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II. La ville de Delphes et sa région

Delphi and Phokis : a Network Theory Approach

« Delphes et Phokis : la théorie du réseau comme manière de traiter leurs relations »
Jeremy McInerney
p. 95-106


Delphes était au centre d’un réseau de relations qui s’étendait sur tout le monde grec. Cependant les liens avec le territoire voisin de Phokis étaient faibles. Phokis ne bénéficia pas d’une mainmise durable sur le sanctuaire, comme Elis le fit pour Olympie, et les Phokiens n’avaient pas de place à Delphes en quoi que ce soit différente d’un autre état grec. Au lieu de quoi une seconde zone alternative d’influence religieuse et de mise en valeur des élites se fit jour de l’autre côté de Phokis, dans le voisinage d’Elatée et de Kalapodi. En examinant la topographie et la connectivité associées aux sites et aux sanctuaires de la partie est de Phokis, nous pouvons alors identifier deux zones distinctes mais complémentaires : Delphes allait devenir un sanctuaire panhellénique, précisément à cause du fait que ses liens aux régions voisines étaient faibles et distendus. Kalapodi, en revanche, était au centre d’un espace hautement contesté, ligne de fissures entre zones locales rivales, qui allait devenir trois états distincts et souvent antagonistes : Phokis, Lokris et Boiotia.

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My thanks to Jean-Marc Luce for having invited me to participate at the Round Table on the theme of ‘Delphes, sa cité, sa région, ses relations internationales.’ The friendly and collegial responses of the partipants at that colloquium improved this paper considerably.

  • 2 Daux, 1936, p. 159-162.
  • 3 Plutarch, de Pythiae oraculis 401A: “Look up there and see golden Mnesarete amid the generals and k (...)

1The sanctuary of Delphi was embedded in a network of relations and affiliations, from the local to the international. In this web of relationships, Delphi’s international importance dominates our perceptions, and this is entirely understandable. From the point of view of material culture, the sanctuary’s physical appearance constantly emphasizes its international reach. Even before entering the temenos of Apollo, the visitor passed the Treasury of the Massiliots in the Pronaia sanctuary, a dramatic reminder of Delphi’s role in authorizing colonies at the far ends of the Mediterranean. Once in the precinct of Apollo, before reaching the temple, pilgrims made their way past the treasuries of states as far apart as Siphnos in the Aegean and Sikyon on the northern coast of the Peloponnese. Ionian states in particular vied for prominence : the Athenians erected their treasury right at the point here the Sacred Way cut back, the Naxians dedicated a sphinx that loomed over the ascending path, and the Chians claimed a privileged place by erecting the altar at the eastern end of the temple platform. Rivalry for positions along the route from the southeastern entrance of the temenos to the temple only reinforced the panhellenic scope of Delphi’s importance and revealed how Delphi functioned in the creation of Greek metageography : first Thessalian dynasts (the Daochos monument) and Spartan admirals, and later Hellenistic kings and Roman proconsuls jockeyed for position along the sacred way leading to the temple platform, the east end of which Daux deacribes as the epiphanestastos topos.2 Plutarch speaks dismissively of the same location as the spot dominated by ‘the generals and kings.’3

2Despite the depradations of time, enough of the offerings made at the sanctuary survive to underscore the role of wealth and display in constantly reaffirming the sanctuary’s importance. Tripods, chryselephantine sculptures and other monumental dedications offered a tangible point of connection between dedicating communities and Delphi as the symbolic centre of a network. The ties between these communities and Delphi were played out through the rituals located here : oracular consultation, theoric embassies and agonistic competition. Accordingly, the institutions most closely associated with Delphi can be seen as constantly and consistently dialogical : by observing the sacred truce, sending theoroi and consulting the oracle any community expresses itself according the same pattern of behaviour as other Greek communities. Such isomorphism, a pattern of shared and repeated behaviours, reveals the constituative rules of Greek social life at the level of networked communities.

