20.A.1. Caryatid from the Treasury of Syphnian

Delphi Archaeological Museum

There were two caryatids in the Treasury of Syphnian (view blog no. 12.A.4.) but only one survived. A caryatid is described as a sculpted female figure (maiden) serving as support of a column or pillar on her head.

Behind the statue is an entrance or a door to the treasury and this female sculture served as a decorative column.

My photo.

12.A.5. Tholos of Delphi

The Tholos is (among the ancient structures) the circular building in the center of the Sanctuary of Athena. It is attributed to the cult of heroes or deities of the underworld. In 373 B.C. a large earthquake destroyed a large part of the sanctuary. Only three of the exterior columns have today been restored.

My Photo.

10.A. Pediments (Architecture), Olympia Museum

Still staring and gazing around the museum’s exhibition areas taking it in, educating myself what civilization was like in this place. One can’t miss the center and largest room in the building, Room 5. The room is named Pediments and Metopes of the Temple of Zeus. Earlier, in my blog (8.A.2.a) I showed an artist’s illustration of the Temple of Zeus’s architecture.

What is a pediment? After developing my photos downloading and identifying per the museum’s exhibits (i.e. bronze room, sculpture room, terracotta room, etc.), I was intrigued by the name. I will also feature metopes in a future blog. It’s difficult for me to explain but a visual helped me to understand. It is described as an architectural element usually of a triangular shape.

Online photo. New York State Appellate Courthouse Pediment

9.A.3. Griffins in Architecture, Museum


I wonder why griffins and gargoyles are sculptures located in high rise buildings.

Well, griffins became familiar figures that have survived centuries joining other types of grotesque sculptures on walls, floors, and rooftops of Gothic cathedrals and castles.

Now, I learned that the use of the griffin in architecture, is decorative and symbolic. Also, it serves a practical purpose on the building’s exterior—to move roof water away from its base, like a drainage gutter.

But the big reveal is … not only do they have to be seen from the street, but they also must be prominent enough to deter the menacing thieves they protect against.

In modern times, use of the griffin is the symbol of the Philadelphia Museum of Art; bronze castings of them perch on each corner of the museum’s roof, protecting its collection. Similarly essentially comparable is, a griffin formed part of the logo of HSBC.

My photo.

6.B.3. Beehive Effect

Now that you’re inside the chamber, look up and you’ll notice structure resembling a beehive. I got the goosies. The interior of this tomb was once decorated with red porphyry and green alabaster, very rare painting colours for that time. I close my eyes and imagine in Technicolor. WOW!

When you have a great tour guide telling you about its history, the place takes on more meaning and substance. And “I was there!”