Statue of Zeus at Olympia
-The famed statue of Zeus was crafted by the Athenian sculptor Phidias and completed and placed in the temple of Zeus at Olympia, site of the ancient Olympics, around the mid-fifth century B.C.
-The statue depicted the god of thunder seated bare-chested at a wooden throne.
-Holding up the thrones’ armrests were two carved sphinxes, mythical creatures with the head and chest of a woman, the body of lion and the wings of a bird.
-The statue of Zeus was richly decorated with gold and ivory. At 40 feet, it was so tall that its head nearly touched the top of the temple.
-The Zeus statue graced the temple at Olympia for more than eight centuries before Christian priests persuaded the Roman emperor to close the temple in the fourth century A.D. At that time, the statue was moved to a temple in Constantinople, where it is believed to have been destroyed in a fire in the year 462.