The Theatre of Dionysus was a major amphitheatre in ancient Greece, built at the foot of the AthenianAcropolis. Dedicated to Dionysus, the god of plays and wine (among other things), the theatre could seat as many as 17,000 people, making it an ideal location for ancient Athens' biggest theatrical celebration, the Dionysia. The Acropolis of Athens, seen from the hill of the Pnyx to the west The Acropolis of Athens, seen from the north, with the restored Stoa of Attalus in the foreground The south wall of the Acropolis of Athens, seen from the Theatre of Dionysus The Acropolis of Athens, seen... The name amphitheatre (alternatively amphitheater) is given to a public building of the Classical period (being particularly associated with ancient Rome) which was used for spectator sports, games and displays. ... Ancient Greece is the term used to describe the Greek-speaking world in ancient times. ... The Acropolis in central Athens, one of the most important landmarks in world history. ... The Acropolis of Athens, seen from the hill of the Pnyx to the west The Acropolis of Athens, seen from the north, with the restored Stoa of Attalus in the foreground The south wall of the Acropolis of Athens, seen from the Theatre of Dionysus The Acropolis of Athens, seen... Bacchus by Caravaggio The god Dionysus is occasionally confused with one of several historical figures named Dionysius, a theophoric name that simply means [servant] of Dionysus. ... The Dionysia was a large religious festival in ancient Athens in honour of the god Dionysus, the central event of which was the performance of tragedies and comedies. ...
Categories: Archaeology stubs | Europe buildings and structures stubs | Ancient Greece | Drama
It was originally built in the late 5th century B.C. The theater was an outdoor auditorium in the shape of a great semicircle on the slope of the Acropolis, with rows of seats on which about eighteen thousand spectators could comfortably seat.
Above lay the deep blue sky, behind it was the Acropolis, and seen in the distance was the olive colored hills and lush green of the forests that surround.
The theater was built as a result of the Athenians religious practice in honor of the god, Dionysos, who personified both wine and fruitfulness.
As a result, there are nearly as many different reconstructions of the Theater of Dionysus as there are scholars interested in the building; some of the reconstruction drawings present architectural impossibilities or run contrary to the practical needs of performers and spectators.
While the annual theatrical festivals held in the ancient theater at Epidauros unmistakably provide the closest modern equivalent to the original acting space of the Greek dramas, the theater itself is of late date, built at a time when stagecraft and the priorities of dramatists had undergone substantial changes.
Unfortunately, we know very little about the use to which this final phase of the Theater of Dionysus, the Neronian/Hadrianic rebuilding, was put, but we can be certain from its design that it was not built with the works of Aristophanes and the three great tragedians in mind.
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