It’s admirable of Michael Scott to shine a light on the forgotten 4th century, and he’s engaging about the culture that bloomed as Athens faded
– DAILY MAIL on FROM DEMOCRATS TO KINGS
According to ancient legend, almighty Zeus, king of the gods of Olympus, let two eagles loose at opposite ends of the earth. These eagles flew towards one another and where they met over Delphi, Zeus declared the ‘omphalos’, the centre of the world. Delphi and its famous Oracle occupy a tremendously important place in Greek history, but it was not always so. Thanks to over a hundred years of excavation work, we can now see the site for what it was – a small sanctuary caught between powerful warring city states, forced to carve out a name for itself as a cultural site worth annexing and preserving.
The Delphi that we think of today was a self-created legend and a record of its many conquerors. Above the entrance to the temple of Apollo was inscribed the god’s most important and famous piece of advice: ‘know thyself’. This book will tell the true story of Delphi as a crucial player in the ancient world, but also, more importantly, the story of how its history has been created.
Michael Scott is currently Moses and Mary Finley Fellow in Ancient History at Darwin College, Cambridge, where he studies the ancient Greek and Roman worlds as well as teaching undergraduates and working with schools around the country. Since 2007, he has been a regular guest lecturer aboard cruise tours of ancient Greece, has run the route of the original Marathon in Athens, and has been an on-screen historical consultant for several documentaries about the ancient world for the History Channel.