Hadrian's Library

Athens, Greece

Hadrian's Library was created by Roman Emperor Hadrian in AD 132 on the north side of the Acropolis of Athens.

The building followed a typical Roman Forum architectural style, having only one entrance with a propylon of Corinthian order, a high surrounding wall with protruding niches (oikoiexedrae) at its long sides, an inner courtyard surrounded by columns and a decorative oblong pool in the middle.The library was on the eastern side where rolls of papyrus 'books' were kept. Adjoining halls were used as reading rooms, and the corners served as lecture halls.

The library was seriously damaged by the Herulian invasion of 267 and repaired by the prefect Herculius in AD 407-412. During Byzantine times, three churches were built at the site, the remains of which are preserved: a tetraconch (5th century AD), a three-aisled basilica (7th century) and a simple cathedral (12th century), which was the first cathedral of the city.

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Address

Areos 3, Athens, Greece
See all sites in Athens

Details

Founded: 132 AD
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in Greece

Rating

4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Chris Bing (17 months ago)
Probably the least essential of the combination ticket sites to actually enter, I wouldn't pay for this on its own. There really isnt much that you can't see almost as well from outside.
Paul Egges (17 months ago)
It was good. I went even though Google said it was closed. I'm glad I did as it was open after all. Maybe the hours changed.
Michael G. (19 months ago)
The remains of a library commissioned by Roman Emperor Hadrian. Although quite interesting and even featuring an active archaeological dig, the site is relatively small, and would require 30-60m at most. Depending on your preferences, the site is either conveniently or unpleasantly close to tourist central, and therefore everything that goes with that.
Phillip Whitehair (19 months ago)
It’s truly amazing knowing your walking around a structure 3000 years old. There’s still a lot of structures left in the complex, which makes for some great pictures. The museum, which is kind of hidden provides a lot of interesting information, especially the details of what Athens was experiencing during War War 2. Luckily Athens was spared the destruction of the Nazis and bombings of the Allies, which spared all these beautifully historical structures. I would definitely suggest spending the 30 Euro and getting access to all the sites and spend a couple days exploring.
S L (20 months ago)
Wonderful. Where past meets the present and they dance in harmony. It is where the knowledge was produced and spread across the world. Amazing
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