New evidence suggest Parthenon was originally coloured

Published on June 27th, 2009 | by Admin


Researched from the British Museum have found tiny traces of paint on some of the Parthenon’s statues and friezes.

At the museum, an imaging technique called photo-induced luminescence was used to detect microscopic specks of pigment. When red light is shone onto the molecules of Egyptian blue, they absorb it and emit infrared light. Seen through a camera sensitive to infrared, any parts of the marble that were once blue appear to glow. So far, the blue has been found in a few places, such as the belt of the messenger goddess Iris from the temple’s west pediment.

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One Response to New evidence suggest Parthenon was originally coloured

  1. Nia True says:

    With all due respect to the British Museum, the idea that the Parthenon was not plain, white marble has been known for years. In fact, I learned this in architecture/art history classes in college (Columbia University) 25 years ago.

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