Greece Architecture Part 6
According to thenailmythology, public buildings for meetings have come down to us. In the buleuterio of Olympia we have one of the first examples of such buildings. There first, in the century. Street. C., a room with two naves was raised, with a row of Doric columns inside (and in this the archaic character of the building appears), and a circular apse: it is the type of construction that derives from pre-Hellenic constructions known to us from the excavations of Drachmani in Thessaly, of Thérmos in Aetolia and also of Olympia. Later, in the century. V, a second similar building was erected, a rectangular room was built in the middle and the three parts of the building were joined by an Ionic portico. A meeting place, but of a sacred nature, was the Telestérion of Eleusis, built under the government of Pericles on the plan of Ictino, and executed by Corebo, Metagene, and Xenocles, floor that enlarged the Telestérion of Pisistrato: it was an almost square building of the Doric order with two floors; on the lower floor there were eight steps for seating and the ceiling was supported by 42 columns in seven rows; to the south-east, at the end of the century. IV, the architect Philo added a dodecastilo portico.
The Thersílion of Megalopolis (after 371 BC), a large rectangular room for the meetings of the representatives of the Arcadian community, is connected to this type of construction; the columns of the interior were arranged in a radial pattern, so as not to prevent the gazes of all the participants from concentrating in the middle; the arcade that preceded the Thersílion served at the same time as a stage for the adjacent theater. Derivations of the same type of construction are the buleuterî of Priene and Miletus; the one (from the 3rd century BC) is an almost square room with steps, this one (from around 170 BC), preceded by a courtyard with a Doric portico and a Corinthian propylaeus, is a hall that contains an auditorium of theater, thus proving to be an architectural type forerunner of our modern theaters. Add the hypostyle hall of Delos (last times of the century. III a. C.), meeting place of merchants, precursor construction of our stock exchanges: it is a large rectangle (56 m by 34 m) with the facade, as in the buleuterio of Miletus, on one of the major sides; in the interior is a double circle operístasis of columns (Doric in the wider circle, Ionic in the smaller one) and in the median rectangle is a row of two pairs of columns. This hypostyle hall reconnects to very ancient Egyptian models, and appears as the primeval form from which the oriental-type Roman basilica developed, that is, with the entrance on one of the long sides (eg the Giulia basilica). Instead, from the elongated building of Tera, with a row of columns in the middle and with the entrance on one of the short sides, the Roman basilica of the type of that of Pompeii develops.
Other civil buildings are libraries, gymnasiums, markets, hotels. For the libraries, the one in Pergamum overlooking the terrace of the sanctuary of Athena Poliade is to be adduced; it consisted of four rooms, one of which larger than the others, placed in a row along a portico. The gymnasium among the Greeks consisted of two parts, namely the enclosure for gymnastic exercises and the rooms for theoretical teachings. And indeed the gymnasium of the sanctuary of Olympia, that of the sanctuary of Epidaurus, those of Priene, of Miletus, of Asso, of Eretria correspond to this type of construction: a rectangular courtyard surrounded by a colonnade and with an entrance sometimes at propylaum (Olympia, Epidaurus, Miletus), and various environments either all around (eg Epidaurus) or on two sides (eg Priene and Eretria) or on one side only (eg Miletus).
There are markets in Priene, Pergamum and Magnesia, true squares with right angles, surrounded by arcades and rooms (shops and warehouses); the Magnesia market was surrounded by a double portico. The so-called butchers are connected to the markets, of which the most striking example is preserved in Pompeii: with a completely closed courtyard, which has a round building or thólos in the middle. Ornaments of the markets were the water and sun clocks, also indicators of the direction of the wind: the so-called Tower of the Winds in Athens, dedicated to the beginning of the century, has survived. I a. C. by Andronico Cirreste Sirio; it is a small octagonal building, with the relief representation of eight winds.
Two hotels can be mentioned, existing at two great sanctuaries in Greece: the Leonidaĩon at the sacred enclosure of Olympia (2nd half of the 4th century BC), and the hotel annexed to the sanctuary of Epidaurus (4th-3rd century a. C.). They were square constructions with various subdivisions: in the Leonidas a large central courtyard surrounded by various rooms, in the Epidaurus building four smaller squares, each consisting of a central courtyard and surrounding rooms.
The entrance to sanctuaries and squares is the propylaum. Here too there is a derivation from Cretan-Mycenaean architecture, since real and proper propylaea can be seen both in the Cretan palace (e.g. the propylaea above the western staircase in the palace of Phaistos), and in the Achaean palace (e.g. the propylaea of entrance and the propylaeus in front of the courtyard of the mégaron, in the palace of Tiryns). The most notable example of this type of construction is found in the propylaea of the Acropolis of Athens, built between 437 and 432 by the architect Mnesicle.