Overlooking the Pleistos Valley on Mount Parnassus in Greece lie the ruins of Delphi, the most famous oracle of the Ancient World, dedicated to the god of sun and prophecy, Apollo.
At the temple of Apollo there were carved into the stone the 147 Delphic Maxims.
Rules for a Happy Life among which the most famous of these is the simple yet profound saying “Know thyself.”
Delphi Apollo Temple
Originally, they were said to have been given by the Greek god Apollo’s Oracle at Delphi, Pythia, and therefore were attributed to Apollo.
The 3rd century doxographer Diogenes Laertius attributed them to the Seven Sages of Ancient Greece as did the 5th century scholar Stobaeus.
The admiration of the ancient Greeks for these hanging quotes in the Oracle of Delphi was so great, that the lyric poet Pindar (522 BC) considered the seven wise men, sons of the Sun, who with their radiance illuminated and guided men to the path of virtue.
The moral education and guidance of the citizens began with their teachers at a young age, but continued later in the oracles, which, in addition to their predicting the future and the will of the gods, they also gave a number of moral orders and exhortations of an advisory nature for the problems of everyday life.