Amphibiotics Euphoriatric & Calisthenics

Calisthenics is based on how ancient Greek warriors trained. It uses bodyweight exercises to maximize strength, flexibility, equilibrium and neuromuscular coordination. The result is incredible muscle control and the ability to pose in gravity-defying positions.

The practice was recorded as being used in Ancient Greece, including by the armies of Alexander the Great and the Spartans at the Battle of Thermopylae. Calisthenics was also recorded to have been used in Ancient China. The Greeks trained with boulders and stones, but the majority of their weight training was doing chin-ups, pull-ups, push-ups, handstand pushups, squats with a fellow warrior on their back, dips, sprinting, jumping and other bodyweight exercises.

10 exercises worthy of a Greek god workout

5 features of a Greek god body

Balanced physique – top to bottom, with no overpowering body parts

Broad shoulders – lean, wide shoulders with an athletic look

Deep, developed back – distinctive muscle density and separation

Tapered waist – a V-taper with muscled abs and obliques

Big legs and calves –balanced quads, hamstrings and calves

How to train for the body of a Greek god

To get the body of a Greek god, you need to build balanced body proportions and a rugged kind of depth to your muscle. This look isn’t about being shredded or ripped. It’s about building a big, lived-in body that looks like it could take on any physical challenge.

Functional workouts and unconventional training styles are great for building a Greek god look to your physique. Traditional barbell and weights machines can play a part – usually to fill-in smaller muscle groups and balance out the whole look. But your Greek god workouts should centre around gymnastics, calisthenics, loaded carries and odd objects like sandbagsatlas stones, and sleds.

10 exercises worthy of a Greek god workout

  1. Pull Ups & Weighted pull ups

    Pull ups are widely regarded as the holy grail of back builders. Take your pull ups to the next level by adding weight with a dipping belt. It’s no surprise that heavy pull ups will build serious mass throughout the upper body, especially in the lats and rhomboids.
  2. Dips & Weighted Dips

    Dips are one of the best upper body push exercises in existence and have stood the test of time, building the triceps, chest, front delts and even the rhomboid muscles in your back. Add weight with a dipping belt to build even more strength and size.

  3. Hollow body holds

    An often under utilised exercise which will build a rock solid and functional core. A strong core is an essential component of the Greek god body.

  4. Hanging Leg Raises

    Another fundamental exercise in building a strong and define core to give you that Greek god body. Not only will this exercise build rock solid abs both visibly and internally, you will also build god like grip strength at the same time.

  5. Farmers walks

    Any kind of weighted walk or carry will build rugged traps and serious back density as well as build leg thickness and strength. Load up a set of farmers handles, or use heavy kettlebells to walk at least 25m for reps.

  6. Sandbag carry and load

    Sandbags are an amazing odd-object training tool that you can use for squats, lunges, cleans, overhead press – pretty much anything. We suggest you take your sandbag for a walk, by doing a carry and load-to-platform challenge with a heavy bag.

  7. Shuttle Runs & Plyometric Training

    The Greeks where not only muscular and strong, they were also fast an agile. Their physiques weren’t there for “show” these guys where absolute machines. Whilst you could build a Greek looking body without being physically fit it wouldn’t be a true Greek God Physique.

  8. Bodyweight or Weighted Squats

    Another key component to the Greek God body is thick and strong legs. Squats are another fundamental exercise that has stood the test of time. However there is more to squats that just weight back squats, try bodyweight squats, pistol squats, sissy squats for better leg development and strength.

  9. Handstand Push ups

    Want big shoulders like a Greek god? Being able to push your bodyweight up in the handstand position is a true measure of strength and will build boulder like shoulders in no time. Haven’t got the handstand fully locked in yet? Use a wall.

  10. Mace & Indian Club Training

    The Spartans, as Macedonians and ALL the Greeks often trained for hours with swords and shields to build their fighting prowess. MOST of us don’t have any SWORDS in the garage but Macebells and Indian Clubs are a great way to workout in the same way. This way of training, we believe is a key component to strong and functional shoulders.


P.S: Theo = God / Mache=battle,fight ex: ANDROMACHE (=manfighter; one of the dauthers of Priamos of Troy) Image result for χειρωνιος χαιρετισμος

Amphibiotics is the ultimate Holistic concept based on both on Earth , Water & Air exescises. inluding Hydro-QiGong  & Martial Arts. Mainly: Calisthenics, Hydrobics – Hydro(=water) gymnastics alias “Hydrobics” (inverted by Konstantin Schönros in 1993) Etymologicaly the word means..AMPHI prep. (=Both places, Round.) ex: Amphitheatre(Amphi= round+theatron, αμφι+βιος-(Amphi+Bios)=AMPHIBIAN = the one who can live both in the water & land, like frogs) etc.

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By exercising the Meander in Calisthenics and nutrition of Hippocrates, all young people today can make statuesque body and have excellent health.

Meander (= Midwife of man – Μαίανδρος) – from: Maia (=Midwife)+andros (genetivus av aner – andros = man)

,Meander, the handle of theomachon – ΘΕΟΜΑΧΩΝ (theo = God + machon = wariors) from: μαχη- machi = battle. ex: Andromachi= the battle of man, by meaning shE can fight, like a man! Andromachi WAS one of the daughters of Priamos in ancient Ilion or TroY=T P O I A/TROIA) 

Unknown(?) ancient Greek gymnastics Nobody has so far not aware that the Meander, the ancient Greek squared symbol painted everywhere is


The dictionaries give as the world … decorative vases, buildings, clothing, etc. and nothing else. And yet the Meander in some rare pots seems clear thatthe race is handle the fight. 

More than 3000 years that valuable information was lost. The few pots with drawings explaining the gym is located abroad (Germany, England, Italy, France, USA etc.). 

No such vessel is in Greece!  At that time, however, was an open secret of the ancient Greeks, for this and painted everywhere, but, strictly codified. 

Exercise strengthens the hands of this first disc, javelin, bow and sword, with the ultimate aim of Meandric handle the fight. The bond between the fingers and clenching his opponentwas painful in the sport of wrestling and deadly war. 

Plato himself was a wrestler, and of course aware of the handle of the meanders.  Due to the loss of these vessels and the ignorance of the usefulness of meander for thousands of years, wechanged the world body type, we lost power, weight and got sick. 

On the meander gym and nutrition of Hippocrates, all young people today can build statue-like body and have excellent health.

From the multitude of ancient amphores representations reflect clearly that this handle, the handle of cheironios or cheironio grid or whatever was called this particular handle in the past, was the special maybe solemn emblem theomachon Greek heroes! The grand schematic slogan that the gods are defeated!
The Meander was probably the graph of divine defeat of spunky theomachous heroes!


  “In all there is inherently something divine. ”
~ Aristotle (384-322 BC)          

 Why “Euphoriatric”?

The word is made up the prefix “ευ” meaning “well”, the verb “phoro” (“φορω” = I carry..i.e: meta-phoric, Dysphoric etc) and “iatric” (“ιατρικη”=medical)

The site is NOT Only about The Gastronomical Healthy Life but also the holistic way of living which includes the Following: Education, Culture, by Physical, Mental & Spiritual practices, as:(Gymnastics & Athletics), Philosophy, All Fine Arts(=:Sculpture, Architecture, Music, Poetry, Theater), Medicine, Physics, Astronomy, Mathematics, Etymology,  (as a clue to analyze words & improve real historical facts), Literaure(=λογοτεχνία), Lectures, Beauty, inspiration Sourses & Traveling is the main line of our mission in combination with our sugested remendies, training (both external & inner exercises – reverse breathing, meditation etc). All this knowledge & Information is NOT for commercial purposes!

The word calisthenics comes from the ancient Greek words kálos (κάλος), which means “beauty”, and sthénos (σθένος), meaning “strength” or “vigor”.It is the art of using one’s body weight and qualities of inertia as a means to develop one’s physique.

The exercise was named after one of its earliest promotors, the historian Callisthenes.

The opening of the Olympic Games began with a four horse chariot race.

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Bildresultat för ancient greek calisthenics

Calisthenics was the main training for all athlets, who partipated in the OLYMPIC GAMES.The first official recorded celebration of the Olympic Games in ancient times was in Olympia at 776 BC  

But this was the 28th Olympiad! This emerges from a copper engraving album “Ifitos disc” as he calls him Pausanias (Solar A 5.20.1) which he saw himself in ancient Olympia. The disc is written royal names of the king of Elis Ifitos king Lycurgus of Sparta and the king of Pisa Kleosthenes, who agreed on the sacred peace “sacred truce” between them. This agreement defines accurately the true inaugural date, postponing the start of the sacred Olympics in Holy Altin Olympia in 108 years earlier! The actual starting date is, if known to us date 776 BC add 108 years, ie 27 more Olympiads for which we know almost nothing, since it has been demonstrated for these written records. Thus we arrive at the beginning of Holy Games of Peace, that the original Olympics in the year -884! So, from then until now have spent 2898 years!

It is only natural that coinage would be struck to commemorate this important religious, political, artistic, and athletic event.

 .From 776 BC and after the Games, slowly became more important throughout ancient Greece, reaching their zenith in the fifth and sixth century BC The Olympics also had religious significance since in honor of the god Zeus, whose huge statue stood at Olympia. The number of competitions was twenty celebration was held in the course of a few days. The winners of the games were admired and become immortal through poems and statues. The prize for the winners was a wreath of olive branches.

Another rare silver stater of Olympia is thought to have been struck in 352 B.C., thus for the 107th Olympiad. It displays an artistic rendering of Zeus on ...

 The Games gradually lost its importance when the Romans conquered Greece and when Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire, the Olympic longer regarded as a pagan celebration, and in 393 AD Emperor Theodosius banned their conduct. In this way over a period of one thousand years during which the Olympic subsequently held every four years.

All free Greeks were eligible to participate in the sacred games (the Olympic games were held in honor of the gods of Olympus – hence the name). Briefly, that means that both kings and the common people of the kingdom of Macedon were eligible to participate in the games. Naturally, this was true for ALL other Greeks as well. Only NON GREEKS were barred from participating in the games.



Theagenes of Thasos was the most famous PANKRATISTIAN AND BOXER, as well of antiquity. His father was rumored to have been Hercules himself; a phantom of the immortal hero was said to have had intercourse with the mother of Theagenes in the likeness of Timosthenes, a priest. Age 9 was the first time we hear stories about this figure. And we hear about him from the writings of Pausanias, a Greek traveler and geographer. The story straight from Pausanias goes like this – here’s a direct quote:

“Not far from the kings stands a Thasian, Theagenes the son of Timosthenes. In his ninth year, they say, as he was going home from school, he was attracted by a bronze image of some god or other in the marketplace; so he caught up the image, placed it on one of his shoulders and carried it home. The citizens were enraged at what he had done, but one of them, a respected man of advanced years, bade them not to kill the lad, and ordered him to carry the image from his home back again to the market-place. This he did, and at once became famous for his strength, his feat being noised abroad through-out Greece.”

He won more than 1400 events, with the greatest victories in boxing and PANKRATION, combining the striking of boxing with the locks and throws of wrestling. The event was founded to commemorate the struggle of Hercules against the ferocious lion of NEMEA, so we shouldn’t expect a fight according to gracious rules in such mortal combat.

………Tired of winning……

He’s best known for being a winner in the original Olympics. In the 75th Olympiad in 480 BC, he had planned to compete in both boxing and pankration. In boxing, he defeated a man named Euthymos, but after the match didn’t have enough energy to compete in pankration, so he was fined for unsportsmanlike conduct. He returned in the 76th Olympiad in 476 BC to compete in pankration and WON TWICE at OLYMPIA (480 and 476 BCE), THRICE at DELPHI, NINE times at NEMEA and TEN times at Isthmia. In fact, he was so TIRED of winning in these events that at PHYTHIA in Thessaly he gave up boxing and the pankration and trained for running. His ambition was to win a prize for running in the homeland of ACHILLES, the swiftest hero of the ancient Greeks, something he managed to achieve without great difficulty.

Some of his victories were controversial though. The most notorious was his victory in boxing in 480 BCE in ancient Olympia. Theagenes registered for boxing and the pankration and proceeded to defeat Eythymos of Italian Lokris, who was the boxing victor in 484. It was a triumph, but Theagenes was so exhausted that he failed to enter the pankration. As a result, the Hellanodikai (judges) imposed on him a fine of one talent for entering the boxing just to spite Eythymos and another talent for failing to compete in the pankration.

It was a heavy penalty, but Theagenes paid the full amount in time for the next Olympic Games and had no more trouble with the judges or other athletes. After his death, a statue of Theagenes was erected in Olympia. It was the work of Glaucias, a famous sculptor of Aegina who made many bronze statues of athletes.

The golden island

His homeland also honored Theagenes with a bronze statue after the athlete’s death. Thasos was a wealthy island in the northern Aegean. The poet Archilochus described its central peak as sticking up like the back of a donkey, but this seemed irrelevant to the Athenian colonists who settled there around 700 BCE to take advantage of the island’s rich deposits of gold. Thasos also offered a convenient base from which to pursue mining on the nearby Thracian mainland. As a result, the islanders grew rich from the export of ore, timber, marble, and slaves. . In 479 BCE Thasos joined the Delian League and came under the influence of Athens. A renowned school of sculpture prospered here during the 6th century BCE, while the famous painter Polygnotus was born in Thasos around 475 BCE. So Theagenes was hardly the only famous native son, but he was definitely worthy of respect and adoration for his Olympic victories.

The statue attacks

The bronze statue of Theagenes in Thasos soon found itself in legal jeopardy. One of the athlete’s enemies came to the statue every night and flogged it as though he were striking Theagenes himself. Apparently, the statue got so mad at this ill-treatment that it fell on the abuser and crushed him to death. The sons of the deceased prosecuted the bronze image for murder and won the trial. The Thasians dropped the statue to the bottom of the sea under the influence of the Athenian laws of Draco, who prescribed banishment even on inanimate objects should they ever kill a man.

Theagenes becomes a god

Soon the crops failed. As famine roamed the land, the Thasians sent envoys to Delphi and received a divine command to allow the exiles to return. This they did but the blight persisted, so off they went again for further instructions from Apollo. How could the god still punish them when they had obeyed his command? Pythia acknowledged the return of the exiles but reminded them that they had forgotten the “great Theagenes”. The Thasians were truly at wit’s end, for how could they hope to ever locate the statue in the vast blue sea? Fortunately, some fishermen caught Theagenes in their net and brought it back to land. The Thasians were so relieved that they set it up in its original position and sacrificed to him as to a god.

Trained at a gymnasium on the island of Thasos, Theagenes, whose strength was said to be legendary, was the most famous among his peers. Theagenes later completed in the boxing and pankration events, becoming victorious at every Panhellenic Games.

**************’D I A G O R A S***************************************************

Diagoras, son of Damagetos and great-grandson of the king of Ialyss Damagetos, was the most famous of all the boxers of Antiquity. The poet Pindar calls him “huge” and it is said that his outward appearance was impressive, both because of his size and because of his beauty. He was crowned Olympian in boxing in 464 BC, in the 79th Olympiad. He was also twice victorious in Nemea, four times in Isthmia, many times in his birthplace of Rhodes, in Panathenaia, in Argos, in Lycaeo, in Aegina, in Megara and elsewhere.
Diagoras stood out for the unique way he fought. He was called “cheerful” because he did not avoid the opponent, did not bend or turn his body. He claimed victory cleanly and with dignity, while always scrupulously following the rules, making his fans admire and proud. Pindar wrote an ode in his honor and his statue was erected in Alti.
Celebrated Olympian and journalist, the most famous boxer in the opinion of historians of the time. Giant, with a beautiful face, with a proud walk and a statuesque posture that caused admiration. According to Pindar’s commentary, Diagoras must have been around 2.20 m in height (four cubits and five fingers).
Periodonicis means that he was victorious in all the Panhellenic games: Olympia- Nemea- Isthmia-Pythia. Euthymachus refers to the way he fought and trisolvios means thrice happy.
Because of the great athlete’s illustrious career, his fellow Rhodians took care to ascribe to him a divine origin. His mother, whose identity is not mentioned anywhere, was found in the countryside and due to the extreme heat she was forced to take refuge in the sanctuary of Hermes. There God found her sleeping and approached her.
He had the happiness of seeing his sons also crowned Olympians – Damagitos in the pygmy, Akusilaos and Dorias in the pancratium – as well as his grandsons Euklis and Peisirod. In 448 BC, at the 83rd Olympiad, Diagoras experienced apotheosis riding on the shoulders of his Olympian sons and cheered by the crowds.
The young people, in their excitement, lift their father in their arms, hold him on their shoulders, advance on the track. They want to show him to the world. To show their pride, to enjoy his own pride. The crowds cheer, shower them with flowers and laurels. It is the triumph of Diagoras’ life.
Rather agreeing with the words of a certain Spartan, who, seeing him, shouted to him that there was nothing left for him now but to ascend to Olympus to the gods, Diagoras leaned into the arms of his children and died.
It wasn’t envy and jealousy. It was for fear of God that great joy should touch impiety. And the voice was exhortation and advice at the same time: “Enough Diagoras. After so much glory, the only thing left for you is to climb Mount Olympus, to become God”… The happy Diagoras heard the voice. And on the arms of his children, in their arms, now happy, he bent his double-crowned head and breathed his last. He did not climb Mount Olympus, but he remained immortal.






Macedonians, did participate in the Olympics and other games for Greeks only. Here we have a random Macedonian making a dedication and mentioning his Greek heritage :

Translation : “Damon son of Nicanor, Macedonian from Thessalonica for Quintus Caecilius son of Quintus Metellus, proconsul of the Romans, to the Olympian Zeus on account of his virtue and goodwill which he continues to manifest to myself and the homecity and the rest of Macedonians and the other Greeks Worldwide.

Brief reference to the participation of the Macedonians in the Olympiads and in Greek and Hellenistic cultural development

The Macedonians, because Macedonia was separated from the rest of Greece by difficult mountains that made communications very difficult, could not actively participate in the political and social life of other Greeks. That is why they had not particularly mixed with the other Greeks and until the time of King Philip II they had no significant contacts or serious military conflicts with them. The favorable involvement of King Alexander I, and his interest in helping to defend the rest of Greece from the Persians, contributed to the southernmost Greeks awarding him the title of “Philellenas”, which meant “Philopatris” and was given to Greeks and mainly to those who did not limit their action and thinking to the common local horizon of the city or state where they were born or lived, but had pan-Hellenic horizons. It should not be overlooked that despite the territorial difficulties in access between the Macedonians and the other Greeks of the south:

• Macedonians had the same language as other Greeks

• Macedonians had the same religion as other Greeks

• Macedonians had the same architecture as other Greeks

• Macedonians had the same arts as other Greeks

• Macedonians used the same names with other Greeks

• Macedonians had the same customs as other Greeks

• Macedonians had the same myths as other Greeks

• Macedonians had the same heroes as other Greeks

• Macedonians had the same customs as other Greeks

• Macedonians had the same habits as other Greeks

• Macedonians were Greeks

The Macedonians, with their rural and pastoral life, living in their mountainous landscape, with their frequent battles against barbarian raiders who wanted to descend on the Greek peninsula, with their anomalies in the succession to the Throne and despite their isolation from the rest of Hellenism, they preserved their Hellenic Manners and Customs.

The intellectual and artistic world of southern Greece, which was culturally advanced, did not remain indifferent to this opening towards the Macedonian space and thus a multitude of artists, sages and scientists found a response to the public of the Macedonian world. This assimilation was completed in the 4th century. The enormous economic prosperity and the valuable leadership of the Macedonian Kings contributed to cosmogonic changes, with innovations and creations in all fields of Art, and above all in metallurgy, painting and architecture, which were a model for the Romans as well, as shown in Pompeii.

This great shift of the center of Hellenism from the south to the north began with the appearance of the Macedonian King Philip II. His victories and the simultaneous decline of the other Greek states? cities, created a psychological climate of jealousy and discomfort among the other Greeks and especially among the Athenians, where the public opinion of Greece was formed, against the, in a way, strangers in political and intellectual communication Macedonians. All the accusations about the “barbarism” of the Macedonians, do not come from philosophers, historians, poets or other writers, but from political orators and indeed Athenians.

When Demosthenes called Philip a “barbarian,” he did not mean Philip a “non-Greek.” This is also inferred from the fact that in his speech to Olynthiacos II, he praises the Macedonian state, but also because he would not hesitate to call any non-Greek a “barbarian”, because HIS OWN ORIGIN was “barbaric”, as Demosthenes HIMSELF was..

Aeschynes in his speech against Ctesiphon calls Demosthenes a slanderer, because by his Scythian mother he is … “barbarian” and only by language “Hellenizes”.

The Macedonian King Alexander I, who was an art lover and friend of Pindaros, took part in the 80th Olympic games, in 460 BC. He ran a road race at Olympia and came second by a very narrow margin. This was not only the starting point for the participation of the Macedonians in the Olympic games, but also an important event with a pan-Hellenic impact for the contact and communication of the Macedonians with the other Greeks, which turned out to be decisive for the destinies of Hellenism.

Macedonians who took part in the Olympic Games were the following:

• King Alexander I , at the 80th Olympiad, in 460 BC. He ran the Stadium and came second by a breaststroke.

• King Archelaus Perdikas , competed in the 93rd Olympiad, in 408 BC. and won at Delphi in the quadruple race.

• King Philip II became a three-time Olympic champion. In the 106th Olympiad, in 356 BC he ran with his horse. In the 107th Olympiad, in 352 BC he ran with his triplets. In the 108th Olympiad, in 348 BC, he won by a margin.

• Clito won in the Stadium in the 113th Olympiad, 328 BC.

• Damasius the Amphipolitan ran the Stadium and won the 115th Olympiad, 320 BC.

