APOLLO: GOD OF LIGHT
APÓLLOHN - ΑΠΟΛΛΩΝ

Foto: Soapstone sculpture of Apollo, modeled after the Apollo of the western pediment of the temple of Zeus at Olympia, encrusted with precious gems, created by the author of this book, who places the photo in the Public Domain.


ΑΠΟΛΛΩΝ ΦΑΕΣΦΟΡΟΣ

ΙΗ ΠΑΙΗΟΝ!


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THE TRIPLE HEART

Come, Phívos Apóllohn, Apóllohn Phosphoros, God of Immeasurable Light! Apóllohn Patroos my Father! Apóllohn, the Healer!
Be with me today, tomorrow, and forever, closer than my own heart.
You who are dearest to me, you who are first in my life: the most beloved of my heart.
Oh, mighty slayer of the Python, my handsome, lovable God: bless me, bring me good things, bring me happiness, and guide my life.
And may I please you in every way, for I love you, my golden-haired Father, with all my heart.

ΤΡΙΠΛΗ ΚΑΡΔΙΑ

Ἔλθέ Φοίβε Ἀπόλλων, Ἀπόλλων φωσφόρε, Θεέ ἀπεράτου φωτός! Ἀπόλλων πάτερ! Ἀπόλλων ἰητρέ! 
Ἕσο μεθ' ἐμοῦ σήμερον, αὔριον, ἔς χρόνον πάντα, ἐγγύς τῆς καρδίας ἐμοῦ. 
Ο πρός ἐμέ ϕίλτατος, του βίου ἐμοῦ πρῶτος· τῆς καρδίας ἐμοῦ ϕίλτατος. 
Ω, ἰσχυρέ Πυθοκτόνε, κάλλιστε ἐμοί, ϕίλτατε Θεέ· εὐλόγησον με, κόμισον μοι ἀγαθά, ϕέρε ἐμοί τύχην ἀγαθήν καί τόν ἐμοῦ βίον ὁδήγησόν. 
Καί εὐχομένου ἴνα εὐχαριστῶ σε παντί τρόπω, ὡς γάρ ϕιλῶ σε, χρυσοκώμα πάτερ, μεθ' οὔλης τῆς καρδίας ἐμοῦ.



APÓLLOHN - (Apollo; Gr. Ἀπόλλων, ΑΠΟΛΛΩΝ)

Apóllohn is among the most important deities of mystical Orphism and Ællinismόs (Hellenismos; Gr. Ἑλληνισμός), the ancient Greek religion. One of the Twelve Olympian Gods, Apóllohn is the son of Litóh (Leto; Gr. Λητώ) and Zefs (Zeus; Gr. Ζεύς) and he is the twin brother of Ártæmis (Artemis; Gr. Ἄρτεμις).


The Birth of Apóllohn

The beautiful Homeric hymn to Dílion (Delian; Gr. Δήλιον) Apóllohn describes the birth of the God, the outline of which is as follows: The Goddess Litóh was unable to find a place to give birth to her children. Litóh was denied refuge wherever she went, all were in fear of jealous Ίra (Hera; Gr. Ἥρα). Ίra was angry because Zefs (Zeus; Gr. Ζεύς), her husband, had consorted with Litóh and was the father of soon-to-be-born Apóllohn and Ártæmis. Despite the fear of retribution, the brave island of Dílos (Delos; Gr. Δήλος) welcomed Litóh. But Litóh's trial was not yet over; Ίra detained Eileithyia (Gr. Εἰλείθυια), the Goddess of childbirth, at Όlympos (Olympus; Gr. Ὄλυμπος). The other Goddesses distracted Ίra and offered Eileithyia a beautiful amber necklace to encourage her to help Litóh. Now, with the assistance of Eileithyia, and holding onto a palm, Litóh gave birth to handsome Apóllohn. The young God was given Amvrosía (Ambrosia; Gr. Ἀμβροσία) and Nǽktar (Nectar; Gr. Νέκταρ) and he arose and proclaimed that he had come to declare the will of his father, for Apóllohn is the voice of Zefs on Earth.

Ártæmis, according to this same hymn, was born before her brother on the island of Ortiyía (Ortygia; Gr. Ορτυγία), near Syrákousai (Syracuse; Gr. Συράκουσαι). Some sources say that they were both born on Dílos and that Ortiyía was an ancient name for the island.

There are other localities from antiquity which also claimed to be the birthplace of Apóllohn, such as Tæyíra (Tegyra; Gr. Τεγύρα) in Viohtía (Boeotia; Gr. Βοιωτία) where was an oracle of the God, Ortiyía near Ǽphæsos (Ephesus; Gr. Ἔφεσος), and Zohstír (Zoster; Gr. ζωστήρ) in Attikí (Attica; Gr. Ἀττική).