3At another level, Delphi also provides a setting for individuals asserting their place within the habitus of Greek culture. Consider the so-called Charioteer of Delphi. Dedicated by Polyzalos of Gela, the statue group of charioteer, vehicle and horses creates a monument that elevates one victory from the instance of the single episode and locates it within a much more extensive system of both athletic accomplishments and celebrations of these victories. History and tradition thus allow the individual to claim a fresh place in an ever repeating matrix of values and norms. Delphi might be thought of as the bank of social capital, in which traditional values of time and arete are parcelled out to victors only to be redeposited for safe-keeping (and display) within the sanctuary. In much the same way, Pindar’s odes repeatedly use the body of Greek myth to situate one victor’s triumph within a nexus of associations stretching across time and space : Pythian 12, for Midas of Akragas, celebrates the victory of an aulos player from Sicily by linking his performance and his home-town in Sicily to the origins of all aulos playing, recounted in a myth that has Perseus slaying the gorgon, taking the head to Seriphos to punish his father-in-law Polydektes (for forcing Perseus’ mother into marriage) before Athena invents aulos music in imitation of the Gorgons’ lament for their dead sister. In this way, aitiological myth provides a template for epinician, and at the same time, every epinician ode, like each dedicatory monument, also serves to locate the individuals and communities who are either subjects or dedicators in historical relations to their forerunners and in geographical relations with their contemporaries. Greece, as a cultural construct, is the matrix constituted by these performances : theoric, agonistic, poetic and commemorative. The most explicit articulation of Delphi’s place at the heart of an international and panhellenic network comes in the itineraries associated with the god and his priests, recalled in the Homeric Hymn To Apollo. After the travails of his mother, who moves in a broad, clock-wise trajectory from Crete to Athens, up the eastern coast of Greece, across to Aiolis and south into Ionia and the Dodecanese, Apollo is born on Delos. This is recognised as his favorite place :

Άλλὰ σὺ Δήλῳ, Φοῖβε, μάλιστἐπιτέρπεαι ἦτορ,
ἔνθα τοι ἑλκεχίτωνες Ἰάονες ἠγερέθονται
αὐτοῖς σὺν παίδεσσι καὶ αἰδοίῃς ἀλόχοισιν.
Οἱ δέ σε πυγμαχίῃ τε καὶ ὀρχηθμῷ καὶ ἀοιδῇ
μνησάμενοι τέρποῦσιν, ὅτἂν στήσωνται ἀγῶνα

But it is in Delos, O Phoibos, that your heart delights the most,
For Ionians with trailing garments gather there
In your honour together with their children and modest wives.
And with boxing matches dancing and song,
They delight you and remember you whenever they hold the contests.
(Homeric Hymn III to Apollo 146-150 tr. Athanassakis)

  • 4 On linearity and the construction of space see Janni, 1984 and Snodgrass, 1987, p. 83-85.

4From here he will make his way to Delphi, not directly, but by way of a circuitous track that, like his mother’s journey, takes him in a great arc from east to west but past many northern places too, such as Olympos and Pieria. Many of these are places with strong Apolline associations, such as Pieria where Apollo served as a cowherd for Admetos. Apollo’s itinerary links a wide swathe of land into a panhellenic geography by allowing each territory and region to claim a place within an Apollonian landscape. This landscape, or more correctly odological space, thus functions like genealogy, as an open-ended system that allows an almost infinite number of spots to claim a place within a larger landscape.4 The active and even political dimension of this geographical thinking is underscored by the Hymn’s denial of some other sanctuaries’ claims to being authentically Apollonian : at Eretria, for example, the god is not pleased to settle :

Στῆς δἐπὶ Ληλάντῳ πεδίῳτό τοι οὐχ ἅδε θυμῷ
τεύξασθαι νηόν τε καὶ ἄλσεα δενδρήεστα.

You stood on the Lelantine plain, but it did not please
Your heart to build a temple with wooded groves.
(Homeric Hymn III to Apollo 220-221 tr. Athanassakis)

  • 5 Frame, 2006.
  • 6 Pausanias 10.5.9-13. See Sourvinou-Inwood, 1979.

5The complement to the east/north/west arc taken by Apollo is the south/west/north movement of the priests of Apollo, guided by Apollo the dolphin from Crete, up to the Corinthian Gulf and finally to Krisa.5 Here they will serve the god at the location of the omphalos, which sits not only at the centre of the world, but on top of the delphys, the womb of the earth. Other myths associated with Delphi reinforce the spatial configuration of Apollo’s sanctuary as the centre of the Greeks’ worldview. For example, one of the early temples of Apollo at Delphi, according to Pausanias’s informants at the sanctuary, was supposed to have been constructed out of feathers and beeswax by visitors from the realm of the Hyperboreans, the northern Antipodes of the Greeks’ geographical imagination.6 In Pythian 10, Pindar describes the banquets of the Hyperboreans and imagines Apollo taking delight in their hecatombs while laughing at the braying of their donkeys.

