Propylaea is the name given to monumental gates or entranceways to a specific space, usually to a temple or religious complex and as such they acted as a symbolic partition between the secular and religious parts of a city. Less complex examples with a single entrance are known as a propylon. Propylaea were a feature of Minoan architecture in 17th century BCE Crete (e.g. at Ayia Triada) and Mycenaean architecture in the 14th century BCE (e.g. at Tiryns). In Classical Greece a monumental Propylon provided the entrance to the sanctuary at Olympia but the most famous and best preserved example of this type of structure is the magnificent Propylaea of the acropolis of Athens.

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