The God Apollo from Greek Mythology is often referred to as the God of many things. Here's some information about him, and where you can find ancient Greek temples dedicated in his honour in Greece.
The Greek God Apollo
Apollo was the son of Zeus and the Titan Leto, and was thought to have been born on the Greek island of Delos. His siblings were Artemis (his elder twin sister and goddess of the hunt) and Hermes – his half-brother. Apollo was born as a typical Olympian god, having all the superhuman attributes – functional immortality, vitality, and physical properties. He was immune to injury and could not be plagued with earthy diseases. Even when he sustains an injury, it healed at a supernatural speed. In fact, Apollo’s strength was notable among average Olympian Gods. He could lift as large as 40 tons weight. He fathered many children including Asclepius and Aristaeus. Fondly dubbed God of many things, Apollo was the God of the sun, prophecy, poetry, archery, healing, arts and music. He is most commonly depicted as a handsome youth, beardless, and sometimes with a golden lyre in hand.
Apollo in Greek Mythology
The most famous Greek myth concerning Apollo, is to do with the slaying of the Python. At only four years of age, and armed with a silver bow and golden arrows given to him by Hephaestus, Apollo decided to kill the Python that lived on Mount Parnassus. Apollo eventually killed the python, and buried it under the slopes of the mountains. Zeus however decided that Apollo had committed a crime, and told Apollo to atone for it. Apollo created the Pythian Games which were held every four years, and was one of the main Pan Hellenic Games of Ancient Greece.
Apollo Statue - credits: gilmanshin/depositphotos
The Children of Apollo
Apollo fathered many children which included goddesses, nymphs, and mortal women. Many among his children were poets, musicians, physicians, archers, and seers. Some of his sons founded new territories and became kings. One thing they got from their father was beauty – they were all charming. Asclepius This is the most influential of Apollo’s offspring – one he birthed through cesarean. Interestingly, Asclepius surpassed his father’s physician abilities. Zeus (Apollo's father) killed him because he used his powers to bring the dead back to life. However, and upon Apollo's request, Asclepius came back to life. But this time, as a God. Aristaeus Cyrene, one of Apollo's wives, was the mother of Aristaeus. After birth, he was taken to Chiron for up-bring. He grew to become the God of cheese making, bookkeeping, animal husbandry and more. Humanity appreciated his immense contribution to earth and his kindness was rewarded with immortality. Linus, Hymenaeus, Orpheus, Eleuther, Ialemus, and Philammon were all Apollo’s children who took to bards and music. Mopsus, Iamus, Idnon, Tenerus, and Apis were all gifted seers - most of which schooled under Apollo himself. Mese, Hypate, and Nete were Apollo’s daughters who were worshipped in the shrine at Delphi. His other daughters include Phemonoe (poetess and seer) and Pamphile (silk weaver). There was also Eriopis (well known for her lovely hair) as well as Parthenos ( became a constellation after death), and Hilyra and Phoebe (both married to Dioscuri) and Scylla.
Powers, Weapons and Attributes
Apollo was loved by other gods. And besides his physical beauty, he stood for moral uprightness. He had a cult in Delphi which wielded great influence on issues of religion and state – as well as matters concerning law and order. He was revered as the God of law, order, and justice. Known as the God of Sun, Apollo could conjure light and heat – as powerful as the level of an average sun. He also wielded prophetic powers which made him foretell future events with high-level accuracy. He used his precognitive abilities to prophecy to his Oracle at Delphi. The multi-facet God could transform into different forms – he transformed into human and animal shapes at will. Also, he could travel far distances like from Earth to Olympus. Apollo was also known to cast spells, sending dreaded plagues, and curses. He could also bestow special superhuman powers on people as he did to Cassandra, the Trojan Princess. Apollo was a pro in playing harp and also a master archer. In his arsenal were mystical arrows with flames at their tips.
Role Of Apollo In Percy Jackson Books
In the Hidden Oracle, Apollo is cast down after a conflict with Zeus - his father. He found himself as a regular teenage dude in New York. The four-thousand-year-old-deity-turn-teenage stripped off his superhuman powers learns to live in the mortal world until his father forgives him. Sadly here on earth, he has so many enemies who want him dead. He needs help. He could only think of one place to seek help from… Camp Half-Blood – an enclave of modern demigods. Dark Prophecy Apollo is punished by Zeus his father by casting him down to the earth as a sixteen-year-old called Lester. He could only get his place back in Olympus by restoring several Oracles that have long gone dark. How could he do it without his superhuman powers? He has had several humiliating experiences at the Camp Half-blood and can’t stay any longer. He embarks on a daring journey through North America., making friends with heroes. Then it all turns out to be a hilarious, harrowing, and haiku filled ride. The Burning maze Lester, following his fall and quest to return to his position in Olympia, his demigod friends had helped him survive his ordeals at the Camp Half-Blood and Indianapolis where a young girl, Meg, got the Dark Prophecy. Meg and Lester have to embark on a journey through the Labyrinth to get the third emperor, an Oracle whose words are puzzles, while Leo moves fast to warn Roman camp on the impending attack on the Camp Jupiter by the Roman Emperors. The prophecy seems to bring a glimmer of hope: the cloven guide alone the way does know. They need a satyr companion. Meg knows who that is...
Famous Temples in Greece connected with Apollo
The most famous temple in Greece that is dedicated to the God Apollo, is the Temple of Apollo at Delphi. Although the temple is now a shadow of its former self, its layout and setting still invokes powerful feelings in visitors to the site. Visiting Delphi is a popular day trip from Athens, and is often included in Greek Mythology tour packages of Greece. Find out more here about our Percy Jackson Delphi tour from Athens. A further lesser know temple dedicated to Apollo can be found in the Peloponnese. This is another UNESCO World Heritage Site known as Bassae, and is the site of the Temple of Apollo Epicurius You can find out more about it here.
Columns of Apollo Temple in Delphi - credits: AlexZi/shutterstock
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