  • 7 Hom., Od. 11.693-4; Strabo 9.3.12; Paus. 10.4.3. See Kyriakidis in this volume. On the economic lin (...)
  • 8 Davies, 1994; McInerney, 1999.
  • 9 Sánchez, 2001.

6It is evident, then, that much of the story-telling generated by and at Delphi reinforced the view that Delphi was at the centre of a network of relations that extended across and beyond the entire Greek world. This is straightforward and unremarkable. What is remarkable is the degree to which the Delphi’s position in relation to the neighbouring territory of Phokis is ignored or glossed over in Delphic myth. For example, despite the fact that Delphi’s near neighbour, Panopeus was probably involved in some type of economic relationship with the sanctuary, supplying it with cattle, the only mythical relationship known to us between the two locations is the episode recounted in Pausanias, according to which Panopeus was home to a giant and lawless creature named Tityos, who tried to rape Leto.7 In the underworld he was punished, his body sprawled over nine acres. The theme of lawlessness, in fact, recurs often in stories of Delphi and its neighbours. The First Sacred War was usually explained as having arisen from the interference of a local tribe, sometimes called the Kragallidai, who had attempted to interrupt the movement of pilgrims from the Corinthian Gulf up to Delphi. The seizure of the sanctuary by the Phokian tyrants during the 3rd Sacred War (356-346 BC) is only a very late expression of what seems to have been a contentious relationship that varied from indifference at best to outright hostility.8 Moreover, after 600 BC, any periods of Phokian control of the sanctuary of Apollo were clearly anomalous, since the shrine was administered by the Amphiktyony.9

  • 10 Luce, 2008, p. 133-196 and 401-409.

7It should be stressed, however, that the line of demarcation between Delphi and its surroundings represents a mental map of the region, which emerged over time, and does not reflect conditions on the ground. Jean-Marc Luce has drawn attention to the connections suggested by the ceramic record between Delphi and northern Greece in the 10-9th century, and between sites in southern Phokis such as Medeon and Antikirra and sites in northern Phokis in the 10th century10. From 800 BC onwards Delphi’s orientation is towards the Corinthian Gulf. Medeon, too, a site with a history going back to the Bronze Age also shows that the sites in southern Phokis were oriented towards Corinth. What the ties were between the various sites in the plain of Itea (Moulki, Amphissa, and Galaxadi) is hard to say, but there is no reason to expect any kind of political cooperation at this early stage, and it is entirely possible that the sanctuary of Delphi had no formal political relationship with any of these sites. But the material culture, measured by ceramics and burial practices shows Delphi to have developed within a regional setting oriented towards the south. Later, too, regional ties persisted even when Delphi made the leap to international status. For example, Dominique Mulliez has shown that the majority of slave-owners who recorded the enfranchisement of their slaves at Delphi in the Hellenistic period were from the neighbouring region of Lokris. So, in terms of daily interactions between individuals and communities it would be wrong to imagine an iron curtain separating Delphi from its nearest neighbours. Nevertheless, from the late Archaic period onwards Phokis was largely locked out of Delphi and failed to establish the kind of long-term control over the sanctuary that Elis enjoyed at Olympia, so that the Phokians had no standing there any different from any other Greek state. Even so, the region around Delphi was not a vacuum defined by the failure to control the international shrine. Instead, the political and cultic landscape of Phokis was shaped by the emergence of a regional network which in certain respects imitated, but on a smaller scale, Delphi’s international connections.

8The evidence for this comes primarily from eastern Phokis, a region distinctly different from Delphi. (See Figure 1.) Delphi is located on the south side of Parnassos, and has access to the north by means of the Gravia Pass leading to Doris and the Malian Gulf. It overlooks ancient Krisa on the coast and therefore has access to the Corithian Gulf, the Peloponnese and the wider Greek world to the west. Eastern Phokis, by contrast, is notable for two fertile valleys : the Kephisos river valley, passing along the north side of Parnassos and bringing water eastwards, and the western reaches of the plain of Chaironeia. The eastern section of Phokis has access to the Corinthian Gulf at Antikyra, but is also very close to the Euboian Gulf.

  • 11 Niemeier, 2008, p. 100.
  • 12 Felsch, 1996.

