The beautiful myths of ancient Greece and its paganreligion had a tremendous impact on the development of world culture. Among the twelve immortal deities sitting on Olympus, one of the most revered and beloved among the people was and remains the god Apollo. In his honor erected majestic temples and sculptures were created. It seemed to embody all the immortal beauty that reigns in music and poetry. Sun-like golden-headed deity to this day is for us the embodiment of youth, intelligence, talent and grace.
The top of the Greek pantheon belongs to the mightyand thunderous Zeus, but the second after him is Apollo - his beloved son. The ancient Greeks considered him the god of the Sun and the arts, among which the main role was played by music. The sun-like youth also patronized the prophecy and art of archery. He was at the same time a legislator and a punisher, a defender of shepherds and lawful orders. Patron of medicine, Apollo at the same time could send disease. In Roman mythology, as in Greek, this god was called Apollo, but also Phoebus, which meant "shining," "bright," "pure."
Apollo, the god of Greece, was most often depicted ina walking or standing beardless beautiful young man with golden hair, waving in the wind and crowned with a noble laurel. In his hands he keeps his invariable attributes - the lyre and the bow, his figure is strong and courageous. The symbol of Apollo is the Sun.
According to myths, the god Apollo was the son of Zeus andTitanides Summer (she was the daughter of a titan). Before the future god came into being, Summer had to wander for a long time to hide from the wrath of the goddess Hera - the legitimate wife of Zeus. Mother Apollo could not find shelter anywhere. And only when it was time to give birth, she was sheltered by the desert island of Delos. The painful birth lasted for nine days and nights. Vengeful Hera did not allow Ilifia, the goddess of childbearing, to help Summer.
Finally, the divine baby was born.It happened on the seventh day of the month, under the palm tree. That is why the seven became a sacred number afterwards, and to the ancient palm tree, growing on Delos, in ancient times many pilgrims sought to worship the place of birth of Apollo.
But the ancient Greek god Apollo was not bornone, and with a twin sister - Artemis, who is known to us as the goddess of hunting. Brother and sister were skillful archers. The bow and arrows of Apollo are made of gold, and Artemis' weapons are silver. The girl was born before. And, as Homer writes, it was she who subsequently taught her brother archery.
Both twins always hit the target without a miss,death from their arrows was light and painless. The brother and sister had the amazing ability to disappear completely without a trace (the girl dissolved among the forest trees, and the young man retired to Hyperborea). Both were honored for their special purity.
This sounds strange, but the radiant god Apollo is notwas happy in love. Although in part he is to blame for this himself. It was not necessary to laugh at the Eros, saying that he lacks the accuracy of archery. In retaliation for the mocker Apollo, the god of love struck the heart with a golden arrow, another arrow (disgusting love), Erot released into the heart of Daphne's nymphs.
Apollo, intoxicated with his love, beganpursue the girl, but Daphne in horror rushed to the river god - her father. And he turned his daughter into a laurel tree. Even after that, the love of the inconsolable youth did not pass. From now on the laurel became his sacred tree, and the wreath, woven from his leaves, forever adorned the head of God.
On this love affair of Apollo is notover. Once he was fascinated by the beautiful Cassandra - the daughter of Priam (king of Troy) and Hecuba. Apollo endowed the girl with a gift of divination, but took from her the word that in return she would give him her love. Cassandra deceived the god, and he avenged her, having done so that people did not believe in her predictions, believing the prophetess to be insane. The unhappy maiden during the Trojan War struggled to warn the inhabitants of Troy about the danger that threatened them, but they still did not believe her. And Troy was captured by the enemies.
Saints revered by the god of medicine Asclepius(Aesculapius in the Roman version) is considered the son of Apollo. Born to the mortal, he subsequently received the gift of immortality for his unsurpassed ability to heal people. Asclepius was brought up by the wise centaur Chiron, who taught him to heal. But very soon the student surpassed his mentor.
The son of Apollo was such a talented physician,that he could even resurrect dead people. The gods were angry with him for that. After all, resurrecting mortals, Asclepius violated the law established by the gods of Olympus. Zeus struck him with his lightning. The Greek god Apollo got even for the death of his son by killing the Cyclops, who, according to legend, forged the Peruns (thunder and lightning that Zeus metal). However, Asclepius was pardoned and returned from the realm of the dead at will moyr (goddess of fate). He was granted immortality and the title of god of healing and medicine.
Apollo - the god of the Sun - is always associated with uswith these string attributes: onions and lyre. One of them allows him to artfully shoot arrows at the target, the other - to create great music. It is interesting that the Greeks believed that there is a relationship between the two arts. After all, in both cases there is a flight to some goal. The song also flies directly to people's hearts and souls, as well as the arrow to the target.
