Observations on the Hephaisteion

by William B. Dinsmoor

Hesperia Supplement 5
171 pp, 76 figs
8.5" x 11"
Paper, ISBN: 978-0-87661-505-8
Publication Date: Nov 1941
Status: Out of Print


The well-preserved Temple of Hephaistos, standing on a low hill to the west of the Athenian Agora, was one of the only monuments visible when American excavations began on the site in 1931. Known throughout its early modern history as the “Theseum,” it is still the Agora’s most conspicuous landmark. This book presents an extremely detailed architectural study of the temple and a reconstruction of its history. Inaugurated in 449 B.C. (on October 17, claims the author), the temple was one of a group of building projects that celebrated the defeat of the Persians and the growth of Athenian power. In the 5th century A.D. the temple was converted to a Christian church and was used as such until the 19th century.