9The emergence of a regional network with its heart in Eastern Phokis is supported by three bodies of evidence : epichoric myth, topography and archaeology. We begin with the archaeological work done in Eastern Phokis where three important sanctuaries have been identified, at Kalapodi, Abai and Kranaia. To this may be added the rich graves uncovered at Elateia. The finds at Kalapodi have been particularly striking. A Mycenaean Kultbau, for example, is dated to the middle of LH IIIC, and a recent sondage suggests cult activity goes back to the Middle Helladic period.11 From the second half of the 9th century there was intense cult activity at the site and in the Archaic period two temples were erected, securely dated and notable for distinctive features such as a naiskos within the south temple. The Archaic temples suffered a sequence of destructions and rebuildings, notably at the time of the Persian wars, but despite subsequent vicissitudes such as an earthquake in the late 5th century, the site was still in use certainly in the early Roman empire.12

  • 13 Felsch, 1990.
  • 14 Felsch-Jacob, 1996.
  • 15 Palme-Koufa, 1996, p. 277-282.
  • 16 Palme-Koufa, 1996, p. 302-303; Csapo, 1993, p. 235.
  • 17 Felsch, 2007.
  • 18 Niemeier, 2007, p. 76-77; Niemeier, 2010, p. 107-108.
  • 19 Felsch, 2007, 74; see also Kilian, 1975 and Kilian-Dirlmeier, 1978/1979.

10Aside from the extraordinary longevity of the site, the material finds reflect a sanctuary of prestige and importance. The stamped Laconian roof tiles of the Archaic temples, for example, come from the same workshop as supplied the temple of Aphaia on Aigina, a sanctuary that was a focal point for elite display in the Saronic Gulf.13 Similarly, the ceramic material from Kalapodi shows affinities with Thessaly as early as the 10th century, based on the fabrics used, and has stylistic features, such as octopus motifs, in common with the Aegean islands and Dodecanese as early as LH III C.14 Furthermore, the frequency with which drinking vessels were dedicated at the sanctuary points to a long tradition of sympotic activity and feasting at Kalapodi.15 The alphabets and dialects of the inscriptions on these vessels also point to regions from Boiotia to Thessaly, once again emphasizing Kalapodi’s central position in a regional network.16 More impressive still are the metal objects. Rainer Felsch identified 104 Geometric and Archaic tripods, suggesting a sanctuary on a par with Olympia, since these are high-status objects, dedicated only by the most aristocratic members of society. Another category of élite dedication, weapons, also underscores the sanctuary’s status : 1960-2050 helmets, c. 2050 greaves, 2054-2096 shields, 494 iron weapons, including pikes, spears, daggers and swords.17 The recent discovery of a polychrome painting depicting warriors advancing to the attack would seem to offer clues to identity of those who frequented the sanctuary.18 These were members of the élites of central Greece. The animal figure attachments designed to be affixed to the bronze cauldrons dedicated at Kalapodi are equivalent to those from the other great panhellenic sanctuaries such as Olympia and Delphi. In fact, not only was Kalapodi a consumer of such luxury goods, but was also a production centre. Bird disk pendants used to be seen as originating in Pherai, in Thessaly, but more have been found at Kalapodi than at any other single site. Similarly, Felsch has now plausibly suggested that a number of different types of bronze attachments—the so-called Corinthian style of bronze attachment and the wheel shaped attachment—actually originates in the vicinity of Kalapodi.19 It now seems beyond doubt that this sanctuary was by far the most important locus of power and wealth in the entire region prior to the Persian Wars.

  • 20 Dakoronia, 1993a, and 2006; Dakoronia et al., 1996.
  • 21 For Athena Kranaia, see Pausanias 10.34-37, Paris, 1892, Scully, 1964, 92 and Demake, 2009.
  • 22 Dakoronia,1993b; Dakoronia, 2006.

