Tower of Winds, Roman Agora

The Tower of the Winds (Horologion of Andronikos of Kyrrhos), with the Acropolis in the background. The building is octagonal in shape, and was designed as an elaborate timepiece. On each of the 8 sides of the building are reliefs depicting the 8 winds. Here you can see (from left to right): Kaikias (NE wind), Boreas (N Wind), and Skiron (NW wind. There are also fixtures for sundials on the exterior, below the personifications of the winds, so that you could tell the time from several different points of view from the outside. But inside the building was an elaborate, water-powered device that turned to show the passing of the hours, the days, and even the phases of the moon. The building was made of Pentelic marble, including the roof. We know from Vitruvius (1.6.4) that there was a bronze figure of Triton on the roof that functioned as a weather vane. The Tower of the Winds was probably built in the mind 2nd century B.C. Also visible in the foreground of the photo is the public latrine, probably built in the 1st century A.D.. View from the north.