This temple, one of the wonders of the world, was decorated with beautiful carvings by Phidias, and all the rich Athenians went to see them as soon as they were finished. This sculptor also made a magnificent gold and ivory statue of the goddess, to stand in the midst of the Parthenon. But in spite of all his talent, Phidias had many enemies. After a while they wrongfully accused him of stealing part of the gold intrusted to him. Phidias vainly tried to defend himself; but they would not listen to him, and put him in prison, where he died.
Between the temple of Athene and the city there was a series of steps and beautiful porticoes, decorated with paintings and sculptures, which have never been surpassed. Many other beautiful buildings were erected under the rule of Pericles; and the beauty and art loving Athenians could soon boast that their city was the finest in the world. Artists from all parts of the country thronged thither in search of work, and all were well received by Pericles.