Ancient Greece: Delphi Essay

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Out of all the Pan-Hellenic shrines is all of Classical Greece, perhaps the most prominent and well-known shrine is Delphi. This religious site attracted Greeks, Romans, Europeans, as well as others to the Gulf of Corinth for one reason, the oracle. They came from all over the world to have their questions heard by the gods as well as receive an answer from them. Matters as personal as, whether or not the child being carried is the questioner’s. To large political issues, such as whether to invade a country or not. The oracle was sought out by all how needed an answer to a difficult question. It is said that Alexander the Great also came to Delphi to see if his conquest would continue. Delphi was one of the most important shrines in all of Greece, the Pythian games held there were second only to the Olympic games held in Olympia. This paper will discuss the large temenos at Delphi, the characteristics of the location of Delphi which make it unique, and the ways in which the rituals at Delphi are adapted to the unique location. The Pan-Hellenic shrine of Delphi is located on the south slope of Mount Parnassus, roughly 100 miles northwest of Athens, soaring high above the Gulf of Corinth. The shrine became one of the most popular in Greece because of the Oracle, who is a mouthpiece for the god Apollo. Believers in the oracle came from all over Greece and some came even from Europe, to see the wonders of the oracle and have their query heard by the Gods. Like Olympia, the site was not a city-state and was not a site of political power. The city provided the priesthood and the priestess, Pythia, and the upkeep of the sanctuary was outsourced. Myth states that the site and the oracle was sacred earliest to Gaia and was guarded by her daughter Python the dragon. According to the Homeric Hymn, Apollo handpicked the site to set up his oracle. “…here I am minded to make a

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