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Joy of Museums

Museums, Art Galleries and Historical Sites

Ionic Capital 4th Century BC

Ionic Capital 4th Century BC - Syntagma Metro Station Archaeological Collection - Joy of Museum

Ionic Capital 4th Century BC

This Ionic Column Capital dates from the 4th Century BC when it probably graced an Athenian temple. At a much later date, after the temple had been destroyed, the Capital was used as a strategy game table, as on the top of the marble was carved the inscription of gameboard pattern.

Ionic Capital 4th Century BC with Inscription - Syntagma Metro Station Archaeological Collection - Joy of Museum

The Ionic Capital and Column are one of the three classical orders of classical architecture, the other two orders being the Doric and the Corinthian. The Ionic capital is characterised by the use of volutes – the spiral, the scroll-like ornament that forms the basis of the Ionic order.

The Ionic columns usually stand on a base which separates the shaft of the column from the platform. The Ionic order originated in the mid-6th century BC in Ionia, the southwestern coastland and islands of Asia Minor settled by Ionian Greeks. The Ionic order Capital and Column became common in mainland Greece by the 5th century BC.

Nine Men’s Morris – Strategy Game

The carved pattern looks very much like the strategy game with the modern name of “Nine Men’s Morris, a strategy board game for two players dating at least to the Roman Empire. Nine men’s morris is a solved game in which either player can force the game into a draw. Its name derives from the Latin word merellus or ‘gamepiece’.

Ionic Capital 4th Century BC

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“Time is the wisest counsellor of all.”
– Pericles

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Photo Credit: JOM

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