PATRAI (Ancient city) ACHAIA
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It was built shortly before the Odeion of Herodes Atticus in Athens (161 A.D.) and is smaller than the Athenian monument. The cavea has four rows of seats in the lower section, and seven in the upper part, over the diazoma. The outer, tall wall of the stage (skene) has five entrances to the skene and the lateral buildings (paraskenia). Access to the proskenion is gained through two built stairways, one on the left and one on the right side. The orchestra is paved and separated from the cavea by a semicircular parapet. The Odeion was revealed in 1889 and until then it was completely covered with earth. Only restricted excavation has been carried out on the site.
The monument was repaired and again dressed with marble slabs after World War II.
Every summer the Odeion is employed for music concerts and theatrical performances.
On the West side of the acropolis, at the upper town, lies the Roman
Odeum of Patras, erected
prior to the Athens Odeum. (Herodeum, 160 AD). Pausanias, that visited Patras
in the decade of 170AC writes, "It has the most beautiful decoration I have ever
seen, after that of Athens". As Pausanias reports, inside the Odeum that used
to be a continuance of the Agora, there was a statue of Apollo, made of the loots
of the war against the Galatians (279 BC), when Patras people had helped the Etolians.
In the centuries that followed, earthquakes, wars and conquerors destroyed the Odeum and covered it with other buildings and ground. A small hill was created, which covered almost the entire Odeum. The Odeum saw daylight again in 1889, when there have been some works of digging to collect ground for the banking up of the port.
A lot of decades went by until the process of restoration begun, which was completed in 1956, the year that the Odeum regained its initial shape. On the same decade, the surroundings were turned into an archaeological site, housing the exhibition of sarcophagi, mosaics and other ancient findings.
The Odeum contains all the basic parts of a theatre such as hollow, orchestra, proscenium, scene and wings as well as 23 rows of seats, while its capacity is 2300 spectators.
After the establishment of Patras International Festival, the Ancient Odeum constitutes its main venue, welcoming in the summer months, top Greek and foreign artistic bands.
This text is cited Feb 2003 from the Municipality of Patra URL below, which contains image.
Patras was rendered a Roman colony in 31BC and the dominance of Roman architecture has been all-embracing. Many public buildings and works were constructed at the expense of Roman Emperors and the benefactors of the city. One of these works was the Roman aqueduct, necessary in a populous city like Patras. It was the time that Patras was going through the most flourishing period in its history, occupying its position as Greece's gate to Italy. Romans constructed a large water reservoir at the sources of Romanos river, where Diakoniaris torrent rises. The reservoir was constructed in the form of an artificial dam at the beginning of the glade, at ten meters distance from the sources. A part of the initial wall of the dam is incorporated today at the base of the contemporary reservoir, while 20m away, inside the river's bed, there are large pieces of a strong wall. At the sources of Romanos River, as it derives from an inscription discovered last century, they worshiped Nymphs, deities of water. Patras' aqueduct, from the reservoir to the fortress, was 6.5km long. Water was transferred at its biggest part through a built ground pipe, passing through valleys and gullies on well-looked-after arches, parts of which survive till nowadays. There were branch-pipes towards several directions with covered pipes of smaller cross-section. The constant water flow was accomplished thanks to the principle of communicating vessels, of which Greeks were aware.
This text is cited Feb 2003 from the Municipality of Patra URL below.
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