The Sacred Gate was the second most important gate of ancient Athens after the Dipylon. Like the latter, it was a ‘courtyard gate’, guarded by four towers. It was designed to be a killing field and worked pretty well until the Roman Emperor Sula in 86 BC bombarded it and sacked Athens.
Through it ran the Eridanos brook and the Road to Eleusis, popularly called the Sacred Way, as it was the road followed by the great procession to Eleusis, the famous sanctuary of Demeter.
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