
At the beginning of the XIII century in the era of the Latin Empire to power in Athens came to the Burgundian commander Otto de La Roche, and the Cathedral was ordered by the French Archbishop. A short time the Parthenon was used as a Catholic Church called Notre Dame d Athenes Is Athens Cathedral of Notre Dame. In the next two and a half centuries by the attacks of mercenaries, coups and diplomatic intrigue control of Athens had passed from the French to the Catalans. Athens and the surrounding territory — the Duchy of Athens is incorporated into the Aragonese Kingdom in 1311. Athens remained under the control of the Catalan company to 1386. The official language Athens at that time was the Catalan and the official religion is Catholicism. In 1387, the power passed to the Florentine family of bankers Acciaioli, then the Greek language has again become the official Greek Orthodox Church has received the patronage of the new rulers. At the same time Athens was claimed by the Venetians and the Ottomans, so the ability of the Board and the protectorate Acciaioli pay the Turkish Sultan tribute. Although the Propylaea turned into a well-fortified, magnificent Renaissance Palace, the frequent change of rulers almost no effect on the appearance of the Parthenon. Changing only the name: Santa Maria de Setins (under the rule of the Catalans), then Santa Maria di Atene (if Italians).
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