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Hadrian's Library

Last Update: Nov 2013
Archaeological site, Cultural heritage PLAKA , ATHENS , GREECE
10550 PLAKA , ATHENS , GREECE
Tel.: +30 210 3245220
Opening hours:
01Jun - 31Oct Mon-Sun, 0800-1500
01Nov - 31May Mon-Sun, 0800-1500

Hadrian's Library - Photo Gallery

Hadrian's Library - Overview

  The Library is situated on the north of the Roman Agora. It is a rectangular building with its entrance, a Corinthian propylon, on the west side, surrounded by a high wall with protruding niches at its long sides. The whole complex was clustered around an open peristyle courtyard with a decorative oblong pool in the middle. Apart from the Library, the adjoining halls were used as reading and meeting rooms. The Library was built in AD 132 and it was one of the several monumental buildings erected during the reign of the Roman emperor Hadrian. The monument was destroyed during the invasion of Herulae in AD 267 and was subsequently incorporated into the Late Roman fortification wall.
  In the 5th century AD an Early Christian church occupied the centre of the peristyle court. After its destruction, a three-aisled basilica was erected on its ruins in the 7th century, which was in turn superseded by the single-aisled church of Megale Panaghia, in the 11th century. The latter temple was destroyed by fire in 1885.
During the Ottoman occupation the building was used as the seat of the Voevode (Governor) and since 1835 as the royal barracks of king Otto.
  The first excavations on the site were carried out by W. Doerpfeld and St. Koumanoudis, in the central and eastern part of the monument, after the great fire of 1885, which caused extensive damages to the Agora (Bazaar) and the church of Megale Panaghia. From the mid-20th century onwards the archaeological research on the site has been continuous and systematic. Over the last decade, under the unification of Athens archaeological sites program, large-scale restoration and maintenance works are in progress in the area of the Roman Agora and Hadrian's Library.

Hadrian's Library - Map

Executives & Departments

  • Archaeological service:, Tel.: 210 9238175, 210 9238724, Fax: 210 9239023, Email:  
    1st Ephorate of Prehistoric and Classical Antiquities, 2-4 Makrygianni Str., Athens

Principals / HQ / participations...

Activities / facilities / services / specialization

Archaeological site

Art & culture

Visiting Information • Admission fee • Fixed hours • Organized archeological site
Ancient monuments • Library / Roman period, 31 BC-AD 324

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