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The oracle and sanctuary of the Greek god Apollo at Delphi were known as the "omphalos"—the "center" or "navel"—of the ancient world for more than 1000 years. Individuals, city leaders, and kings came from all over the Mediterranean and beyond to consult Delphi's oracular priestess; to set up monuments to the gods; and to take part in competitions. In this richly illustrated account, Michael Scott covers the history and nature of Delphi, from the literary and archaeological evidence surrounding the site, to its rise as a center of worship, to the constant appeal of the oracle despite her cryptic prophecies. He describes how Delphi became a contested sacred site for Greeks and Romans and a storehouse for the treasures of rival city-states and foreign kings. He also examines the eventual decline of the site and how its meaning and importance have continued to be reshaped. A unique window into the center of the ancient world, Delphi will appeal to general readers, tourists, students, and specialists.
An innovative reading of how different authors tell stories about the Delphic Oracle, focusing on the religious views thereby conveyed.
This book considers the provisional nature of cities in relation to the Anthropocene – the proposed geological epoch of human-induced changes to the Earth system. It charts an environmental history of curfews, admonitions and alarms about dwelling on Earth. ‘Provisional cities’ are explored as exemplary sites for thinking about living in this unsettled time. Each chapter focuses on cities, settlements or proxy urbanisations, including past disaster zones, remote outposts in the present and future urban fossils. The book explores the dynamic, changing and contradictory relationship between architecture and the global environmental crisis and looks at how to re-position architectural and urban practice in relation to wider intellectual, environmental, political and cultural shifts. The book argues that these rounder and richer accounts can better equip humanity to think through questions of vulnerability, responsibility and opportunity that are presented by immense processes of planetary change. These are cautionary tales for the Anthropocene. Central to this project is the proposition that living with uncertainty requires that architecture is reframed as a provisional practice. This book would be beneficial to students and academics working in architecture, geography, planning and environmental humanities as well as professionals working to shape the future of cities.
Examining the final years of Delphic consultation, this monograph argues that the sanctuary operated on two connected, yet distinct levels: the oracle, which was in decline, and the remaining religious, political and social elements at the site which continued to thrive. In contrast to Delphi, other oracular counterparts in Asia Minor, such as Claros and Didyma, rose in prestige as they engaged with new "theological" issues. Issues such as these were not presented to Apollo at Delphi and this lack of expertise could help to explain why Delphi began to decline in importance. The second and third centuries AD witnessed the development of new ways of access to divine wisdom. Particularly widespread were the practices of astrology and the Neoplatonic divinatory system, theurgy. This monograph examines the correlation between the rise of such practices and the decline of oracular consultation at Delphi, analyzing several examples from the Chaldean Oracles to demonstrate the new interest in a personal, soteriological religion. These cases reveal the transfer of Delphi’s sacred space, which further impacted the status of the oracle. Delphi’s interaction with Christianity in the final years of oracular operation is also discussed. Oracular utterances with Christian overtones are examined along with archaeological remains which demonstrate a shift in the use of space at Delphi from a "pagan" Panhellenic center to one in which Christianity is accepted and promoted.
Expanded to include the latest discoveries in prehistoric art as well as the most recent developments in non-Western and modern art, this is an up-to-date and wide ranging history of art.
Discusses the history of cultural life in ancient Greece, from the Bronze Age to the Roman conquest, and includes information on the birth of the city-state, the growth of literature, and changes in religious life.

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