). Games celebrated to the Actian
1. At Rome.
--Though under this actual name there were not any
games celebrated at Rome, still there were games in honour of the Actian
Apollo. These were decreed at Actium by Augustus in 31 B.C. after his
victory, and first held at Rome in 28 (D. C.
). They consisted of horse-races among the patrician youths and
men, gymnastic contests, and sometimes gladiatorial exhibitions. They were
held every fourth year (D. C. 51.19
administered generally by one of the four chief colleges of priests in
succession (ib. 53.1), though sometimes by the consuls (Mommsen, Res
gestae d. Aug.
p. 42). Thus the first exhibition was held by the
consuls, or rather by Agrippa alone (D. C.
); but in 16 B.C. we find them celebrated by the Quindecimviri
(ib. 54.19). We are to suppose the celebration of 24 B.C. was held by the
Pontiffs, that of 20 B.C. by the Augurs, that of 16 B.C. by the Septemviri
Epulones, and so on in rotation till 13 A.D., when
they were probably held for the last time (Mommsen, l.c.
). The last recorded celebration is 9 A.D. (Plin. Nat. 7.158
), and we do not hear of
them again till 62 A.D., when they had been a
considerable time discontinued (Tac. Ann.
). We find these games sometimes alluded to as pro salute
6.877): cf. ὑτὲρ τῆς ἐμῆς
(Res gest. d. Aug.
5.8-11, Greek) and
(Suet. Aug. 44
), i. e.
when they were held by the Pontiffs. That these games were celebrated to the
Actian Apollo may be proved from the coin of C. Antistius Vetus of 16 B.C.
(Eckhel, 6.104; Mommsen, Röm. Münzwesen,
742). On one side is a sacrificing priest, with the inscription pro valetudine Caesaris
S. P. Q. R.; on the other, Apollo sacrificing,
with the inscription Apollini Actio.
In Suet. Tib. 6
is a mistake for astici
(Mommsen, Res gest.
2. At Actium.
3. In the Provinces.
--Similar quinquennial games
seem to have been held in many provincial towns (Suet. Aug. 59
): e. g. at Caesarea by Herod (J. AJ 15.11
1.21, 8); also at Antioch and Alexandria (C.