Treasury of the Athenians

Treasuries were actually buildings where each city-state used to place trophies and other offerings to the god Apollo, thus many treasuries existed around the temple, but the most impressive that still survives till today is the Athenian.

The Treasury of the Athenians is the only monument which had adequate original building material to allow its almost complete restoration and was erected as either the symbol of victory of democracy over tyranny or after the Athenian victory at Marathon in 490 B.C against the Persians. This structure was built in the form of a small Doric Temple and was made to house Athenian offerings to the Delphi oracle. This building dominated the Sacred Way.

The impressive reliefs existing on the outside of the temple depicts the exploits of Hercules and Theseus, while the internal has inscriptions containing many honorary decrees. On the south wall of the treasury, exist two hymns dedicated to the God Apollo, the only in existence Greek texts with written notation of a melody. Inscriptions on the building’s walls give us information on ancient festivals and customs, mainly the Pythais, Dodecais, Pyrphoria and the Tripodiphoria, the official processions of the Athenians at Delphi.