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Theater of Priene

a Pleiades location resource

Creators: Jackson N Miller
Contributors: Adam Rabinowitz
Copyright © The Contributors. Sharing and remixing permitted under terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License (cc-by).
Last modified Aug 13, 2018 07:57 PM History
Greek theater just below the agora in the Ionian city of Priene

theatre, theater

{ "type": "Point", "coordinates": [ 27.297866, 37.6598722 ] }



Google Earth and Partners Imagery 2013


  • Hellenistic-Roman Early Empire (330 BC – AD 300) (confident)


Throughout its Greek, Roman, and brief Byzantine existence, the theater at Priene was the main stage for the city's inhabitants. Its construction was probably funded in part by Alexander the Great, who had been a major benefactor to the city. Archaeology has shown that this theater went through stages of construction starting from around 350 BCE and continuing until the Late Roman period. The building probably evolved from a wooden structure to one with marble seats. Remains not only demonstrate changes in seating and architecture but also reflect the changing themes in Greek comedy and drama. The theater’s construction originally emphasized the orchestra, but it was later remodeled to bring more attention to the actors, in conjunction with the emergence of Greek “New Comedy”. The front row, constructed in Roman times, consists of five seats of honor intended to accommodate important visitors. The various phases of remodeling, particularly those that involved the addition of seating, also suggest that the city's population increased over time.

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Name Priene