The Ancient Library
 

Scanned text contains errors.

On this page: Apion – Apodectae – Apographe – Apollo

41

APION——APOLLO.

upon cookery. He poisoned himself for fear of starving, though at the time of his d eath he was still worth £75,000. His name be­came a proverb, so that we find an Apicius Ccdius, author of a collection of recipes in ten books, De Re Cullnaria, 3rd century a.d. Aplou. A Greek grammarian of the 1st century a.d., a pupil of Didymus, and presi­dent of the philological school at Alexandria. He also worked for a time at Rome under Tiberius and Claudius. A vain, boastful man, he travelled about the Greek cities, giving popular lectures on Homer. Of his many writings we have only fragments left. The glosses on Homer that bear his name are of later origin ; on the other hand, the Homeric lexicon of the sophist Apollonius is based on his genuine Homeric glosses. Hia bitter complaint, Against the Jews, ad­dressed to Caligula at the instance of the Alexandrians, is best known from Josephus' noble reply to it.

Apodectse (apodektai = receivers). The Athenian name for a board of ten magis­trates yearly appointed by lot, who kept accounts of the moneys coming in to the State from various sources, took possession in the council's presence of the sums raised by the proper officers, and after cancelling the entries in their register, handed the money over to the several treasuries.

Apfigraphe (Gr.). An inventory, or register; also, in Attic law, a copy of a declaration made before a magistrate.

Apollo (Gr. ApottOn). Son of Zeus by Leto (Latona), who, according to the legend most widely current, bore him and his twin-sister Artgmis (Diana) at the foot of Mount Cynthus in the island of Delos. Apollo appears originally as a god of light, both in its beneficent and its destructive effects ; and of light in general, not of the sun only, for to the early Greeks the deity that brought daylight was HeliSs, with whom it was not till afterwards that Apollo was identified. While the meaning of his name Apollo is uncertain, his epithets of Phoebus and Lycius clearly mark him as the bright, the life-giving, the former also meaning the pure, holy; for, as the god of pure light, he is the enemy of darkness, with all its unclean, uncouth, unhallowed brood. Again, not only the seventh day of the month, his birthday, but the first day of each month, i.e. of each new-born moon, was sacred to him, as it was to Janus, the Roman god of light; and according to the view that prevailed in many seats of his worship, he withdrew in winter time

either to sunny Lycia, or to the Hyper­boreans who dwell in perpetual light in the utmost north, and returned in spring to dispel the powers of winter with his beams. When the fable relates that immediately after his birth, with the first shot from his bow he slew the dragon Python (or Delphyne), a hideous offspring of Gsea and guardian of the Delphian oracle, what seems to be denoted must be the spring-god's victory over winter, that filled the land with foul marsh and mist. As the god of light, his festivals are all in spring or summer, and many of them still plainly reveal in certain features his true and original attributes. Thus the Delphlnia, held at Athens in April, commemorated the calming of the wintry sea after the equinoctial gales, and the consequent re­opening of navigation. As this feast was in honour of the god of spring, so was the Thargelia, held at Athens the next month, in honour of the god of summer. That the crops might ripen, he received firstfruits of them, and at the same time propitiatory gifts to induce him to avert the parching heat, so hurtful to fruits and men. About the time of the son's greatest altitude (July and August), when the god displays his power, now for good and now for harm, the Athenians offered him hecatombs, whence the first month of their, year was named Hecatomb&fin, and the Spartans held their Syacinthia (see hyacinthus). In autumn, when the god was ripening the fruit of their gardens and plantations, and preparing for departure, they celebrated the Pyanepsia (q.v.), when they presented him with the firstfruits of harvest. Apollo gives the crops prosperity, and protection not only against summer heat, but against blight, mildew,, and the vermin that prey upon them, such as field-mice and grasshoppers. Hence he was known by special titles in some parts, of Asia. He was also a patron of flocks and pastures, and was worshipped in many dis­tricts under a variety of names referring to the breeding of cattle. In the story of Hermes (q.v.} stealing his oxen, Apollo is himself the owner of a herd, which he gives up to his brother in exchange for the lyre in­vented by him. Other ancient legends speak of him as tending the flocks of Laomedon and Admetus, an act afterwards repre­sented as a penalty for a fault. As a god of shepherds he makes love to the nymphs, to the fair Daphne (q.v.), to Coronis (see asclepius), and to Cyrene, the mother of Aristaeus, likewise a god of herds. Some

Pages
About | First | Index

40

41

42
letter/word  
page #  
Search this site
Google


ancientlibrary.com
WWW
All non-public domain material, including introductions, markup, and OCR © 2005 Tim Spalding.