The two Columns of the Doric temple ~ Taranto Capitale di Mare

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The two Columns of the Doric temple

Piazza Castello, 74123 Taranto TA



The Columns, now visible in Piazza Castello, were part of a temple from the Magna Graecia age and can be dated to the beginning of the sixth century. B.C.

This once large place of worship, certainly dedicated to a female deity, was one of the temples and public buildings that occupied the city’s acropolis.

The structure, originally, had six or eight columns on the short side and fifteen or seventeen on the long side. Only two of them and part of a third one remained.

The dating of the temple (to the first twenty-five years of the sixth century. B.C.) makes it the oldest in all of Magna Graecia.

The archaeological investigations have reconstructed most of the events that followed the construction of the place of worship, which, from a very simple building probably made of wood and raw bricks, has acquired monumental dimensions. It was abandoned, probably, after the Roman capture of the city.

The area, during the late ancient age was almost certainly used as a quarry area and then destined to homes or functional environments equipped with silos and granaries.

Even if the proofs of the Lombard attendance are practically absent, it is possible to assume that in the pagan sacred area, since the 10th century A.D., a small Christian church had been created. Its presence is attested since the late Middle Ages.

By analysing some sources, it is possible to claim that the small place of worship, which perhaps incorporated part of the ancient structures, was dedicated to Santa Maria dei Martiri. In the following centuries, the urban space seems to have been occupied by houses and production areas which were later replaced by the Celestini Convent (demolished in 1926-1927) and by the church of the Holy Trinity demolished in the 1970s.

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The two Columns of the Doric temple is part of the following itineraries

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Piazza Castello, 74123 Taranto TA



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