• Lambus the Philippian , emerged as a quadruple winner in the 119th Olympiad, in 304 BC.

• Antigonus ran the Stadium and won the 122nd Olympiad, 292 BC. and in the 123rd Olympiad in 288 BC.

• Seleucus ran the Stadium and won the 128th Olympiad, in 268 BC.

• At the 128th Olympiad, in 268 BC, she defeated a Macedonian woman in the pole-drawn chariot race (pole border). Pausanias mentions “victors say that a Velestich woman from coastal Macedonia emerged on the border”.

Pausanias mentions the Philippion of Olympia: “Inside Alti are the Register and a building called Philippion … it was built by Philip after the battle in Chaeronea … there are statues of Philip, Alexander, Amyda … they are works of Leocharus of elephant and gold, as are the statues of Olympias and Eurydice.” Pausanias also mentions various tributes and statues that were made by order of various people and mentions “from the Macedonians the inhabitants of Dion, a city in the Pieria mountains, commissioned a statue (depicting) Apollo holding the deer”.

Museum replica of a bronze discus inscribed as a votive offering to Zeus by Asklepiades of Corinth, winner of the pentathlon in the 255th Olympiad (Glyptothek Munich, original in theArchaeological Museum of Olympia)

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Bodyweight calisthenics

…are exercises that use the practitioner’s own bodyweight as resistance.

Resistance within the context of strength training simply means stressing a muscle with a load or training it to move against a force. When using free weights, the load comes from the weight of a dumbbell or a barbell; in bodyweight calisthenics, the load is the practitioner’s own weight. Authentic old school body weight calisthenics develops real strength. They are of different variety from those you see in a typical Physical Education class.

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In 480 BC, Anaxilastyrant of Rhegium, won the mule event, and this tetradrachm was struck in commemoration

 According to the account, a spy of the god-king Xerxes saw the Spartan army of King Leonidas practicing naked calisthenics. The Greek geographer and traveller Pausanias also observed that the athletes of the original Olympic Games (776 B.C.),were also trained in calisthenics. The art and tradition of bodyweight calisthenics continued in Roman gladiator camps as noted by the historian Livy.

The benefits of calisthenics are manifold. Correctly practicing calisthenics can help you achieve strength levels which can only be described as superhuman. In addition, strength training can help you tone your body and turn your body into a fat burning machine since it requires a lot of energy to perform some of the more advanced calisthenics exercises such as pistol squats, one arm pull ups or hand stand push-ups. Calisthenics also train your coordination and balancing skills and can help you develop strong joints and ligaments which reduce the risk of injury while doing all sorts of sports.

Below: Two athletes competing in the pankration. Panathenaic amphora, made in Athens in 332-331 BC, during the archonship of Niketes (= Winers from NIKH – in English:NIKE = Victory/Ex: Thessaloniki, Nikolaos the people`s winner = The victory of Thessaly). From Capua.

Patience is King!

As anything which is worth achieving in life, becoming a master in calisthenics does not happen overnight. It can take months or even years, depending on your overall fitness level, to progress from the most basic exercises (e.g. wall push-ups) to the most advanced exercises (e.g. one arm push-ups). However, even if you already have some experience concerning fitness and working out in general, if you have never trained in calisthenics before you should start with the basic exercises before attempting to try many of the exercises you see people performing in dozens of videos when you type the word calisthenics in YouTube’s search bar. Why, you ask? Well, because it is imperative that you progressively develop the strength you will require and slowly condition your joints, tendons, ligaments and muscles to the stress which will be placed upon them by the more advanced exercises. If you rush things, the only results you will get will be frustration, disappointment and failure, and you will also risk causing permanent damage through injury. So, please be patient and let your body take the time it requires to adjust itself to the new challenges you present to it. Being patient is not always easy but there are thousands of things you can do while you wait for your body to recover from training session to training session, and your body will be thankful!


Calisthenics / Stockholm movement 2017 **A)*Konstantin on the left and Arash performingMovement-Calisthenics/ B) with Johanna performing Antigravity YOGA

Pankration (/pæn.ˈkreɪti.ɒn/ or /pæŋˈkreɪʃən/)(Greek : Παγκράτιο) was a sporting event introduced into the Greek Olympic Games in 776 BC and founded as a blend of boxing and wrestling but with scarcely any rules. The only things not acceptable were biting and gouging of the opponent’s eyes. The term comes from the Greek παγκράτιον [paŋkrátion], literally meaning “all of might” from πᾶν (pan-) “all” and κράτος (kratos) “strength, might, power”.

THEAGENIS, the son of TIMOSTHENES, a priest in the temple of HERCULES in THASSOS, became one of the most famous PANKRATISTS and after his death he was worshiped as a god-healer.(HERE: AS THE SITTING BOXER /ONE OF THE AUTHENTICWORKS OF LYSSIPPOS IN BRONZE (350 BC)/(Υψος) Height: 1,28m NATIONAL MUSEUM of ROME) It is considered the oldest case of deification of an athlete.Some believed that he was in fact the son of a god, who in disguise slept with his mother. According to another version, he was considered the son of HERCULES .An incident at the age of nine made THEAGENIS’s name more widely known for the first time.Theagenis, returning from school, saw in the market a bronze statue of a god and he liked it so much that he grabbed it from its base and carrying it on his shoulders took it home. As this act, which was considered sacrilege, was revealed, some, despite his young age, demanded the death penalty for him.Luckily for him, the logic of an old man prevailed, who stated that it was enough as a punishment to carry the statue back in its place.The young Thasios became an Olympian for the first time in 480 BC. (75th Olympiad) in the sport of fist and in 476 BC. (76th Olympiad) in the pancratium.According to PAUSANIAS, he won three times in PYTHIS, nine in NEMEA and ten in ISTHMIA, sometimes in BOXING and sometimes in PANKRATIUM.In some races in honor of ACHILLES in FTHIA he competed on the dolicho road (endurance road, length 2 stadiums: ~ 3600 m.) And also won.According to ancient sources, the crowns he had won during his athletic activity amounted to 1,400.Pausanias mentions that one of the statues of THEOGENES in OLYMPIA , was work of the sculptor GLAUKIAS from AEGINA AND was erected in NEXT to those of PHILIP II and the son of ALEXANDER THE GREAT the Great.In DELPHI , he won without having fought since no one dared to face him.According to Pausanias, someone who in his life had never managed to defeat Theagenis, went every night and beat and whipped his statue.One night the statue, leaving its base, fell and killed this man.His children, in their grief, accused the statue of murder and demanded the implementation of the law, which provided for life exile from the island.So it was decided to remove the statue, which was thrown into the sea.After that, a great drought hit the island and the people were unhappy. Following a DELPHIC oracle, the THASIANS, in an attempt to appease DEMETRA, brought all the exiles back to the island.However, the drought and famine continued and the lords sought the oracle’s advice again.Then PYTHIA reminded them of the statue of Theagenis that was at the bottom of the sea. And while they were worried about how to find the statue, some fishermen caught it in their nets and brought it ashore.The drought stopped and since then the Thasians began to offer sacrifices to the god-healer THEAGENIS.THEAGENIS, glorified by the many successes, became an object of worship in his particular homeland. After his death, the Thassians erected a statue on the island in his honor. In the market of Thassos where his statue was erected, he was considered a god healer of fever.The modern inhabitants of the island honored the memory of their Olympic compatriot, placing the marble statue of Theagenis at the beginning of the main beach of the Port of Thassos.THEAGENIS THASSIOSA superathlete of antiquity.In his work Pausanias “Tour of Greece” tells us the following about THEAGENIS:When he brought it, the child gained a great reputation for his strength and the incident was heard all over Greece. For these most important achievements of THEAGENIS at the OLYMPIC Games, I have already spoken above …He also won three victories in boxing in PYTHIA and nine victories in NEMEA and ten in ISTHMIA, sometimes in the PANKRATION and sometimes in boxing.In FTHIA//THESSALY, he left the performance in the fist or in the pancreas and looked to stand out among the Greeks as a runner, and really won on the dolicho road.It seems to me that his ambition was to win a victory in the road race in the homeland of ACHILEUS, the fastest among all the so-called heroes. The wreaths he won for his victories were all together one thousand four hundred !!!When he died, one of those who Theagenis was his enemy during his lifetime, went to THEAGENISs bronze statue every night and whipped him as if he were abusing Theagenis himself.The statue, however, fell on this man and put an end to his wear and tear. However, the children of the deceased started a court battle against the statue for murder. The Thassians, following the perception of the Dragon, who with the laws for murder punished with exile and the inanimate, if any of them fell and killed a man, threw the statue of Theagenis into the sea. Later, because the place did not bear fruit, the Thasians sent people to DELPHI, and God commanded them to bring back the exiles. They brought them back but to escape the barrenness.So they went to PYTHIA again and said that although they did what he was ordered to do, the wrath of the gods did not go away. Then PYTHIA gave them the following answer:-YOU FORGOT THE GREAT VIEW While they were puzzled as to how they would retrieve Theagenis’ statue, they say that some fishermen who had gone out to sea for fish caught the statue in their nets and brought it back to land. The Thasians restored them to their place and since then they are used to sacrificing to Theagenis, as if to a god.I saw statues of Theagenis elsewhere in many places, erected by both Greeks and barbarians. He cures diseases and the locals honor him “

Trained at a gymnasium on the island of Thasos, Theagenes, whose strength was said to be legendary, was the most famous among his peers. Theagenes later completed in the boxing and pankration events, becoming victorious at every Panhellenic Games. 


Statue of Theagenes found at the agora of Thasos City

In addition to his two Olympic victories, one in boxing and one in the pankration, Theagenes won numerous victories in other games. When he traveled to Phthia, the traditional home of the legendary hero of the Iliad, “swift-footed” Achilles, Theagenes decided to compete in the footrace. Of course, he won.

After defeating the boxer Euthymos, Theagenes was too tired to win a second crown for the pankration. Interestingly, the judges fined Theagenes for entering the boxing competition merely to spite Euthymos.

In the Olympics and other games for GREEKS ONLY. Here we have a random Macedonian making a dedication and mentioning his Greek heritage :
Translation : “Damon son of Nicanor, Macedonian from Thessalonica for Quintus Caecilius son of Quintus Metellus, proconsul of the Romans, to the Olympian Zeus on account of his virtue and goodwill which he continues to manifest to myself and the homecity and the rest of Macedonians and the other Greeks”
P. S: JUST a little lesson to the ANTIHELLENIC barbarian – pseudo “historians”…

Brief reference to the participation of the Macedonians in the Olympiads and in Greek and Hellenistic cultural development

The Macedonians, because Macedonia was separated from the rest of Greece by difficult mountains that made communications very difficult, could not actively participate in the political and social life of other Greeks. That is why they had not particularly mixed with the other Greeks and until the time of King Philip II they had no significant contacts or serious military conflicts with them. The favorable involvement of King Alexander I, and his interest in helping to defend the rest of Greece from the Persians, contributed to the southernmost Greeks awarding him the title of “Philellenas”, which meant “Philopatris” and was given to Greeks and mainly to those who did not limit their action and thinking to the common local horizon of the city or state where they were born or lived, but had pan-Hellenic horizons. It should not be overlooked that despite the territorial difficulties in access between the Macedonians and the other Greeks of the south:

• Macedonians had the same language as other Greeks
• Macedonians had the same religion as other Greeks
• Macedonians had the same architecture as other Greeks
• Macedonians had the same arts as other Greeks
• Macedonians used the same names with other Greeks
• Macedonians had the same customs as other Greeks
• Macedonians had the same myths as other Greeks
• Macedonians had the same heroes as other Greeks
• Macedonians had the same customs as other Greeks
• Macedonians had the same habits as other Greeks
• Macedonians were Greeks

The Macedonians, with their rural and pastoral life, living in their mountainous landscape, with their frequent battles against barbarian raiders who wanted to descend on the Greek peninsula, with their anomalies in the succession to the Throne and despite their isolation from the rest of Hellenism, they preserved their Hellenic Manners and Customs.

The intellectual and artistic world of southern Greece, which was culturally advanced, did not remain indifferent to this opening towards the Macedonian space and thus a multitude of artists, sages and scientists found a response to the public of the Macedonian world. This assimilation was completed in the 4th century. The enormous economic prosperity and the valuable leadership of the Macedonian Kings contributed to cosmogonic changes, with innovations and creations in all fields of Art, and above all in metallurgy, painting and architecture, which were a model for the Romans as well, as shown in Pompeii.

This great shift of the center of Hellenism from the south to the north began with the appearance of the Macedonian King Philip II. His victories and the simultaneous decline of the other Greek states? cities, created a psychological climate of jealousy and discomfort among the other Greeks and especially among the Athenians, where the public opinion of Greece was formed, against the, in a way, strangers in political and intellectual communication Macedonians. All the accusations about the “barbarism” of the Macedonians, do not come from philosophers, historians, poets or other writers, but from political orators and indeed Athenians.

When Demosthenes called Philip a “barbarian,” he did not mean Philip a “non-Greek.” This is also inferred from the fact that in his speech to Olynthiacos II, he praises the Macedonian state, but also because he would not hesitate to call any non-Greek a “barbarian”, because HIS OWN ORIGIN was “barbaric”, as Demosthenes HIMSELF was..

Aeschynes in his speech against Ctesiphon calls Demosthenes a slanderer, because by his Scythian mother he is … “barbarian” and only by language “Hellenizes”.

The Macedonian King Alexander I, who was an art lover and friend of Pindaros, took part in the 80th Olympic games, in 460 BC. He ran a road race at Olympia and came second by a very narrow margin. This was not only the starting point for the participation of the Macedonians in the Olympic games, but also an important event with a pan-Hellenic impact for the contact and communication of the Macedonians with the other Greeks, which turned out to be decisive for the destinies of Hellenism.

Macedonians who took part in the Olympic Games were the following:

• King Alexander I , at the 80th Olympiad, in 460 BC. He ran the Stadium and came second by a breaststroke.
• King Archelaus Perdikas , competed in the 93rd Olympiad, in 408 BC. and won at Delphi in the quadruple race.
• King Philip II became a three-time Olympic champion. In the 106th Olympiad, in 356 BC he ran with his horse. In the 107th Olympiad, in 352 BC he ran with his triplets. In the 108th Olympiad, in 348 BC, he won by a margin.
• Clito won in the Stadium in the 113th Olympiad, 328 BC.
• Damasius the Amphipolitan ran the Stadium and won the 115th Olympiad, 320 BC.
• Lambus the Philippian , emerged as a quadruple winner in the 119th Olympiad, in 304 BC.
• Antigonus ran the Stadium and won the 122nd Olympiad, 292 BC. and in the 123rd Olympiad in 288 BC.
• Seleucus ran the Stadium and won the 128th Olympiad, in 268 BC.
• At the 128th Olympiad, in 268 BC, she defeated a Macedonian woman in the pole-drawn chariot race (pole border). Pausanias mentions “victors say that a Velestich woman from coastal Macedonia emerged on the border”.

Pausanias mentions the Philippion of Olympia: “Inside Alti are the Register and a building called Philippion … it was built by Philip after the battle in Chaeronea … there are statues of Philip, Alexander, Amyda … they are works of Leocharus of elephant and gold, as are the statues of Olympias and Eurydice.” Pausanias also mentions various tributes and statues that were made by order of various people and mentions “from the Macedonians the inhabitants of Dion, a city in the Pieria mountains, commissioned a statue (depicting) Apollo holding the deer“.

In the excavations of Vergina, a tripod was found, which is kept in the Museum of Thessaloniki, on which there is the inscription: “I am of the race, the Heraia of Argos”. According to Andronikos’ interpretation, the Tripod belonged to Alexander I and was a family heirloom.

King Archelaus (413-399 BC) established in DION brilliant contests every two years for Olympian Zeus “ta en DIO OLYMPIA”, which lasted 9 days, as many as the nine Muses, who came from the Pierian Mountains of Macedonia and during the tragedies of ancient Greek philosophers were taught.

King Archelaus I (413-399 BC) organized the army and transport and moved the capital from Aiges to Pella. The tragic poet Agathon, the epic Chorilos, the eulogist Timotheus, the tragic poet Melanipides and the physician and son of Hippocrates Thessalos lived in his Court. The tragic poet Euripides composed the tragedies “ARCHELAOS” and “BACCHES” at the court of Archelaus. Euripides died and was buried in Macedonia.

Three ancient theaters have already been discovered in Macedonia. Of Zeus, 5th century BC, of ​​Vergina (Aegon), 4th century BC. and Philippi. Ancient Greek tragedies were performed in all these theaters. In fact, in the theater of Dio, which is similar to that of Epidaurus, the “Bacchies”, “Archelaos” and, according to one view, also “Iphigenia en Aulidis” by Euripides were first performed. The subject of the tragedy “Archelaus” was the well-known tradition about the migration of Argios Temenidos, Prince of Macedonia and founder of the House of Goats. These tragedies, like all the others that were taught in these theaters, were written in the Greek language, because they were obviously addressed to Greek spectators, the Macedonians.

DION, the sanctuary of the Macedonians, is one of the largest and most important archaeological sites in Greece (1,500 acres), with a complex of baths, covering an area of ​​approximately 4,000 sq.m., with a mosaic floor, with basins lined with marble and with a of the multi-burner system, as well as luxurious rooms, with colonnades and mosaic floors, with a water supply and drainage system, with clay, lead and masonry pipes. DION therefore had to be, due to the spiritual struggles, the starting point of the cultural Olympiad. Unfortunately it was ignored.

The “Hellenistic Era” is a huge subject and it will be illuminated properly only if a University Chair is created to fully investigate and make known to Hellenism and the rest of the world, the role of Hellenism and Islam, which is, according to Professor Konstantinos Romanos, a fact the missing link in the History of Civilization. The influence of the Greek cultural and spiritual heritage that was transmitted by the Macedonians to the peoples of East Asia, is mentioned by all the Ancient authors.

Plutarch states “The whole of Asia, tamed by Alexander, was ignorant of Homer and the Tragedies of Euripides and Sophocles.” It is no coincidence that the Qur’an mentions Alexander as a Prophet. The Jews adopted his name. Buddhists worshiped him as an Isogod. Basil the Great, as well as Saint Nektarios, project Alexander. Diodorus typically mentions “… The conqueror made the enemies happy”.

Detail pankration scene on Attic red-figure cup, vase of 490-80 BC The pankratiasts to the right trying to pull the eyes of his opponent. The referee is ready to knock him for that foul.
Milo of Kroton
Theagenes of Thasos
Diagoras of Rhodes
Polydamas of Skotoussa
Melankomas of Caria

The Pankration sport combining wrestling and boxing without straps, was introduced at the Olympic Games at the 33rd Olympiad (648 BC). It was spectacular and popular but dangerous sport after resulted many times as the death of one of his opponents. For this reason the Olympics after 200 BC and introduced a less violent contest the “Pankration boys” for young boys.

The Pankration athletes who were called pankratiasts combined blow and the handle. Common techniques were those that today would translate as handles dislocation points such as the neck, shoulder, etc. The kicks and the use of the fist attack was the method that was based heavily on power. For this reason, the Pankration was a case of heavier and more powerful athletes. In fact there were only three rules:
Competitors were not entitled to make each other’s eyes, to bite each other or to hit the sensitive area.

There were two kinds of pankration:

One was conducted in an upright attitude and was less dangerous, it was called “Upper or orthostadin pankration.”
At the other continued the struggle after the fall of one of his opponents, who thereupon were vulnerable to an opponent’s blows. This species was named “Kato pankration or alindisi”.
Krefgas the Epidamnios & Damoxenos the SyrakousiosTo pankration was hard event. The pagkratistes Krefgas the Epidamnios, and Syracuse Damoxenos agreed after a long fight with no winner, knocking each other, which would remain erect and motionless. The Krefgas Damoxeno hit him in the head, without dangerous consequences. The Damoxenos, Krefga hit him in the side with outstretched fingers, pierced the bowels, and uprooted with his hands. The Krefgas died immediately (Pausanias, Periegesis).

*****Ancient Greek athlete MILO of CROTON

An other legend has it that the Ancient Greek athlete MILO of CROTON was so strong he could break a cord tied around his head with only the force of his brow. In the 6th Century BC, he gained fame as a formidable wrestler, winning six times at the Olympic Games. He supposedly had complete control of his muscles, tensing or relaxing them according to his opponent’s moves.

Greek wrestler, Milo of Croton, nearly 2,500 years ago was regarded as the strongest person who had ever lived in the known world.

A man of incredible strength and athleticism, he taught us the three basic principles of building muscle: start very light, don’t miss workouts, and increase training in very small increments.

Milo, from Croton in Magna Graecia, today’s southern Italy, was almost certainly the most successful wrestler of his day, becoming six-time wrestling champion at the Ancient Olympic Games in Greece.

In 540 BC, he won the boys’ wrestling category and then proceeded to win the men’s competition at the next five Olympic Games in a row.

Milon of Croton
Public Domain

He also dominated the Pythian Games (7-time winner), Isthmian Games (10-time winner), and Nemean Games (9-time winner).

It is said that Milo built his incredible strength through a simple but profound strategy.
One day, a newborn calf was born near Milo’s home. The wrestler decided to lift the small animal up and carry it on his shoulders. The next day, he returned and did the same.

Milo continued this strategy for the next four years, hoisting the calf onto his shoulders each day as it grew until he was no longer lifting a calf but a four-year-old bull.

The core principles of strength training and building muscle are encapsulated in this legendary tale of Milo and the bull

Anecdotes about Milo’s seemingly superhuman strength and lifestyle abound. His daily diet allegedly consisted of 9 kg (20 lbs) of meat, 9 kg (20 lbs) of bread, and 10 liters (18 pints) of wine.

