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II. Monuments of Marathon
The Suidas epigram was quoted by the orator Lycurgus in the fourth century. Later its text was again cited, with variants in the second line, by Aristides, a later scholiast on Aristides, and Suidas.
The original monument was the statue of a winged woman, a Nike or an Iris, supported by an Ionic column of Pentelic marble, The statue and the column, both destroyed in the Perserschutt, were reunited from the surviving fragments by Raubitschek (1940a:53-56 and fig. 1) during a study of archaic inscribed bases found on the Acropolis. According to Raubitschek’s reconstruction the statue and the column together must have been more than twelve feet tall and had been set up on the Acropolis as a dedication to Athena by the Polemarch Callimachus before the battle of Marathon. The reason for the dedication is not known, but the column presumably bore a dedicatory inscription upon its base, which may have explained its purpose.
The Parthenon was built upon the foundations of an earlier temple which had been destroyed by a fire of great magnitude. The earlier temple is usually designated the Older Parthenon. Dinsmoor (1934) has suggested that it was planned as a memorial for the battle of Marathon and he bases his theory on dating the beginning of the temple just after 490 B. C.
The predecessor of the Periclean Propylaea is designated the Old Propylon. Like the Older Parthenon it was destroyed by fire and the Propylaea later built on its foundations. The strongest argument for considering it a monument to Marathon is that it is generally associated with the same building program as the Older Parthenon (no. 20). No one formally states that the Old Propylon was a monument, but Dinsmoor seems to imply it (1942: 206-207), and if Marathon indeed provided the impulse for monumental building in Pentelic marble on the Acropolis, the entrance to the Acropolis was certainly one of these monuments.
Before the battle of Marathon the Athenians vowed to sacrifice to Artemis Agrotera, if victorious, as many kids as there were Persians dead on the field. After the battle they decided to sacrifice 500 kids yearly as a token offering. Xenophon (Anabasis 3.2.12) reports the content of the vow and states that in his time it was still being fulfilled.