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by Archaeology Newsroom

The chapel of Panayia Marmariotissa, a former Roman mausoleum

The chapel of Panayia Marmariotissa lies behind the sanctuary of the present big modern church that goes by the same name in Chalandri, a suburb of Athens. This building was originally a Roman Mausoleum, which was at some later, unspecified date converted into a Christian church by the followers of the new faith.

During the Roman period Phlya, as today’s Chalandri is known, was one of the so-called “minor” demoi of Attica, which the ancient Greek traveller Pausanias clearly differentiated from the “major” ones of Athens, Eleusis, etc. The powerful, rich Greek or Roman families, who controlled the economy and administration of the region, used to build imposing Mausolea as individual or family tombs. The small chapel of Panayia Marmariotissa used to be such a Mausoleum.