Choragic Monument of Lysicrates

Choragic Monument of Lysicrates

The Lysicrates' Monument (or Lantern of Diogenes) was built on the west side of Tripodon Street in 335-334 B.C.. Is the best saved example of this style of monument and is naturally the center of attention in the same named square.

These choragic monuments were erected in honor of the sponsors of the applicants of the Athenian festival competitions who, proved to have found a good way to get there names written down in history.

This specific monument, known as the Lantern of Diogenes, is a cyclical structure built on a square podium out of porous stone (2.93 m) with six Corinthian columns of Pentelic marble, with panels of marble from Mount Ymmitos as the first examples of Corinthian style in Athens.

The Monument was incorporated into a neighborhood monastery in 1669 and is used by the monks as a chapel as well as a reading room and library after they moved a panel to open up the entrance.

The monastery, which had housed Lord Byron in 1810 during his last visit to the city, was destroyed during the Greek War of Independence. In 1845, French archaeologists cleaned the monument from the ruins and investigating for architectural parts that were missing. In 1876-1887, the restoration was started by Boulanger and Loviot. It was completed in 1892 under the responsibility of the French government.

Today the monument and the Lysicratous Square around it is a central and popular meeting point in Plaka, the old town of Athens.