***************************M I L O OF CROTON

Other legends say he carried his own bronze statue to its place at Olympia. One report says the wrestler was able to hold a pomegranate without damaging it while challengers tried to pry his fingers from it, and another report says he could burst a band fastened around his brow by inhaling air and causing his temple veins to swell.He also dominated the Pythian Games (7-time winner), Isthmian Games (10-time winner), and Nemean Games (9-time winner).

The Ancient Greeks typically attributed remarkable deaths to famous persons—in keeping with their characters throughout life. The date of Milo’s death is unknown, but according to ancient historians, Milo was walking in a forest when he came upon a tree-trunk split with wedges.

In what was probably intended as a display of strength, Milo inserted his hands into the cleft to rend the tree. The wedges fell from the cleft, and the tree closed upon his hands, trapping him.

Unable to free himself, the wrestler was devoured by wolves.

The death of Milo of Croton by Joseph-Benoît Suvée (18th century, oil on canvas). Public Domain

Milo of Croton

Milo’s legendary strength and death have become the subjects of modern art and literature. His death was a popular subject in 18th-century art.In many images of this period, his killer is portrayed as a lion rather than wolves. In Pierre Puget’s sculpture, Milo of Croton (1682), the themes are the loss of strength with age and the ephemeral nature of glory as symbolized by an Olympic trophy lying in the dust.

His death is also depicted in paintings. It is the subject of an eighteenth-century oil on canvas by Joseph-Benoît Suvée and a work of art by the eighteenth-century Irish painter, James Barry.

In literature, François Rabelais compares Gargantua’s strength to that of Milo’s in Gargantua and Pantagruel, and Shakespeare refers anachronistically to “bull-bearing Milo” in Act 2 of Troilus and Cressida.

According to mythology, the sport has been invented by the heroes Theseus and Hercules as a result of using both wrestling and boxing in conflicts with their opponents. They say that Theseus has used his skills in pankration to defeat the Minotaur in the Labyrinth, and how Hercules paid the pankration the Nemean lion.

Famous ancient pankratiasts was Theagenis the Thasian the Lygdamis the Syracuse, the Dorian Rhodes, the Sostratos the Sikyonios and Polydamas from Skotoussa.


The Olympic champion and hero Polydamas

Map of ancient ThessaliasO Polydamas was ancient athlete Skotoussa city of Thessaly, which had been founded by Pelasgians Proellines the area is currently between Feres and Farsala.

He excelled and became Olympic champion in the 93rd Olympiad (408 BC). Famous for strength, while according to Pausanias, was more husky man who ever lived.

His reputation is not only due to win in Pankration. Pausanias to Solar mentions various feats and that for those pushed by the ambition to rival the labors of Hercules.

At Olympus then there were lions. There completely xarmatotos Polydamas killed a possible huge wild lion. He was taken on this adventure wanting to emulate Hercules killed the lion of Nemea.

Also joined a flock of oxen, grabbed the wildest and largest bull by the hind legs and held him by the hooves, which were left in the hands when the animal escaped. One can imagine this improbable scene? On the one hand the powerful beast tried to free his foot from the hands of the athlete and on the other, the athlete with legs are like trees planted on the ground holding up the furious bull, unperturbed, to stay with hooves hands . You may doubt that such power does not come straight from the gods?

The most famous Olympic medalist in wrestling was Milon of Croton, with six wins (540/532/528/524/520/516 BC). He was a pupil of the philosopher Pythagoras. There are many stories about the strength of Milon, which he developed by lifting a calf every day until became a bull. He said that he raised a bull on his shoulders, which periefere after two rounds at the stage of Olympia, later the slaughtered and ate alone. Such was the force, which could uproot a tree trunk.
Nobody could bend the fingers of the stretched hand. He used to keep in a handful of pomegranate and while the others were trying to get it, always end pomegranate remained intact. It was very easy for him to bend a bronze coin between his forefinger and thumb. When he became Olympic champion and made the statue at Olympia, the lifted and placed it at the base, although it weighed about a thousand pounds.
The end was tragic. One day I was in the countryside, close to Croton, he saw a tree trunk with iron wedges riveted on him. When Milon tried asking them, his hands were caught between them and could not deliver them. Without any help he remained there until the wolves devoured.

Arrachion of Figalias
A heroic and simultaneously tragic event took place in Olympia in 564 BC, when pankratiasts Arrachion from Figalia died during the struggle. Arrachion being in a difficult position when his opponent grabbed the handle of the neck, she managed to make him resign (the opponent raised his hand), twisting his leg while he was dying. Although dead, the Arrachion declared the winner. He won three consecutive Olympiads (BC 572/568/564).

Theagenes of Thassos

The boxer and THEAGENES THEAGENES — came from the island THASOS and was active as a sportsman during the Persian Wars. It is remarkable that he took part in Greek games, while Thasos stood at the side of the Persians. His father was a priest of Herakles, the hero of the combat sports. Sometimes THEAGENES is even called a son of HERACLES himself.

THEAGENES won an enormous number of victories. He won ten victories at the Isthmian games (nine in the PANKRATION, one combined with a victory in boxing), nine at the NEMEAN games, all in boxing, three at the Pythian games, also in boxing and two at the OLYMPIC games, one in boxing and one in the PANKRATION, in 480 and 476 BC. THEAGENES also WON a victory in the DOLICHOS at local games in ARGOS. It was unusual for fighters to take part in running events, but wanted to imitate his great hero ACHILLEUS, who was NOT only the strongest, but also the fastest of all the Greeks. In total he won, according to the sources, 1300 or 1400 victories. This would mean he won a match every week for 25 years. But since there were no games in the winter, this number probably includes all the preliminary rounds as well. He was unbeaten at boxing for 22 years.
was so proud of his Olympic victories that he called his son Disolympios, ‘double Olympic champion’. Yet his first visit to Olympia was not an undivided success: after his victory in the boxing, he was so exhausted that he withdrew from the pankration. The hellanodikai judged that Theagenes had on
ly participated in the boxing to provoke his opponent Euthymos and imposed a heavy fine.

Theagenes of Thasos was one of the most famous pankratiasts. He was the son and priest when he was nine years old, stole the bronze statue of a god and moved home. When the people of Thasos learned it, they wanted to punish the child to death. Luckily for Theagenes, one of the elders of Thasos took the decision that the only proper punishment for the child was to carry the statue back to its base.
Theagenes won twice in Olympia in boxing in 480 BC and pankration 476 BC, and many other victories at the Pythian games, etc. After his death, the people of Thasos made his statue and said to someone who could not beat him alive, beating the statue of each night. One night the statue fell from its base and killed him. The inhabitants of Thassos then forced by the law, they took and threw into the sea.
After this event fell aridity in Thassos and asking the help of the oracle of Delphi, received the oracle to bring back all the exiles. The people obeyed, but the aridity continued and asked the help of a second time oracle. Delphi then told them that they forgot the Theagenes. When fishermen caught in their networks the statue and brought it to Thassos, anhydrous stopped. During his long sports career, the 1300 Theagenes won prizes.



We don’t know which way the winner came out but there shouldn’t have been a score. It seems that the first matches were, in a way, like qualifiers and in the fifth match there were two left, fighting, and the WINNER took the PRICE OF WILD OLIVE STEPHANOS.
Pankration, which literary means ‘all force’, is a combination of wrestling and boxing. It was a dangerous sport, in which everything was permitted except biting, gouging (stabbing with your finger in your opponent’s eye, nose or mouth) and attacking the genitals. Just as in the other combat sports, umpires stood ready to punish offenders. All holds from wrestling and all blows from boxing could be used. The danger of getting wounded was nevertheless smaller than with boxing, because pankratiasts normally didn’t wear hard gloves.

As with wrestling, there were two forms: upright pankration in which you lost upon touching the ground three times and ground pankration in which you could fight on the ground and lost only by submission. The first form was mostly used in training, the second form in the games.

Pankration was the favourite sport of the spectators. At those games where money could be won, the winning pankratiast received the highest prize-money of all the winners, except for the winners of the equestrian events. The Greeks regarded it as the ultimate test in strength and technique. So it was clearly more than brute force. In 648 BC, the pankration was introduced at Olympia, but only four centuries later, in 200 BC, it was extended to boys.

*Arrichion of Phigalia
* Kallias of Athens
* Kleitomachos of Thebes
* Diagoras of Rhodes & family
* Dorieus of Rhodes
* Theagenes of Thasos
* Poulydamas of Scotussa
* Marcus Aurelius Asklepiades
* Marcus Aurelius Demostratos Damas)

Sostratos of Sikyon

Sostratos the pankratiasts, the so-called Akrochersitis (extreme hands are), the unusual style he used. He caught his opponent by the fingers, the bent and did not leave until his opponent delivered.
He won three consecutive Olympic Games (364/360/356 BC), as the inscription on the statue at Olympia says. Apart Olympia, won midnight victories overall in Nemea and Isthmian games, and two in the Pythian Games. There was also a statue at Delphi.
Coins of Sikyon from 320 BC, depicting him.

Glaucus of Karystos

Glaucus of Karystos, who won the boxing match at Olympia in 520 BC, was the son of the farmer Dimylou, who had seen his son to use his hand as a hammer to put the ploughshare to plow.
Glafkos trained for a while boxer and went to Olympia. During the struggle, he was badly hit by experienced opponent. His father, who was watching the race closely, seeing his son in a bad state, cried out: “My son, give a punch of the plow.” Glafkos gathering all the power of the remaining, using his hand as a hammer, hit the opponent, who fell to the ground unconscious.
When Glaucus died, they were buried on a small island near Karystos, now named island of Glaucus.

The boxer Diagoras of Rhodes (464 BC) belonged to a noble family and during his lifetime, he was known throughout Greece as the best example of an athlete.
The technique was unique. Not trying to avoid the blows of his opponent and always kept scrupulously the rules of boxing.
His sons were also Olympians and was lucky to see them win, one on boxing and one in the pankration. After their accomplishment, the joyous sons of Diagoras, crowned their father with olive branches and carried him to step up to their shoulders. The entire stadium applauded them and epeffimize when someone told him to die at that moment, Diagoras let his head fall and died instantly, on the shoulders of his children. The youngest son of Diagoras, Dorian, was an able politician and military leader when he was arrested by the Athenians to war, let him free immediately. His grandson Diagoras also became Olympic champion.
Diagoras also won four times in the Isthmian games and twice at Nemea, and the Pindar in his odes describes him as a fair fighter and as a giant man.

Melagkomas Caria

The boxer Melagkomas of Caria, who became Olympic champion in 49 AD, was known throughout Greece for the unorthodox way the technique in boxing for the very nice body and masculine face. He had great stamina, fights could be all day without getting tired. During his career, where he had many victories, he never hurt his opponent, believing that getting hurt in the games was lack of bravery.
The Melagkomas during the struggle avoided skillfully flips his opponent, who is exhausted and desperate, delivered. The Melagkomas died at young age.

Race, Dolichos (4000 m.), 500 BC
Orsippos Megara
O Orsippos from Megara, winner of Race 720 BC, was distinguished as the first Greek to run naked in Olympia and praised for his action. It is said that in this way opened the borders of his country, while the enemies of trying to diminish.

Ladas of Argos
The Ladas of Argos won the Dolichi the race in 460 BC He was famed for its lightweight running. He said that his feet did not leave footprints on the ground.

Lasthenous Thebes
The Lasthenous Thebes was winner of Dolichi in 404 BC He was also the winner of the competition with road horse, running from Koronia to Thebes.

Ageas Argos
Another famous runner was Ageas from Argos, who won at Olympia in 328 BC Immediately after his victory, he ran to Argos to give them the good news, without stopping anywhere.

Leonidas of Rhodes
Leonidas of Rhodes was the only ancient Greek athletes who managed to win in four consecutive Olympiads in all three disciplines: the channel, the stage, and gunner road (164/160/156/152 BC).

Other events

Kyniska Sparta
The Kyniska, daughter of the king of Sparta Archidamus was the first woman who had been breeding horses and the first to win two Olympic victories in the four-horse (396 392 BC).

Irodoros Megara
The Irodoros of Megara won nine consecutive Olympiads winner in the fallopian tube (328-296 BC). The Irodoros was a man of immense proportions and the campaign of Demetrius Poliorkitou against Argos, used two trumpets simultaneously animating their soldiers to defeat.

Special rules for training and competition procedures.

The Greek Courts

“There, the method of training and the type of exercises are decided by others and the Greek judge, not the coach, organizes everything on his own initiative and without any restrictions, according to the specific conditions that apply each time. And the Greek judge has the whip at his disposal, not only for the athlete but also for the coach, and he uses it in every case of disobedience to his orders. And all are obliged to comply with the orders of the Greeks, as those who violate them may be expelled from the games. immediately”.

Philostratos, about 3rd century BC.

These were the Hellanodike, i.e. the judges of the Greeks. Originally, their position was hereditary. After 584 BC, all citizens of Elis could assume this position. Their number varied from two (584 BC) to nine (480 BC), twelve (368 BC) and then reduced to ten (348 BC). During the games they resided in the Greek Court, a large building in the city market, and wore purple tunics to distinguish themselves.

They were responsible for awarding the prizes to the winners and imposing punishment and fines on the violators of the regulations. To promote the games and ensure a perfect final spectacle, they supervised the athletes during the month of training, selected those who had prepared satisfactorily and rejected those who performed poorly. Their judgment was not only about the issue of physical performance, but also about the character and morals of the athletes.

Rules of Participation

During the Classical period, all Greeks could participate in the Olympic games, from various city-states in mainland Greece and its colonies, which stretched from Gibraltar and Greater Greece (Lower Italy and Sicily) to the Black Sea. The participation of slaves and “barbarians” was strictly forbidden, as were those who had committed crimes or stolen a temple. During the Hellenistic period, the games became international.

The Greeks who participated were mostly professional athletes who came from Antioch in the East to Alexandria in the South and moved from city to city to win big prize money. Later in the Roman period, as athleticism declined, the Roman emperors competed in Olympia, while slaves were allowed to participate in the games held in other cities.

According to a very strict rule, in addition to prohibiting the participation of women as athletes, married women were also prohibited from entering the Stadium, and thus could not watch the games. This only lasted for the season of the games. The only woman allowed to enter was the priestess of Demeter Hamynis, who watched the games sitting on the altar of the goddess, opposite the judges’ seats. In Roman times, this honorary position was held by Regilla, wife of Herod of Atticus.

If a woman dared to break the law, the punishment was severe: she was thrown from Mount Typia, as Pausanias records. The only woman who managed to break the law and go unpunished was Callipateira, daughter, sister and mother of Olympians.

Callipateira took special care in the upbringing and training of her son Peisidoros, so her desire was to see him compete in the games. Dressed in men’s clothes, she entered the Stadium to watch her son run. After his victory, as she tried to enter the arena, her clothes fell off, revealing her gender. The Greek judges, however, did not punish her, thus honoring her family members, who were all Olympians.

Surprisingly, there were special street races for young maidens, held at Olympia in honor of the goddess Hera every four years. In Herea, as they were called, young virgin women took part, who were divided by age into categories – young women, young women and women – dressed in a short tunic and with the right shoulder bare up to the chest.

The winner was crowned with an olive branch, gained the right to commission a sculpted image with her name on Heraeus, and was offered a share of the cow sacrificed to Hera. According to tradition, these games were established either by Hippodamia in honor of the husband of Pelops and his victory over Oenomaus’ father or by the sixteen women of Elis who wove the veil of the goddess.

In the Olympic games, women were only allowed to participate as owners in the equestrian events, where the prize was awarded to the owner of the horse and not to the rider. Thanks to this institution, many women were declared Olympians. The first female Olympian was Kyniska, daughter of the king of Sparta Archidamus, whose horses won the quadrupeds (396 BC). Velestichi from Macedonia, Timareta and Theodota from Ilia also won in equestrian events.

Preparation and Conduct of the Games

A set of rules, promulgated at the time of the Olympic Games, regulated the organization of the events. A basic restriction concerned non-Greeks, slaves and women, who were forbidden to participate. As for the athletes who wished to participate, they were required to come to Elis a month before the games and train under the supervision of the Hellanodiki (literally, the judges of the Greeks).

This was a kind of preliminary or trial training, during which the judges were free to select those who had trained well. Also, the athletes had to prove that they had been training systematically for the last ten months before the games.

Upon their arrival in Ilida, the athletes continued training. There were two gymnasiums there that athletes could use for training before the games: Xystos for runners and pentathletes and Tetragono for wrestlers and boxers. The Gymnasium intended for the training of children was called Maltho. There was also a gymnasium in Ilida for the training of athletes.

In addition, one of the main tasks of the Hellanodics was to judge the age of the athletes who would participate in the games and according to this to classify them into different groups. The very young were not admitted, while those who had reached adulthood could participate in the men’s competitions and the girls in the special competitions held on the second day of the games.

Those who wanted to take part and were accepted could not resign or withdraw. Also, thanks to the reserve rule, athletes who were left without an opponent had the right to compete with the winner of the second round. So the reserve, the one who was waiting, had the opportunity to participate in the games.

The Greek Judges, assisted by the alytarchs, imposed punishments on those who did not obey the rules, which included physical punishment, fines and even exclusion from the games. Corporal punishments were carried out by whippers and whippers. If an athlete could not pay the fine, his city paid it, so that he would not be disqualified from the games. The proceeds from the fines were used to build the statues of Zeus, the Zanes, which were placed in the sanctuary.

The Truce During the Games

Before the start of the Olympic Games, the Armistice was declared, during which all Greek cities ceased hostilities for a certain period. The institution of the Truce was first established with the reorganization of the Games in the 8th century. e.g. The kings of Ilia, Pisa and Sparta, Ifitos, Cleosthenes and Lycurgus respectively, are considered responsible for this, who concluded a treaty with lasting effect, the so-called Holy Truce.

The original goal was to stop the wars between the peoples of the Peloponnese, but essentially it was a treaty respected by all Greeks. Several scholars connect the Armistice of the Games with similar cases, known mainly from the Homeric epics, where hostilities stopped in order to collect the war dead, bury them and hold games in their honor. It was a treaty respected by both sides.

The traveler Pausanias mentions that when he visited Olympia in the 2nd c. A.D. he saw kept in the temple of Hera, together with other sacred objects, the copper disk, the so-called of Iphitus, where the text of the truce was inscribed. According to this, the regions of Elis and Olympia were declared sacred and the presence of troops on their lands was henceforth prohibited.

The Truce was announced throughout the Greek world and obliged the cities that participated with athletes in the Games and had accepted the holy libations to refrain from military operations during its duration. This period lasted from one to three months, that is, as long as it took for the athletes and visitors to reach the sanctuary of Olympia undisturbed, watch the games and return to their cities safely. Thanks to this institution, the Olympic Games gained great fame in Greek cities.

In fact, the region of Ilia, where Olympia belonged, experienced great wealth and an increase in its population. However, during the years that the Olympic Games were organized, there were no shortage of cases of violation of the sacred truce. In 420 BC Sparta was excluded from the Games with a fine of 2,000 mnon for attacking Lepreo, while in 362 BC. the Ilians fought against the Pisates inside the sanctuary itself.

Briefly, the terms of the truce were as follows:

All hostilities ceased, while the state of Ilia was declared neutral and accessible to all. Athletes and visitors from cities at war could travel safely through hostile territory.

Army and weapons were prohibited in the lands of Ilia.

During the Armistice the execution of the death penalty was suspended.

The Program of the Olympic Games

Originally the Olympic games lasted only one day. Later, the program was expanded and enriched with a multitude of sports and celebratory events that accompanied the five-day celebration, which was attended by a large number of athletes and spectators. Pausanias cites as the reason the holding of the 77th Olympic games (472 BC), when the chariot race and the pentathlon were so late, that the pancratium started late and lasted until the night hours, as a result of which the Athenian Kallias won.

Then it was decided to hold the games over several days and the five-day schedule was established as follows. The ceremonies began on the 11th day of the month and lasted until the 15th day, so that the night of the fourth day of the games was bathed in the light of the full moon. According to today’s calendar the start of the games took place around the end of June, beginning of July.

During the preparation of the athletes in the city of Elis, the Greek judges divided them, according to their age, into categories (men and children). Two days before the start of the games, athletes, judges and officials started in a procession from Elis and arrived at Olympia by crossing the Sacred Way.

First day. On the first day in the morning, the oath-taking ceremony for the observance of the rules was held by the athletes, their relatives and the judges in the Bouleuterion, in front of the statue of Zeus Oath. The athletes were then registered, separated by events, and drawn into pairs or the order in which they would compete. Then, near the entrance to the stadium, the preacher and trumpeter competitions took place. In the afternoon, sacrifices were made to the holy Alti and alms giving. Philosophers, historians and poets also gave speeches and various gatherings were held.

Second day. In the morning, all the athletes and the Greek Judges went in procession to the stadium, where the crowd was waiting for them. The games started with the road stadium competition, followed by children’s wrestling, boxing and pancratium.

Third day. In the morning, chariot races and equestrian events took place at the hippodrome. In the afternoon, the pentathlon competition (jump, discus, road, javelin, wrestling) took place in the stadium. In the evening of the same day, they made sacrifices in honor of Pelops, followed by celebratory dinners.

Day four. All the athletes, Hellanodikes, theorians in a procession that started from the gymnasium reached the great altar of Zeus, where they sacrificed 100 animals (hekatombi). After the end of this brilliant ceremony, the men’s road races, wrestling, boxing and pancratium took place. The day ended with the arms race.

Fifth day. The last day was dedicated to awarding the athletes. The winners went to the temple of Zeus, where they were crowned by the Greek judges. This was followed by a formal meal in the rectory and festivities that lasted until the evening.

