This week, I am going to write about another wonder in my book(Ancient Wonders of the World by Justin Pollard), the Statue of Zeus at Olympia.
Arguably the greatest Greek sculptor of all time, Phidias, was the sculptor of this wonder. Phidias was born an Athenian and was widely recognized after making many statues in Athens. He also made statues for the Parthenon(another ancient wonder). Unfortunately for Phidias, enemies accused him of representing himself and Pericles, his sponsor, on the shield of a statue. He was forced to flee to the city to Elis, the home of the Ancient Olympic Games.
The Ancient Olympic were an event in honor of Zeus, and so Phidias began on a huge statue of Zeus. In the end, it took 8 years to complete. The statue was approximately 39 ft. tall! Anyone who visited it would be amazed, even with very high expectations. It is said that even Zeus was amazed. According to legend, after the work was finished Phidias prayed and asked Zeus to give a signal to represent his liking of the Statue. A signal of amazement was immediately given via lightning bolt.
The magnificent statue does not stand today, and no remains have been found. One of the wonders on Antipater’s list, it truly was a sight to see, for ancient people.