[The Agora]

The Painted Stoa

The "Painted Stoa" (Stoa Poikile) Built about 475-450 . A south facing stoa about 36m long decorated with painted wooden panels by outstanding 5th century painters - still in place when described by Pausanias 600 years later (Pausanias 1.28.3). Subjects were: Athenians v Amazons; Greeks v Trojans, and Athenian victory over Persians at Marathon. Also displayed were Spartan shields captured at Pylos in 425/4 BC, one of which was found in a well - inscribed "The Athenians from the Spartans from Pylos". The stoa was a general place for shelter and meeting - the written sources mention sword-swallowers, jugglers, beggars and fishmongers -and it was the birthplace of Stoicism around 300 BC, when Zeno used it as a base for his lectures on philosophy.

[Picture of the Stoa Poikile]

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