Games of the Ancient Olympics

The Olympic Games of Antiquity included a significant number of events. Many of these are ancestors of modern Olympic sports and had terms and rules not unknown to modern athletes. The ancient Olympic events were as follows:

Matches of Preachers and Trumpeters

Equestrian Competitions

Matches of Preachers and Trumpeters

In Olympia, apart from the athletes, the Heralds and Trumpets were distinguished. They participated in games introduced at the 96th Olympiad, in 396 BC, and the winners had a privileged role in their performance. More specifically, because many skilled heralds and trumpeters claimed the honor of announcing the contests and winners or blowing the trumpets in the hippodrome, competitions were established for them as well. Thus, those who won gained the privilege of trumpeting and announcing the athletes during the Olympiad.

The Javelin

The ancient Greeks made sure to practice throwing the javelin often, since this was their main offensive weapon. In the Iliad it is mentioned that during periods of rest from the battles, the Achaeans threw javelin and discus, while in the Odyssey we are informed that the suitors of Odysseus’ wife, Penelopes, they had fun throwing javelin and discus in a specially designed area.

The Equipment of Javelin

The javelin used by athletes was a wooden pole, 1.5 to 2 m long, with one end pointed and lighter than that used by warriors. It is not certain whether the javelin simply had a pointed tip or a metal point like that used by the army. Hesychius mentions that this type of javelin was called Atomas. Both types are found in vase decorations. The pointed javelin was necessary in target practice so that it could be nailed to it.

However, from reports by the orator Antiphon it appears that accidents did occur with this javelin, such as in the case of the death of a child from being thrown a javelin during exercises. Xenophon, in his work On Equestrianism, in order to avoid such incidents, suggested that the javelin be covered with a ball. When the javelin had no additional point, a metal ring was placed on its tip, so that the center of weight was forward , giving it precision and stability along the way.

The main difference between the ancient and modern javelin is that the athletes of ancient Greece adapted the hook, a loop-like strip of leather, which was tied to the center of gravity of the javelin and where the athlete passed the index and middle finger. Each athlete tied the hook in the place that served him best, while in war javelins the hooks were placed in a fixed place.

The bracket assisted the throw in two ways:

– Increased the power of the shot, because it made the grip safer.

– It allowed the javelin to rotate around its axis, stabilizing its course and propelling it further.

Javelin Rules

Athletes competed in the javelin (long throw) and javelin (shooting at a predetermined target).

A. Ecivolos Javelin

The javelin was thrown in the Stadium, and the vase depictions show that the athlete started from some fixed point, possibly the valve of the track, taking a few steps before throwing it. The javelin had to fall within an area defined by three sides, and the athlete’s attempt was invalid if it ended up outside it. Throws were marked with a small stake.

The javelin throwing technique is similar to that used by athletes today, with the only difference being the use of the hook. The athlete would tie the hook to the javelin as tightly as he could, test it several times and pass his index and middle finger through the loop. Before beginning his attempt, he would push the javelin back with his left hand to stretch the hook, which the spearman would tighten with the fingers of his right hand.

Then, holding the javelin, the athlete would turn the body in the direction of the throw and take a turn. A few steps before the throw, he would pull his right arm back, turn his body and head to the right, put his right foot in front of his left, and pull his left arm back to assist the turn. Then, bending the knees slightly, he would stretch his left leg forward, to stop his course so that he would stay behind the designated throwing line, and the javelin would be hurled.

B. Thoughtful javelin

Throwing a javelin at a target was usually done from a horse. In this event, while the horse galloped, the rider had to throw the javelin at a round target, probably a shield. The movement of the horse affected the stability of the rider and limited the control he had over his movements. The rider had to be able to achieve perfect coordination between the horse’s galloping pace and his hand movement, while always keeping his eyes fixed on the target. The stochastic javelin or horseback was one of the main events of the Panathenaians and Heraeans.

The Spearman

The athlete ran a short distance holding the javelin horizontally and at head level, just as today, and hurled it as soon as he stepped on the valve. In the contemplative javelin, where the athlete marked from horseback, a steady eye, a strong hand and the flexibility of an experienced rider were required.

In the ancient Olympic Games, jumping was held mainly as part of the pentathlon and rarely as a separate event. There is a reference to it as an independent sport in a votive inscription on the dumbbell of the athlete Einaetes from Eleusis. For the first time there is a reference to the jump in Homer’s Odyssey, in the races given by the Phaeacians in honor of Odysseus.

It is not known whether the long jump was a single, double or triple jump. However, it was considered particularly difficult, because it required both the coordination of the athlete’s limbs and the synchronization of his movements. For this reason and at times he was accompanied by a piper, whose sounds underlined the rhythm and musical flow of a well-executed jump.

Alti’s Equipment

In contrast to modern jumping, where the jumper’s only equipment is his sports shoes, in the ancient Olympics they used stone or lead weights, the dumbbells. These basic components were manufactured in various shapes and their main types were the long and spherical ones, which were in use in the 6th and 5th centuries. e.g.

Some dumbbells were shaped like simple cones with pits so that the athlete could get a good grip on them. Their weight varied starting at 1,616 grams, while there are tribute examples that reached up to 4,629 grams. The use of dumbbells allowed jumpers to achieve better performance.

Rules of the Jump

The competition was held in a pit about 50 feet long, filled with soft soil so that the footprints of the athletes could be seen. Philostratos mentions that if the imprint of both feet was not present the jump was considered invalid. On one side of the pit there was a fixed point, the vator, from where the athletes started and were measured


One difference between the vaulter of the ancient and modern Olympics is that the former gained acceleration by using dumbbells. It has not been fully established whether the athletes were running to achieve greater acceleration before the jump. However, from vase representations it appears that the athlete, holding the dumbbells, ran up to the water and swinging them back and forth attempted his jump with arms stretched forward. Just before he landed in the pit, with his feet closed, he threw the dumbbells back.

The discus is one of the events whose starting point is not related to military gymnasiums or agricultural work. The first descriptions of this race are found in Homer’s Iliad and in the epitaph races organized by Achilles in honor of his dead friend Patroclus. There, in the discus competition, the winner was Polypoitis, who received as a prize the solo, i.e. the raw mass of iron, which he threw.

In the Odyssey, in the Phaeacian games in honor of Odysseus, the Ithacian hero himself won the discus. In Greek mythology, the discus has been associated with various accidental deaths, such as that of Hyacinthus who was accidentally killed by his friend Apollo with the discus when Zephyr’s blast threw him off course.

The Equipment of the Discus Thrower

Archaeological finds show that the disks were originally made of stone and later of copper mainly, but also of iron or lead. The disk, like today, consisted of two convex curves with a large circumference and varied from about 17 to 32 centimeters in diameter and from 1.3 to 5.7 kilograms in weight. However, larger discs have also been found that were most likely tributes, such as that of Poplius at Olympia, while often bearing incised decoration with sporting performances, such as the Berlin disc.

Pausanias mentions that, in order for discus throwers to compete “on equal terms”, three discs of equal size were kept at Olympia, in the Sikyonian Treasury.

Disc Throwing Rules

Throwing the discus was done as follows: after the discus thrower had first rubbed his hands and the discus with sand so that they would not slip, he stood on the valve with his left foot in front and threw the weight of the body on the right, if he was right-handed athlete. The discus, which the athlete held with his right hand, swung up and down a few times. When the disc was above shoulder height, he also used his left hand to support it.

Each time the discus swung down and back, the discus thrower turned their body slightly to the right. Then, bending the legs slightly, he shifted his weight from the right to the left and, leaning forward, hurled the disc with force. It is not known whether the discus throwers performed step or spin as they do today.

Small wooden stakes or nails marked the drop point of the disk, while the length of the throw was measured with poles.

The discus thrower

The physical movements of the discus thrower have not changed significantly from Antiquity to the present day. In fact, the technique was very close to that of today’s free throw technique. To throw the discus well, the athlete had to hold it up with one hand and hold it down with the other. Then, she had to force him down and forward or sideways and forward. This movement utilized the muscles of the shoulder, chest and ribs.

Throwing the discus required pace, precision and strength. Contrary to mythological accounts, there are no reports of accidents during the games, because the spectators sat on the embankments.

Famous discus throwers were Phayllos from Crotona, who is said to have thrown his discus 28.10 meters, and Phlegyas who could send his from one bank of the Alpheus to the other, at its widest point.

It is one of the oldest competitions. The first mention of it is in Homer, in the Iliad, where Odysseus was declared the winner. According to tradition, Ideos Herakles, ancestor of the progenitor of Ilia, was the one who first organized the street sport. Moreover, he fixed the length of the stadium (600 feet) at Olympia, had his brothers Curites compete, and crowned the victor with a wreath of wild ivy.

The children were taught from an early age the techniques and philosophy of the street, and their continuous, daily exercise in it was a key part of their education. After all, Plato in his Laws has emphasized the importance of competition in the general preparation of young people for war.

Road Race Equipment

Road races were held in the Stadium, the length of which varied from city to city, since the poos used as a unit of measurement differed. For example, the Stadium at Olympia was 192.28 feet long, at Delphi 177.5 and at Athens 184.96. A flat area next to hills or on their slopes was the usual choice for the construction of a Stadium.

Initially, the start and finish of the track were defined by simple lines carved into the ground. From the 5th c. BC, the valves were placed at these points, i.e. permanent long narrow stone slabs with two parallel grooves carved along them. The positions of the runners were separated by stakes placed in hollows.

In the Late Classical period, a release machine, the ysspek, was invented, based on catapult technology. It is considered to represent a significant change in road racing, as it ensured that all athletes started at the same time, thus ruling out any bias on the part of judges. In road races longer than a stadium, the turning point was defined by a stake or column and was called a corner.

As for the runners, they originally wore a piece of cloth around their waist. Later, this was abandoned and the athletes ran completely naked. The only exception was the hoplite road, in which athletes wore helmets and shins and held shields. However, in the 5th c. e.g. the shins were abolished and after the 4th c. e.g. and the helmet, so runners ran with only the heavy wooden, copper-plated shield.

Competitions and Rules of the Road

The stage was the main speed race and the oldest event. In Olympia it was the only event from the 1st (776 BC) to the 13th Olympiad (728 BC). Because of its importance, it was customary for the winner of the stadium to give his name to each Olympiad.

The bus was also a sprint, in which runners running in fours had to cover the distance of two furlongs (about 400 m). It was introduced to the program of the Olympic games in the 14th Olympiad (724 BC) and, like the stadium, preliminary and final games were held.

Dolichos was an endurance road, where the athletes had to cover a distance of 7-24 stadia (1,400-4,800 m.). This event was introduced to the program in the 15th Olympiad (720 BC) and Acanthus from Laconia is mentioned as the first winner. Dolichos is considered to have originated from the distances covered by the heralds of the holy truce and the day messengers or messengers, that is, the messengers who carried news and messages throughout the country.

The hoplite road was a speed road and one of the most spectacular events. Runners covered the distance of two furlongs – rarely four – wearing a helmet, shins and a shield. Pausanias (V.12.😎 mentions that 25 such shields were kept in the temple of Zeus at Olympia, which were distributed among the armourers, so that all the athletes carried shields of the same weight. This event was introduced to the program in the 65th Olympiad (520 BC) and, according to tradition, was held in honor of a hero who fell fighting.

There was also a semi-endurance road race, the horse race, which, while it was included in the Nemea, Isthmia, Panathenaia and other local races, did not belong to the program of the Olympic events. Runners were required to cover four times the distance of a furlong (about 800 m), which was probably the same as that of the racecourse, hence the name of the race.

The start of all runners was simultaneous, with a specific signal, and those who started earlier were flogged or even expelled. There was a code of honor that all the athletes followed, according to which they were not allowed to hinder their opponents by pushing, hitting or holding them, and above all, any association of the athletes with bribery and sorcery was forbidden.

The Runner

As the road was the most practical and common form of exercise and sport in ancient Greece, there was never a shortage of good athletes in this field. Athletes were famous for their unimaginable endurance, strength and speed. Stadiodromes (speedway runners) were said to have thin legs, a trait lacking in dolichodromes (endurance runners), who also needed strong shoulders and necks.

Equestrian Games (Chariot Races and Equestrian Games)

According to mythology, the first chariot race was between Pelops and Oenomaus, the king of Pisa, and took place in Olympia. Also, Poseidon, patron of horse racing, is said to have owned the famous horse Areon, with which Heracles and his handler Iolaus defeated Cycnus, the son of Ares, in a chariot race at Troizena. But even Homer, in the Iliad, includes the chariot race in the competitions organized by Achilles to honor Patroclus.

Equestrian events were held in the hippodrome. Although ancient hippodromes have not survived, Pausanias informs us that the one at Olympia was south of the stadium.

Rules of Horse Racing

Equestrian events held at Olympia included: the celite race, a rider and perfect horse (one-year-old horses), introduced in 648 BC, the colpi, i.e. mare race in 496 BC, and the horse race poles in 256 BC

Chariot races had their roots in the military habits of the Achaeans. The chariot races in the order they appeared at Olympia were: the tetrapton, a four-horse chariot in 680 BC, the apene, a chariot drawn by two demi-horses in 500 BC, the somoris, a chariot drawn by two horses in 408 BC, the triple pole in 384 BC. and the border of Poles in 268 BC.

The racecourse was a wide, flat, open space where the start and finish were defined by a post. A second small post, the nyssa, marked the turning point, which was also the most dangerous for accidents. The track itself was divided lengthwise by a stone or wooden partition, called a piston, along which the horses and chariots ran.

It is known that the quadruplet completed twelve laps of the track (the poet Pindar calls the race dodecadromon). The border and triple pole ran eight laps, while the border pole three. Very little is known about the rules of horse racing. It is well known that swerving in front of others was not allowed, unless one got out in front to avoid collisions.

At Olympia opposite the nyssa there was a round altar, Taraxippus, which caused the horses to panic. Most likely, this was related to the position of the sun, which, since the races started in the afternoon, was in the west phase and at the turn it blinded the animals, resulting in accidents.

Pausanias describes in detail the complex system of the initiation, the hipafesis, an invention of the armor maker Cleoita. On the western, narrow side of the racecourse, the starting positions formed a triangle topped by a bronze dolphin on a raised pole. In the middle of the base of the triangle was a brick altar with the release mechanism.

A bronze eagle adorned the top of the altar. Just before the race, the chariots entered the special divisions. With the blowing of the trumpet, the eagle on the altar was raised so that it could be seen by the spectators, the dolphin fell to the ground, and the rope was withdrawn from the positions – starting from the two extremes – so that all the chariots were in a straight line.

The chariot was a small, wooden vehicle, wide enough to accommodate two standing men and open at the back. It rested on a shaft, the ends of which were attached to two strong wooden wheels. The strongest and fastest animal was placed on the right to help the chariot turn corners. Horses were marked on the hooves or thighs, either with the letter koppa, from which they got the name koppatias, or with the letter sigma, which gave them the name samphores. Although the original war chariot accommodated two men – the charioteer and the warrior -, only the charioteer rode in the quadruped and the border.

The Elder

The successful charioteer had to drive the chariot without lurching, which was difficult, especially in the quadruped, to be well versed in the use of the whip and to hold the reins securely so as to avoid crashing or falling from the chariot on the turn. During the race, the rider’s concern was to exploit the inner side of the racecourse, so as to cover the shortest distance. Based on vase performances, riders rode naked without mounts and stirrups, holding the reins and whip.

The harnessmen were not the owners of the horses, but rode for a fee on behalf of the latter. The owner of the horse was declared the winner and received the hen as a prize, while the rider or reiner was crowned with a woolen ribbon. For this reason, there have been cases where Olympian women (Kyniski) as well as children or cities (Argos, Thebes) were highlighted. The animals that won the races were also crowned with a woolen ribbon and given special honors.

Famous eunuchs were Antikeris of Cyrene, Karrotos, eunuch of the king of Cyrene Arkesilaus, Chromios, of the tyrant Hiero of Syracuse, Phidis, of Agesias of Syracuse, and the Athenian Nicomachus, of Xenocrates from Akraganta.

The pancratium belonged to the category of heavy events and was added to the Olympic program for men in 648 BC, in the 33rd Olympiad, and for boys in 200 BC, in the 145th Olympiad. According to mythology, the pancratium is attributed to the hero Theseus, who combined wrestling and boxing to slay the Minotaur. It was considered the most interesting and dangerous event, since it combined all the punches of boxing and the holds of wrestling in a spectacle of fast phases and frequent falls. Philostratus mentions that the pancratium was an excellent exercise for the training of warriors.

Rules of Pancratius

In the pancratium matches, while all the grips used by the wrestlers and all the blows of boxing were allowed, biting (daknein) and hitting the eyes (oryssein) were prohibited – except in Sparta. Thus, the pancratium was the most severe of all contests, as the goal was victory without regard to bodily harm or the life of the opponent.

There were two types of pancratium:

Lower pancratium, in which the fight continued after the opponents had fallen to the ground. It was used in the races.

Upper or upright pancratium, in which opponents fought standing up. It was used for training or in preliminary matches. This was the lightest and safest form of the sport.

Wrestlers didn’t wear belts or gloves like boxers, so the blows weren’t as painful. However, the wrestler had the right to hold his opponent with one hand and strike him with the other, which was not the case in boxing.

The athlete who fell to the ground first was in a difficult position, because his opponent could fall on top of him and immobilize him with his legs, with his hands free to strike him or apply a choke hold. The falling wrestler would try to turn on his back and use his arms and legs to protect himself. Smaller wrestlers often fell on their backs on purpose, a technique called supination.

Kicking played an important role in pancratium. The kick in the stomach was called gastrizen. The grip with which the pancratist held his opponent’s leg as tightly as he could, in order to make him lose his balance, was called apotherin.

The Pancratian

According to Philostratus, the perfect pancratian had a physique such that he could be described as the best wrestler among boxers and the best boxer among wrestlers.

Leading pancratists were Lygdamis from Syracuse, Dorias – son of the famous boxer Diagoras – from Rhodes, Sostratos from Sikyona, Theagenes from Thassos and Polydamas from Scotoussa.

It is the oldest and most widespread sport in the world. The first description of it is found in the Iliad, in the funerary games organized in honor of Patroclus, Achilles’ friend, where Aias Telamonios and Odysseus faced each other in wrestling. According to mythology, Theseus was the one who invented wrestling techniques when he fought and killed Cercyon.

Wrestling as an independent event and part of the pentathlon was introduced at the Olympic Games in 708 BC, while boys’ wrestling was established in 632 BC. Great value was placed on it as a form of military exercise. This sport was distinguished in upright wrestling or orthopali or step wrestling and in alindisin or kilisin or bottom wrestling. Wrestlers first stood facing each other with their legs bent and slightly apart, a position called sistasis or parathesis. Unlike today, a scoring system had not been developed nor was differentiation made according to the weight of the athletes.

Standing Wrestling

The purpose of this type of wrestling was for the wrestlers to simply throw the opponent to the ground. Three falls meant a loss and the winner was called a triactor. The match continued until the final fall of one of the two athletes. In standing wrestling, the upper part of the wrestlers’ body (head, neck, shoulders, arms, chest, waist) was exercised.

In this type of wrestling, the lower body (waist, thighs, knees) and arms were mainly trained. The match ended with the admission of defeat by one of the two athletes by raising his right hand with the index finger outstretched.

Rules of Wrestling

The athletes lived and trained in specially designed areas, the palaistres, while the matches were held for standing wrestling in the sand on the pit, and for wrestling in the wax, a muddy arena. Wrestlers used to anoint their bodies with olive oil before the fight.

During a wrestling match, tripsticks and holds were allowed, no matter how dangerous and violent they might be, such as the amma (grab in a knot), the angein (choke), the rassein (fall to the ground), the necking (grab by the neck), breaking it (grab by the waist), etc. However, hitting was not allowed, as well as biting, as well as fighting outside the boundaries of the pit.

The Wrestler

Philostratus maintains that a good wrestler should have a symmetrical body and stature, strong shoulders and arms and not a thin neck, his sternum should be broad and his ribs should be strong, his stomach should be flat and his hips flexible, his thighs and legs should be strong and to give the impression of a solid statue. Famous wrestlers were the famous Milo and Timasitheos from Crotona, Hipposthenes and his son Etoimocles from Sparta, Aristodemus from Ilia and Isidoros from Alexandria.

The pentathlon was added in 708 BC, in the 18th Olympiad, and consisted of 5 events: discus, javelin, jumping, road and wrestling. Road and wrestling were also separate events in the Panhellenic games, but jumping, discus and javelin were only held as part of the pentathlon. According to mythology, the pentathlon was founded by Jason. He combined the five events and awarded the prize to his friend Peleus (who came second in all but wrestling, in which he won).

The order of the five events is not known. Most likely the pentathlon started with the road or the jump. What is certain, however, is that it ended with wrestling.

Pentathlon Rules

The pentathlon combined the two types of events that existed in the ancient world: the light events (jumping, road and javelin) and the heavy events (discus and wrestling). The sources do not clarify how the winner will be selected. It is not known, therefore, whether the crown of victory was won by the athlete who came first in all five events or only in three, one of which was necessarily wrestling.

The Pentathlete

According to Aristotle, pentathletes are the best athletes, because they have the natural gifts of both speed and strength. Participation in the pentathlon required a combination of abilities, such as speed, strength, skill and endurance, and the pentathletes were considered sporting role models.

Boxing (boxing), one of the oldest sports, was included in the Olympic Games in 688 BC. and children’s boxing was introduced to the Olympic program in 616 BC. Boxing is first mentioned in the Iliad, as one of the matches organized in honor of the dead Patroclus, where Epios was victorious, and in the Odyssey in the matches on the island of the Phaeacians.

Apollo, who defeated and killed Forvadas, a boxer who challenged travelers passing through Delphi to fight him, is mentioned in mythology as the founder of the contest. Apollo also defeated Ares in a fist fight at Olympia.

