The Parthenon is a structure that is both beautiful and beautifully engineered. It has stood the test of time, and is amazing to us today because it was built in an era when so little technology was available to provide assistance. It also tells us something about the people who conceived it. The Parthenon was created in 438 BCE as an immense temple to the goddess Athena. It once housed an enormous statue of her rendered in gold and ivory. There is actually a reproduction of this statue inside a replica of the Parthenon in Nashville, TN. The basic structural idea the engineers used was fairly simple, while also being magnificently executed. The outer perimeter consists of marble columns - eight across the front and back, seventeen along the sides. Across the tops of the columns are marble lintels, and then a lot of decoration. The original structure had a roof made of wooden trusses covered in clay roof tiles. It also had interior walls that created a room for the statue. One thing that people marvel at today is the fact that engineers designed curves into the Parthenon, apparently as a kind of reverse optical illusion. So the floor of the temple is not flat— it is subtly higher in the middle. The columns do not stand straight; instead they lean in very slightly. The corner columns do not match the others— they are slightly wider and closer to the others. Everything "looks right," but the only reason it looks right is because everything is a bit wrong. The wrongness was built in to create the rightness of appearance. So today, when we think of the greatest Greek temple, we think of the Parthenon. Not because it was the biggest, or the best preserved, but because of its perfection. The Greeks have gone to a tremendous amount of trouble recently to repair some of the damage that has been inflicted over the centuries and restore the grandeur created by the original engineers and craftsmen. >The Parthenon is widely regarded as the most perfect example of Greek architecture.