in Attica. ELEUSIS. 9. Route. 11 1
Road prom Athens to Eleusis. The 'Sacred Way' to Eleusis
begins at the Dipylon and the Chapel of the Hagia Trias (PI. A, 4;
p. 85) and as far as the Kephisos has been described at p. 103.
On the bank of this stream stood the 'Holy Fig-Tree', presented
by Demeter to Phytalos in recognition of the hero's hospitality.
Farther on, to the right, is a powder-factory; to the left we obtain
a view of the Pirfeus. The ancient road, with which the modern
one corresponds pretty closely, was lined almost all the way to Eleu¬
sis with tombstones, traces of which are visible at several points.
The road now ascends the ravine intersecting the range of Mt.
jEgaleos from E. to W. To the left is a new lunatic asylum. Be¬
yond the hill of St. Elias, to the right, is a poultry-farm and to
the left is a group of cafe's, where the horses are watered. Adjacent
is the decayed Convent of Daphni, erected by the Franks in the
middle ages and still occupied by a few nuns. The entrance is on
the E. side of the enclosing wall, about 70 paces from the road,
and opposite a well. The court contains some Byzantine sculp¬
tures and also a few fragments of Ionic columns and other marble
relics of the temple of Apollo, which anciently occupied this
site. To the right is the church, which is generally open. The
Byzantine mosaics, on a gold ground, are interesting, particularly
the figure of 'Christos Pantokrator' in the dome. In one of the
vestibules stand two old sarcophagi, one of which bears a coat-of-
arms with fleurs-de-lis. The flight of steps in front of the W. door
ascends to a terrace commanding a view of part of the bay of Eleu¬
sis ; several of the old cells open on this terrace.
The road now descends. The rocks to the right show numerous
traces of the 'Sacred Way'. At the narrowest point of the pass are
the remains of some mediaeval fortifications, while in the rocks to
the right are several niches for votive statuettes, with inscriptions.
The latter prove that a Temple of Aphrodite once stood here. As
we approach the sea, a small plain appears to the left, extending
to the disused convent of Skarmangd. On the right are marks left
on the rock in constructing the ancient road. Beyond the two salt
lakes called the Rheitoi, in which of yore the priests of Eleusis
alone had a right to fish, lies the Thriasian Plain, so named from
the old deme of Thria. Eleusis, situated beside a long and narrow
ridge, now comes conspicuously into sight; in front of us are the
chapel of the Panagia and its belfry, while higher up to the right is
the Tower of the Franks. Beyond the village, to the left, rise the
mountains called Kerala, or 'Horns', from their shape. Near the
railway-station of Eleusis the road to Thebes (p. 171) diverges to
the right. To the left, near a well, much frequented by the Eleu-
sinians, are the remains of a bridge, probably dating from the time
of Hadrian. At the entrance to the village, beside the chapel of
Zacharias(p. 114), is aBakali or shop, where wine, bread, beer, and
coffee may be obtained.