GENERALITIES CONCERNING APÓLLOHN

In antiquity, Apóllohn was perhaps honored and loved more than any other God and his influence on ancient society was great, and he is still loved in our time. We will attempt to list below some of his major characteristics. 


Apóllohn is the voice of Zefs on Earth

Apóllohn speaks the unfailing will of his father, Zefs (Zeus; Gr. Ζεύς), at whose right hand he sits. Apóllohn is the voice of Zefs on Earth for which he is called the Orthós Lógos (Gr. Ὀρθός Λόγος), the True Word, for Apóllohn does not lie:

"For he (ed. the Dælphic Oracle, i.e. Apóllohn) does not lie, since this is not lawful to him." [2]

As Diónysos (Dionysus; Gr. Διόνυσος) is the action of Zefs on Earth, Apóllohn is the voice of Zefs on Earth.


Apóllohn is sympárædros to Zefs

Apóllohn is the ambassador of the Solar Powers, the higher Olympian Gods and, as such, he is at the same level as Zefs of this, our system, and thus truly merits the title Ánax (Gr. Ἄναξ), the Great King. Apóllohn is sympárædros (symparedros; Gr. συμπάρεδρος) to Zefs of our system, meaning that they hold the throne jointly.
[1] (See Thomas Taylor's notes to the Orphic Hymn to the Sun.) The Solar Powers are represented by the two intertwined snakes of the Kirýkeion (= Caduceus; Gr. Κηρύκειον, one of the major symbols of Zefs) which Apóllohn gives to Ǽrmis (Hermes; Gr. Ἑρμῆς).


Apóllohn is the Great God of Enlightenment

Apóllohn is the God of Light, for which he is known as Phívos (Phoebus; Gr. Φοίβος), the shining one, who has dominion over the Sun itself (Ílios or Helios; Gr. Ἥλιος). Apóllohn is not the same as the Sun, despite what some ancient literature would have one believe; he has dominion over the Sun. (See Thomas Taylor's notes to the Orphic hymn to the Sun for an explanation which is reasonable.). Apóllohn is the great God of enlightenment.


Apóllohn possesses a great fire

Apóllohn, like his sister Ártæmis, possesses the bow and arrow; this arrow is a mighty fire that pushes the soul forward to great progress and Arætí (Arete; Gr. Ἀρετή), genuine virtue; his arrows are said to never miss the mark and are also said to avert evil and punish the unjust.


Apóllohn Presides Over Music, Knowledge, and All the Arts

Apóllohn plays the kithára (cithara = a type of lyre; Gr. κιθάρα), an instrument which, in the mythology, he acquired from his brother Ǽrmis, who, in the Homeric hymn to Ǽrmis, created the instrument from the shell of a turtle and gave it to his brother in exchange for his stolen cattle. The kithára of Apóllohn has seven strings, a number associated with the God, and represents the Seven Centers of the Soul. Therefore, with his beautiful music, Apóllohn causes these centers to vibrate and spin and thus propels the soul to progress and deification.

Please visit this page: The Lyre of Apóllohn.

Apóllohn is involved with all which is splendid, illustrated by his association with the Mousai (Muses; Gr. Μοῦσαι), who are the Goddesses of all the arts, of music, song, dance, science and literature; they are his entourage, and for this reason he is known by the epithet Mousayǽtas (Mousagetes; Gr. Μουσαγέτας), leader of the Mousai.



Apóllohn is the Great God of Freedom

Apóllohn, being an Olympian, has dominion over one of the Natural Laws: Freedom. After the soul is harmonized by Aphrodíti (Aphrodite; Gr. Αφροδίτη) at the Eighth House, Apóllohn frees it at the Ninth.


Apóllohn is the Guardian of the Mysteries and Deification

Apóllohn is the principal guardian of the Mystiría (Mysteries; Gr. Μυστήρια). This can be seen in a mythological interpretation of the Iliás (The Iliad; Gr. Ἰλιάς) where Ælǽni (Helen of Troy; Gr. Ἑλένη), meaning "basket," is the symbol of the Mysteries, and Apóllohn is defending the Trojans. Apóllohn is the principal deity of deification, and when Apóllohn kills, in Iliás and wherever found in the myths, he deifies: always, as does his father Zefs and all the Olympians.

All the Mysteries come through Zagréfs-Diónysos (Zagreus-Dionysus; Gr. Ζαγρεύς-Διόνυσος) and Apóllohn is intertwined in his mythology. After the dismemberment and sacrifice of Zagréfs, Zefs (Zeus; Gr. Ζεύς) sends Athiná (Athena; Gr. Ἀθηνᾶ) to retrieve his still-beating heart and he sends Apóllohn to gather his limbs; Phívos (Phoibus; Gr. Φοῖβος) then inters the limbs at his sanctuary on Mount Parnassós (Parnassus; Gr. Παρνασσός). This story can be found in the Orphic Rhapsodic Theogony: The Sixth King.


