Location: South side of the Agora. No. 18 in the Agora plan of the Guide: Μc Camp II, J., The Athenian Agora, A Short Guide to the Excavations, Excavations of the Athenian Agora, Picture Book no 16, American School of Classical Studies (Princeton 2003), p. 2 and pp. 24-25.
Periods of Use: Hellenistic, Roman.
The East Building was constructed so as to form a whole with the Middle Stoa and South Stoa II. Its function was commercial and administrative, but its main role was connecting the so-called South Square with the Panathenaic Way.
Together with two more structures, the Middle Stoa and South Stoa II, the East Building delimits –by incorporating the quadrilateral peribolos (enclosure) known as Aiakeion, and the Southwest Fountain– the so-called South Square. The East Building connected the Middle Stoa to South Stoa II. The function of the building was to connect the Middle to the South Stoa, but also to open to the Panathenaic Way. Furthermore, there are indications of commercial or administrative, trade-related functions.
It was excavated in 1952 and research continued until 1967. This is a rather small building, measuring 13.80 × 39.80m. A transverse wall divided it into two sections: the east section opened to the Panathenaic Way, and the west to the South Square. A small percentage of its building material originates from the Square Peristyle.
Very few parts of its superstructure remain. The euthenteria comprises large blocks, approximately 1.30m in length.
The eastern section was floored with mosaic composed of irregularly shaped marble-chips. Square marble bases were set inside this floor (with a side of approx. 0.90m); these bore four shallow sockets for affixing furniture, apparently small tables, used by the bankers. (An alternative suggestion is that they supported tablets with judges' names, but the judiciary usage of the building is not accepted nowadays). Out of the 12 bases 4 survive today in their original places, spaced out every 3m approximately. The floor of the western section was lower by roughly 1.7m. Five compartments opened in this part, the central functioning as a staircase (total width 8.5m), connecting the two levels. The adjacent room to the south of the stairway was shaped like an exedra with two columns in its façade and a marble bench around its other three sides. The southern room was provided with water by lion-shaped spouts set on the rear wall. There is no information on the two northern rooms, as these were completely ruined by later structures.
East of the building a wide terrace opened, 8.5m in width, and this indicates that it was frequented by many people. The difference in elevation with the area to the east and the south necessitated the creation of a five step stairway, and three of these steps survive today. Through it, one could access the Panathenaic Way. An open stone pipe coursed the building south to north, right next to the flight of steps.
The East Building was severely damaged during Sulla's attack. It was rebuilt in the 2nd cent. AD, together with other parts of the South Square, like the rear wall of South Stoa II, the Middle Stoa, the Aiakeion and the temple in the middle of the square.
In 1952, the excavators originally thought it was a stoa, due to the stairway in its east side. As further research has shown, this is not the case.
Earlier views connecting the South Square with Ptolemy’s Gymnasium or with a shrine, or considering it as an extension of the Heliaia law court, have been abandoned today, especially since the so-called Heliaia is probably identified with the Aiakeion. Thus, nowadays, it is thought more likely that it served purely commercial purposes.
Mc CAMP II, J., The Athenian Agora: A Guide to the Excavation and Museum4 (Αθήνα 1990).
Μc CAMP II, J., The Athenian Agora, A Short Guide to the Excavations, Excavations of the Athenian Agora, Picture Book no 16, American School of Classical Studies (Princeton 2003), p. 27.
Mc CAMP II, J., Η Αρχαία Αγορά της Αθήνας. Οι Ανασκαφές στην καρδιά της κλασικής πόλης2 (Αθήνα 2004), pp. 211-216.
THOMPSON, H.A., ‘Excavations in the Athenian Agora: 1952’, Hesperia 22 (1953), pp. 36-37.
THOMPSON, H.A., ‘Activity in the Athenian Agora: 1966-1967’, Hesperia 37 (1968), pp. 37-41.
THOMPSON, H.A. – WYCHERLEY, R., The Agora of Athens. The American Excavations in the Athenian Agora, vol. XIV, American School of Classical Studies at Athens (Princeton 1972), pp. 65-71.

East Building, Representation in VR environment

The project "Virtual Reality Digital Collection 'The Ancient Agora of Athens'" has been co-funded in a percentage of 80% by the European Regional Development Fund and in a percentage of 20% by state funds in the framework of the Operational Programme "Information Society" of the 3rd Community Support Framework.

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