Terrace of the Lions, the famous symbol of Archaeological Site of Delos, Delos Island, Cyclades, Greece.

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Terrace of the Lions


The most-photographed part of the Delos site is this terrace facing the Sacred Lake, lined with stone lions (these are replicas, the originals are in the museum). Judging by their work, it seems likely that the sculptors from 7th-century-BC Naxos had never seen a real one before.

It's thought that there were originally between nine and 19 of these large beasts but only five substantially complete ones and three fragments remain. A sixth was plundered by the Venetians and now guards the entrance to their famous Arsenale, after having received a major facial reconstruction.

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1. Dodekatheon

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Dating from the 3rd century BC, this small temple was dedicated to the 12 principal gods of the Greek pantheon. Statuary from the temple is housed in the…

2. Sacred Lake

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According to the legend, it was here that Leto gave birth to Apollo and Artemis, making it one of the most sacred sites of the ancient world. This didn't…

4. Wall of Triarius

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The remains of fortifications built by the Roman governor in 69 BC to protect the town.

5. Artemision


Adjoining the sanctuary of Apollo was a smaller compound forming the sanctuary of his twin sister, Artemis. Three remaining columns mark the location of…

6. House of Comedians


The re-erected Doric columns here once formed a colonnade around the atrium of a large villa, which takes its name from a painted frieze featuring actors…

7. Lake Palaestra


Wrestlers and, possibly, boxers would once have trained here.

8. Poros Temple


The smallest and oldest of the three adjacent temples to Apollo at the heart of his sanctuary, this one dates from the 6th-century BC and was named for…