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Arch of Hadrian (Pili tou Adrianou), Athens

Categories: Monuments, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
4/5 based on 440+ 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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  • It's another beautiful archaeological attractions, walking around the Greek capital, it emerges imposingly in front of you. Very close to the Temple of Zeus. It's worth it!
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  • This is beautiful! Try to ask a tour guide the history behind this gateway and the experience will be far more enriched! 
  • It is in the neighborhood of Plaka. Be observed from arc or Hadrian's Gate, the ruins of the Temple of ZEUS. All Athens's history! You are excited! Thank you!
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  • 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.
  • 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
  • It is a bit difficult to find it in spite of being able to see it 1 1/2 blocks away. The street is very busy as traffic is constantly passing by; therefore, taking photos of Hadrian's Arch up close can be challenging. You need to wait for the right moment. We were able to view Hadrian's Arch from Acropolis Hill and decided to visit the area. The view from the street is most likely the best view that you may get as a close-up- right across the street. The arch is somewhat a remnant of the original but never the less, it is a view to appreciate as it is a rare find. Watch out walking in the streets of this area as there are plenty of street peddlers trying to sell their ware. Don't get too distracted with them. Go if you have a chance!
  • Iconic and impressive! Love the history behind it. Basically Hadrian coming in and saying uh...Theseus move over!!!! You will drive by it for sure if you are cabbing to/from port or airport but you can get close by visiting Olympian Zeus.
  • 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.
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