The island of Delos, isolated in the centre of the roughly circular ring of islands called the Cyclades, near Mykonos, had a position as a holy sanctuary for a millennium before Olympian Greek mythology made it the birthplace of Apollo and Artemis.
Inhabited since the 3rd millennium BC, between 900 BC and AD 100, sacred Delos was a major cult centre, where Dionysus is as much in evidence as Leto, Apollo and Artemis. The island was a natural meeting-ground for the Delian League, which was first founded in 478 BC, and a separate quarter was reserved for foreigners and the sanctuaries of foreign deities. During the 3rd century BC, Hellenistic monarchs competed to honor Delos with civic monuments, both with stoas and with statues whose countless pedestals still line the Sacred Way. In 166 BC Delos was given by the Romans to the Athenian city-state, but in modern times it has become uninhabited. It is currently only used for archeology and tourism.
This article is licensed from Wikipedia under the GNU Free Documentation License.
View on Google Maps