Apóllohn Rules Medicine

Apóllohn is the God who cares and helps, and, as such, he is the principle deity of Medicine and Healing for which he is called Paián (Paean; Gr. Παιάν). The Kǽntavros (centaur; Gr. Κένταυρος) Kheirohn (Chiron; Gr. Χείρων) taught medicine to Asklipiós (Asclepius; Gr. Ἀσκληπιός ), the son of Apóllohn and the most renowned Physician after him. Asklipiós in turn, taught his own sons and daughters medicine, a whole host of healers. Apóllohn is mentioned first in the Hippocratic Oath:

"I swear by Apollo the physician, and Aesculapius (ed. Asklipiós), and Health (ed. Yyeia; Gr. Ὑγεία), and All-heal (ed. Panákeia; Gr. Πανάκεια), and all the Gods and Goddesses, that, according to my ability and judgment, I will keep this Oath..." (trans. Francis Adams).


Apóllohn and Death and His Involvement with Mankind

It is said that the Gods avoid death for whom it is a pollution; this is the tradition. For example, it is not appropriate to bury a dead body within the walls or grounds of a temple. The actual pollution is the corpse itself. This is the tradition of respect for the Gods, but this convention is somewhat misunderstood. In reality, the Gods cannot be polluted, despite the fact that the literature presents them as removing themselves directly before death; nonetheless, there is something to the belief. Apóllohn, however, is shown in the opening section of the Álkistis [Alcestes; Gr. Ἄλκηστις] of Evripídis [Euripides; Gr. Εὐριπίδης]) bargaining with Death itself to extend the life of his mortal friend Ádmitos (Admetus; Gr. Ἄδμητος). While the play is, after all, a play, it nonetheless reflects on the character of the God who not only must deal with mortal death because of his role as the principal deity of medicine, but also reveals his willingness to become intimately involved in the affairs of man and individuals. This involvement is also demonstrated in the Orǽsteia (Oresteia; Gr. Ὀρέστεια) of Aiskhýlos (Aeschylus; Gr. Αἰσχύλος) in which he stands fiercely loyal to Orǽstis (Orestes; Gr Ὀρέστης) and struggles for mankind along with Zefs (Zeus; Gr. Ζεύς) and Athiná (Athena; Gr. Ἀθηνᾶ), resulting in a great progress for mankind in the trial of Orǽstis.


The Seat of Apóllohn on Earth is Dælphí 

The principal seat of 
Apóllohn on Earth is Dælphí (Delphi; Gr. Δελφοί); it is the oracular seat (Θρόνος) of the God, the most famous oracle of the ancient world. In the ancient world, the pronouncements of the oracle were viewed as the voice of Apóllohn himself. 

Dælphí was once the dominion of Poseidóhn and Yi (Ge; Gr. Γῆ), but Apóllohn took Dælphí and gave Poseidóhn the island of Kalavría (Calauria; Gr. Καλαυρία) in exchange.
 
It was at Dælphí that Apóllohn slew the Pýthohn (Python; Gr. Πύθων). In one version of the story, the Pýthohn tormented Apóllohn's mother Litóh (Leto; Gr. Λητώ) at the behest of the Goddess Íra (Hera; Gr. Ἥρα). According to this myth, because the Pýthohn was sacred to Yi (Ge or Earth; Gr. Γῆ), Zefs (Zeus; Gr. Ζεύς) exiled Apóllohn, and coerced him to become a shepherd for nine years in the service of Ádmitos (Admetus; Gr. Ἄδμητος), King of Thæssalía (Thessaly; Gr. Θεσσαλία). (There is another myth, probably more common, which attributes this "punishment" to Apóllohn's killing of the Kýklohps [Cyclops; Gr. Κύκλωψ], who forged the weapon that killed Apóllohn's son, Asklipiós.)

In winter, Apóllohn departs from Dælphí to the land of the Ypærvóreiï (the Hyperboreans; Gr. Υπερβόρειοι) who have great devotion to the God. During this time Diónysos (Dionysus; Gr. Διόνυσος) assumes the throne. Apóllohn then returns to Dælphí in Spring. Apóllohn shares the throne at Dælphí with Diónysos because of their relationship with Zefs: Apóllohn is the voice of Zefs on Earth and Diónysos is the action and fulfillment of his providence by means of his Mysteries (as can be seen in The Orphic Rhapsodic Theogony: The Sixth King).  

Apóllohn also had oracular shrines at Dílos (Delos; Gr. Δήλος)Kláros (Claros; Gr. Κλάρος), Tǽnædos (Tenedos; Gr. Τένεδος), Dídyma (Gr. Δίδυμα), Pátara (Gr. Πάταρα), and elsewhere.


