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PANTHEON (Lat. pantheum or pantheon; ...

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Originally appearing in Volume V20, Page 683 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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PANTHEON (Lat. pantheum or pantheon; Gr. srav& ov, all-holy, from re, s, all, and Oeor god), the name of two buildings in Rome and Paris respectively; more generally, the name of any building in which as a mark of honour the bodies of the nation's famous men are buried, or " memorials " or monuments to them are placed. Thus Westminster Abbey is sometimes styled the British " Pantheon," and the rotunda in the Escorial where the kings of Spain are buried also bears the name. Near Regensburg (q.v.) is the pantheon of German worthies, known as the Valhalla. The first building to which the name was given was that built in Rome in 27 B.C. by Agrippa; it was burned later and the existing building was erected in the reign of Hadrian; since A.D. 609 it has been a Christian church, S Maria Rotunda. It was the Paris building that gave rise to the generic use of the term for a building where a nation's illustrious dead rest. The Pantheon in Paris was the church built in the classical style by Soufflot; it was begun in 1764 and consecrated to the patroness of the city, Sainte Genevieve. At the Revolution it was secularized under the name of Le Pantheon, and dedicated to the great men of the nation. It was reconsecrated in 1828 for worship, was again secularized in 183o, was once more a place of worship from 1851 to 1870, and was then a third time secularized. On the entablature is inscribed the words Aux Grandes Holmes La Patrie Reconnaissance. The decree of 1885 finally established the building for the purpose for which the name now stands.
End of Article: PANTHEON (Lat. pantheum or pantheon; Gr. srav& ov, all-holy, from re, s, all, and Oeor god)
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