The Greek Central Archaeological Council (KAS) decided on Wednesday that a part of the Parthenon, now in ruins on the Athens Acropolis, is to be rebuilt using mostly materials which are now lying on the ground.
It is believed to be the first time that a section of the ancient monument will be rebuilt to reflect its former glory.
The KAS has decided to rebuild the “cella” of the Parthenon, which once housed the chryselephantine statue of Athena Parthenos, sculpted by Phidias and dedicated in the year 439 or 438 BC.
“Today’s meeting is of great importance, because by utilizing research concerning the restoration of the cella we will be able to reconstruct its appearance, a very important event for the later history of the Parthenon,” a statement by KAS said.
The appearance of the cella has been known, as it has been described and likened to other images. The decorative stonework was originally highly colored.
The statue of Athena Parthenos, universally recognized as a piece of extraordinarily beautiful ancient art, represented Athena armed with a spear, shield and helmet, and accompanied by a serpent. Her right arm was extended before her, and her hand held a statue of victory.
The Athena Parthenos statue remained in the cella until the fifth century AD, when it was removed to Constantinople — and subsequently disappeared.
The complex rebuilding effort, which will include reusing 360 marble and stone pieces currently lying broken on the ground, is expected to take years to be completed.