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Greek architecture

Origins of Greek Architecture

Palaces of the Minoan civilization remain at Knossos and Phaestus on Crete. Of the later Mycenaean civilization, surviving examples are the Lion's Gate at Mycenae and palaces at Mycenae and Tiryns. When the Dorians migrated into Greece (before 1000 B.C.) true Hellenic culture began, and the architecture that eventually developed seems to have borrowed little from the preceding civilizations.

In Greece the Dorians developed their building forms with such rapidity that between the 10th and the 6th cent. B.C. a definite system of construction was established. However, prior to the creation of the great marble temples of the 5th cent. B.C., there were undoubtedly evolutionary stages in which walls were made of sun-dried bricks and roofs, columns, and uprights of wood. The Heraeum at Olympia, considered one of the most ancient temples yet discovered, represents such a stage; in its later alterations (7th cent. B.C.), it is illustrative of the beginnings of the Doric temple of stone.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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