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West Pediment

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West Pediment
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Photo Comments

View of the west Pediment of the Temple Zeus as reconstructed (using original materials) in the Museum at Olympia.

Note the low triangular shape of the pediment.  In the center is the standing figure of the deity Apollo and from him the figures slope down into the two (right and left) corners. 


The theme of this pediment is taken from the story of the marriage of Peirithoos, a Greek king, and Deidameia.  The scene depicts the moment at the wedding when the invited centaurs (half human half beast) had too much to drink and began to attack the women and boys – trying to carry them off.


In the center of the pediment is a calm, cool, and collected representation of Apollo.  The statement seems to be that Apollo, the son of Zeus and patron of the arts, is in charge of that which makes life humane and worthwhile.


This image courtesy of Jerry Hawkes.