Parthenon Details

  • Concrete faced with Trajan brick
  • Adorned with white Pentelic marble (Greek marble)
  • Originally a temple to all the Gods
  • Converted to a church

The Pantheon, once a Roman temple, was originally built on the site of an earlier temple commissioned by Marcus Agrippa during the reign of Augustus. The first Pantheon was severely damaged and required replacement except for some parts of the lower porch section and foundation. The Pantheon was rebuilt by the Emperor Hadrian during the period 118 to 128 A.D. This time period is disputed. However, most of the bricks were made and placed in the Pantheon in 123 A.D., a date that the maker stamped on his bricks. The building stands virtually intact and offers a unique opportunity for the modern visitor to step back 2,000 years and experience the glory that was Rome. Yet, like other ancient remains in Rome, the Pantheon was for centuries a source of materials, the marble for new buildings and bronze adornments went into the making of cannons and weapons. In addition to the loss of original finishings, sculpture, and all of its bronze elements, many other changes were made to the building from the fourth century to today. Originally an ancient temple, the Parthenon was later converted into the Church of Santa Maria and Martyrs. The building’s consecration as a church saved it from the abandonment, destruction, and the worst of the spoliation that befell the majority of ancient Rome’s buildings during the early medieval period.