11If Kalapodi was the symbolic centre of a regional network, recent work has also brought to light other signs of the emergence of élite culture in other parts of central Greece nearby. A cluster of tombs close at the Alonaki cemetery west of the classical city of Elateia, the most important city in classical Phokis, located less than ten kilometers from Kalapodi, has produced 121 Mycenaean seals. The pottery from the same graves shows that the cemetery was in use, presumably by a nearby community, continuously from LH IIIA1 through Sub-Mycenaean to protogeometric times.20 In the hills between Elateia and Kalapodi lies the temple of Athena Kranaia, first excavated by Pierre Paris over one hundred years ago. Paris’ excavations were neither careful nor thorough, and he believed that the sanctuary was only in use in classical and early Archaic times, but a recent cleaning of the site by the ephoreia, even without systematic excavation, revealed the presence of much earlier pottery, reaching back to Geometric and even Late Helladic times.21 The same story, pointing to a more intense occupation of the region by wealthy elites is now emerging in eastern Locris, northeast of Kalapodi. At Opous, excavations of an early Iron Age cemetery with 45 graves have revealed two burials in sarcophagi with jewels and metal objects, including weapons and a diadem.22 Kalapodi, therefore, lies in the middle of a swathe of territory that sweeps from the inland, at the southeastern end of the Kephisos plain, northeastwards towards the coast. Throughout the coastal district of eastern Lokris, recent survey and excavation has painted a picture that differs markedly from other regions in the so-called Dark Ages. At sites such as Kynos Livanaton and Mitrou, the norm from the Bronze to the Iron Age is continuity, not the massive disruptions felt in regions at the heart of Mycenaean Greece. So, while in other places, the record material from 1100 to 800 BC has inspired a narrative of rapid decline and contraction followed by gradual renovation, the region of east central Greece looks to have followed a different trajectory. The new picture emerging of this area of Greece is one of comparative stability in the early Iron Age, and it is against a backdrop of regional rivalries, not the collapse of Mycenaean society, that the emergence of separate zones in eastern and western Phokis must be understood.

  • 23 McInerney, 2012 (forthcoming).

12The topographical component in this changing political landscape is best shown graphically. Figure 2 shows much the same terrain as Figure 1, but superimposes on the topography zones reflecting both the religious and ethno/political divisions of the region. To the southwest is Delphi, shown here as a zone distinct from the rest of the region in order to suggest its independence from Phokis. On the other side of Parnassos, however, three separate ethnic koina would emerge : the Phokians, Lokrians and Boiotians. It is surely not coincidental that the interstices of these three regions, the area shown on the map by the overlap of three ovals, is precisely the location of the religious terrain dominated by Kalapodi, recently identified by Wolf-Dietrich Niemeier as the oracle of Apollo at Abai, and, to a lesser extent, by the temple of Athena Kranaia and the sanctuary formerly identified as Abai, now possibly to be seen as the site of the sanctuary of Artemis Elaphebolos.23

13What is represented here is the evolution of two quite distinct zones. Delphi goes on to become a panhellenic shrine precisely because its ties to the regions in its immediate vicinity were so loose and weak. Kalapodi, by contrast was at the centre of highly contested space, a line of fissure between rival local areas that would come to identify as three distinct and often antagonistic states. Delphi and Kalapodi served as the symbolic centres of two different kinds of networks. Delphi, by virtue of the colonial dedications and the need for colonies to retain a connection of sorts with the cultural homeland of Greece, was well suited, as colonies started to populate the western Mediterranean, to serve as a symbolic centre. I say symbolic because aside from the moral authority of granting foundation charters, Delphi did not actively govern colonies. The Greek colonies were only loosely linked by the repetition of cultural forms : foundation stories, worship of the archegetes, cults of oikists, centuriation, land division, sometimes receiving magistrates from the metropolis, but not always forming tight bonds of political federation, like the Panionion. In Magna Graecia the ties are looser, and a neutral distant symbolic religious centre serves their needs better than a federal sanctuary.

  • 24 Ellinger, 1993.

14But as the communities of northern and eastern Phokis grew closer, especially as the common victims of Thessalian expansion, federation was an attractive choice, with a religious centre providing the setting for a celebration such as the Elapheboleia, the national festival celebrating the Phokian defeat of the Thessalians.24 It is noticeable that when the ethnos of the Phokians found full expression as a koinon the town that often served as their capital and major city, was Elateia, another settlement on the eastern edge of Phokis. So, as Delphi acquired panhellenic status, at the heart of a farflung network of loosely tied nodes, Kalapodi’s assumed a regional status at the centre of a smaller network based on more closely connected nodes.

  • 25 On epichoric heroes and regional identity, see Calame, 1987.
  • 26 Pritchett, 1982, p. 149-151.
  • 27 Strabo 9.3.17.
  • 28 Pausanias 10.36.10.

