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Stelae as slabs of stone would also be used as ancient Greek and Roman government notices or as boundary markers to mark borders or property lines.The surface of the stele usually has text, ornamentation, or both.Emperors found it necessary to promulgate laws, regulating the use of funerary steles by the population.
From public and extravagant processional funerals to different types of pottery used to store ashes after cremation, visibility has always been a large part of Ancient Greek funerary markers in Athens.
Most recently, in the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe in Berlin, the architect Peter Eisenman created a field of some 2,700 blank steles.
Urartian steles were freestanding stone obelisks that served a variety of purposes, sometimes they were located within temple complexes, or set within monumental rock-cut niches (such as the niche of the Rock of Van, discovered by Marr and Orbeli in 1916) or erected beside tombs.
Regarding stelai (Greek plural of stele), in the period of the Archaic style in Ancient Athens (600 BCE) stele often showed certain archetypes of figures, such as the male athlete.
Moving into the 6th and 5th centuries BCE, Greek stelai declined and then rose in popularity again in Athens and evolved to show scenes with multiple figures, often of a family unit or a household scene. Typically grave stelai are made of marble and carved in relief, and like most Ancient Greek sculpture they were vibrantly painted.