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Home » Did You Know? » Statue of Zeus at Olympia

Statue of Zeus at Olympia

 The Statue of Zeus at Olympia, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World was built around 435 BC.

 Zeus was considered to be the god of the sky, thunder, lighting, law, justice, order and the father of the Olympic Games.

 A temple was built for Zeus at Olympia between 466-456 BC and it was designed by architect Libon.

 The wonderful huge statue was sculpted by a legendary Athenian sculptor Phidias who was assisted by his pupils Panainos and Kolotis

 Statue of Zeus was erected in the Temple of Zeus at the sanctuary of Olympia

 It took 12 years to complete this wonder.

 The statue measured around 42 Ft. (13m) tall and the base 21 Ft. (6m) wide. Its perimeter was 43 Ft.(13m)

 The figure of Zeus was seated on a huge throne that was 22 feet wide which was almost touching the roof.

 Strabo, the noted geographer once commented, if Zeus were to come to life and stand up, “he would unroof the temple”

 The throne was made from cedar wood and decorated with precious stones, ivory, gold and ebony.

 In his right hand Zeus held a figure of Nike, the Greek goddess of victory and in his left hand was eagle headed sceptre.

 The depictions of the Statue of Zeus are based on historical descriptions and depictions on Ancient Greek coins.

 The statue was transported by a Greek named Lausus to his palace in the city of Constantinople.

 It was damaged in a massive earthquake and repaired.

 The statue remained there until it was destroyed by fire which swept through the city in 475 AD.

 Today nothing remains at the site except rocks and debris, fallen columns and the foundation of the buildings.

 But the huge statue stood strong in the temple at Olympia for more than 800 years.

Image Credit: www.chess.com

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