A model boxing match in mythology was that between Polydeuces and Amykos, the king of the Bevryks from Bithynia on the Black Sea. The king challenged all foreigners who passed through his country to fight with him and during the fight he killed them. Polydeuces proved a very tough opponent for Amycus, whom he defeated and forced to swear that he would allow travelers free and safe passage through his country.

Fist Equipment

In order to keep the wrists and finger joints stable, the pyktas (boxers) – already from the Homeric years up to the 5th c. BC – belts, loops or melihai were wrapped around the hands. They were strips of soft oxhide, about 3 m long, which they smeared with oil or fat to keep them soft. They wrapped the straps around the first knuckles of the fingers and then passed them diagonally, from the palm to the top of the hand, leaving the thumb exposed.

They were then tied around the wrist or up the arm with a loop. In the 4th c. e.g. the straps covering the first phalanx of the fingers were reinforced with harder leather on the outside and wool on the inside (bullets) and were used more in training.

From the 4th c. e.g. up to the 2nd century BC, boxers began to wear a type of glove consisting of leather strips wrapped in advance, the sharp straps. The Roman invention of the caestus, a boxing glove reinforced with iron and lead, transformed the Greek art of boxing into an inhumane and deadly struggle.

The Rules of Fist

The exact rules of boxing are unknown. However, we do know that grips, genital strikes, reinforcing straps with additional layers of strips, and using pigskin strips were not allowed. The referees examined the lanes before each match. During training boxers protected their ears by wearing a leather cover, the amphotides or epotides.

Fisting in ancient times was very different from modern boxing. The categorization of boxers according to their weight was unknown. Instead, they competed with whoever was chosen by lot. In addition, the venue of the match is not known. We do know, however, that there was no time limit on the duration of the match.

Opponents would fight until one of them gave up, raising a hand with an outstretched index finger to show that they were admitting defeat, or falling to the ground. Sometimes, and with the consent of the two opponents, the referee would give them some time to recover their strength.

They seem to have valued good blows to the head quite a bit, and the position of the boxer in relation to the sun was of particular importance. If one of the two succeeded in forcing his opponent to face the sun, he gained an advantage, as he was blinded by the glare. When a match went long and no winner emerged, the two opponents were allowed to enter the ladder process. In it each boxer stood still and received a blow from his opponent, making no effort to avoid it. Whoever knocked out his opponent or made him admit defeat was declared the winner.

The Pyktis (Boxer)

According to Philostratus, a good boxer had to have long and strong arms, strong shoulders, a high neck and strong and flexible wrists. Flaws were considered the thick cane of the foot (reduces agility) and the large stomach (does not allow smooth movements). In addition, the boxer had to have perseverance, patience, endurance, strong will and fortitude.

Changes to the harnesses brought significant modifications to the racing technique. In the past, when the straps were soft, boxing required agility, skill, flexibility and good technique, but when the sharp straps were adopted, boxers paid more attention to defense and the fight became slower, with more emphasis on brute force than skill .

Numerous satirical poems and epigrams were written on the occasion of the disfigurement of the boxers’ faces.

Famous boxers of antiquity were Diagoras from Rhodes, Melagomas from Caria, Cleoxenos from Alexandria, Hippomachus from Ilia and Glaucus from Karystos.

Sports Venues

The sports venues that functioned were the Stadium, the Gymnasium and the Hippodrome, which we find not only in the great sanctuaries but also in most Greek cities. Of these, the most important was the Gymnasium. The training of the athletes took place there as well as the preparation of the teenagers for their military service. It was an integral part of every Greek city and quickly developed into a place of general education and the cultivation of spiritual and moral values, where artists, philosophers and orators gathered.

In Gymnasiums, young people exercised their bodies and for 

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All reactions:

1Konstantin Schönros

Polydamas stops armaMia ever caught with one hand a chariot was running very fast and stopped.

His reputation because of these achievements came very far. When he became king of the Persians Darius II (423-405 BC) sent messengers to Polydamas he knew about the wonderful works, and persuaded him with promises of prizes, come to see him in his capital Susa. There Polydamas caused three of the immortals who belonged to an elite group of the army. Their name had been taken because he always stayed as a force 10,000 strong men if someone killed or died someone else took his place and was never less or more than this number. Polydamas not hesitated and fought in front of Darius with all three. They came to compete with the away armor and armed with the sword while Polydamas only had the bat in his hand. He killed all three.

For all these achievements, he learned Pausanias at Olympia which was on high pedestal statue Polydamas, work of the great sculptor Lyssipou. The statue is believed stood in the northwest of the imposing temple of Zeus and in fact between the temple and the portico of Echo. Today only two parts of the podium on three sides of which are distinguished, reliefs from the struggle of the hero in the court of Darius and the harnessing of the lion at the foot of Mount Olympus.

According to Pausanias: This man Polydamas son of Nikias from Skotoussa, was the largest and highest of all human beings apart from the heroes as onomazontai- by any mortal race that existed before the heroic era, was the largest and the tallest.

Parts of the pedestal of the statue of Polydamanta according Pausanias again: The townspeople Pellini Pellini in antiquity belonged to Achaia, argued that after the Persian daring Polydamas returned to Olympia to take part in competitions and that their compatriot Promachos defeated in Pankration. The Promachos was a renowned athlete who won at Olympia, Isthmia and Nemea. But the Thessalians not accepted and responded with an inscription that complements the relief of the pedestal of the statue of the famous athletes:
“Oh, Skotoussa, you who nursed undefeated Polydamas”.

The end of the tragic hero was very like that of Milon of Croton.

Like many other ancient men who were proud of their physical strength, so Polydamas would be destroyed by its power. He went into a cave during the summer with his companions, finding shelter from the great heat. Some poor welfare roof of the cave began to collapse. When they realized what was happening his companions ran out. But Polydamas believing that the enormous power could prevent the collapse of the cave, with his hands tried to support the roof, while the rocks crushed around him. His great strength was the destruction, for it was crushed by the huge rocks in this dark cave the famous Polydamas, who was crowned three times in the Olympics, he met his death.

As he wrote Diodorus of Sicily: The death of Polydamas made clear to all people how risky is to have great power, but little awareness.

Data from:
Pangration Wiki
Legends of Olympia by Cleanthis Paleologos

By exercising the Meander in Calisthenics and nutrition of Hippocrates, all young people today can make statuesque body and have excellent health.

Meander (= Midwife of man – Μαίανδρος) – from: Maia (=Midwife)+andros (genetivus av aner – andros = man)

Unknown(?) ancient Greek gymnastics Nobody has so far not aware that the Meander, the ancient Greek squared symbol painted everywhere is


The dictionaries give as the world … decorative vases, buildings, clothing, etc. and nothing else. And yet the Meander in some rare pots seems clear thatthe race is handle the fight. 

More than 3000 years that valuable information was lost. The few pots with drawings explaining the gym is located abroad (Germany, England, Italy, France, USA etc.). 

No such vessel is in Greece!  At that time, however, was an open secret of the ancient Greeks, for this and painted everywhere, but, strictlycodified. 

Exercise strengthens the hands of this first disc, javelin, bow and sword, with the ultimate aim of Maeandriushandle the fight. The bond between the fingers and clenching his opponentwas painful in the sport of wrestling and deadly war. 

Plato himself was a wrestler, and of course aware of the handle of the meanders.  Due to the loss of these vessels and the ignorance of theusefulness of meander for thousands of years, wechanged the world body type, we lost power, weight and got sick. 

On the meander gym and nutrition of Hippocrates, all young people today can build agalmatino body and have excellent health.

From the multitude of ancient angeiografiakon representations reflect clearly that this handle, the handle of cheironios or cheironio grid or whatever was called this particular handle in the past, was the special maybe solemn emblem theomachon Greek heroes! The grand schematic slogan that the gods are defeated!
The Meander So was probably the graph of divine defeat of spunky theomachous heroes!

  Once the moon’s light the king of Fthia Peleus. panoria saw a goddess dancing with the daughters of waters. It was the goddess Thetis, the prophecy of Prometheus forced to marry the mortal, so as not born one who would overturn the almighty Zeus!

This magnificent theme brilliantly depicted inside red-cup [3] 500 BC now in the museum of West Berlin. The excellent display that shows Peleus, defying snakes divine transformation that the bite everywhere, and the lion oryetai hooked on his back. Peleus overcomes the transformations of Beauty goddess, using the sacred “cheironio handle” or “meander” as later became known, the famous ancient symbol of the defeat of the gods!

Image: Hercules pays Triton with “Maiandrios handle.”
Angiography in 550 BC Archaeological Museum Tarkynia.

Dictionaries indeed insist on stupid stereotypical view, that meander is “the ancient decorative shape that reminds maneuver the river meanders Caria where was first discovered and from which it took its name.”!!! It may indeed be named from the river near which protoefrethi but is utterly foolish to believe that throughout the world ellinoprepi These findings reflect passionately graces and “maneuvers” of an unknown to a large river Asian Caria. 

Rules of Participation

During the Classical period, all Greeks could participate in the Olympic games, from various city-states in mainland Greece and its colonies, which stretched from Gibraltar and Greater Greece (Lower Italy and Sicily) to the Black Sea. The participation of slaves and “barbarians” was strictly forbidden, as were those who had committed crimes or stolen a temple. During the Hellenistic period, the games became international.

The Greeks who participated were mostly professional athletes who came from Antioch in the East to Alexandria in the South and moved from city to city to win big prize money.

….Later in the Roman period, as athleticism declined, the Roman emperors competed in Olympia, while slaves were allowed to participate in the games held in other cities.

According to a very strict rule, in addition to prohibiting the participation of women as athletes, married women were also prohibited from entering the Stadium, and thus could not watch the games. This only lasted for the season of the games. The only woman allowed to enter was the priestess of Demeter Hamynis, who watched the games sitting on the altar of the goddess, opposite the judges’ seats. In Roman times, this honorary position was held by Regilla, wife of Herod of Atticus.

The Panhellenic Games in Antiquity – Heraia in Argei

Hera. Roman copy 450 – 400 BC. Museo Archeologico Nazionale, Naples.

The Panhellenic as well as the locally established sports competitions of the ancient Greeks, a creation of the free Greek spirit as well as the heroic way of perceiving life, were closely connected with the strongly naturalistic ancient religion, the regenerative powers of nature, the exploits of the gods against the Giants but also the worship of heroes, whose exploits were praised and made into songs by Homer and the divine poets.

In Argos, the fertile Inachian country, the “filthy” city of Hera , athletic competitions were connected with the cult of the great “Potnian” goddess of nature, Hera, whose cult, along with Zeus, is mentioned in the Mycenaean Grammiki tablets B’ script of Pylos and Thebes. The worship of this pre-Greek deity with its many exhibits has deep roots in Argeia country and is the personification of the sustainable, regenerating natural forces of Plutodotra nature, which every year with its life-giving powers spreads the divine blessing on Mother Earth, with the rampant vegetation, the flowering of Spring and the fruitfulness with the rich amitos.

In Spring , when nature found “its sweet and good time”, religious rituals were held in honor of the great Potnia (all-powerful) Goddess, during which the Epiphany of the divinity took place, as triumphantly depicted in the largest gold, Mycenaean ring of Tiryns , the Summa Theologica, the holy of the saints of the Mycenaean religion , where the Goddess of nature is depicted, seated on a throne and with her right hand raised holding the cup of the “Divine Communion”, while her holy almighty animals, symbols of of natural forces, anthropomorphic lion-demons bearing the ritual offerings (copper vessels-jugs) ready to offer the “divine Eucharist” to the great Potnian goddess of nature.

The great golden ring of Tiryns (16th – 15th century BC). The goddess of nature, seated on a throne, holds the cup of “divine communion.” Lion demons in procession hold tall, ritual offering vessels.

According to tradition Inachos and his co-judges Kifissus and Asterion decided that the country belonged to Hera and not to Poseidon, and ” Zeuxidia and Zygia “ Hera taught the inhabitants of Argos how to mate her sacred animals, the white cows, and to learn to cultivate the earth, so that it would flower and yield wheat, and for this reason she was worshiped in spring in Argos mainly as Hera Antheia, with ceremonial dances of women holding branches in their hands.

In Heraion of Argos

As the wife of Zeus at the top of the Dodecatheon pyramid, Hera represented and protected the divine and human order, protector of marriage and the family, firmly held ” the keys of marriage “ and was a strict, merciless punisher of the sworn, as was the case with the priestess her Io , who consorted with Zeus, whom he pursued to the end and transformed her into a heifer . But Hera had taken part in the Battle of the Giants and was also a war goddess. In her sanctuary was dedicated the irresistible weapon, the sacred shield of Danaus, after whose death Lygeus gave it to his son and king of Argos  Avadas, who with this sacred weapon, the palladium of Hera, was invincible, while according to legend Avanda’s sons Proitos and Acrisios fought each other for the first time with wooden shields.

Bronze Hydra, 470-460 BC, prize in the games of the Heraeans of Argos. Metropolitan Museum of New York.

The shield , the sacred symbol, palladium of Hera, was given as a prize, among other prizes, to the winners of the games, which took place in the Heraion of Argos, the largest religious center of Argolis in historical times, which developed when the Argives dominated powerfully on the other cities and towns of Argolis and around the sanctuary, to which the ancient wooden statue (xoano) of Hera was transferred from Tiryns, they created a religious and political conflict of decisive importance for the political unification of the Argean country.

The sanctuary was established in the middle and to the north of the Argolic field, in the wider area of ​​Mycenae, in ancient Prosymna , on a quiet hill, in an old place of worship and below the mountain of Evia (=mountain with the beautiful cows, the sacred animals of Heras) from where the pilgrim and visitor experiences the divine peace of the incomparably beautiful natural landscape that is encircled in a circle by the divine ridges of the mountains and spreads out calmly around the mother gulf of Argolis.

In this unique sacred space with the unprecedented architecture of the archaic and classical eras, which is forty-five stadia, eight kilometers, north-east of Argos, religious rituals of the great goddess of Argos, Hera, and competitions with pan-Hellenic influence took place, which in their evolution over time they were called Iraia, Ekatomboia and the aspis from Argos .

These contests were also associated with the hero worship of the glorious heroes of Argos who primarily took part in the Trojan War and whose exploits glorify the Homeric epics, but also of the aristocratic families, as is clear from the large, sepulchral, ​​pithoid amphora of the Late Geometric period depicting a wrestling performance, apparently in epitaphic matches.

The holy procession

On the festival of Hera, the sacred procession started from Argos. Leading the way were the young men who were in the prime of puberty with the sacred bronze or golden shield, the sacred symbol, palladium of the goddess, who had taken it down (removed) from the sacred fortified place of Larissa of Argos, which also bore the name Shield. The shield was held by the most worthy of the youths and this religious choice was a great honor among the youths.

Cleovi and Vitona Complex – Archaeological Museum of Delphi. Two monumental archaic statues, among the best-known examples of the kouro type. They usually stand on separate plinths, but on a single pedestal, on which is engraved an inscription, which is not preserved in its entirety. The two youths are depicted naked, offering their left leg, while their hands are clenched into fists and slightly bent. Most scholars identify them with Cleobi and Vitona, two young men from Argos, sons of the priestess of Hera.

From this process comes the ancient Argentinian proverb: ” Axios ei tis aspidos “ (=you are worthy to raise the shield, i.e. you are the first!). Then followed the priestess of Hera on the chariot drawn by two white cows, the sacred animals of Hera, the hundred oxen for the pandemic sacrifice, the authorities of the city and the multitude of pilgrims who participated in a common banquet, (the public thoina ) after the sacrifice.

This sacred procession was associated in the memory of humanity with the informal divine feat – an offering to Hera of the two grooms – athletes of the priestess Cydippe , who, because the cows during the festival of Hera were late, impersonated the sacred animals of the Goddess, rode the chariot and the two ” athlophoros ” dragged the chariot with their priestess mother forty-five stadia, eight kilometers, to Heraeus. After this holy feat, when they slept, they did not wake up, they passed to the opposite bank of immortality giving a lesson about human happiness to all mankind, according to the heroic way of perception of the Greeks, as Herodotus saved him (1,31) through Solon’s priceless dialogue about happiness with King Croesus. The Argives honored the two heroic lads with statues at Delphi and a bas-relief representation of the chariot race in the Agora of Argos.

Heraia was celebrated already from the geometrical – archaic era, it was initially a triennial celebration and then a five-year celebration (every five years) and was celebrated at the end of June – beginning of July. The oldest written testimony about the games is the epitaph epigram of the end of the 6th – beginning of the 5th century BC. of the “athlete” (h) Ysemata, who fell in battle they were killed in battle )   and received the highest honor of being buried next to the hippodrome (pelas hippodrome).

The matches

In Heraia , road, stadium, hoplite, dolichos, pentathlon (road, jumping, javelin, discus and wrestling), musical and dramatic competitions, chariot races and horse races were held. The athletes received as a prize a myrtle wreath and bronze prizes (prizes) shields, tripods, cauldrons and hydrias. Of the bronze awards, Heraia was poetically called the “bronze of games”. The earliest bronze awards, which have survived as grave offerings of athletes or their descendants, date to 470 – 430 BC. and bear the inscription: ” Par( )Iras (ami of) aethlons “, like the bronze hydria in the Museums of New York, Ankara and Copenhagen, the libus from Athena’s tomb in the British Museum and the uniquely intact bronze tripod which was found by Manolis Andronikos in the tomb of Philip II in Vergina (i.e. the ancient Aiges, the capital of Macedonia, whose name has inexplicably(!) disappeared from the modern map of our country) and dates back to the second half of the 5th century BC. h.

This inscribed tripod-prize (tremendous proof of the self-evident Greekness of the Macedonians) is an ancestral prize of the royal family of the Macedonians who came from Argos, the royal city of the Temenids, and apparently took part in the games of the Heraes of Argos as well as in the Olympic Games , apparently in the years of King Perdiccas II (454-413 BC). About a hundred years later, this prize-heirloom was placed (as an honorary decoration in the untouched royal tomb of the Goats (Vergina) attributed to Philip II. Unfortunately, archaeological circumstances have not yet given us the prize par excellence of the Heraes of Argos, a bronze shield, while depicted in monument representations.

The Argentinian king of Salamis, Cyprus Nikokreon (322-310 BC) was honored with a bronze statue in Argos for the Cypriot copper he sent for the bronze prizes of the Heraeans of Argos. The Hera of Argos in the 4th – 3rd century are called Ekatomboia from the sacrifice of a hundred oxen for the widespread participation of pilgrims in the festivals of Hera. Despite the fact that the Herea of ​​Argos were not officially established as pan-Hellenic games, they had a pan-Hellenic influence due to their mythical, heroic and epic tradition. Demetrius the Besieger in 303 BC. declared the games in Heraea, while the Attalids of Pergamum won several times in chariot races.

From about the middle of the 3rd c. e.g. the Heraia being celebrated in Argos together with the Nemea (the performance of which the Argives had transferred to Argos) and called: “Heraia ta en Argei”. He participated in Heraea in Argei and Nemea in 209 BC. the Macedonian king Philip V with two events. The races of the Heraeans and Nemeans in Argos were held in the months of June – July in the stadium mentioned by Pausanias, whose location we identified NW of the Prophet Elias (hill of Deirados). (Unfortunately today, along the northern side of the stadium where the athletes were running, wheelbarrows cross on an asphalt road! “Aedos Argeios!”).

One more road (= ancient stadium track) of the 1st century. e.g. it has been found in the market of Argos, where the youth of Argos and the athletes exercised. From the 1st c. A.D. and henceforth the Heraia of Argos are referred to as: ” The ex Argos aspis “ from the bronze shield – prize of the winners which had a special religious sacred meaning for Argos, in whose acropolis (in Larissa) there was a sacred fortified area called Aspida. From the research, it has been wrongly associated in the past and also in the present the established equestrian javelin competition of the Panathenaic shield with the competitions in Herea of ​​Argos, the shield from Argos.

Champion names

Wreaths of olive and silver celery on a part of the base bearing a statue of an athlete, a runner, who won at Olympia, Heraia and other races, 3rd c. e.g. His name was not saved. Argos Museum.

Many great athletes in the Panhellenic games, from mainland Greece and Asia Minor, also participated in Heraia of Argos, such as the Olympic boxer Diagoras of Rhodes who met “the bronze in Argos”. Pindar with his victorious hymns immortalized the victories of the athletes, while the great sculptors and coppersmiths, first of all Polykleitos with Doryphoros , deified the beauty of the athletic body. Here we consider it necessary to mention the Argive athletes who won in Herea and their names were saved:

The wrestler Theos Argeios , who also won at Nemea and Pindar wrote an epic for him (Nemaeonikos X).

The wrestler Prateas of Aeschylus (4th century BC) who won in many matches and in Heraea, of whom a bronze statue was erected in Argos.

The wrestler Aeschylus Pratea , son of the previous one.

Another Argean runner, Olympian and poly-winner in numerous races, won in Heraia twice on the bus and twice on the hoplite road, but his name is unknown to us (end of the 3rd century BC). Unfortunately, time has lost a number of famous athletes, but their fight is an example to be imitated and a legacy for posterity.

**I**** S H O R T L Y***”

The sources of historical times referring to pankration cover the period from the 8th century BC to the 12th century AD; the term “pagration” or “pankration” as a sport alone, and its derivatives with related meanings they are found in dozens of inscriptions and passages of authors, with multiple references. These reports provide information about the conduct of the sport’s competitions, famous pancratists, their prizes in large or small competitions, etc., while according to the testimonies it seems that the pancratium was included in the Olympic games in 648 BC.

