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date: 09 December 2022


, festival of Apollo, primarily at Sparta


, festival of Apollo, primarily at Sparta
  • Paul Cartledge


Apellai (1) was a festival of *Apollo at Sparta and elsewhere, the orthography deriving from the Doric form (Apellōn): see apellai (2). At Sparta, the festival was monthly, on the seventh, and it was on this day that the stated meetings of the Spartan assembly were held. From this coincidence has arisen the erroneous modern notion that the assembly was called the apella. Actually, its name was the *ekklēsia, as is corroborated by the existence of a ‘little ekklesia’ (mikra ekklēsia: Xen. Hell. 3. 3. 8). The identity and competence of the latter can only be guessed. The main ekklēsia comprised all Spartiate male citizens in good standing. With the concurrence of the *gerousia, and under the presidency of an *ephor, it had the right to vote on laws, decide on peace or war and the conclusion of treaties, elect ephors and other officials and members of the gerousia, appoint military commanders and emancipate *helots—all normally by shouting, not the counting of individual votes (Thuc.


  • Greek Myth and Religion

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