Analysis Of Hadrian's Pantheon

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According to William L. MacDonald, who wrote the book The Pantheon: Design, Meaning, and Progeny, “Hadrian’s Pantheon is one of the grand architectural creations of all time: original, utterly bold, many-layered in associations and meaning, the container of a kind of immanent universality.” While Hadrian was not the architect of the very first Pantheon, he was the architect of the one that stands today. The first Pantheon was started in 27 BC by Marcus Vispanius Agrippa. It was unfortunately destroyed by a fire in 80 CE. The second Pantheon was commissioned by Domitian, but it was struck by lightning in 110 CE and burned down as well. In 118 AD, Hadrian completely rebuilt it and made it the majestic beauty that it is today. The pantheon…show more content…
This temple was the largest temple in Ancient Rome, and was dedicated to the goddess Venus Felix, known as the Bringer of Good Fortune, and Roma Aeterna, Eternal Rome. Hadrian’s design was finalized in 121 when construction began, and he introduced it to Rome in 135. However, because of how incredibly detailed and massive the temple was, Hadrian did not live to see the completion of it, as it was completed under the reign of his successor, Antoninus Pius, in 141 AD. This temple measured 53m wide and 110m long, sitting on a platform that measured 140m wide and 145m long. Inside the temple one would find two different cellae, sacred inner chambers. One contained the statue of Venus Felix, and the other contained the statue of Roma Aeterna. This temple was unique in the fact that it was the only temple in Rome to have 10 columns along the front. Hadrian took much pride in his architectural designs, as he should have considering lavish and incredible each one was. Hadrian asked one of the most famous architects at the time, Apollodorus of Damascus to comment on the temple. Apollodorus replied in a rather blunt and honest manner, and told Hadrian that “the temple was too low and the statues of the gods too tall for the space they occupied,” according the University of Chicago. This offended Hadrian to great lengths, and shortly after this conversation occurred, Apollodorus was banished and later put to death, allegedly. This incredible temple suffered a devastating fire and earthquake, but just from what remains of it today, we can tell just how insurmountable the temple must have seemed to an architect in ancient

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