From ancient sources it appears that the pancratium was an integral part of the great and local contests of classical and Roman antiquity from Italy to Anatolia and from the Black Sea to Egypt; it was even part of the necessary military training of the young. It was the most popular sport because of its increased demands, the variety it provided as a spectacle and the anxiety it caused to the spectators; these characteristics explain why we see characterizations of the pancratium as “the completely prevailing”, “the best in Olympia” etc. .etc

In our time, the sport of pancratium appears again, renewed after research and studies and with the aim of the Olympic Games. The Hellenic Pancreatic Sports Federation, officially recognized since 1996, has undertaken the dissemination of this historic combat sport in Greece and throughout the world; it is worth noting that the World Pancreatic Sports Federation and the European Confederation have their headquarters in Greece, that the Board of Directors of P.O.P.A. consists of Greeks, and that the official language of the sport is ancient Greek. In order to engage in pancratium, one needs to be in good physical health, regardless of age. The trainee in the pankration learns in the basic training the techniques of self-defense (techniques with punches and kicks, throws and immobilizations) while at the same time, he is taught the education, culture and moral principles of ancient Greece.

Here we consider it necessary to also mention three famous Argean runners :

The stadium of Lada , famous for its great speed, in which the Argives had set up the bronze statue in the temple of Apollo Lyceum.

The Agea racetrack , which in the 113th Olympiad , in 328 BC after winning the dolicho (endurance race) in Olympia, on the same day he ran the long distance from Olympia to Argos (about 140 kilometers) and announced his victory himself.

The dry road in the 4th BC century he ran on the same day the distance from Olympia to the sanctuary of Asclepius of Epidaurus where he announced the start of the Olympic Games.

Still present

Tombstone of Corinthian Lefkios Cornelius, where he defeated the Heraeans in the 2nd century. A.D. twice. Museum of Isthmia.

The Argive faithful to the ancient religious and political institutions of their homeland continued the struggles until the late 4th AD. century and according to a letter attributed to Iulianos, whose secularism was passionately fought by the representatives of the new religion, the Argives were exempted from contributing to the celebration of the Isthmian because ” the Argives organize the Nemea festival as a festival “.

With the abolition of the Olympic and other games by Theodosius I in 393 AD, the celebrations on religious holidays in the Byzantine and post-Byzantine era continued in the ancient liturgical way with dances and songs as well as competitions, as in the feast of Ai George and in the thieves’ dens, despite the prohibitions and exorcisms of the representatives of the new religion, against the believers and against “paganism”, as a result of which our national name Greek in the Byzantine era lost its meaning and meant idolater, they did not bring result.

After about a thousand years, the philosopher of Mystras, the wise Plethon the Full restored our name, our identity by proclaiming that: ” Greeks are the race”.

The way of worshiping the deity is not imposed from above by doctrinal imperatives, but by the temperament and religious sensitivity of each people that is effortlessly formed within the natural environment that moves and breathes. And today in Agia Paraskevi in ​​Mytilene and in the feast of Panagia on the fifteenth of August in Imbros and elsewhere, the Greeks sacrifice the bull for the common participation of the faithful in the feast, as was done since ancient times on the feast of Hera, and songs and dances follow. Of course, no representative of the church today dares to condemn this ancient way of worship and custom as idolatry.

Today, in the plain of Argolis, the sanctuary of Hera was succeeded by the numerous temples of Panagia and the festivals continue as an unbroken continuation of the ancient holidays and festivals, even with the same name with dances and songs. It is very touching that even today the great goddess of Argos, Hera, who held the keys of marriage, is present during the wedding ceremonies. Shortly before the ceremony, the groom’s mother, according to custom, puts a key (!) in the groom’s pocket, while the close circle of the couple locks a lock with a key during the ceremony, so that the marriage does not break up.

Finally, no matter how many doors Christianity closed to the ancient religion, it entered through the window (!) with apotheosis of the magical Epitaph ceremony of Good Friday, because the ancient religion represented the natural forces that are always present. The ancient way of worshiping the deity, with dances, songs, and fights as the case may be, is a clear proof of the Greek way of understanding life, with basic values, freedom (religious and political), democracy, justice, struggles with noble rivalry of athletes away from the modern distorted perception of the Olympic Games of championships and anabolics.

 Christos Peteros



  •  R. ​Amandry “Sur les Concours Argìens” BCH Suppenphtum, VI, 1980.
  •  X. ​Peter, “The Ancient Stadium of Argos”. Act. 2nd Top. Syn. of Argolic Studies 1981.


  • Kathimerini, Seven Days, ” The Panhellenic Games in Antiquity “, Sunday September 9, 2001.

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Clevis and Viton (580 BC)

Posted in Argos – Historical , Athletes – Sports , People , tagged alphaline , Ancient Greek , Archaeological Museum of Delphi , Argolikos Arghival Library History and Culture , Argos , Hera , Argolis , Argolic Archival Library of History & Culture , Athletes , Biographies , Herodotus , Hera , Heraion Argos , History , Cleobis and Biton (580 BC) , Mythology , Persons , Peloponnese , Culture , Kleobis (Cleobis) and Biton on July 5, 2011| 1 Comment »

Clevis and Viton (580 BC)

Cleavis and Viton were brothers and worthy athletes from Argos . Their mother was Cydippi, priestess of the goddess Hera , protector of Argos. They remained in the memory of humanity with the atypical divine feat – an offering to Hera by two young men – athletes, who, because the white cows during the festival of Hera were late in coming from the fields, impersonated the sacred animals of the goddess, rode the chariot and the two ” athletes” dragged the chariot with their priestess mother forty-five stadia – eight kilometers – from Argos to the sanctuary of the goddess, in Heraion.         

Cleovi and Vitona Complex – Archaeological Museum of Delphi. Two monumental archaic statues, among the best-known examples of the kouro type. They usually stand on separate plinths, but on a single pedestal, on which is engraved an inscription, which is not preserved in its entirety. The two youths are depicted naked, offering their left leg, while their hands are clenched into fists and slightly bent. Most scholars identify them with Cleobi and Vitona, two young men from Argos, sons of the priestess of Hera.

All congratulated the mother for having such sons, so worthy, brave and strong, Cydipe then, proud of the brave deed of her children, prayed to the goddess to bestow upon the youths all that is most good and excellent that man can expect in life of. After this priestess’s wish, the three of them offered the sacrifice, ate and slept inside the sanctuary.

Cleovis and Viton, Nicolas Loir, 1649.

The goddess Hera heard the prayers of the respected and humble mother and gave her sons the most precious gift, eternal sleep . When they slept, they did not wake up, they passed to the opposite bank of immortality, giving a lesson about human happiness to all mankind, according to the heroic way of perception of the ancient Greeks, as rescued by Herodotus (1.31) through the priceless dialogue about Solon’s happiness with King Croesus.    

 31. [1] But when Solon exhorted Croesus to tellus, he said many things and olbia, he was the second one with him, so that he would be a second man. what he said “Cleovine and Vitona. [2] For this is the Argive race, and the life of the archaeans is long, and to this body of men, they were both equally strong, and the reason is not mentioned anywhere. On the same day Argeios, however, saw their mother being driven to the iron, and the oxen did not come out of the field in time it was the mother, and five and forty-four furlongs passed by the iron.  [3] These things were not done, and when under the feast the end of a noble life took place, God decreed, however, that as long as he was a man, he would rather die or live. For the Argives, without occasion, blessed the name of the young , and the Argives their mother, whose children she blessed; They respected me greatly, God gives man good fortune.   [5] And after this blessing, as they sacrificed and blessed, the young men, having fallen asleep in this place, did not wake up at all, but in the end this was done. But the Argives, having made an image of the spheres, assigned Delphi as the best-born. 

The upper part of the statue of Viton during its discovery. French School of Archaeology. Photo: Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

The Argives honored the two heroic lads with statues at Delphi. These kouroi were a dedication of the Argives to Apollo and, according to the inscription, were made by the Argive sculptor (Poly)medes . They are a typical example of archaic sculpture and, in particular, of the Argentinian workshops of the 6th century. e.g. Also on Argentinian coins, Cydippi is depicted on a chariot, which is drawn by two youths. 

Clevis and Viton, Museo Nazionale Romano, Rome, Italy.

Finally, as Pausanias mentions, near the statue of Meilichios Zeus in the Agora of Argos, there was a stone relief, which represented Cleobis and Viton pulling the chariot towards the Heraion , with their mother sitting on it. It is also worth noting the testimony of Pausanias (II 19, 5), according to which he saw an icon in the sanctuary of the Lyceum of Apollo , in Argos, where Vitonas was shown carrying a bull on his shoulders, which he carried from Argos to Nemea, with intending to sacrifice him to Zeus.

Today Clevis and Viton reside in the Delphi Museum.


The contribution of Ancient Argos to the development of Music

Posted in Argos – History , Articles – Studies – Recommendations , tagged alphaline , Argolikos Arghival Library History and Culture , Greek History , Argos , Argos – History , Archaeological Museum of Argos , Argolida , Argolic Archival Library of History & Culture , Aristonikos , Avlos , Gymnopedias , The contribution of Ancient Argos to the development of Music , Herodotus , Heraion Argos History , Hierax , Lasso the Ermioneus , Musician , Pythian laws , Pindar , Pausanias , Peloponnese , Poetry , Culture , Sakadas , Telessila , Telesilla , Kitaro dia on June 1, 2011| 2 Comments »

The contribution of Ancient Argos to the development of Music 

Herodotus tells us that around 600 BC . the Argives had the reputation of being the best musicians among the Greeks[1] . Although the relevant verse of the father of History is disputed, the evidence we have today on the subject confirms this superiority of the Argives. Let us try, then, to trace the evolution of music in Ancient Argos , as far as historical sources, archaeological findings and our modern musicological studies allow us.

The oldest, perhaps, relevant archaeological find from the area is the representation of a three-stringed lyre on a vase fragment from Tiryns , dating to the 12th BC . century[2] . The instruments of the lyre-guitar family originally had only three strings , so here we have a depiction of an early period instrument. According to Mythology, the fourth string was added to these instruments by Linos, son of Apollo and the Muse Calliope, in mythical times.      

Historical memory gives us the guitarist Aristonikos [3] as the first important Argean musician . Aristonikos was the first to introduce ” small guitar playing “, i.e. the performance of music by the guitar alone, solo guitar, in the 7th BC . century, until then there was only ” guitarody “, i.e. a song (ode) accompanied by a guitar. Aristonikos established the “fine guitar playing”, pure guitar playing, freed the guitar from its accompanying character in the song and highlighted it as an independent musical instrument.

Today we can well understand the importance of this innovation if we consider what a difference a guitar or a piano makes when they accompany a song and what knowledge and skills are required when these instruments are used for a solo presentation of independent works for piano or guitar. And the ancients had already appreciated exactly this difference, which is why, also on the flute, they crowned the winner only the aoid and not the accompanying piper.

Such was the impact of this energy of Aristonikos that fine guitar playing was considered a great achievement and was established as an official competition in the great Panhellenic holidays. We know that this competition, “of the guitar players on the strings of the aphons” [4] , was introduced for the first time, a few years after Aristonikos, in the Pythia of Delphi in 558 BC. and the first winner was then Agelaos from Tegea.

The establishment of the solo guitar competition in Pythia also leads us to other considerations. The guitar at that time, and for years after, had seven strings (fig. 1), as you can also see in this angiography , but it is understandable that guitarists did not only use the seven frets, the seven notes that corresponded to the same numbers strings, but with appropriate fingerings the vibration of the strings was interrupted at various points, as we can see the musician in the image doing with his left hand, so that other phthongs were also produced. The same principle is applied to this day by those who play guitar or bouzouki or instruments of the violin family, pressing the strings on the fretboard of these instruments with their left hand.

Fig. 1. Fragment of a red-figure Attic vessel of 490 BC. National Archaeological Museum of Athens. Acc. 609.

Fine guitar playing was preserved in the various musical competitions throughout Greece throughout Greek Antiquity. Here (fig. 2) we can see a guitarist, probably in a formal musical competition, wearing a crown and luxurious concert clothes and flanked by two judges.   

Fig. 2. Guitar player in a musical contest on the red-figure amphora of the vase maker Andokidos. 5th BC century. Louvre Museum, G1. RMN’s photo. Photographer Lewandowski.

Contemporary with Aristonikos was another Argive musician, this piper, Ierax, who was an eminent musician of his time, of the 7th century BC. According to Polydeukis[5] Hierax was a student of the great piper Olympos , the last of the famous mythical Phrygian courtier triad, which consisted of: Yagnis, Marsyas and Olympos. Hierax died young, but managed to leave an important work, which concerned compositions for flutes. His name in the history of ancient Greek music is associated with three forms, with three types of compositions for flutes, which he invented: the priestly law, the priestly member and the endromen .

The priestly law was a composition for flutes and, like all the laws of ancient Greek music, it was an important composition of high demands ; it was a very disciplined and strict form – musical form, both in terms of composition and performance. The composers of the musical laws , as well as their presenters, were obliged to observe the various elements of these compositions strictly as if they were laws of the State, and indeed from this obligation these compositions were called laws. Especially the priestly laws had, it seems, so many peculiarities and so many difficulties in their execution, that there were special flute players who played exclusively priestly laws in their court[6] .

The priestly organ was another kind of instrumental composition that was played again with flutes, accompanying the girls who held the flowers, the “anthesphores”, during the procession in honor of Hera – Antheia , held in Argos[7] . Each time, on the occasion of this procession, later pipers over the centuries composed new member shrines.

Finally, the introdium was also a kind of composition for flute, distinguished and great, which was first inspired and composed by Ierax, and which was established to accompany the pentathlon event at the Olympic games every time, with new works of this kind. These compositions were considered so great that they were created and performed by famous pipers, such as Pythokritos of Sikyon , who performed six times in the Olympic games in the second quarter of the 6th century BC.[8] , while at the same time he himself had emerged six more times as Pythionist-piper in Delphi. For his victories, in fact, he was honored with a relief inscribed column in Olympia. Races continued to accompany the pentathlon (jump, road, discus, javelin and wrestling) until the Roman era as a matter of habit, but then these compositions ended up being insignificant and weak and certainly not commensurate with the ancient and great form which Ierax, their first creator, had conceived[9] .    

Intense musical development continued to be noted in Argos and Argolis in general during the 7th , 6th and   5th centuries BC. At that time great musical figures were presented such as the flutist and poet Sakadas , the great Argeia poetess and musician Telesilla, the musician and first music theorist Lasos Hermioneus , Mikylos, whose bronze cymbal (fig.3) with the inscription has been preserved THEY AỈCKLAPIÔI ẢNÉTHEKE MIKÝLOC and others.     

Fig. 3. Bronze Cymbal of Mikylos. National Archaeological Museum of Athens, no. wide 10870 of the Museum’s Bronze Collection.

At the end of the 7th to the beginning of the 6th century BC. one of the “discoverers of the first music” appears in Argos (according to Lysias[10] ), is the famous flute player of Sakadas Argios. Sakadas was originally a poet, composer of elegies set to music, and piper, but later turned to purely courtly art[11] . Just as earlier his compatriot Aristonikos separated the guitarody into guitarism and ode, so also Sakadas freed the flute from the accompaniment of the song and highlighted it as an independent instrument. When in 586 BC was established as an official competition in the Pythias, in Delphi , the performance of the solo flute, i.e. the pure flute, Sakadas fought and won, presenting there, in the Theater of Delphi (fig. 4), for the first time the Pythian Law . According to Pausanias[12] He repeated this victory in the two following Pythias with new Pythian laws, establishing this new form of composition.

Fig. 4. Theater of Delphi.

The Pythian Law was a composition intended to describe Apollo’s struggle with Python, the terrible serpent-dragon, who was originally the master of Delphi, and to praise the god’s final victory.

The Pythian law consisted of the following five parts:

o ) the experience (that is, introduction), where the god examines the suitability of the space before starting the race,

o ) the ambush (i.e. the provocation), here the god challenges Python to a fight,

o ) the iambic, where the flute musically narrates the main struggle. In this part, the imitation from the lumen of the gnashing of the teeth of the wounded dragon is attempted with the so-called dentition,

o ) the spondeion, where the victory of the god is declared and finally

o ) the katachoreusis, the epic dance, where the god celebrates by dancing his victory.

And the mere enumeration of the parts of the Pythian law is enough to make it clear that these works were compositions of great extent and many demands.

The impression created by the Pythian law was so strong that, according to Pausanias [13] , Sakadas became the cause of the dissolution of Apollo’s hatred of pipers, a remnant of the god’s enmity towards the piper Marsyas, after the fight between them music match.

The strictly defined frameworks of the Pythian law were preserved by the later composers, who were also their executors, unchanged for centuries, until the 3rd century BC, when the Pythian law was modified by Timosthenes, the admiral of the art-loving king of Egypt Ptolemy II of Philadelphus (309-247 BC)[14] .

The pipers who played the Pythian laws were called Pythian pipers or pythaules and the pipes used to perform them Pythian pipes[15] . Here (fig. 5) we see a piper in formal dress playing his flute in a musical competition.

Fig. 5. Red-figure amphora of the beginning of the 5th century BC. century. London, British Museum.

The Pythian Law is the first known composition of programmatic music , of which we know the story of the music. With the term programmatic music, we call today in morphology a free form – form, which aims to express with sounds, as graphically as possible, a thought, a hypothesis or to narrate a poem. In the most recent era, the one who established programmatic music was Hector Berlioz (1803-1869), only in the middle of the 19th century .

With those victories, Sakadas became the founder of the famous courtly tradition, the courtly school of Argos, a school that for many centuries competed with the also famous Theban courtly school, founded there by the equally great Theban courtier Pronomos. In fact, a great rivalry developed between these two traditions, which we know was valid at least until 369 BC, when the Argive and Boeotian courtiers competed, playing compositions of Sakadas and Pronomos respectively, as they accompanied the construction of the walls, the temples and the houses of Peloponnesian Messina[16] .

Biographical information about Sakadas has not been preserved to us, but it seems that he was a generally well-known musical personality with pan-Hellenic prominence. According to the testimony of Pausanias[17] Pindar had dedicated a hymn to Sakadas, or at least mentioned him in one of his prologues, where he seems to have been commenting on the size of the Argive piper’s courts. On the occasion of that verse of Pindar, Pausanias lies to the sculptor of the statue of Sakadas, which he himself saw in the sacred grove of the Muses in Helikon among the statues of the Muses, because in that statue, according to the Traveller, the piper – piper ratios mentioned by Pindar.

Pseudo-Plutarch, apart from the Pythian Law, attributes to Sakadas other creations, such as the Trimeric Law [18] . The Tripartite or Tripartite Law was a composition, including Dorian, Phrygian and Lydian modes, and Sakadas composed three stanzas and taught the choir to sing the first stanza in Dorian, the second in Phrygian and the third in Lydian mode. The existence of the three different harmonies-modes also gave the characterization of Tripartite to this composition. Plutarch adds, of course, that Clonas Sicyonius is mentioned somewhere as the inventor of this law.            

Pseudo -Plutarch continues to inform us that Sakadas together with Thalitas from Gortyna, Xenodamus from Kythera, Xenocritus from Locrus and Polymnistos from Colophon were the co-creators of the second Spartan musical school (tradition). This group of musicians established in Sparta the Gymnopedias , where we had the three dances: of the elderly, of the men and of the children with their well-known songs[19] . The same musicians organized in Arkadia the Proofs , about which we have no information, and finally in Argos the Clothes .

The Vestments was a festival celebrated in Argos in honor of Hera, analogous to the Panathenaia of Athens, in which the priestesses of the goddess surrounded her cult statue with the “patos”, the foot veil of Hera (the bottom, of the bottom). During this celebration, they sang the special compositions of the Sakada Costumes.

According to Pseudo-Plutarch[20] this group of five reformers, despite the innovations they introduced, did not move away from the high style of the older musicians and especially Terpandros, who was the founder of the first Spartan school of music; especially Sakadas is mentioned that, although he innovated in terms of arrangement, he maintained the high form in his compositions.

Pausanias [21] again informs us that he saw the tomb of Sakadas at Argos, near the gymnasium of Cylaravi and the gate there, eight whole centuries after the death of the musician. Hesychius also handed down a wind instrument called ” sakadion “, the construction of which is attributed to Sakadas, but this is unknown to us from other sources (Hesychius, word sakadion ).

Sakadas, in addition to being a famous musician, was also a very good poet , like all the poets of ancient Greece. Of Sakada’s musical works, no sample has been preserved, of his poetic works we only know the title of one, it is a poem of his entitled ” Ilio Persis “, Taking Ilium, Falling of Troy, where, according to Athenaios[22] , Sakadas named “many” of those who had hidden in the Trojan Horse [23] . Here (fig. 6) we see a typical depiction of the Durian Horse on a relief vase, with representations from the fall of Troy, a vase that is contemporary or a little earlier than the time of Sakadas, and which today adorns the Archaeological Museum of Mykonos.     

Fig. 6. Large relief amphora of the 7th BC. century, of the well-known ceramic workshop of relief vases of Tinos, which was found in Chora of Mykonos and had been used for burial. Catalog Number 2240 of the Archaeological Museum of Mykonos.

A little later than Sakadas is a great female figure, the lyric poet Telesilla, she lived at the end of the 6th to the beginning of the 5th century BC. She was a great poet and musician. It must be clarified here again that throughout Greek Antiquity all the poets, and the great tragedians, were at the same time very good musicians and set their works to music themselves, after all, lyric poetry in particular was not only set to music, but had accompaniment mainly lyre, at least in its initial stages, and it is precisely to the accompaniment of this instrument that it owes its aggressive designation , that is, it is poetry intended to be sung with lyre accompaniment.

Although Telesilla lived in ancient history, the information we have about her life is quite confusing. According to Plutarch [24] , he was the offspring of an illustrious and glorious Argean family, without specifying what this family glory consisted of. Plutarch also informs us that she was delicate and that in her youth she was ill-tempered, which created many unpleasant problems for her, so that she had to seek the advice of the Oracle of Delphi; Pythia’s answer was: “the Muses heal” . This oracle seems to have satisfied the young Telesilla, who followed him, cultivated the natural abilities, which, undoubtedly, she had and ended up being considered both by her contemporaries and by her posterity as a very great poetic and musical form. Six centuries later the epigram maker of the 1st century AD. Antipater the Thessalonica admires her and counts her, along with Sappho, among the nine Muses that the Earth raised[25] , in contrast to the nine Heavenly Muses[26] .

