Universitätsbibliothek HeidelbergUniversitätsbibliothek Heidelberg

Society of Dilettanti [Editor]
The unedited antiquities of Attica: comprising the architectural remains of Eleusis, Rhamnus, Sunium, and Thoricus — London, 1833

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Sunium was one of the borough towns belonging to the tribe Attalis, It was situated on a
promontory of the same name, forming the southernmost point of Attica. The rocks next the sea
are precipitous and rugged.

During the Peloponnesian war the Athenians, who expected to derive their means of subsistence
from Euboea, fortified Sunium for the protection of the vessels employed in carrying their supplies
along the coast. The Lacedemonians at this time, by maintaining a garrison at Decelea, cut off all
communication between Athens and the inland towns.

The principal ruins of Sunium are the remains of a temple dedicated to Minerva- Sun ias; it is
constructed with the white marble produced by the neighbouring hills. The temple is of the
Doric order, and had six columns in the front; beyond the tenth column of the south-west flank
there are no remains to indicate its original extent: nine columns are still standing on this side,
and three on that opposite, as well as the two belonging to the pronaos, with one of their antae.

North of the temple, and nearly in a line with its eastern front, the remains of a Propylgea were
discovered. It was a building of the same order of architecture; the proportions of its columns
and the form of its moldings were nearly similar to those of the temple.

With respect to the age of these edifices it is probable that they were coeval, or nearly so, with
the temple of Nemesis at Rhamnus; the conjecture as to the origin of the latter is likewise
applicable to the buildings of Sunium. The exquisite finish observed in their execution is a
sufficient proof of their having been erected in one of the best ages of architecture.

The fronts of the Propylsea were in antis, that is, the porticoes were formed by placing two