Τhe online exhibition “Proving History” is dedicated to the great battles that took place during the Persian Wars, especially the Battle of Thermopylae and the Naval Battle of Salamis. It was designed in the context of the celebrations of the “Thermopylae – Salamis 2020” Anniversary Year, with the aim of reflecting on the significance of these historic events, offering access to all types of evidence and sources.
Thermopylae – Salamis 2020
The year 2020 marked the 2.500-year anniversary of the Battles of Thermopylae and Salamis, two events of seminal importance not only for Ancient Greek history, but arguably also for the course of Western Civilisation as we know it. The Anniversary Year was regarded as an opportunity to commemorate and revisit these historical milestones, reflect on their significance and reevaluate their messages. A series of events were planned, although many had to be rescheduled or transition it into an online format, due to the restriction inflicted by the Codid-19 pandemic.
Trireme, Kotsanas Museum of Ancient Greek Technology
The online exhibition “Proving History” attempts to shed light on the conflict between the two worlds, East and West, which have left an indelible mark on the course of world history.
It was implemented by the Directorate of Archaeological Museums, Exhibitions and Educational Programs following the concept of synergies and interconnectivity between Museums, in order to introduce the visitor of nine collaborating Museums of the Ministry of Culture and Sports to the atmosphere of historical events and the virtual visitor into an enriched digital experience.
Left: Acroterion of Nike (Victory) from the roof of the Stoa of Zeus Eleutherios, Pentelic marble, Ancient Agora Museum; Right: Marble bust of Themistocles 2nd cent. AD, White fine-grained marble Ostia, Italy Museum of the Archaeological Park of Ostia
The museums which would take part in the exhibition, hosting different chapters, are the Ancient Agora Museum, the Kerameikos Archaeological Museum, the Archaeological Museum of Piraeus, the Archaeological Museum of Salamis, the Archaeological Museum of Lavrion, the Centre of Historical Information of Thermopylae, the Archaeological Museum of Sparta and the Numismatic Museum of Athens.
The digital transcription of the exhibition constitutes a new action of the Directorate of Archaeological Museums, Exhibitions and Educational Programs in the field of museum education and unrestricted access to the national cultural heritage, especially in view of the current restrictions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The concept as well as its general coordination and supervision were undertaken by Dr. Anastasia Lazaridou and Nikoletta Saraga, directors of the Directorate of Archaeological Museums and of the Department of Exhibitions and Museum Research of the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports.
The texts and entries of the online exhibition have been created with the cooperation of the Directorate of Archaeological Museums, Exhibitions & Educational Programs with several other cultural institutions, including the National Archaeological Museum, the Epigraphic Museum of Athens, the Numismatic Museum, the Acropolis Museum, the P. & Al. Canellopoulos Museum, as well as the Ephorates of Antiquities of the City of Athens, Piraeus and Islands, Eastern Attica, Arcadia, Ilia, Lakonia, Phthiotida and Evrytania, and Phocis.
The main concept of the exhibition is the presentation of the historic narrative based on the study of the sources, i.e. texts and inscriptions, on the excavations and the movable finds that these brought to light.
The exhibition is divided into twelve thematic sections that create a comprehensive and timeless framework for presenting the Greek-Persian Wars, offering a valuable insight into the events of 480 BC in an attractive and innovative way.
Read also via Greek News Agenda: Thermopylae – Salamis 2020: 2.500 years of history; The National Archaeological Museum celebrates the Greek War of Independence bicentennial; Greek Shipping: An important global actor in line with the Greek maritime spirit; Kerameikos, the necropolis of Athens
N.M. (Intro image: Naval Battle of Salamis, Konstantinos Volanakis, 1882, Hellenic Maritime Museum)