Table of Contents:
And the silver and gold offerings which were at Delphi were offered originally by Gyges the king of the Lydians. For before the reign of this monarch Apollo had no silver, [p. 366] and still less had he gold, as Phanias the Eresian tells us, and Theopompus, too, in the fortieth book of his History of the Transactions of the Reign of Philip. For these writers relate that the Pythian temple was adorned by Gyges, and by Crœsus who succeeded him; and after them by Gelo and Hiero, the tyrants of Syracuse: the first of whom offered up a tripod and a statue of Victory, both made of gold, about the time that Xerxes was making his expedition against Greece; and Hiero made similar offerings. And Theopompus uses the following language—“For anciently the temple was adorned with brazen offerings: I do not mean statues, but caldrons and tripods made of brass. The Lacedæmonians, therefore, wishing to gild the face of the Apollo that was at Amyclæ, and not finding any gold in Greece, having sent to the oracle of the god, asked the god from whom they could buy gold; and he answered them that they should go to Crœsus the Lydian, and buy it of him. And they went and bought the gold of Crœsus. But Hiero the Syracusan, wishing to offer to the god a tripod and a statue of Victory of unalloyed gold, and being in want of the gold for a long time, afterwards sent men to Greece to seek for it; who, coming after a time to Corinth, and tracing it out, found some in the possession of Architeles the Corinthian, who had been a long time buying it up by little and little, and so had no inconsiderable quantity of it; and he sold it to the emissaries of Hiero in what quantity they required. And after that, having filled his hand with it he made them a present of all that he could hold in his hand, in return for which Hiero sent a vessel full of corn, and many other gifts to him from Sicily.”
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.