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The Acropolis with the Parthenon Temple

Iktinos (also Iktious or Ictinus) was an architect active in the mid 5th century BC, who, together with Kallikrates designed the Parthenon (447-–432 BC) in Athens, Greece.

Little is known about the life of Iktinos, most contemporary information being based on the writings of Plutarch.

The most complete surviving example of Iktinos's work is the Temple of Hephaestus in Athens, which has been preserved almost intact as a result of having been a Christian Church. It is a Doric temple.

Iktinos is also believed to have designed the temple of Apollo Epicurius at Bassae, the first known use of a Corinthian column, and also the Telesterion shrine of Eleusis, a gigantic hall used in the Eleusinian Mysteries.

Pausanias 8.41.7:

On the mountain is a place called Bassae, and the temple of Apollo the Helper, which, including the roof, is of stone. Of the temples in the Peloponnesus, this might be placed first after the one at Tegea for the beauty of its stone and for its symmetry. Apollo received his name from the help he gave in time of plague, just as the Athenians gave him the name of Averter of Evil for turning the plague away from them. It was at the time of the war between the Peloponnesians and the Athenians that he also saved the Phigalians, and at no other time; the evidence is that of the two surnames of Apollo, which have practically the same meaning, and also the fact that Ictinus, the architect of the temple at Phigalia, was a contemporary of Pericles, and built for the Athenians what is called the Parthenon.

The artist Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres painted a scene showing Iktinos together with the lyric poet Pindar - the painting is known as Pindar and Ictinus and is exhibited at the National Gallery, London.

References

F. E. Winter (1980) "Tradition and innovation in Doric design: the work of Iktinos" in American Journal of Archaeology, Issue 4, pp 399 - 416.

See also: Kallikrates

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