The Temple of Hephaestus
The Theseum, or Temple of Hephaestus, at the Ancient Agora is Athens’ best preserved and restored ancient temple. Built during Athens’ Golden Age in 450 BC, it is believed to have been designed by the same architect as the temples of Poseidon in Sounion, Nemesis in Rhamnous, and Ares in Menidi. The temple was initially dedicated to Theseus.
When Christianity prevailed, the Doric Temple of Hephaestus was converted into a church in honour of Saint George. Under Ottoman occupation, the Athenians kept the church closed to prevent it from being converted into a mosque.
Opening its doors only on their Saint’s name day, the Athenians called this church Saint George Akamatis (the lazy) to highlight this peculiarity.