Zefs is the source of all prophecy and 
Apóllohn is his voice

Zefs (Zeus; Gr. Ζεύς) is the source of all prophecy:

"Beside the beautiful altar of Zeus he let fall the fawn where the Achaeans were used to offer sacrifice to Zeus from whom all omens come." [3]

Nonetheless, it is said that oracle was first spoken by Yi (Ge = Earth; Gr. Γῆ) and handed down to Thǽmis (Themis; Gr. Θέμις), who gave it to Phívi (Phoebe; Gr. Φοίβη), and eventually became the possession of Apóllohn who holds this power eternally:

The Pythia speaks:

"I give first place of honor in my prayer to her
who of the Gods first prophesied, the Earth; and next
to Themis, who succeeded to her mother's place
of prophecy; so runs the legend; and in third
succession, given by free consent, not won by force,
another Titan daughter of Earth was seated here.
This was Phoebe. She gave it as birthday gift
to Phoebus, who is called still after Phoebe's name.
And he, leaving the pond of Delos and the reef,
grounded his ship at the roadstead of Pallas, then
made his way to this land and a Parnassian home.
Deep in respect for his degree Hephaestus' sons
conveyed him here, for these are builders of roads, and changed
the wilderness to a land that was no wilderness.
He came so, and the people highly honored him,
with Delphus, lord and helmsman of the country. Zeus
made his mind full with Godship and prophetic craft
and placed him, fourth in a line of seers, upon this throne.
So, Loxias is the spokesman of his father, Zeus." [4]

Loxías (Gr. Λοξίας) is an epithet of Apóllohn meaning "he who is the prophet and interpreter of Zefs."

Apóllohn states that it is forbidden to practice soothsaying, even for the Gods, in the Homeric Hymn to Ǽrmis (Hermes; Gr. Ἑρμῆς):

"...μαντείην δέ, ϕέριστε, διοτρεϕές, ἣν ἐρεείνεις, οὔτε σὲ θέσϕατόν ἐστι δαήμεναι οὔτε τιν' ἄλλον ἀθανάτων·  τὸ γὰρ οἶδε Διὸς νόος·"

"But as for sooth-saying, noble, heaven-born child, of which you ask, it is not lawful for you to learn it, nor for any other of the deathless Gods: only the mind of Zeus knows that." [5]

Apóllohn goes on to say that he reserves the power of oracle to himself:

"I am pledged and have vowed and sworn a strong oath that no other of the eternal Gods save I should know the wise-hearted counsel of Zeus." [5]

Apóllohn will use his power to both help and impair mankind:

"As for men, I will harm one and profit another, sorely perplexing the tribes of unenviable men." [5]

Why would Apóllohn "harm one and profit another," as the hymn states? Because Apóllohn distinguishes between the mortals who choose to live in justice and those who choose to live in injustice, and he keeps them separate. This is explained more thoroughly below in the explanatory comments to the Orphic Hymn to Apóllohn.

For more information regarding oracle, prophecy, soothsaying: 


Apóllohn is a Pastoral God and a Great God of Fruitfulness

Apóllohn protects flocks and cattle, and is a great God of fruitfulness, who, himself being a twin, is said to have the ability bestow twins:

"Phoebus and Nomius we call him, ever since the time when by Amphrysus he tended the yokemares, fired with love of young Admetus. Lightly would the herd of cattle wax larger, nor would the she-goats of the flock lack young, whereon as they feed Apollo casts his eye; nor without milk would the ewes be nor barren, but all would have lambs at foot; and she that bare one would soon be the mother of twins." [6]


Apóllohn Cares for Boys and Children and has an Interest in their Education

"For men say that the young of all creatures cannot be quiet in their bodies or in their voices; they are always wanting to move and cry out; some leaping and skipping, and overflowing with sportiveness and delight at something, others uttering all sorts of cries. But, whereas the animals have no perception of order or disorder in their movements, that is, of rhythm or harmony, as they are called, to us, the Gods, who, as we say, have been appointed to be our companions in the dance, have given the pleasurable sense of harmony and rhythm; and so they stir us into life, and we follow them, joining hands together in dances and songs; and these they call choruses, which is a term naturally expressive of cheerfulness. Shall we begin, then, with the acknowledgment that education is first given through Apollo and the Muses?" [7]
 
And in the Thæogonía (Theogony; Gr. Θεογονία) of Isíodos (Hesiod; Gr. Ἡσίοδος), at line 346, Apóllohn is said to have boys in his care, and who along with the Okæanídæs (Oceanids; Gr. Ὠκεανίδες, the sea-nymphs.), the three-thousand daughters of Tithýs (Tethys; Gr. Τηθύς) and Okæanós (Oceanus or Ocean; Gr. Ὠκεανός) raise them to become men.


