festival of Apollo Actius, celebrated at Nicopolis in Epirus, with
wrestling, musical contests, horse-racing, and sea-fights. It was
established by Augustus, in commemoration of his victory over Antony off
Actium, and was probably the revival of an ancient festival; for there was a
celebrated temple of Apollo at Actium, which is mentioned by Thucydides
) and Strabo (vii. p.325
), and which was enlarged by
Augustus. The games instituted by Augustus were celebrated every four years
) at Nicopolis, probably on
Sept. 2, the anniversary of the battle of Actium; they received the title of
a sacred Agon, and ranked next after the four great games of Greece. Some
counted by Actiads
instead of Olympiads. (J. BJ 1.20
D. C. 51.1
; Suet. Aug.
; Stat. Silv. 2.2
; Böckh, Corp.
No. 1720, 1793; Krause, Olympia,
were also celebrated at the same time at
Rome by the orders of the senate. (D. C. 53.1
; Mommsen, Res gest. D.
p. 27.) They are frequently mentioned in inscriptions, and were
also celebrated in other parts of the empire. (Friedländer,
ii. p. 304.)