Ortigia

Ortygia and the air element. The Gods of Olympus and the Temple of Apollo.

In Ortygia, the air element is connected to Greek mythology, thanks to the presence of temples, sacred buildings dedicated to the Olympic gods.
According to Greek religion, the gods lived on Mount Olympus, a very high and unreachable mountain always shrouded in clouds.
The temple was where the gods were prayed to and rites and sacrifices were performed. This structure represented a place of union between heaven and earth: a place where humans came into contact with the Olympic gods through prayer, sacrifice and invocation.
Of all the majestic temples built in Ortygia, the Temple of Apollo, dedicated to the sun god, was one of the most important. The building was built in 565 BC. All that remains today are the remains of two columns and a wall that formed the “cella” (shrine).
Veduta frontale Tempio di ApolloOriginally there were many columns! The temple had a rectangular shape and six columns on the front and seventeen along the sides. The cella (shrine), on the other hand, was the room that housed the precious marble statue of the god Apollo.
Ricostruzione Tempio di ApolloCeremonies took place outside, in front of the façade. Only priests had access to the temple. The roofs were made of wood and decorated with colourful terracotta.
At the top, above the roof or in the triangular space of the façade above the columns, you could find terracotta statues of knights, the winged sphinx, or the dreaded gorgon !

Neapolis and the earth element. Places of performance: the Greek theatre and the Roman amphitheatre

Giudecca and water. The ritual baths: the Casa Bianca mikveh

Giudecca and the earth element. Between gardens and artisan workshops

The naumachiae: naval battles at the theatre

The fountain of Diana in Piazza Archimede

Neapolis and fire. The Altar of Hieron and the sacrificial fire

Ortygia

Giudecca

A journey to Pantalica

The interior of the Cathedral of Syracuse

The Cathedral of Syracuse

The Neapolis

Neapolis and the water element. The Nymphaeum

Pantalica and the earth element

Ortygia and fire. Archimedes and the invention of the burning mirrors

Pantalica and fire. The Metal Age: objects from the culture of Pantalica

Pantalica and air. The skies of Pantalica: from hawks to bats

Neapolis and the air element. The Ear of Dionysius

Nature in Neapolis

Ortygia and water. The Fountain of Arethusa

Ortygia and the air element. The Gods of Olympus and the Temple of Apollo.

Ortygia and the earth element. Piazza del Duomo: discovering the origins.

Giudecca and fire. Cooking and the Jewish religion

Giudecca and air. The Basilica of San Giovannello

Pantalica and water: the Myth of the Anapo River