The Frieze of the Temple of Apollo Epikourios at Phigaleia

frieze of battle scene

Artist: Unknown
Date: Fifth Century B.C.
Location: Library, Stairwell

The date of the construction of the temple is not known for certain, though the style of the frieze suggests the fifth century B.C. The temple was built in recognition of the deliverance from a plague, which may have been that which visited Athens soon after the outbreak of the Peloponnesian War (431 B.C.). The architect was Iktinos, the same who built the Parthenon, which was completed in 438 B.C.

The frieze, which originally encircled the four walls of the cella, on the inside, was discovered among the ruins of the temple in 1811, and soon afterwards acquired by the British Museum where the original is now found.

The frieze depicts two Greek warriors advancing on two Amazons. The excitement of their battle is captured in their stance and the flowing robes of the advancing Amazon warrior.

Descriptive and historical information about the sculptures compiled by Dr. Douglas O. Eason.