We know that Telesilla was the wife of Ida , who, after her death, founded a monument in her honor, the epigram of which has survived[27] . This epigram states:

 “Take heed, O sweet Telesilla, teach me well

teuxen Idas alochos, lahine ἥ ἥ ἥ ἥ ἥ pan tὸ perisshon

faith [28] , of favor, of virtue of indignation,

Ofra and essomenisi teon kleos afthiton eiei.

 In free translation:

Monument, sweet Telesilla, here nice

built Idas to the wife, who happened to him, who offered him too much

faith, favor, virtue and meekness,

so that your glory may be immortal to posterity.

From this epigram we learn the virtues that distinguished Telesilla, although from the historians and ancient writers who mention her (Pausanias, Plutarch, Athenaios, Polydeukis and others) no other information about her life has survived, we do not know when she was born , at what age, where and when he died, etc.

A tradition has developed around her name and her actions , which presents the poetess as a unique heroic figure, who managed with her brave attitude and her enthusiastic patriotic poems to enliven the elders, women and even children and he successfully arrayed them against the Spartans , who sought to capture Argos, since the fighting men of the city had been killed up to one, around 494 BC, in the battle of Sepia. Eventually the Spartan army retreated and the city of Argos was not captured.

The confirmed historical facts are that the Spartans, already after their victory in the second Messinian war (669-657 BC), wanted to become the sole leading power in the Peloponnese, an obstacle in this pursuit they encountered Argos; patiently, however, and for a century and a half they promoted their cause, sometimes with military actions and sometimes with diplomatic actions. Finally, shortly after 500 BC, probably in 494 BC, the active king of Sparta Cleomenes I , half-brother of Leonidas, defeated the Argive army near Tiryns, in Sepia , where according to Herodotus [29] 6,000 Argives were killed, and those who survived the battle and took refuge, as beggars, in the sacred grove of Argos adjacent to the battlefield, were burned alive, by order of Cleomenos[30] . Despite his victory, the Spartan king did not proceed, according to Herodotus, to occupy the city, because of the differences he had with the second king of Sparta, Dimaratus.       

After this disaster, and apparently later, the Argean tradition developed, presenting the poetess Telesilla as a heroic defender of her city. As M. Mitsos naturally observes [31] , Herodotus, the contemporary of the events, who describes that campaign in detail, does not mention that Telesilla had such an action, which is strange, if the events had happened as Pausanias and Plutarch. The latter probably drew their information from later sources, when the legend surrounding Telesilla had already developed and established itself in the consciousness of the Argives.

Pausanias [32] describes what he saw around 170 AD. in the upper part of the theater of Argos, and in front of the sanctuary of Aphrodite which was there, a relief stele, representing Telesilla holding in her hands a helmet and preparing to put it on her head, while books were thrown at her feet of her, and in fact, on the occasion of this very column, she tells us about the legendary heroic attitude of the poetess. Probably the Argives wanted to present Telesilla as a case similar to that of Tyrtaeus in Sparta. We are thus ignorant of details of the life of this great lyric poet, and our modern historians rightly question the accuracy of the beautiful legend surrounding her.

Regarding her poetic activity, we know that in her poems she used her own meter, the final meter. Her poems were entitled Asmata , they were all lyrical poems, usually virginal, and fortunately some small passages of her asmata have been saved to Artemis, to Apollo, to Niovine and perhaps to the marriages of Zeus – Heras .

Pausanias[33] tells us that on the top of Mount Coriphon, near Epidaurus , there was a sanctuary of Artemis Corippus, and that this sanctuary was mentioned by Telesilla in one of her songs . It is thought likely that the following two surviving verses belong to that poem of hers[34] :

 O Artemis, O crow, and this is Artemis, girls,

    I left Alfeon. avoiding Alpheion.

Finally in Epidaurus an inscription was found   in gray hard limestone with red waters, broken into three pieces. The inscription has three Hymns inscribed, the first Hymn is dedicated to all the gods, the second to Pan, and the third to the Mother of the gods. The Hymn to the Mother of the Gods ( Ματρὶ θεῶν ), Rhea, has a final meter, is attributed to Telesilla and has been preserved in its entirety, almost intact.

This beautiful Hymn is as follows: and in translation:

   For God’s sake. To the Mother of the gods.

Ὦ Daughters of Remembrance O daughters of Remembrance

Come here from heaven, come here from heaven

and you agreed with me and sing with me

the mother of the gods, the mother of the gods,

as he came astray who came after wandering

in the mountains and in the gorges

syrous’ abrotean coman, pulling the sacred count,

damn brakes. having completely lost her mind. 

But when King Zeus saw it, Zeus did not respond 

the mother of the gods, the mother of the gods,

he sent lightning – and he threw lightning – and

he was taking the drums – he was taking the drums – 

of stone leaked out – and broke the stones – and 

he used to hear the drums – . he was taking the drums – .  

Mother, send to the gods, Mother, send to the gods,

and do not go astray on the mountains, and do not go astray on the mountains,

not happy lions or bright lions

or many wolves – or gray wolves –

here they are they devour you while you wander.

And I do not worship the gods, And I do not come to the gods,

If I don’t get my parts, if I don’t get my shares,

half of the sky, half of the sky,

half of the earth, and half of the earth,

point the third part; of the sea a third;

I’m fired anyway. and so I will leave.

Rejoice, O great one 

Anassa, Mother Olympus [35] .       queen, Mother of Olympus.     

The ancient text is easily understood even with minimal knowledge of ancient Greek, while at the same time it retains its musicality, which no translation can render. This inscription is kept, not exhibited , in the Archaeological Museum of Epidaurus. I was excited by the nice idea formulated by my colleague – archaeologist Mr. Christos Peteros, to make a copy of this inscription and place it in the Archaeological Museum of Argos . I hope this will be relatively easy to accomplish so that the very great Argean poetess Telesilla can find her place in the Museum of her birthplace.      

At the end of the 6th beginning of the 5th century BC. a historic advance in music in general is taking place. Now the musicians systematized their engagement with their art and as a natural consequence arose the need to record their works, a need that eventually resulted in the creation of the ” parasimantica “, the first musical writing of European culture.

We do not know precisely when and where these attempts to record music began. So far the oldest reference, and this indirect one, gives us a date around 470 BC. We know, that is, that at that time Pindar sent from Greece to the sanctuary of Ammon Zeus in Egypt a Hymn in honor of the god[36] , which presupposed musical writing and even known and understood by the priests of Ammon Zeus, because then the Hymns were always set to music by their own poets. From this era or a little earlier is also the sample of a music impression provided by the epinitro of Eleusis (fig. 7), where we apparently have a record of a very short purpose of trumpeting. Here musical points are the letters or rather the syllables that surround the Amazon.

Fig. 7. Fragment 1 of the Epinitro of Eleusis. Elefsina Museum, no. 465 and old no. 907.

Ancient Greek musical writing is known to us today mainly thanks to the tables of the book Introduction to Music by the music theorist Alypius , 3rd  4th century AD, so that with their help the minimum (about 60 or a few more) written musical remains of Greek Antiquity, sheet music so to speak, which, however, all but one, are very damaged. It is generally believed that the organization of musical writing followed various evolutionary stages to arrive at a system of alphabetic musical writing, where it used as its symbols the letters of the ancient Greek alphabet regular or distorted, upright, (fig. 8) sideways, supine, inverted, inverted, double, square, drawn, incomplete, etc. The ancient Greeks eventually formed a double musical writing, i.e. they had different symbols for instrumental music, kromatography , and others for vocal music, melography . The very shapes of the musical symbols of the instrumental writing, the krumatography , recall the archaic form of the letters of the middle years of the 5th century BC.

Fig. 8. Table with ancient parasign symbols.

Let’s see the conclusions of two internationally renowned experts on the subject. According to Professor Egert ö hlmann [37] “more possibilities of comparisons offer the alphabets of Argos and Mycenae . . . What we see emerging, he continues, is that the beginnings of the musical writing of krumatography should be sought in Argos and dated to the first half of the 5th century BC, in the last quarter of which melography must have been created .»..

For the same subject M. L.​ West concludes that: “the instrumental parasign, or at any rate its original core, was invented by a musician from Argolis , not much later than the middle of the 5th century BC. and possibly a little earlier. One cannot but feel surprise, he notes, at the coincidence that two of the earliest known theorists (of music) hailed from this or a nearby region, Lassus Hermioneus and Epigonus Sicyonius.[38] . 

Already during the 6th and 5th centuries BC, therefore, famous Argive musicians had left their indelible mark on the musical affairs of Greece. Aristonikos and Sakadas established the guitar and the flute respectively as autonomous solo instruments in musical competitions. Ierax and Sakadas invented and established particular forms (forms) of remarkable compositions and generally introduced innovations, which contributed to the development of the music of those times.

Sakadas participated in the formation of the Gymnopedia festivals in Sparta, the Proofs in Arcadia and the Dressed in Argos. Lasso the Hermioneus studied music theoretically and is the first to write a theoretical treatise on music, after all, the introduction and establishment of the dithyramb as an independent competition in the musical competitions of the various holidays is also due to Lasso’s actions.

Finally, the study of the ancient sign today, twenty-six centuries after its creation, indicates as the place of its invention the Argolis of the 5th century BC. All these facts justify the verse of Herodotus mentioned at the beginning, reasonable in those years the Argives had the reputation of being the first among the Greeks in music, since they had contributed substantially with so many new elements to its development.

After this boom in musical matters until the 5th century BC, the musical movement in Argos and the Argolis continued to be lively, but it was now limited to following general developments, without offering new originals ideas. The poetic and musical creations of the Argives now imitate the older standards and, without reaching them in quality, are eclipsed by them. Historical memory and sources give us some relevant information about some musicians, rather meager, but able to confirm the existence of intense musical activity.

An important event in the 4th and  3rd centuries BC is the establishment of the great  Hellenistic theater of Argos (fig. 9), which is one of the largest and most beautiful theaters in ancient Greece, with a capacity of 20,000 spectators in its full development , and which today is preserved in relatively good condition. Its particularity lies in the fact that it is carved into the natural rock. This theater has the usual shape of the ancient theater and replaced the older theater of the Classical Period, which had straight benches.

Fig. 9. The great Theater of Argos, Hellenistic Times.The theatrical and musical needs of the city were later served by the 

Roman Conservatory (fig. 10), which is also preserved in a satisfactory condition. In fact, we have been saved a theater ticket from Argos. It is an inscribed pyramid-shaped clay ticket of the 3rd 

century BC, inscribed with the names STRATON/ANTANDRA

[39] , apparently they are the names of its owners, so we had branded tickets already back then.   

Fig. 10. The Conservatory of Roman Times.

In 270-260 BC the fourth most important Panhellenic Festival, the Nemea or Nemeia, was transferred to Argos, and since then its organization every two years has been the exclusive responsibility of the Argives. The Nemeans held them in honor of the Nemean Zeus and their celebration in Argos gave a special brilliance to the artistic life of the city, because on the occasion of the Nemean musical contests, many famous musicians flocked to the city.  

In Antiquity, all those who were professionally engaged in music, poetry, theater considered themselves to be in the service of Dionysus, and under his protection, and were called Technicians of Dionysus . Initially these arts served exclusively religious needs and in these contexts they were created and developed. From the 4th century BC, however, their close relationship with religion began to slowly diverge, and, as the religious element faded over the years , their secularization prevailed, although they always maintained some rudimentary religious epiphany.

At the beginning of the 3rd century BC all the professional musicians of various instruments, poets, dramatic poets, actors – that is, actors, teachers and hymn poets, dancers, choristers, stagehands, preachers and all related artists had developed a strong trade union consciousness and had compacted professional groups, which they called Commons Techniton Dionysos .

These Commons appear organized at this time, almost simultaneously, in the entire Greek world at the time. The first clear reference we have comes from a resolution of Delphi in 279 BC, which grants to the Society of Craftsmen of Dionysos Isthmus – Nemea the right of promancy, presidency and pretrial[40] . Immediately after one year, in 278 BC, a new resolution follows from the Amphictyons of Delphi, which provides similar and more privileges to the Synod of the Athenian Craftsmen of Dionysus[41] . They were followed by: the Guild of Craftsmen of Dionysus on Ionia and the Hellespont, the Guild of Craftsmen of Egypt, the Guild of Craftsmen in the Cypriot Secretariat about Dionysus, the Guild of Craftsmen of the Dodecanese, the Guild of Craftsmen in the West (Italy, today’s South France) and finally , around the middle of the 1st century AD. now, the Universal Synod of Craftsmen of Dionysus , based in Rome, appears.

In these Commons the local priest Dionysos was in charge . The members of the Commons enjoyed special honors and privileges, which ensured them a good professional career and various facilities in their lives in general, but they also created obligations towards the Common, the breach of which entailed penalties, usually monetary. It is worth noting that the Peloponnesian Technitai of Dionysos of Isthmus-Nemea were the pioneers in the creation of the Commons .    

A resolution of the year 114 BC is of interest. of the “Council of craftsmen from Isthmus and Nemea about Dionysus of the late council” [42] . From this resolution we are informed that there was a Synod of Artisans of Dionysos Argos and that it belonged to the Isthmus-Nemea Artisans Community. From the same resolution we learn the names of three Argive artisans of the time, they are : Aristocles, secretary of the Synod, Xenos, archon and treasurer of the Synod and Zeno the Centurion, whom the Synod honors with this resolution with a golden wreath and bronze statuette for the services he had rendered to the Public. The various sources have saved us the names and some other information in total for more than 60 Craftsmen of Dionysus from Argos and the wider region throughout time.                        

Archaeological remains from the city of Argos together with other information from written sources complete our knowledge of the musical movement of the city. It was already mentioned that the musical and theatrical needs of the citizens were satisfied by the Theater of classical times, which had straight pews, the great Theater of Hellenistic times, carved out of the natural rock, with a capacity of 20,000 spectators, a number indicative of the need to serve a large number of spectators, and the Roman Conservatory of the city.              

series of holidays of pan-Hellenic significance gave great mobility to the city’s artistic events. Apart from the great pan-Hellenic festival of the Nemeans, a famous local festival with a pan-Hellenic influence was the Heraia, a festival in honor of Hera, patron goddess of Argos. The holiday was celebrated every four years, in the middle of each Olympiad, and it lasted up to three days and formed the basis of the holiday dating. 

The celebration began at the city’s stadium with musical, athletic-naked and rhetorical competitions. The pan-Hellenic importance of the holiday is also attested by the bronze tripod (fig. 11), found in the tomb of Philip , in Vergina, dated to 430-420 BC. and bears the inscription “Par’ Ἥras Argeias ἀμὶ την Αθλον”. It was apparently acquired by a royal ancestor and accompanied Philip to his tomb as a precious family heirloom.

Fig. 11. The bronze tripod of Philip’s tomb from Heraea of ​​Argos.

After the end of the games, a majestic procession started from the city to Heraion, which is located between Argos and Mycenae, in the present-day community of Neos Heraion, headed by the priestess of the goddess and accompanied by courtiers. Heraion (fig. 12) was the extended sanctuary of the goddess and among its other buildings was dominated by the temple of the goddess, which in those years housed the chryselephantine statue of Hera, the work of Polykleitos .

Fig. 12. The Heraion of Argos.

In the city, and near the temple of Letus, there was the temple of Antheia Hera [43] , where, during the procession held in honor of Hera – Antheia, “anthesphorous” virgins, holding flowers and marching to the sounds of the courtyards, which they played the priestly organ , the special composition of the Priest for the occasion, as Polydeukis also informs us[44] .

In the city they also celebrated Ekatomboia, with the sacrifice of a hundred shouts, and the ” Shield from Argos “. All these celebrations also included musical competitions, where musicians and poets from the entire Greek world at the time were distinguished from time to time, as we can conclude from various lists of winners.

 According to Pausanias , Hegeleus, son of Tyrrhenus, founded in Argos a temple of Athena – Trumpet [45] and it was he and his brother Milas who first introduced the trumpet in military operations. In image 13 a winged Victory trumpets the happy outcome of a battle, perhaps some naval battle. The Argives carried out their war operations accompanied by trumpets , while the Spartans accompanied by a flute (fig. 14), the Cretans accompanied by a lyre, etc.    

Fig. 13. Trumpeted Victory on a gold stater of Demetrius Poliorkitos. (Treasure of Epidaurus) of 300 BC. about. Numismatic Museum of Athens.

Fig. 14. Corinthian Crater of the 7th century BC. Rome Villa Giulia. Piper in battle.

The picture of the musical movement of the city is also completed by some exhibits of the Archaeological Museum of Argos. In showcase 20 on the ground floor, a fragment of a bone shaft (fig. 15) from the 7th century BC is exhibited. with two holes, two holes; the built-in showcase 13 on the ground floor also exhibits the processed turtle shell (fig. 16) which was a lyre speaker and was found together with a second shell in a depository of the Late Archaic Period (6th century BC) near in the Ancient Theatre.

Fig. 15. Bone lumen fragment. 7th BC century.

Fig. 16. Lyre speaker of Late Archaic times.

It is worth noting that the lyre, which was an invention of Hermos, was a stringed instrument that had a tortoise shell as a speaker. In picture 17 we see the famous Elgin lyre of the 5th century BC, which is in the British Museum in London. The most suitable for this use were the shells of the loggerhead turtle (testudo marginata), which is found in large populations on Mount Parthenion, today’s Partheni, between Tegea and Arcadia, where there was also a sanctuary of Panos, Pausanias even notes the suitability of this tortoise for lyre speakers[46] .

Fig. 17. Elgin’s lyre. 1816. 6-10. 501. British Museum.

Among the sculptures of the Argos Museum, on the first floor where the sculpture exhibition is, stands out the figurative head of Sophocles (fig. 18) of the Farnese type, which was found in Kefalari of Argos and is a copy of a work from the 3rd century BC, as well as a statue of Muse (fig. 19) holding a lyre. 

Fig. 18. Head of Sophocles. No. cat. 33.

Fig. 19. Muse with lyre. No. cat. 4.

Finally, in the courtyard of the Museum, a beautiful mosaic floor (fig. 20) from the 5th or 6th century AD is exhibited , with a representation of a Dionysian scene of a Satyr with a bikan and an orchestra player with cymbals, which proves that music continued to be a favorite pastime of the Argives and during Late Antiquity. 

Fig. 20. Mosaic floor with a dance scene of a Satyr and an orchestra player.

The famous great Theater of Argos, from the Hellenistic Times, has been included in the program of protection and promotion of Ancient Theaters of the “Diazoma” Association and it is hoped that its promotion will soon be achieved.

Katerina Papaoikonomou-Kipourgou




[1] Herodotus 3, 131, 3.

[2] Archaeological Museum of Nafplio, no. index 14376.

[3] Athenaios Deipnosophistai   XIV637 f.

[4] Pausaniou Fokika X, VII, 7.

[5] Polydeukus Onomastikon  IV, 78 and 79.

[6] Athenaios Deipnosophistai  XIII, 570 b, 26.

[7] Polydeukos Onomastikon IV 78.

[8] Pausanias Iliaka B, VI, XIV, 9 and 10.

[9] Pseudo-Plutarch ‘s Ethics. About Music 1140 D, 6.

[10] Pseudo-Plutarch On Music 1135 E, 14.

[11] Pseudo – Plutarch On Music 1134 A, 8.

[12] Pausaniou Fokika X, VII, 4.

[13] Pausanias II Corinthians , XXII, 9.

[14] Commentary 34 on Pseudo-Plutarch’s On Music . Ethics. Volume 29. Cactus Publications. p. 272.

[15] Polydeukos ‘Onomastikon IV, 81.

[16] Pausanias Messinian IV, XXVII, 7.

[17] Pausaniou Boioti IX, XXX, 2.

[18] Pseudo-Plutarch On Music 1134 A, B, 8.

[19] 21 Plutarchou Lykourgos .

[20] Pseudo-Plutarch On Music 1135 F.

[21] Pausanias Corinthians II, XXII, 9.

[22] Athenaios Deipnosophistai XIII 210 c.

[23] Bergk Theodorus Poetae Lyrici Graeci , Volume III. Teubner edition. Leipzig 1882. Pp. 201. Sakada Ilio Persis.

[24] Plutarch’s Ethics 245 C et seq.

[25] Prixilla, Moiro, Anyti, Sappho, Irinna, Telesilla, Corinna, Nossis and Myrtis.

[26] Palatine Anthology. Epigram of Antipater of Thessalonica IX, 26. Volume II. Pg. 6.

[27] Palatine Anthology Epigram II 553. Volume III. Pg. 182.

[28] The spelling of the inscription was followed.

[29] Herodotus Histories 6, 77.

[30] Pausaniou II, XX, 8.

[31] Mitsou M. Argolic Portrait  p. 171.

[32] Pausaniou II, XX, 7.

[33] Pausanias II, XXVIII, 2.

[34] Theodorus Bergk Poetae Lyrici Graeci . Volume III. p. 381.

[35] Iscriptiones Graecae (IG). Volume IV, I. ​​Inscription 131. Catalog Number 1277 of the Archaeological Museum of Epidaurus.

[36] Pausanias Boiotics IX, XVI, 1.

[37] Eggert Pelman – Ioanna Spiliopoulou. Drama and Music in Antiquity. p. 38-40.

[38] ML West Ancient Greek Music . p. 358-359.

[39]   Supplementum Epigraphicum Graecum (SEG) XI 356.