The music of Apollo is pure and clear, like himself.This master of melodies appreciates the clarity of sound and the purity of notes. His musical art raises the human spirit, gives people spiritual insight and is the complete opposite of the music of Dionysus, which carries with it ecstasy, rampage and passion.
According to legend, when spring comes to the earth,the Greek god Apollo goes to the mountain Parnassus, next to which the Kastalsky spring murmurs. There he leads dances with the ever-young muses - the daughters of Zeus: Talia, Melpomene, Euterpe, Erato, Clio, Terpsichore, Urania, Calliope and Polygymnia. All of them are patrons of various arts.
God Apollo and Muse together constitute the divinean ensemble in which the girls sing, and he accompanies their singing with a game on their golden lyre. In those minutes when their choir is heard, nature is silent to enjoy the divine sounds. Zeus himself at this time becomes meek, and the lightning in his hands fade, and the bloody god Ares forgets about the war. Peace and tranquility reign on the Olympus.
When the god Apollo was still in the womb, hismother on the orders of Hera everywhere pursued the fierce dragon Python. And so, when the young god was born, he soon wanted to avenge all the pain that fell to the lot of Leto. Apollo found a gloomy gorge in the vicinity of Delph - the abode of Python. And the dragon appeared at his call. His appearance was terrible: a huge scaly body wriggled countless rings between the rocks. The whole earth trembled with its heavy footfall, and the mountains crashed into the sea. All the living in horror ran away.
When Python opened his fire-breathing mouth,it seemed that even a moment, and he would devour Apollo. But the next moment there was a ring of golden arrows that pierced the body of the monster, and the dragon fell fallen. In honor of his victory over Python, Apollo founded in Delphi an oracle, so that the will of Zeus was announced to the people in him.
But, although Apollo is considered the god of predictions andprophecies, he himself never did this. The priestess-pythia gave answers to numerous questions of people. Coming into a state of frenzy, she began to shout loudly incoherent words, which were immediately recorded by the priests. They interpreted the predictions of the Pythia and passed them on to the inquirers.
After the god Apollo shed the blood of Pithon,by the decision of Zeus he had to be cleansed from this sin and atone for it. The young man was banished to Thessaly, the king of which at that time was Admet. Apollo was to become a shepherd, in order to achieve redemption by simple hard work. He humblely passed the royal herds and sometimes, right in the midst of pasture, amused himself by playing on a simple reed flute.
His music was so wonderful that even wild animalsleft the forest in order to listen to it. When Apollo - the god of ancient Greece - was playing music, ferocious lions and predatory panthers peacefully walked among his herd along with deer and chamois. Around there was joy and peace. In the house of King Admet prosperity prevailed. His horses and gardens became the best in Thessaly. Apollo helped Admetu and in love. He gave the king a huge power, thanks to which he was able to harness the chariot of a lion. This condition was set by the father of beloved Admet-Alkesta. For eight years, Apollo served as a shepherd. Having completely redeemed his sin, he returned to Delphi.
Apollo is the god of ancient Greece, who, likeother revered Olympic deities, was immortalized. And not only in marble statues and legends. In his honor the Greeks erected numerous churches. It is believed that the very first temple dedicated to the sun god was built exactly in Delphi, at the foot of the Oracle. Tradition says that it was entirely built of laurel tree branches. Of course, the construction of such a fragile material could not stand for long, and soon a new cult structure appeared on this place.
What is the account of the temple of Apollo in Delphi,the ruins of which have survived to our time, now difficult to say, but today we can see how magnificent this Delphic temple was once. Historians-art historians say that above the entrance to the sanctuary was inscribed an inscription with the two main commandments of God, which read: "Know thyself" and "Know the measure."
Apollo is an ancient god who inspired manyartists and sculptors to create beautiful works of art. In the world there are many of his sculptural images. But the most perfect statue, in which the image of one of the most revered Greek gods is depicted is the marble sculpture "Apollo Belvedere". This statue is a copy, taken by an unknown Roman master from the bronze ancient Greek sculpture Leohar, who served at the court of Alexander the Great. The original, unfortunately, did not survive.
A marble copy was found in the villa of Emperor Nero.The exact date of detection is unknown, it happened approximately between 1484 and 1492. In 1506, an invaluable work of art was brought to the Vatican and installed in the Belvedere Garden. What is he, the god Apollo? Pictures and photos, alas, can give only a general idea of how the ancient Greeks saw it. But one thing can be said with certainty: Apollo even today can be considered a symbol of male beauty.