15The more local significance of Kalapodi is well attested by epichoric traditions, which consistently draw attention to conflicts between the various communities of the area. The first of these concerns the tangled genealogies of the eponymous hero, Phokos. There, were, in fact, two Phokoses. One is associated with the towns of the northern side of Parnassos, is descended from Pelleus, ‘the man from Pelion’, and is credited with the federation of the Phokians. The other is Phokos, grandson of Sisyphos, from Corinth, who came to assist the locales of the eastern side of Phokis in the heroic age when they were invaded. Even at the level of their genealogies the Phokians therefore encapsulated the notion of the two zones of Phokis without entirely reconciling them.25 Corinthian Phokos, whose place of origin points to a rapprochement between the communities of the Kephisos—whose eponym was from the north—and their southern neighbours, was supposed to have crossed from Corinth to help the inhabitants of Hyampolis in their fight against the Lokrians over the port of Daphnous.26 The story’s geographical setting is significant. Situated on the shore of the Euboian Gulf, at modern Aghios Konstantinos, Daphnous gave access to the Aegean and the trade that connected Kalapodi to the regions north and east. At the same time, as Strabo noted, the capture of Daphnous split Lokris in two, the Opountian region to the east and Epikemidian Lokris to the west.27 Here is a dramatic example of the way that the fight to control a key node in this network of exchange only exacerbated local rivalries and cemented local identities. While Lokris was split, Phokis became more thoroughly incorporated. Capturing the prize confirmed the Phokian affiliation of the Hyampolitans who had called on Phokos for help. The Phokian identity of Daphnous was asserted by making it the site of the Schedion, a hero shrine to the Phokian leader, Schedios, named in the Catalogue of Ships. Other towns followed suit. The town of Panopeus (again located on the border with Boiotia) claimed Schedios as their early king, thereby signalling their Phokian affiliation also, while Antikyra, on the Corinthian Gulf would also claim a tomb of Schedios.28 Up and down the corridor of eastern Phokis, therefore, stories reinforced the connections found in heroic genealogy, making the district of Kalapodi emphatically Phokian.

  • 29 Herodotus 8.27-32, Plutarch, Moral. 244B-D and Pausanias 10.1.7.
  • 30 Herodotus 8.27.
  • 31 Pausanias 10.35.1, Steph. Byz. s.v. ῎Αβαι; Homer, Iliad 5.536-544; Strabo 10.1.3.

16Of course the local rivalry that overshadowed all else in the region of Kalapodi was the war to expel the Thessalians shortly before the Persian Wars. The famous battles mentioned in Herodotus, the Chalk Battle, the Battle of the Amphorae, and the the last desperate battle before which the Phokians vowed to immolate their wives and children if they lost, occurred not on Delphi’s doorstep, but on Kalapodi’s.29 Two thousand shields were dedicated by the Phokians at Abai as offerings to Apollo and the commemoration of the national victory took place at the Elapheboleia festival, transforming the Kalapodi district into a lieu de mémoire, inseparably connecting this entire area to Phokis, the exact inverse of Delphi’s resistance to Phokian claims. The polarity distinguishing Delphi and Kalapodi is remarkable ; just as Delphi comes under the sway of a Thessalian dominated Amphiktyony, oriented towards the western side of Parnassos and the corridor leading to the seasonal meetings at Anthela, the communities clustered around Kalapodi at the eastern end of the Kephisos valley federate to throw off Thessalian domination. It is nevertheless possible to overstate this polarity. The Phokians, after all, dedicated as many shields at Delphi as at Abai after defeating the Thessalians, and at both sanctuaries they erected statues using a tithe from their victory.30 And Abai seems never to have asserted Phokian origins, looking instead towards an Argive hero, Abas, as the eponymous founder and claiming a connection to Homer’s Euboian warriors, the Abantes.31 Such stories represent countercurrents and perhaps even resistance to the growing pressure on communities and sanctuaries within the region to choose their affiliation. Yet, even allowing for such push-back, it seems clear that Kalapodi and Delphi represent quite different trajectories taken by important sanctuaries. Kalapodi would, by the exigencies of history become supremely important for Phokis, ultimately caught within a smaller, regional network than Delphi, whose connections, were to the western colonies, to Delos and Crete. In fact it is notable that the Homeric Hymn to Apollo acknowledges Apollo’s birth on Delos, his travels through the north of Greece and his arrival at Delphi, but the locations of nearer Apollo sanctuaries such as Eretria and Abai are conspicuously absent. Apollo, according to the Homeric Hymns, comes to Delphi from Delos. The journey thus puts into a narrative the relationship of two major sanctuaries of Apollo, one where he is born and one where he offers oracular advise to mankind. The itinerary of the poem operates like a heroic genealogy, of places connected to Apollo’s panhellenic status : the inclusion of places like Iolkos, where Apollo served as cowherd to Laomedon, allow places to affiliate with the burgeoning network of regions and locales that were part of the hellenic world of Olympian deities. At the same time some places usually associated with Apollo’s worship, like Eretria, were excluded from the sacred itinerary of the poem, suggesting local resistance to the claims of Delphi and Delos for primacy in the worship of Apollo. The Homeric Hymn passes over eastern Phokis in silence. Whether they liked it or not, the sanctuaries of the Kalapodi district were relegated to local significance and had no place in the panhellenic topography dominated by Delphi. Different networks, different scales, different functions.

