Three horse heads from the chariot that Selene (Ακρ. 881) drives. Two are originals and were removed from the Parthenon in 1987. The third is a plaster cast of the prototype held in the British Museum in London after it was forcibly removed by Thomas Bruce, lord of Elgin, who in 1801-1804 when Greece was under Ottoman occupation detached most of the sculptures that he found in their original places on the pediment. The fourth horse’s head which may have fallen off from the monument in 1687 during the bombardment of the Parthenon by the Venetians under Francesco Morosini has been most probably lost.
The east pediment portrayed the miraculous birth of Athena from the head of her father Zeus. The scene takes place on Mt Olympus in the presence of the other gods who watch standing, sitting or half-reclining. The pediments' corners contained the chariots of Helios (Sun), which emerges from the sea, and Selene (Moon), which sinks in the ocean waves, indicating thus that the goddess' birth takes place at dawn. The centre of the scene was occupied by the statues of Zeus and Athena. Due to the misadventures suffered by the Parthenon over the following centuries, many of the temple's sculptures have been destroyed; some survive in mutilated form, while others are represented only by small fragments.
The two Parthenon pediments are adorned with about fifty oversized statues. The sculptures perfectly worked even on their unseen sides present scenes from the myths of the goddess Athena.
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