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Theater of Epidaurus

Theater of Epidaurus

Theater of Epidaurus

Epidaurus (Greek: Επίδαυρος, Epidavros) was a small city (polis) in ancient Greece, at the Saronic Gulf. Two modern towns bear the name Epidavros (Επίδαυρος): Palaia Epidavros and Nea Epidavros. Since 2010 they belong to the new municipality of Epidavros, part of the regional unit of Argolis. The seat of the municipality is the town Asklipieio.[2]

Epidaurus Theater, designed by Polykleitos the Younger, c. 360 BC, 14000 seats at a sacread area of Asklepios [ Source]

Epidaurus Theate Epidaurus Theate

Epidaurus Theater, Epidaurus Theater

Epidaurus was independent of Argos and not included in Argolis until the time of the Romans. With its supporting territory it formed the small territory called Epidauria. Reputed to be the birthplace of Apollo's son, Asklepios the healer, Epidaurus was known for his sanctuary situated about five miles from the town, as well as its theater, which is once again in use today. The cult of Asklepios at Epidaurus is attested in the 6th century BC when the older hill-top sanctuary of Apollo Maleatas was no longer spacious enough.

The asclepieion at Epidaurus was the most celebrated healing center of the Classical world, the place where ill people went in the hope of being cured. To find out the right cure for their ailments, they spent a night in the enkoimitiria, a big sleeping hall. In their dreams, the god himself would advise them what they had to do to regain their health. There are also mineral springs in the vicinity which may have been used in healing.

Asklepios, the most important healer god of antiquity, brought prosperity to the sanctuary, which in the 4th and 3rd BC embarked on an ambitious building program for enlarging and reconstruction of monumental buildings. Fame and prosperity continued throughout the Hellenistic period. In 87 BC the sanctuary was looted by the Roman general Sulla and in 67 BC it was plundered by pirates. In the 2nd century AD the sanctuary enjoyed a new upsurge under the Romans, but in AD 395 the Goths raided the sanctuary.

Even after the introduction of Christianity and the silencing of the oracles, the sanctuary at Epidauros was still known as late as the mid 5th century, though as a Christian healing center.

Reconstruction of Santurary of Epidaurus

Reconstruction of Santurary of Epidaurus

The prosperity brought by the Asklepieion enabled Epidauros to construct civic monuments too: the huge theater that delighted Pausanias for its symmetry and beauty, which is used once again for dramatic performances, the ceremonial Hestiatoreion, baths and a palestra. The theater was designed by Polykleitos the Younger in the 4th century BC. The original 34 rows were extended in Roman times by another 21 rows. As is usual for Greek theaters (and as opposed to Roman ones), the view on a lush landscape behind the skene is an integral part of the theater itself and is not to be obscured.

Stadium in Epidaurus

Stadium in Epidaurus , 5th century BC [Source]

Epidaurus Katagogion

Epidaurus Katagogion

Epidaurus Stoa of Kotys

Epidaurus Stoa of Kotys

Palaia Epidavros

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Epidaurus :

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Amazon from Epidaurus, Athens National Museum, Aphrodite from Epidaurus,

Nike from Epidaurus

Tholos of Epidaurus


11. September 1938 , Electra played in the Epidaurus theater. The first play of an ancient work in this place since antiquity.

Apollo Maleatas Sanctuary

156 : Statue of a Nereid or Aura on horseback. Pentelic marble.

159 : Statuette of Nike. Parian marble.

263 : Statue of Asklepios. Pentelic marble


  • Perseus website : Epidauros
  • The Sanctuary of Asklepios at ancient Epidauros

Municipalities and communities of the Argolis Prefecture

Argos | Asini | Asklipieio | Epidaurus | Ermioni | Koutsopodi | Kranidi | Lerna | Lyrkeia | Midea | Mykines | Nafplion | Nea Kios | Nea Tiryntha

Achladokampos | Alea

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