The Fourth Century
c. 400-300 BCE


Temple of Apollo
at Bassai
attributed to Iktinos
c. 430-390 BCE
Limestone and marble
Height (columns) 19 feet 6 inches

The Temple of Apollo the Helper (Epikourios) at Bassai (Phigaleia) in the mountains of Arcadia was built around 400 BCE. One of its distinctive features is the earliest known Corinthian column capital. Another unusual feature is an internal frieze showing Herakles battling the Amazons, and the Battle of the Lapiths and Centaurs.

Temple of Apollo, Bassai: Plan

Temple of Apollo, Bassai
Reconstructed interior view with single Corinthian at the end (by F. Krischen, 1938)

Temple of Apollo, Bassai: Frieze
The fragment shows the Battle of the Lapiths and Centaurs
with Lapith women on the left clinging to an Archaic-style statue of a goddess (Artemis?)

Frieze of the Battle of the Greeks and Amazons
from the Temple of Apollo, Bassai

Temple of Apollo, Bassai
in the mountains of south-western Arcadia

© Christopher L. C. E. Witcombe