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Temple of Hera I (the "Basilica")

a Pleiades place resource

Creators: Noura Alavi, Jeffrey Becker, Levi Noble, Tom Elliott
Contributors: Adam Rabinowitz
Copyright © The Contributors. Sharing and remixing permitted under terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License (cc-by).
Last modified Feb 21, 2024 12:37 PM History
An Archaic Doric temple probably dedicated to Hera in the central urban sanctuary of Paestum/Poseidonia.

40.41926825, 15.0054008



The Temple of Hera I was probably dedicated to the wife of Zeus, goddess of fertility and creativity. Constructed in the Doric order in the middle of the sixth century BC, the temple is peripteral, with nine columns along the east and west facades and eighteen along the north and south. The unusual division of the cella by a colonnade has been attributed to either the structural design or a double dedication to Hera and Zeus, although these explanations are still debated. Several architectural details, such as the prominent entasis of the columns and the curvature of the echinus of their capitals, help date the construction to the Archaic period. Other features reflect an interest in decoration and elaboration unusual for the Doric order, but more common in the West: some of the capitals, for example, have carved floral bands around the base of the echinus.

Upon discovery of the temple in the eighteenth century, archaeologists and architects began to argue that Roman architectural developments might have their roots in earlier Greek forms. Although early archaeologists mistakenly identified the Temple as a civic building (the reason it is also known as the "Basilica"), several votives depicting Hera found at the site confirm the religious nature of the building and the goddess to whom it was dedicated.

Location based on OpenStreetMap.

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Noura Alavi, Jeffrey Becker, Levi Noble, Tom Elliott, and Adam Rabinowitz, 'Temple of Hera I (the "Basilica"): a Pleiades place resource', Pleiades: A Gazetteer of Past Places, 2024 <> [accessed: 01 March 2024]

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