Apóllohn, Athiná, and Ærmís

Apóllohn, Athiná, and Ærmís work together as a great triad for the benefit of the Virtuous. This can be gleaned from the close proximity they share in the plays of the great tragedians and in the mythology in general.


Miscellaneous

Apóllohn rules over the realms of archery, poetry, all the fine arts, and Reason. He has a great interest in the foundation of cities, towns and principalities and delights in their orderly and just institutions.

Apóllohn is the only Olympic God whose name was retained in the Roman pantheon, being called Apollo. In Rome he was worshiped primarily as the God of healing.  

There is no place on earth more famous than Spárta (Gr. Σπάρτα) for their great love of Apóllohn with glorious festivals in his honor such as the Kárneia (Gr. Κάρνεια) and the Yakínthia (Hyacinthia; Gr. Ὑακίνθια).

There are numerous stories about Apóllohn; you can find the most famous of them summarized here: http://www.theoi.com/Olympios/Apollohn.html



The Meaning of the Name of Apóllohn

There are various opinions concerning the etymology of the name Apóllohn. For instance, in the Kratýlos (Cratylus; Gr. Κρατύλος) of Plátohn (Plato; Gr. Πλάτων), 405 b-d, Sohkrátis (Socrates; Gr. Σωκράτης) suggests several etymologies: Apolouohn (Gr. ἀπολούων) "purifier", Apolýohn (Gr. ἀπολύων) "he who delivers from impurity," Áplos from Áploun (Gr. Ἄπλουν) "simple, sincere" and with regard to his oracular ability, and aei Vállohn (Gr. ἀεὶ βάλλων) "always or ever-shooting" in reference to his skill at archery. Sohkrátis points out that the letter Álpha (Gr. Άλφα) at the beginning of the name signifies harmony, both harmony in music and the concordance in Gods and men.

Another proposed etymology of his name is: α, "not" + πολύς, πολλοί, "many," (See Ploutarkhos [Plutarch; Gr. Πλούταρχος], The E at Delphi, 393 b-c) i.e. not many, a Unity.

A
ll of these ideas shed light on the meaning of the name Apóllohn, but this author has been taught that the primary etymology is derived from the Greek verb apóllymi (Gr. ἀπόλλῦμι) "to destroy," an opinion that Sohkrátis or Plátohn would seem to disagree with, most likely because Plátohn did not like ideas that had the potential to mislead people about the Gods. Nonetheless, Destroyer is the most important and fundamental meaning of the name of Apóllohn. Because of this association with destruction and some other qualities (such as his relationship to plague), it has been assumed by some that the God has a "dark side," but this is a complete misunderstanding. Apóllohn is a destroyer, but what does he destroy? He destroys the darkness of the mind and soul, superstition, spiritual stagnation, the ýdra (hydra; Gr. ὕδρα) of egotism, slavery, and injustice, and everything that obscures the Natural Laws. He destroys all the impediments to enlightenment. It is evident in his epithets: Phívos (Phoebus; Gr. Φοίβος) meaning "the bright one," or Phohsphóros (Phosphoros; Gr. Φωσφόρος) meaning "light-bearer," or Lýkeios (Gr. Λύκειος) from lýkhnos (Gr. λύχνος) meaning "light" or "lamp." Apóllohn is the great boundless God of light. He is enlightenment itself. There is nothing dark in him. Within the verb apóllymi is the root ly (Gr. λυ) meaning "light:" "He who destroys with light." The idea that any divine being has a dark side, whether we speak of Apóllohn, Ækáti (Hekate; Gr. Ἑκάτη), or any deity, is completely illogical because they are all beings of light and complete goodness.

Apóllohn is the principle God of deification and this is indicated in yet another meaning of the word apollymi: "I lose myself." The entangling ýthra (hydra; Gr. ὕδρα) of ego has been destroyed, therefore "I lose myself" and unite with the Gods in immeasurable freedom. You are no longer what you were: "I lose myself." The circle is complete: you shall no longer return as a mortal being.



