Washington Square Marbles

washington arch.JPG
not a pigeon in sight this past Thursday

Stanford White's elegant Washington Square Arch has been restored, but virtually every square inch of its carved surfaces is now covered in an almost invisible high-tech screening material designed to keep out the New York pigeon. Only the flat and molded surfaces (including the base, a section of which is shown above) and the two pier sculptures of George Washinton manage to avoid the veiling.

I suppose Ancient Athens didn't have much of a pigeon problem. This is just a thought, but if it had, without sophisticated modern plastic netting the Parthenon frieze would have been hidden under guano for over 2000 years and Lord Elgin would never have known his "Marbles" were even there.

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Published on May 29, 2004 8:09 PM.

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