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The Contribution of ‘Total Environment’ Reconstructions in Interpreting Ancient Greek Experience of Ritual Spaces

Boutsikas, Efrosyni (2019) The Contribution of ‘Total Environment’ Reconstructions in Interpreting Ancient Greek Experience of Ritual Spaces. Open Archaeology, 5 (1). pp. 540-552. ISSN 2300-6560. E-ISSN 2300-6560. (doi:10.1515/opar-2019-0033) (KAR id:75757)

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Official URL
https://doi.org/10.1515/opar-2019-0033

Abstract

The temple of Epikourean Apollo in Bassae has long been suspected to have been constructed with astronomical considerations, aimed at influencing ancient religious experience. The study presented here involves the use of Virtual Reality software to reconstruct the temple in its original position and orientation, combined with an accurate reconstruction of the sun’s position during the Classical period. The aim is to test the hypothesis of deliberate solar considerations associated with the temple’s east entrance. The reconstruction also discusses the application of Virtual Reality Models (VRM) and their potential impact on understanding ancient spatial movement and memory, emotionality and cognition. In addition, it explores the possibility of ancient natural light manipulation in enhancing experience of religious architecture. This paper not only presents the first VRM of Apollo’s temple, but also a model with an accurate reconstruction of the sun’s position at specific moments in the year. The importance of such reconstructions in understanding religious experience is exemplified. A great deal is revealed about the proposed solar effect in relation to human observation, and the connotations of such an effect in specific religious contexts. This study could facilitate discussion on the contribution of digital technology in understanding ancient Greek ritual experience.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1515/opar-2019-0033
Uncontrolled keywords: Virtual Reality Modelling, Apollo Epikourios Bassae, Greek religion, ancient astronomy, light in archaeology
Subjects: C Auxiliary Sciences of History > CC Archaeology
N Visual Arts > NA Architecture
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Arts and Humanities > School of European Culture and Languages
Depositing User: Efrosyni Boutsikas
Date Deposited: 10 Aug 2019 21:48 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2021 14:06 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/75757 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Boutsikas, Efrosyni: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0226-7959
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