Apóllohn in Iconography

In iconography Apóllohn is portrayed as a youth [8] of consummate beauty. His body exhibits perfect proportions, neither soft nor overly muscular. "And he is beautiful, and eternally young. Cheeks not even shadowed by down, his fragrant hair sheds essence to earth, no pomade for Apollo, but pure Panacea (ed. Panákeia; Gr. Πανάκεια), a distillation to immunize cities wherever it falls." [9] He often carries a kithára (cithara = lyre; Gr. κιθάρα), or a bow and arrows, or sometimes a sword. Frequently Apóllohn is accompanied by the Mousai (ed. Muses; Gr. Μοῦσαι). The head of Apóllohn is adorned with long blond hair and is typically crowned with laurel. His eyes are green. Sometimes he is shown holding a branch of myrtle, emblematic of prophecy, or an apple, the prize of the Pythian Games (ed. from whence we get the title Pythian Apóllohn, Pýthios [Gr. Πύθιος]. The area around Dælphi is called Pýthoh [Pytho; Gr. Πυθώ] because at Dælphí Apóllohn slew the serpent.) He is often accompanied by a raven, sacred to him, or the Lýkos (Gr. Λύκος), the wolf, a symbol of the power of Apóllohn. The wolf is known as the Æöhsphóros (Eosphoros or Eosforos; Gr. Εωσφόρος), the herald of the Dawn or the Light of the Dawn because wolves are usually seen at the break of dawn.

"The character under which this God is represented, is often suggested by the taste and caprice of the sculptor or the poet. He appears at Lesbos (ed. Lǽsvos; Gr. Λέσβος) holding a branch of myrtle, a tree considered by the ancients to be emblematical of divination: sometimes he holds an apple, the prize at the Pythian games. At Delos (ed. Dílos; Gr. Δήλος), he has a bow in his right hand, and in his left the three Graces (ed. The Kháritæs = Charities; Gr. Χάριτες), each of them bearing an instrument of music, the lyre, the flute, and the Sýrinx (Gr. Σύρινξ). As the sun, he has a cock on his hand, is crowned with rays, and traverses the zodiac (ed. Zohthiakós; Gr. ζῳδιᾰκός) in a car, drawn by four white horses, to which the names, Philogæus (ed. Philóyaios; Gr. Φιλόγαιος), Erythræus (ed. Ærythraios; Gr. Ερυθραίος), Ethon, Actæon (ed. Aktaiohn; Gr. Ἀκταίων), and Pyrois, are variously given. At other times, he appears upon Parnassus (ed. Mt. Parnassós; Gr. Παρνασσός), surrounded by the Muses (ed. Mousai; Gr. Μοῦσαι), with his lyre in his hand, and a wreath of laurel on his head. The Persians, who confounded Apollo with the sun, represent him with the head of a lion and human features, surmounted by a tiara, and holding by the horns an infuriated bull, an emblem of Egyptian origin. The Egyptians, who identify him with Orus (ed. an antique way of spelling Horus), represent him as an infant, swathed in variegated clothes, holding in one hand a staff, which terminates in the head of a hawk, and in the other a whip with three thongs; but he is most generally represented as tall, beardless, in the beauty and vigour of youth, with flowing locks, holding in his hand a bow, and sometimes a lyre (ed. Kithára = cithara; Gr. κιθάρα), his head being crowned with laurel, and surrounded with beams of light. In the temple of Assyrian Juno (ed. Íra; Gr. Ἥραat Hierapolis (ed. Iærápolis; Gr. Ἱεράπολις), he is seen, near the throne of the sun, as an old man with a long beard. The statue of the God which has acquired the greatest celebrity, is that of Apollo Belvidere, which represents him at the moment of having discharged the arrow from his bow. Homer (ed. Ómiros; Gr. Ὅμηρος), and the most ancient mythologists, considered the sun and Apollo as two distinct divinities; whereas Plato (ed. Plátohn; Gr. Πλάτων), Cicero, and the Greeks, generally identified them. Upon antique monuments and coins they are almost invariably distinguished from each other; and more recent inquiries into this part of mythology tend to confirm the propriety of the distinction, ..." [10]


Birthday of Apóllohn and the Number Seven

Apóllohn's birthday is celebrated on the seventh of Tharyilióhn (Thargelion; Gr. Θαργηλιών; which our community always celebrates on May 21). Because of this, Apóllohn is known by the epithet Ævdomayænís (Ebdomagenes or Hebdomagenes, Gr. Ἑβδομᾱγενής), meaning born on the seventh day. [11] All seventh days are, therefore, sacred to Apóllohn [12], hence, the connection between Apóllohn and the number seven.

For another interpretation of why the number seven is connected with Apóllohn we find this explanation of Próklos (Proclus; Gr. Πρόκλος):

"For he (ed. the Dimiourgós = Demiurge; Gr. Δημιουργός) divides the soul into parts, harmonizes the divided parts, and renders them concordant with each other. But in effecting these things, he energizes at one and the same time Dionysiacally [i.e. Bacchically] and Apolloniacally. For to divide, and produce wholes into parts, and to preside over the distribution of forms, is Dionysiacal; but to perfect all things harmonically, is Apolloniacal. As the Demiurgus, therefore, comprehends in himself the cause of both these Gods, he both divides and harmonizes the soul. For the hebdomad (ed. ævdomás = seven; Gr. ἑβδομάς) is a number common to both these divinities, since theologists (Orphic) also say that Bacchus (ed. Vákkhos; Gr. Βἀκχος) was divided into seven parts:

Into seven parts the Titans cut the boy.

