The present study examines sculptural decoration on large scale ancient Greek architecture and its influence on the Neoclassical movement in eighteenth and nineteenth-century England. The Elgin Marbles – the famous Parthenon Sculptures dating to the fifth century BCE, now in the British Museum – represent an important touchstone for reappraising key themes related to the development of the Neoclassical style in England, as well for reconsidering the sculptures’ connection to their place of origin. Moreover, the relocation of the Elgin Marbles to England raises issues regarding ethics and expatriation, illuminating aspects of the imperial English identity in relation to ancient and contemporary Greek society. This research analyzes the multivalent quality of the Parthenon Marbles, studied through the British adaptation of the ancient Athenian narrative, thus illustrating a crucial moment of aesthetic change and imperialistic ambition in European history.


Cosgriff, Tracy

Second Advisor

Kardulias, Nick


Art and Art History; Sociology and Anthropology


Arts and Humanities

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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