DELPHI (Small town) PARNASSOS
Delphi, with a population of 1.500, is one of the most beautiful and impressing landscapes of Greece, and the centre -"omphalos "- of the world, according to the ancient myth. It was already inhabited in the prehistoric times and later -especially during the classic times- obtained great historic importance, as it has been linked with the most significant events of Greek history. Apollo, the God of catharsis and the genuine oracle, dominated earlier forms of worship in the Delphi. He taught people the "metron", that is prudence and modesty, which became the most ethical and peaceful expression of the Greek spirit. The famous Oracle of Delphi, where the god's divination was given through the mouth of Pythia, was directed by the so-called priesthood, that is priests with deep mystic education. Moreover, Delphi with the renowned Amphictyonic institution, gave the signal for friendship, brotherhood and peaceful coexistence of peoples, as a fundamental goal of the Delphic idea . A quite spectacular proof of the world-wide prestige enjoyed by the temple of the God of Light was the amount of votive offerings by leaders, towns and rich citizens, great in both quality and artistic value; unfortunately, very few of them have survived through the time.
Today the visitor can admire various interesting architectural monuments, as, in the northwest, one of the best preserved stadium of antiquity, dating from the roman ages (a stadium had already been there since the 2nd half of the 5th century BC). The stadium hosted the Pythian games, which were very important in Greece and took place every four years. In the northeast, there is the sacred place (temple), surrounded by a wall, contains, amongst other things, the dorian Temple of Apollo (4th century BC), a theater for 5,000 spectators, where in 1927 and in 1930 Aggelos and Eva Sikelianou organized for the first time since antiquity ancient drama plays, as well as a set of Ηtreasures", small buildings in the shape of a chapel, which various countries dedicated to the Sanctuary to keep the precious offerings. The visitor can get an idea of these buildings by visiting the erected Treasures of the Athenians.
The most important treasure appears to be the Treasure of Sifnioi, especially for its sculpted decoration, exhibited in the Museum of Delphi (one of the richest museums of the world), along with the magnificent, unique copper statue of Iniohos, the Sphinx of Naxioi, the two young man statues, findings of gold and ivory excavated in 1939 and tens of other findings. Eastward, where the two rocks of Fedriads meet, we see the renowned Kastalia Spring, and below the motorway, we see the Highschool and a little bit lower the Sanctuary of Athena "Pronaia", within which we see the dome, a round structure of dorian order, a true masterpiece. The new city of Delphi, which was transferred a km wester, after the excavations in 1892, is characterized by a modern touristic infrastructure and is ready to host all types of visitors. Here, we see the European Cultural Center of Delphi which aims at reviving Delphi as a European and international cultural centre with global activities, the house of Aggelos Sikelianos and his wife, Eva, which has been transformed into the Museum of Delphi Celebrations, a branch of the Arts School as well as many stores and workshops of folklore art. (...)
This extract is cited Sept 2003 from the WebPage of the Prefecture of Fokida
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