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Hadrian's Library

hadrian library

It has been built in 132 AC from emperor Hadrian and it is rectangular (122 X 82 m). On its floor plan it shaped a peristyle archway where there were storage rooms for papyri and books along with lecture lounges. This building was partly ruined by the Erouli in 267 AC. It was renovated during the first half of the 5th century AC. At the same time in the atrium there is a four-socket building which was probably the first metropolitan temple of Athens, luxurious with incredible mosaics.

The church of Agioi Asomatoi once situated in today's Areos street was built somewhere between the 11th and 12th century in the western propylon of the library. During the 11th century the palaiochristian church found in the center of the atrium is transformed into the Byzantine "Megali Panagia" (Our Lady the Great).

During the Ottoman domination it is transformed into a shopping center of Athens. In the southwestern side of the premises was the residence of the Turkish commander of Athens. The Greek Administration headquarters were situated in today's Mitropoleos street. Until the liberation (1833) the library was operating in the same way the ancient Greek agora did, meaning as an administrative and commercial center of the city. The bazaar once found in the eastern part of the library was burned in 1884. after the destruction excavations and research of the monument took place and the public was able to visit it for the first time in the summer of 2004.

hadrian library hadrian library

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