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Arch of Hadrian (Pili tou Adrianou), Athens

(4/5 based on 480+ reviews on the web)
The Arch of Hadrian, most commonly known in Greek as Hadrian's Gate, is a monumental gateway resembling – in some respects – a Roman triumphal arch. It spanned an ancient road from the center of Athens, Greece, to the complex of structures on the eastern side of the city that included the Temple of Olympian Zeus. It has been proposed that the arch was built to celebrate the adventus of the Roman Emperor Hadrian and to honor him for his many benefactions to the city, on the occasion of the dedication of the nearby temple complex in 131 or 132 AD. It is not certain who commissioned the arch, although it is probable that the citizens of Athens or another Greek group were responsible for its construction and design. There were two inscriptions on the arch, facing in opposite directions, naming both Theseus and Hadrian as founders of Athens. While it is clear that the inscriptions honor Hadrian, it is uncertain whether they refer to the city as a whole or to the city in two parts: one old and one new. The early idea, however, that the arch marked the line of the ancient city wall, and thus the division between the old and the new regions of the city, has been shown to be false by further excavation. The arch is located 325m southeast of the Acropolis.Construction and designMaterial and designThe entire monument is made of Pentelic marble, from Mt. Pentelikon, 18.2 km northeast of the arch. Pentelic marble was used for the Parthenon and many other notable structures in Athens, although its quality can vary significantly. The marble used for the arch is of a lower grade that had more inclusions than that used in the best Athenian buildings. The arch was constructed without cement or mortar from solid marble, using clamps to connect the cut stones. It is 18m high, 13.5m wide, and 2.3m in depth. Its design is fully symmetrical from front to back and side to side.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • A bit in a minor key invaded by a large scroll artery nearby with car and public transport, elegant and slender shape, was to be the monumental entrance of the city as well as conceived by the changes desired by the emperor Hadrian. Note that on the western façade was written. "This is the city of Theseus" while on the opposite façade is written "this is the city of Hadrian" ... as if to distinguish two things
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  • Not much to see... You can see while passing from this area in bus or tram... Worth less to stop for this spot... 
  • The Arch of Hadrian is located next to the temple of Zeus....also right on a main street of traffic. If you are visiting the Temple of Zeus, by all means, walk an extra 20 feet and see the Arch. Other...  more »
Google
  • Nice spot, but not One of The absolut mødt see's
  • A beautiful ancient Greek structure which is not too far of a walk to the Acropolis. Next to it is a park with more ruins within.
  • I gave this 5 stars purely based on my love for the classics. Open for all to see. You can get within 3m of it. Not much of a description next to it and it isn't overly celebrated, but if you read up about its history beforehand it's always a joy to see it in situ.
  • Interesting design as it has a Roman arch and then Greek arches on top. Worth a quick visit.
  • Great sight to see while walking. No crowds so you can really take an up close look at the remaining arch standing. Recommend to see while walking to the Olympic stadium and the temple located behind the arch