Civilization of Dion Exhibit in New York, March 24 to June 18

 

Great Baths of Dion
Great Baths of Dion

“In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous,” – Aristotle

Americans will be given the opportunity to see the civilization of Dion for free in New York City. From March 24 through June 18, 2016, the Onassis Cultural Center NY a will present the exhibition Gods and Mortals at Olympus: Ancient Dion, City of Zeus, exploring the relationship between daily life in a city built on the slopes of Mount Olympus and the mythological abode of the gods at the peak. The Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation (USA) is located at 645 Fifth Avenue, New York.  Seeing the natural, unspoiled beauty of the Mount Olympus area brings to life why Greeks viewed Mount Olympus as the “Home of the Twelve Gods.”

A synopsis of the civilization of Dion

- Sancturary of the Goddesses of Fertility
Sanctuary of the Goddesses of Fertility
               The Dion Park’s introductory poster describes its history. The peaks of Mount Olympus and the plains of Pieria are mentioned for the first time in Homer’s Iliad and in the Homeric hymn Dion, the sacred place of Zeus, are first mentioned by Thucydides. Worshipped together with Zeus Olympias were the Muses, who had been born on the slopes of Mount Olympus. To honor them, an annual celebration, the Olympiad of Dion, was held.…”

Dogs welcomed us to the Great Baths.
The Great Baths
         The poster continues saying “Dion was visited frequently by the Macedonian kings. They came to sacrifice to Zeus Olympios for the ceremonial purification of their army to take oaths of allegiance before the Gods and to celebrate the army and the people.  In the same place, King Phillip II celebrated the glorious victories and Alexander the Great starting out his campaign to Asia sacrificed to Zeus….. Repeated earthquakes threw its buildings into ruin, obliging its inhabitants to abandon their homes.

-Sacred River Baphyras
Sacred River Baphyras
        Excavations outside the walls have located the sanctuary of Zeus Olympos, where the altar, pedestals and inscriptions have been found. The sanctuary of Demeter with building and finds going back to the 6th century B.C. and the sanctuary of Isis where originally Artemis as the Goddess of childbirth was worshipped. In 2003, the sanctuary of Zeus Hypsistos with God’s cult statue and marble eagles came to light. Found within the city walls, dating back to the 4th century B.C. are roads, numerous public buildings, the agora, bath complexes, villas, workshops, houses and basilicas.

Sanctuary of Isis
Sanctuary of Isis
        Another poster explained that “near the waters of the Baphyras river on top of the sacred springs, the ancient inhabitants of Dion built a sanctuary devoted to Aphrodite, as the Goddess of the foothills of Olympus. And Artemis as the goddess of childbirth. In the 2nd century B.C., Artemis was succeeded by the Egyptian goddess Isis. Alexander the Great held her in the highest esteem.

The Odium
The Odium
       “The Odium of the Great Thermae” dates at the end of the 2nd century A.D. It is the last one of the building for public spectacle. It was a small roofed theater with a capacity of 400 spectators. The building was destroyed in the middle of the 3rd century A.D. by a powerful earthquake and followed by a fire.

 

mosaic
mosaic

 


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