D.C. Mondays: Washington's Wonders of the Ancient World

House of the Temple of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry in Washington, D.C.
House of the Temple of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry in Washington, D.C.


Washington, D.C., boasts American adaptations of three of the seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The cult statue of Zeus from Olympia, Greece, reappears in a seated statue of George Washington. The Mausoleum of Halicarnassus from Hellenistic Turkey sits at 16th and S streets, where it serves as the House of the Temple of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry. Finally, the Lighthouse of Alexandria from Ptolemaic Egypt rises on Shuter’s Hill in Alexandria, Virginia, as the George Washington Masonic National Memorial.

GW professor Elise Friedland will take a closer look at the historical, political and artistic contexts of these monuments and consider why the public art and architecture of our nation’s capital so consciously adopts and adapts these wonders of the ancient Greek and Roman worlds. 

About Elise A. Friedland

Elise A. Friedland is associate professor of classics and art history at GW. She has published two co-edited volumes, The Sculptural Environment of the Roman Near East (2008) and The Oxford Handbook of Roman Sculpture (2015, 2018), and a monograph, The Roman Marble Sculptures from the Sanctuary of Pan at Caesarea Philippi/Panias (Israel) (2012). In 2013, Friedland was awarded both GW’s Bender Teaching Award and the Archaeological Institute of America’s National Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award. She has also received a NEH Public Scholar Fellowship for 2020-2021 to write Classical Washington: Greece & Rome in the Art and Architecture of D.C.

How to Participate

To participate, register online, and we will email you a link and instructions for joining the program on Zoom. Simply follow that link at the time the event starts (12 p.m. EDT). When you register, you can also request to receive a reminder email one day before the program with the link included.  

About the D.C. Mondays Series

Join local authors, researchers, and community members online for lively discussions about Washington, D.C.’s history, politics, culture and more. Browse upcoming programs