[40] Sylloge Inscriptiorum Graecarum (SIG) 460.

[41] Sylloge Inscriptiorum Graecarum (SIG) 399.

[42] Inscriptiones Graecae (IG) IV 558.

[43] Pausaniou II, XXII, 1.

[44] Polydeukus Onomastikon  IV 78.

[45] Pausanias II Corinthians , XXI 3.

[46] Pausanias Arkadika VIII, LIV, 7.


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Heraion Argos

Posted in Argolis , Argolis Monuments , tagged alphaline , Argolikos Arghival Library History and Culture , Greek History , Argos , Hera , Archeology , Argolis , Argolis Archival Library of History & Culture , Heraion Argos , Mythology , Mycenae , Monuments , Peloponnese on March 28, 2011 | Leave a Comment »

Heraion Argos 

 Heraion of Argos is located between Argos and Mycenae, on the slopes of the hill called Aetovouno or Evia. It is considered the center of the cult of Hera, the goddess “Argeia”, as Homer calls her. Let’s see below how the painter and writer Diana Antonakatos describes the Heraion of Argos in her book ¨Argolida¨.

The sacred place of Heraion, south of Mycenae and rooted to the east, facing the plain. A bare simplicity on a proud hill. It has no imposing secrets, no fascinating ruins, no modern devotees—no eras yet. In all ages it holds this same open, uncovered reverence, outstretched palm, offering sacred to the faith of the great female deity of the Ancients.

A Virgin Mary, without kindness, but strict in her virginity, unyielding in the faith of a man: Hera . In all months the modern pilgrimage exudes the same sanctity. There are no short trees to define the changes of time. Only the grass among the few ruins marks the change, having to offer the same companionship as that of grasses on forgotten cemeteries. The chill of the wind only penetrates the grass. Different as it is dry in autumn and another as it is cool in spring.

Heraion, painting by Diana Antonakatos.

The landscape is lonely . It is enveloped by a loneliness without arrogance, without cruelty, without anxiety, a loneliness which spreads with a feminine sweetness, with a imperceptible sadness of heart, and unites with everything around that is still life, on the most alive part of Argolis. In this solitude you communicate with Heraeus. Silence accompanies you as you pass through the guardhouse to the majestic first stairs, 81 meters wide to lead you from the first elevation to the second of the new Temple. On this middle elevation you will follow the most important footprints of the historical years to surround the Temple.

To the east a building 28X17 may have served as an execution room, a chamber of mysteries, as in Eleusis. To the north, behind a second scale 45 m wide, three portico buildings develop, 22 x 7 m wide, with double columns, the small and the large 63 x 10.50 m, and a third portico to the northwest. To the south and west another building, one of the most ancient of its kind, with a courtyard and a peristyle of the 4th century perhaps, a house for the priestesses of the Goddess that touches with one corner a fourth portico, that of the entrance with the most perfect construction of ‘ all the buildings of Heraion. Further west, you discover Roman baths and other arcades.

In the middle of these buildings is the new church , one of the most beautiful historical ones, built by Eupolemos to replace the archaic one that burned down. Its base is 39 X 20 meters, with six Doric peristyle columns and twelve on the sides. In the interior the base of the walls of the nave and the foundations of the interior columns. Inside there is the golden elephant statue of the Goddess seated on the throne, the work of Polykleitos . And nearby a wooden statue of Hera stolen from Tiryns in 468 BC.

Only a few pieces of the gables exist in the National Museum . ( Pausanias tells that one gave the birth of Zeus and the battle of the Giants, the other the fall of Troy ). In the Propylaia there were statues of priests, heroes and Orestes . On the third hill the ancient temple of Hera – burned in 423 BC. – it still dominates with a sovereign majesty from the height of 252 meters, while behind the mountain of Evia rises to 700 meters. Between two small rivers, the Asterion and the Eleftherio – their waters sacred for the purification of the priestess I now knew – the site would have had centuries of worship to the goddess or a deity predecessor to her in Mycenaean times as well. The legend here designates the place where Agamemnon swore the Achaeans before Troy.

During the excavations of 1926 Neolithic ceramics and tombs of the Pre-Hellenic era, even Mycenaean and Geometric, were found above the archaic temple. All this assures us how long this place was sacred to the goddess of the natural elements that became the holy mosque of Argos , the great pilgrimage, the refuge in bad times, but also the great root of their festive joy.

The expression of supreme reverence is given through antiquity with the two statues of Delphi, the Argive brothers Cleobi and Viton . Tributes to the highest piety. Sons of the Priestess of Hera dragged the cultic chariot with their shoulders, bringing their mother to Heraion themselves, to fall asleep exhausted, finding eternal sleep – a gift of divine favor – the same night. There is no war event that is not also connected with this reverence for the Mother of Gods and Men, honored by natives and foreigners, friends and enemies.

Cleomenes, after killing 7000 enemies of Argeios in the sacred Grove of Sepia, near Tiryns , came, according to tradition, to Heraion for sacrifices and atonement with a thousand soldiers, entering the Temple by force. But as he approached the statue of the patroness of Argos, emitting flames from its breast, showed him the wrath of the Goddess for the destruction of her beloved state.

Her great festival, the ” Herea ” took place in the second year of each Olympiad and was the most official festival of the Argives, both religious and national. With sacrifices – there were many and that’s why they were called Ekatombaia – with games – their prize was a bronze shield, the ” Chalkion of Games ” – with processions and parades by young men and women. And finally with rants.

The Priestesses were considered high persons – their names were taken from royal families. Recorded together with the dates of their service in the temple, they meant to the Argives a measure of date. The celebration began only when the Priestess came onto the chariot, driven by two white oxen. When the Theater of the city could accommodate twenty thousand spectators, it is easy to imagine how many thousands of believers and pilgrims such a magnificent and multi-day celebration could gather in an open outdoor space.

And it is easy to imagine the multitudes of eternal women’s desires and woes, as they would climb the broad stairs, with their vows, beseeching their own Goddess. Similar to the ever-thousands of women who crawl, sometimes on their knees, pray and spend the night in front of all the Virgin Marys with the myriad caresses of local reverence, to this day. (For Argos, Hera had various diminutive cults: Antheia, Akrea, Eileithia).

If it suddenly happened that the shadows of the dead believers of all times were to walk together in this Sanctuary, the Argean space would be filled, overflowing. Their breath, incensed by the reverence of a millennium , would then thicken into a great gray cloud, traveling northward, towards Olympus. All around, however, only spring projects a colorful mosaic of a busy land. A white cloud travels across the sea. It is marked by a single half-demolished pillar, in the whole area of ​​former magnificence. Here, not even the shadow of the Goddess was preserved by the merciless centuries.


  • Diana Antonakatou, ” Argolida “, Athens, December 1967.

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  • After the start of the Greeks’ Struggle for freedom and the establishment of the new Greek state, it was deemed necessary to establish a penal code whose purpose was to protect the liberties of the Greeks on the one hand and to guarantee these liberties from criminal activities on the other . Thus, in article 97 of the Provisional Government of Epidaurus, the First National Assembly (1822) commissioned the Executive Body to set up a committee to draw up, among other things, a penal code. Because this committee was not established, the Second National Assembly in Astros on 1-4-1823 appointed a nine-member committee of two bishops, two hieromonks, one deacon and four laymen to expose “the main criminals from the draft, embargoed by the laws of the late Byzantine Emperors and elsewhere”…
  • […] The soon-to-be-deceased had been convicted of the “murder and piracy” of three passengers on a ship in which he himself was a “fellow sailor”. After the rejection of his request for pardon, he was imprisoned under guard in the church of Agios Georgios in Kalamata. There he spent the night “confessing his sins to the priest and praying without ceasing” until morning. Then, while the bells were tolling mournfully, the convict was led through the marketplace – here again the importance of exemplifying the many is evident! – in the area of ​​the old Metropolis and the old monuments, where he was executed, on top of his already prepared tomb, by three soldiers who shot him in the head…
  • Dr. Markos N. Roussos – Milidonis, Commissioner of the Catholic Church of Nafplio, presents in the Nafplio Analects VII (2009) two informative letters from the years 1841 of the famous Georgios Dunavis to his ecclesiastical superior Bishop Alousios M. Blancis of Syros. The first concerns the celebration of Holy Week in the year 1841, and the second some differences with the commissioner Boniface Bonafin. Let’s see how the priest describes the Catholic Easter celebration in Nafplio in 1841…
  • books
  • Nafplio in the 19th century – Testimonies and Testimonies from the Local Print Media
  • An in-depth research, by Angeliki Markou , which aims to highlight the local history of the 19th century without chronological restrictions, which make it difficult to understand the connections between historical events. The often fragmented analysis of Nauplian history delves into persons and situations, but cannot clearly demonstrate how each period affected the actions of subsequent generations…
    The study, pages 432,  of the entire century through the utilization of the Nauplian type as a basic historical source offers the possibility of reconstructing Nafplio in a different light…
  • “Argolic Calendar 1910”
  • In the “subversive” edition entitled “Argolikon Imerologion 1910, Issued by the Athens Association of Archaeologists” and printed “In Athens – From the printing office of the Public Shops. Terzopoulos – 1910”, we meet important scholars of the 19th century from Argos but also from neighboring Nafplion, such as Ioannis Kofiniotis, Dimitrios Vardouniotis, Michael Lambrynidis, the Priest and founder of the Association “O Danaos” Christos Papaikonomos and many others, who their works are housed in the book’s 356 yellowed and time-worn pages.
    This “disruptive” edition has a special emotional value because, through the recall of memory, it depicts the history of the city of Argos and the wider region, while at the same time it is a journey into the cultural environment of the time.
    The dormant sounds and discourses resound again, false witnesses of a brilliant culture, revealed by research, at all levels of public and private life, in letters, arts, political life…
  • The Ancient Rivers of Argolis

  • In the pages of this book, we will meet the Genarch river Inachus, Erasinos with his four daughters, Danaida Amymoni, the wide and dangerous stream Haradros (Xeria), Asterion with his three daughters, the feeders of Hera, the river Rados which flowed on the northern slopes of Mt. Didymos, the Chrysorroas and Yllikos in Troizina et al.
    Mythology is a sacred story, set in a space-time beyond common human experience. It is the set of myths that belong to a specific tradition of a place.
    We believe that myth is a discourse, which even if it is not true or has not evolved into such, contains within it some primordial experiences and truths. And as Lucius Apuleius writes: And the myths that seem beautiful like fairy tales, truths hide many sinkholes in lies…
  • Kiveri – From Myth to History
  • Kiveri is a large village of Argolis, a coastal village on the west coast of the Argolic gulf, directly across from Nafplion. This place is associated with Herakles and the Lernaean Hydra. Here Danaus landed with his daughters, when he came to be king in Argos. The area has certainly been inhabited since ancient times, as Mycenaean tombs have been discovered. The place was continuously inhabited throughout the centuries. In ancient times it became the scene of battles between the two powerful neighbors of the time, the Argives and the Spartans. In the Middle Ages there was a strong castle of the Franks there, to whom it belonged until 1389. Since then, Kiveri belonged to the Venetians until 1481, when it was destroyed by the Turks. Its geographical position made Kiveri a strategic point from ancient times to modern history. It is a place with a rich history for its area, already from archaic times. A story linked to the fate of neighboring Argos from prehistoric and archaic times, but also of Nafplio from the time of the Frankish rule in Greece. During the prehistoric period, the wider area of ​​today’s Kiverio was connected to the three springs, Amymon, Lerna and Anavalos, which gushed fresh water from then until today…
    • Tree planting of Prophet Ilias Argos (1955-1962)[…] So the students of this great school (highlighted great scientists, entrepreneurs, land cultivators, furniture makers, blacksmiths, etc.) under the late director Andreas Katsoulos, every Saturday and I mean every Saturday, after the first hour teaching (interpretation of the next Sunday’s Gospel) with a skeparni or small hoe in hand we continuously planted small saplings, pines and others, continuously and uninterruptedly for a long series of years, so that the hill was covered, except for the north-northwest side, where there were underground concrete crypts with dynamite managed by the company X. Karyotis – Peppa Brothers, financial accountants of the Hellenic Monopoly…
    • The contribution of Vasiliki Bobou – Stamatis to the study of Bicentios Damodos[…] B. Damodos is a special case of modern Greek scholarship due to the diversity of his work and the large number of manuscripts with his works that have survived, some dated and others undated, in libraries, most of the time not accessible, not not only in Greece but also abroad (Saint Petersburg, Jerusalem, Budapest, Bucharest, etc.)…
    • 100 years since the death of Emmanuel Repoulis – Events of Honor and Memory in Kranidi[…] Emmanuel Repoulis (1863-1924) distinguished himself in the journalism and political life of Greece for three decades. His journalistic pen laid the foundations for questioning the dominant old-party perceptions. As a politician he was at the forefront of the modernization and urban upliftment of the state. Together with Eleftherios Venizelos, they made groundbreaking changes in the political history of the country and contributed to the territorial expansion of the Greek state…
    • Bust of Dimitrios PlaputosThe fully sculptural bronze bust of Dimitrios Plapoutas in Nafplion was created by the sculptor Ilias Kanzilieris in 1981, at the initiative and expense of Mina Plapoutas-Papachristou, the honoree’s granddaughter. The unveiling of the monument took place on November 29, 1981, as part of the celebrations of the 159th anniversary of the fall of Palamidi.
    • Will you dye an egg or eggs?[..] The 1943 article was written by Triantafyllidis in Nea Estia in response to a letter from a reader, who complained that in Triantafyllidis’ Neohelliniki Grammatiki (1941) there was the writing “egg”, the same in the Eleftheroudakis Encyclopaedic Dictionary, while in Great Greek Encyclopedia both scripts existed, but in the Historical Dictionary of the Academy the writing “avgo” was used, while in a later text of the Academy, in 1938, “according to the scientific regulation of Modern Greek Orthography” the writing “avgo” was also preferred…
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We note here that the correlation of that handle, or a handful hooked mes “on the other, clearly forms the famous ellinoprepes linear symbol fret, here are evident. I do not see anywhere but commenting so, this evident parallelism, which both honors’ world famous Greek meander “, which is simply known only as a beautiful decorative linear invented and not as a potential holy symbol riser man on the podium of equal opponent the “gods”. The Maiandrios pair of hands is excellent symbolism every heroism and axiosynis.MEANDROS_PILEAS-THETIDA Eikona: Peleus pay Thetis with “Maiandrios link hands or cheironio handle”! Red-figure kylix Interior dated around 500 BC D. Berlin Museum.

From the multitude of ancient angeiografiakon representations reflect clearly that this handle, the handle or cheironios cheironio grid or whatever you called this particular handle in the past, was the special maybe solemn emblem theomachon Greek heroes! The grand schematic slogan that the gods are defeated!
The Meander So was probably the graph of divine defeat of spunky theomachous heroes!
MEANDER2-HERKELESEikona: Hercules pays Triton with “Maiandrios handle.”
Angiography in 550 BC Archaeological Museum Tarkynia.

The “Maiandrios handle” as rightly must now call it, uses repeatedly the foremost theomachos Hercules, as seen highlighted clearly in this masterly portrayal of Hercules wrestling with Triton, angiography of 550 eg . where we see Triton strive in vain to open in front of his chest, locked with Maiandrios handle steely fingers invincible hero!
The obvious relation decorative meander and meander handle can also easily found by Peleus and Thetis complex [5] where the value of said handle in the center of the show overemphasized wreathed around from the most stylized Maiandrios symbolism. There should also be no coincidence that angiograms crowd implying divine defeat, or unreasonable heroism, often topped by fret!
Maiandros_FILIPPOUSymperainoume So that it is no accident the wide dissemination in antiquity of these meanders symbolism. It was a timeless gift of mythological times, the classic and modern times Mediterranean descendants of Greek. A lovely schematic slogan, the obligation to retreat of power “gods”, the priesthood and religions.

Meander from chryselephantine shield of gilded armor of Philip II which was found in the royal tomb of Vergina!
Indeed, if we assume that the right questions and interpretations, are the two hands of the wise. Then Maiandrios essence, is none other than the unbroken chain of questions and interpretations that render inoperable the deified ainigmatopoious, along with their riddles!

You as a people (this applies only to the current Greek) to suffer (because some so want) heavy historical amnesia, but there is no reason to remove stubborn value than the symbolism of our ancestors, insisting passionately on upstart some interpretations very lightly suggested underestimating him brutally exquisite sacred symbolism.

The meander is a linear ordering of the Greek ancestors, for battle against the impossible! A wonderful schematic reminder that in your two “hands” keep the secret of the defeat of your oppressor. If only your own “hands” are not sufficient, then join with others in an inseparable harmonious whole, ellinoprepous, militant, meander chain, aggressive questions and apomoithopoiitikon interpretations! This is the most effective battle against arbitrary power!
The sacred meander is an eternal symbol of victory that gives the Greek antiquity the universal hope of ultimate release from the bondage of every single ancient and contemporary “gods”.

First, before getting to the main theme, the rectum is to “ετυμολογία” – etymology and (LEΞΙΣ )Lexie=Word: “etymology.” They etymologithei oftentimes different words but the word “etymology” never.

This is moreover one in which meets the concept of the word “etymos” (from which the conditions produced “ετυμολογία”  – “etymology” –  “ετυμολογικό=etymological”), which go be said: True, real.

Let’s deal with the etymo words.


  1. an undeniable kinship relation to: ΜΕΤΟΠΗ, ΕΥΡΩΠΗ, ΚΥΚΛΩΨ, ΜΥΩΠΙΑ.


We read of the “Works and Days” of Hesiod verses 168-201, where the poet mentions the mythological version of the genesis of “Iron genus” of people, the fifth in the order of creation. In this integrating and people of his time. And obviously in that we also belong, and since we are an unbroken continuity of that generation.

After enjoying the vivid Hesiodic narration from the original, but more than the most easily understood translations, we stand in certain words of the text, which in one way or another to survive until today, even if they look at first glance perhaps incomprehensible.

The isolated word is  “ευρύοπα” – “evryopa” that perform as the “Pantepoptes”. Trace the aitiologisis of any translation: the evryopas (or evryops) is a composite ευρύς + όψ – (=word – wide + brave opening) . The first of these two words are easy to understand, which is why we focus on two:

the brave opening όψ

 – the flesh = όψ – genetivus: οπός=όψις, όρασις, οφθαλμός – opsis(=the view), orasis(=the up vision), ophthalmos (=the eye). Moving to a deeper investigation, we start from the root of the word is op- from which are also produced: op-O-p-s, opsomai (op-p-inbred), OMMA (op-ma), view (op -cis), eye (ori-chamber), hole (hole in the roof as a chimney, opening that enables that vision, and then each hole).

From these basic derivatives root -op find that rescued already aftousios words: view, eye, hole, spoiled the word OMMA> ommation> eye.

We now return to λέξις – LEΞΙΣ – Lexie(=Word) “evryopa” meaning one who has wide eyes, with whom supervise everything, the Pantepoptes.

But then the associations recall to our memory a multitude of everyday words, such as: suspect – suspect – suspicious // Synopsis-efsynoptos-this-baked – autopsy – autopsy scout // – // katoptefsis on-optefo – Supervisors-Registry – on-baked – inhab-view – Flat-optron.


The word bore us directly refers to the “ROOTS” of the churches, which are among the long holes that let the beams of the roof, which was later covered with embossed plates, while concealing the edge of the beams were placed Triglyphs plates, but in between two holes (eyes) field. This second word but derived from a further Word root -op:

The ops of opos wherein extent of op- to op-.

the LEΞΙΣ –  Lexie this encounter eg in verse 158 C of the Iliad, where Homer, speaking of the beauty of Helen, says (Doric dialect): “αινώς αθανάτοισοι θεής εις ώπα έοικεν” – “Hainaus athanatoisoi theis at opa eoiken”(= ultimate immortal gods has same appearance)

From LEΞΙΣ – Lexie ops comes the unknown maybe complex ευρωπός (=Europe = wide), but also well-known to us bottleneck (στενωπός – stenopos = the narrow passage), and: πρόσωπον–prosopon= person, ενώπιον – enopion= before etc.


In our mind now comes the Kyklop(s)-Κύκλωψ (κύκλος+ωψ) – kyclos=circle + ops) = one who has a round eye.

And that in turn reminds us of the Modern Hellenic the LEΞΙΣ-Word: presviops – From: πρέσβυς = a(=γέρον=geron=elder ) + ωψ-ops  [=bud, up vision)] = one who suffers from πρεσβυωπία-presbyopia, ie. By inability to clearly distinguish near objects, which is common in the elderly, and the SA (Ancient) myopic (who constricts eyelids to public).


The surprises continue as it is clear from the myo (= close lips) produced another series of words, such as the little-known myzo (= drink with closed lips, suck, suck), which we find among others, Xenophon (Snooze . 4,5,27):

Other finally myo derivative is myeo (= enter the sacraments, catechize, instruct, but murmured, secretly). And from this comes: myisis, mystic, mystery.


One of the nine Muses, who was distinguished for her beautiful voice, Named-hole as having Καλλι-όπη – “καλήν όπα” “Kalin opa”. Indeed, Calliope was considered the protector of the human voice products, such as rhetoric and, above all, the epic poetry. That is why the word brave opening οψ-ops (=φωνή-phoni=voice) differs from the assonance of brave opening οψ (= up vision) not only semantically but etymologically because produced by root (where epic = ratio), changing qualitatively in op- .


An adventure in the vast world of words is finishing here. And to think that we stood in a single row and a single Lexie this!

However, we believe that the results of this periplaniseos significantly both in terms of quality (depth) and quantity (width), to facilitate the possibility of “choice of words”, which is the first (of two) Asking for accurate and nice find. The second is the correct positioning of the words. Furthermore we think that was a visual way an example of the unity of the Greek language from antiquity to today.