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December 14, 2007

Stoa

The restored Stoa of Attalos in Athens.
The restored Stoa of Attalos in Athens.

Stoa (plural, stoae or stoæ) in Ancient Greek architecture; covered walkways or porticos, commonly for public usage. Early stoae were open at the entrance with columns lining the side of the building, creating an enveloping, protective atmosphere and were usually of Doric order. Later examples consisted of mainly two stories, with a roof supporting the inner colonnades where shops or sometimes offices were located and followed Ionic architecture. These buildings were open to the public; merchants could sell their goods, artists could display their artwork, and religious gatherings could take place. Stoae usually surrounded the marketplaces of large cities.

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