The Ancient Circuit Wall of Athens: Its Changing Course and the Phases of Construction

by Anna Maria Theocharaki

Hesperia, Volume 80, Issue 1
Page(s): 71-156
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2972/hesp.80.1.0071
Year: 2011


This paper presents a survey of the physical remains of the ancient Athenian circuit wall, which are plotted here on a new map aligned with the city's modern urban structure. Technical details of the methods and materials of construction are reviewed in order to distinguish the characteristics of the surviving stretches of walls and to assess the chronological value of these details. The author proposes likely locations for sections of the circuit wall not yet identified. Drawing on the results of the survey and on literary and epigraphical evidence, the author identifies four courses and 15 construction phases of the city wall of Athens between the early 5th century B.C. and the mid-6th century A.D.