Towering Over the Wrecks of Time

Much of antiquity is couched in stories with superlatives.  At night the drizzle filtered image dominates the skyline. The historical record and the visible monuments tower over the modern polis of Athens.  At the highest point in the city the temple of Athena, the Acropolis, flashes its white marble to the Sun and towers over the city.

Across from the Acropolis is the Porch of the Caryatids.  This most recognizable of the elements on the Acropolis site features the maidens (likely modeled after women from Laconia) toasting victory and raising their dresses to dance.

The details may be less important than the vista of the Acropolis mount from the streets of Athens.  From behind Hadrians Arch the Acropolis perches on the hill.  The Arch was built in 132 ACE to celebrate the construction of the Temple of Zeus or some conquering parade through the city. Time has a way of making the details merge with the dust of memory — the great thing about stories, and much of history is story, is that in the words of Tom SpanBauer, “A story does not need to be true, it needs to feel true!”  The simple truth is that in the dust of a summer day every fragment of marble was polished for an eternity where even the stones can rest.

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