Ancients' feasts, games and rituals EPIRUS (Region) GREECE - GTP + Greek Travel Pages

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Ancients' feasts, games and rituals (1)

On the occasion of a great victory

Actia

NIKOPOLIS (Archaeological site) EPIRUS
Actia (Aktia), a festival of Apollo Actius, celebrated at Nicopolis in Epirus, with wrestling, musical contests, horse-racing, and sea-fights. It was established by Augustus, in commemoration of his victory over Antony off Actium, and was probably the revival of an ancient festival; for there was a celebrated temple of Apollo at Actium, which is mentioned by Thucydides (i. 29) and Strabo (vii. p. 325), and which was enlarged by Augustus. The games instituted by Augustus were celebrated every four years (menteteris, ludi quinquennales) at Nicopolis, probably on Sept. 2, the anniversary of the battle of Actium; they received the title of a sacred Agon, and ranked next after the four great games of Greece. Some counted by Actiads instead of Olympiads. (Joseph. B. Jud. i. 20, 4; Strab. l. c.; Dio Cass. li. 1; Suet. Aug. 18; Stat. Silv. ii. 2, 6; Bockh, Corp. Inscr. No. 1720, 1793; Krause, Olympia, p. 221.)
  Actia were also celebrated at the same time at Rome by the orders of the senate. (Dio Cass. liii. 1, liv. 19; Mommsen, lies gest. D. Aug. p. 27.) They are frequently mentioned in inscriptions, and were also celebrated in other parts of the empire. (Friedlander, Sittengesch. ii. p. 304.)

This text is from: A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities (1890) (eds. William Smith, LLD, William Wayte, G. E. Marindin). Cited June 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


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