Fig. 1. Topographical Map of Central Greece.

Fig. 1. Topographical Map of Central Greece.

Map by Margaretha Kramer-Hajos.

(Reproduced by permission)

Fig. 2. Religious and ethnic zones in Phokis.

Fig. 2. Religious and ethnic zones in Phokis.

Map by Margaretha Kramer-Hajos.

(Reproduced by permission)

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2 Daux, 1936, p. 159-162.

3 Plutarch, de Pythiae oraculis 401A: “Look up there and see golden Mnesarete amid the generals and kings.”

4 On linearity and the construction of space see Janni, 1984 and Snodgrass, 1987, p. 83-85.

5 Frame, 2006.

6 Pausanias 10.5.9-13. See Sourvinou-Inwood, 1979.

7 Hom., Od. 11.693-4; Strabo 9.3.12; Paus. 10.4.3. See Kyriakidis in this volume. On the economic link between Panopeus and Delphi see McInerney, 2010, p. 163-164.

8 Davies, 1994; McInerney, 1999.

9 Sánchez, 2001.

10 Luce, 2008, p. 133-196 and 401-409.

11 Niemeier, 2008, p. 100.

12 Felsch, 1996.

13 Felsch, 1990.

14 Felsch-Jacob, 1996.

15 Palme-Koufa, 1996, p. 277-282.

16 Palme-Koufa, 1996, p. 302-303; Csapo, 1993, p. 235.

17 Felsch, 2007.

18 Niemeier, 2007, p. 76-77; Niemeier, 2010, p. 107-108.

19 Felsch, 2007, 74; see also Kilian, 1975 and Kilian-Dirlmeier, 1978/1979.

20 Dakoronia, 1993a, and 2006; Dakoronia et al., 1996.

21 For Athena Kranaia, see Pausanias 10.34-37, Paris, 1892, Scully, 1964, 92 and Demake, 2009.

22 Dakoronia,1993b; Dakoronia, 2006.

23 McInerney, 2012 (forthcoming).

24 Ellinger, 1993.

25 On epichoric heroes and regional identity, see Calame, 1987.

26 Pritchett, 1982, p. 149-151.

27 Strabo 9.3.17.

28 Pausanias 10.36.10.

29 Herodotus 8.27-32, Plutarch, Moral. 244B-D and Pausanias 10.1.7.

30 Herodotus 8.27.

31 Pausanias 10.35.1, Steph. Byz. s.v. ῎Αβαι; Homer, Iliad 5.536-544; Strabo 10.1.3.

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Table des illustrations

Titre Fig. 1. Topographical Map of Central Greece.
Légende Map by Margaretha Kramer-Hajos.
Crédits (Reproduced by permission)
Fichier image/png, 664k
Titre Fig. 2. Religious and ethnic zones in Phokis.
Légende Map by Margaretha Kramer-Hajos.
Crédits (Reproduced by permission)
Fichier image/png, 712k
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Jeremy McInerney, « Delphi and Phokis : a Network Theory Approach »Pallas, 87 | 2011, 95-106.

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Jeremy McInerney, « Delphi and Phokis : a Network Theory Approach »Pallas [En ligne], 87 | 2011, mis en ligne le 01 mars 2012, consulté le 28 septembre 2023. URL : ; DOI :

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Jeremy McInerney

Davidson Kennedy Professor
Dept of Classical Studies
University of Pennsylvania

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