Sunday, October 11, 2009

Colossal Statue of Apollo Unearthed in Turkey

Italian archaeologists have recently unearthed a colossal statue of Apollo in Pamukkale, Turkey, which used to be the ancient Greek city of Hierapolis; the city, which flourished during the Hellenistic age, was later given to Rome in 133 B.C. A finding such as this is extremely rare in Asia, as only a dozen similar statues exist. The statue, which stands at over 4 meters tall, depicts Apollo wearing an ornate tunic that highlights the god’s large muscles, and is missing a head and arms. Also, the statue was evidently designed to be viewed only from the front, which was figured out because of the sculptor’s lack of attention to the back. The statue had particular significance to Hierapolis because Apollo was considered to be the divine founder of the city, and it was likely the chief sculpture at the city’s temple of Apollo. As with most other temples of Apollo, the one at Hierapolis was built along a fault line, and it is clear to historians that an earthquake that occurred there was responsible for the division of the statue and separation of the arms and head. Archaeologists are continuing to unearth artifacts and statues at the site of Hierapolis, and it’s only a matter of time until they find the rest of the statue of Apollo!

-Ravi S., period 7

1 comment:

Ben Scanlan said...

I think Turkish sculpture is some of the best in the ancient world. A not as well known ruin of the late Hellenistic period, The Ruins of Nemrud Dagh is my current desktop background. King Antiochus monuments depict stories of the king, his family and ancestors, and their interaction with the gods.