At the top of the Acropolis in Athens, Greece is the Erechtheion, a temple constructed in 421 B.C. and dedicated to Poseidon and Athena. On the side of the temple is the Porch of the Caryatids, or Porch of the Maidens, which has a long and sad history. The history of the porch during ancient times alone could fill several pages. It was burnt by the Roman General Sulla, modifed by Byzantine Christianity, home of a harem during the Ottoman period, but it still stands defiantly today, a monument to perseverance. The caryatids visible today are not originals, but exact replicas. The five originals now reside in the New Acropolis Museum, but what about the sixth? She resides in the British Museum, where she was sold by Lord Elgin, (along with the Parthenon frieze) in the nineteenth century. Legend states that when Lord Elgin stole the caryatid away from her sisters, the other five could be heard wailing for her return.

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  1. Thanks Kate! I would definitely like to visit the sixth at the british museum also.

  2. Do you know, I ow have an insane desire to visit number six and see if she’s making a racket too….lovely post, Jen, thanks.

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