[The Agora]

The Temple of Hephaistos

Once known as the Theseum (temple of Theseus) - now generally agreed to be the Hephaisteion (temple of Hephaistos), where Hephaistos, god of the forge and Athena, goddess of arts and crafts were worshipped together, on the hill overlooking the commercial centre. It was built between 460 and 420 BC (delays because of building programme on the Acropolis, and the Peloponnesian War) of Pentelic marble, and is the best-preserved Greek temple. The sculptural decoration showed labours of Heracles, labours of Theseus, and battle of Lapiths and Centaurs, and inside were statues of Athena and Hephaistos. The sanctuary was landscaped to provide shelter from the sun (evidence from planting-pits filled with large terracotta flowerpots).

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