And they refer the heptad (ed. group of seven) to Apollo, as containing all symphonies. For the duple diapason (ed. a rich outpouring of harmonious song) first subsists in the monad (ed. one = monad; Gr. μοναδ), duad (ed. two = dyás; Gr. δυάς), and tetrad (ed. four = tætrás; Gr. τετράς), of which numbers the hebdomad (ed. seven = ævdomás; Gr. ἑβδομάς) consists.  Hence they call the God Hebdomagetes (ed. Ævdomayænís = Ebdomagenes; Gr. Ἑβδομᾱγενής), or born on the seventh day, and assert that this day is sacred to him." [13]

 

Festivals of Apóllohn:  

KARNEIA - ΚΑΡΝΕΙΑ 

PYANÆPSIA - ΠΥΑΝΡΨΙΑ


Hymns and Prayers to Apóllohn:

Hymn to Apóllohn from Álkistis 

Kallimakhos' (of Kyrene/Alexandria) Hymn to Apollohn 

THE TRIPLE HEART - in Ancient Greek and English - ΤΡΙΠΛΗ ΚΑΡΔΙΑ

THE HOMERIC HYMN TO DÍLION (Delian) APÓLLOHN


Próklos on Apóllohn:  

Próklos (Proclus; Gr. Πρόκλος) interprets the Kratýlos (Cratylus; Gr. Κρατύλος) of Plátohn (Plato; Gr. Πλάτων) in its discussion of Apóllohn and in its discussion of the Mousai (Muses; Gr. Μοῦσαι): Próklos on the Kratýlos of Plátohn Concerning Apóllohn


The Orphic Hymn to Apóllohn

Please follow this link to a page which includes the ancient Greek text of the Orphic Hymn to Apollo, a transliteration for easy pronunciation, and the translation into English by Thomas Taylor along with his commentary. You will also find additional comments from HellenicGods.org:

The Orphic Hymn to Apollo


Apóllohn and Orphismós

Apóllohn rules the Ninth Orphic House, the month of  Dídymi (GeminiGr. Δίδυμοι) from May 21 through June 20, and his dominion is the Natural Law of Ælefthæría (Gr. Ἑλευθερία). The Divine Consort of Apóllohn is his twin sister, the Goddess Ártæmis.  The Orphic Hymns suggest an offering of mánna (Gr. μάννᾰν) to Apóllohn [possibly powdered frankincense, possibly not.]. 


Epithets of Apóllohn:

Visit this page for an extensive listing of his names and epithets: APÓLLOHN EPITHETS 


The story of the birth of the GodsOrphic Rhapsodic Theogony.
We know the various qualities and characteristics of the Gods based on metaphorical stories: Mythology
Dictionary of terms related to ancient Greek mythology: Glossary of Hellenic Mythology.

Introduction to the Thæí (the Gods): The Nature of the Gods.


 

NOTES:

A list of abbreviations can be found at the bottom of this page: GLOSSARY HOME.

[1] Symparædros (Gr. Συμπαρεδρος) to Zefs for this and other reasons: "Now Jupiter (ed. = Zefs = Zeus; Gr. Ζεύς) in the Orphic theology, is the Demiurgus (ed. Demiurge or Dimiourgos; Gr. Δημιουργός) of the universe, or the first intellect; and Apollo, in the intellectual world, is the same with Jupiter (ed. Zefs)..." This statement is found in the notes to the hymn to Pan, HO p. 130. HO = The Hymns of Orpheus, translated by Thomas Taylor, 1792.

[2] Plátohn (Plato; Gr. ΠλάτωνApoloyía (Gr. Ἀπολογία) 21b, trans. Thomas Taylor in 1804, found here in Vol. IV of The Works of Plato which is Vol. XII of the Thomas Taylor Series, Prometheus Trust (Somerset UK), 1996 edition, p. 189.

[3] Ómiros (Homer; Gr. Ὅμηρος) Iliás (Iliad; Gr. Ἰλιάς) viii.250. HIM1 p. 369.  HIM1 = Homer Iliad I: Books 1-12 trans. A. T. Murray, Revised by William F. Wyatt, 1924.  We are using the 1999 edition published by Harvard University Press (Cambridge MA USA and London England), Loeb Classical Library LCL 170. 

[4] Aiskhýlos (Aeschylus; Gr. Αἰσχύλος) Efmænídæs 1-19 (Eumenides; Gr. Εὐμενίδες) CGT1 p. 135, trans. by Richard Lattimore, 1953. CGT1 = The Complete Greek Tragedies Vol. 1: Aeschylus, translated by various authors. Published by the University of Chicago Press (Chicago IL USA) 1959, the individual plays have various original copyright dates.

