Once the ruling father of the Olympians Zeus, willing to find the center of Earth, had sent two eagles from two opposite parts of the world. Eagles met above the place which now is called Delphi. That is how the center of the Hellenistic universe and the symbol of all Greeks unity appeared.
The pearl of Hellas
The religious and political center of classical antiquity, one of the most significant monuments of the Greek history, the city of Delphi is situated in the Southwest of the central Greece, on hillsides of Mount Parnassus near the coast of the Gulf of Corinth.
Ancient Hellenes considered it as obligatory to ask for gods’ advice and favor in all their actions and beginnings. No considerable action could be started without conferring with the Oracle, the messenger of gods proclaiming their will in the place where God of the Sun Apollo had won over the dragon Python, and based own sanctuary.
The Oracle of Apollo
Delphian Oracle was the most influential of all Ancient Greece oracles that we know (“The Father of History” Herodotus mentions six most significant). Without its advice, no colony could be based and no war could be started. Big business deals and dynastic alliances also needed Oracle’s prophecy. The prophet Pythia was foretelling world's fate in the sanctuary of the temple of Apollo in Delphi. Apollo’s priests were interpreting her words.
Pilgrims, riches, and the main treasure information from three continents, Europe, Asia, and Africa were flowing to Delphi. The Athenians visited the city to get a prophecy before their victory at the Battle of Marathon; the "happiest" and the richest king of antiquity Croesus was sending his messengers there.
Remembrance of the past
Here, since the 6th century BC, the second most important all-Greek competitions called the Pythian Games were taking place (after the Olympic Games). The Roman Emperor Nero made his speech and wise Aesop finished his life journey in the local theater.
For centuries the Treasuries in Delphi were full of gold and precious gifts. Their buildings preserved in quite a good condition, allowing the living to estimate the incredible skill of sculptors and architects of the past. Facades of buildings are covered with the bas-reliefs depicting Heracles’ and Apollo's battles, the abduction of Leucippus’s daughters, the trial of Paris and many other scenes.
The Olympian gods left the fragments of the greatness of the ancients as a keepsake for the people of the present day. Moving along the remains of the Sacred Way modern travelers cross the small square in front of a sanctuary; after passing an agora they get to Apollo's temple, and further, to the Treasury which once was bursting with gifts. Then they see the Gymnasium, Athena's temple, and then get to the ruins of the ancient theater from where they will catch sight of the whole valley. At last, modern Delphi pilgrims reach the symbolical Castalian Spring.
To visit ancient Delphi means to get a feel of the time, to touch the eternity this place is steeped with. And who knows, maybe exactly here the ancient God of the Sun will show himself in all his magnificence to the city visitors.
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Drinking water, money for souvenirs, your lunch, entrance tickets to monasteries, positive thinking, and desire to be enriched spiritually.:)
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