[5] Homeric hymn IV to Ærmís, lines 532-541, trans. Hugh Evelyn-White, 1914; found here in the 1936  Heinemann [London]/Harvard [Cambridge, Mass.] edition, Loeb Vol. 57, entitled Hesiod, The Homeric Hymns, and Homerica, pp. 401-403.  

[6] Kallímakhos (Callimachus; Gr. Καλλίμαχος) Hymn II: To Apóllohn, 47-54. Trans. by A.W. Mair and G.R. Mair in the book entitled Callimachus, Lycophron, Aratus; Loeb Classical Library, William Heinemann (London, England UK) and G. P. Putnam's Sons (New York NY USA), 1921, where this quotation may be found on p. 53.

[7] Plátohn (Plato; Gr. Ρλάτων) Nómi (Laws; Gr. Νόμοι) Book II 653 d-e, trans. Benjamin Jowett, 1892. We are using  the 1937 Random House edition (New York, NY USA) entitled The Dialogues of Plato, Vol. 2, where this quotation may be found on p. 432.

[8]   "Pythagoras (ed. Gr. Πυθαγόρας) pointed out that boys were most dear to the divinities; and he pointed out that, in times of great drought, cities would send boys as ambassadors to implore rain from the Gods, in the persuasion that divinity is especially attentive to children.....That is also the reason why the most philanthropic of the Gods, Apollo and Love (ed. Ǽrohs or Eros; Gr. Ἔρως), are, in pictures, universally represented as having the ages of boys." (The words of Iámvlikhos [Iamblichus; Gr. Ἰάμβλιχος] from The Life of Pythagoras, translated in 1818 by Thomas Taylor, edited for readability by Kenneth Sylvan Guthrie in The Pythagorean Sourcebook and Library, 1988 edition, p. 68)

[9] Kallímakhos Hymn II: To Apóllohn, lines 44-48, translated by Stanley Lombardo and Diane Rayor, 1988; Callimachus: Hymns, Epigrams, Select Fragments, The Johns Hopkins University Press (Baltimore MD USA and London England), p. 8.

[10] CM* p. 19.  CM = A Classical Manual, Being a Mythological, Historical, and Geographical Commentary on Pope's Homer, and Dryden's Æneid of Virgil, 1833; London: John Murray, Albemarle St. This vast, very old, and quite amazing reference book does not list an author.

[11] L&S, p. 466, right column. 

[12] CM* p. 22 under Hebdomagenes.

[13] Próklos Commentary on the Tímaios of Plátohn, Diehl pagination: 200C-D, 2,197-198; trans. Thomas Taylor, 1820; found here in the 2006 Prometheus Trust edition, Vol. II of the book entitled Proclus' Commentary on the Timaeus of Plato, Thomas Taylor Series Vol. XVI, on p. 616.



Apollo and the Muses.  Liebig-Oxo trading card, 1865?





The logo to the left is the principal symbol of this website. It is called the CESS logo, i.e. the Children of the Earth and the Starry Sky. The 
Pætilía (Petelia; Gr. Πετηλία) and other golden tablets having this phrase are the inspiration for the symbol. The image represents this idea: Earth (divisible substance) and the Sky (continuous substance) are the two kozmogonic substances. The twelve stars represent the Natural Laws, the dominions of the Olympian Gods. In front of these symbols is the seven-stringed kithára (cithara; Gr. κιθάρα), the lyre of Apóllohn (Apollo; Gr. Ἀπόλλων). It (here) represents the bond between Gods and mortals and is representative that we are the children of Orphéfs (Orpheus; Gr. Ὀρφεύς). 


PLEASE NOTE: Throughout the pages of this website, you will find fascinating stories about our Gods. These narratives are known as 

, the traditional stories of the Gods and Heroes. While these tales are great mystical vehicles containing transcendent truth, they are symbolic and should not be taken literally. A literal reading will frequently yield an erroneous result. The meaning of the myths is concealed in code. To understand them requires a key. For instance, when a God kills someone, this usually means a transformation of the soul to a higher level. Similarly, sexual union with a God is a transformation.


The story of the birth of the Gods: Orphic Rhapsodic Theogony.
We know the various qualities and characteristics of the Gods based on metaphorical stories: Mythology
Dictionary of terms related to ancient Greek mythology: Glossary of Hellenic Mythology.

SPELLING: HellenicGods.org uses the Reuchlinian method of pronouncing ancient Greek, the system preferred by scholars from Greece itself. An approach was developed to enable the student to easily approximate the Greek words. Consequently, the way we spell words is unique, as this method of transliteration is exclusive to this website. For more information, visit these three pages: 

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