Apollo and the Island of Rhodes

Informant Info:

  • Nationality: Greek
  • Occupation: Professor
  • Residence: Connecticut 
  • Primary language: Greek

Text and context:

I.T chose to inform me on one of the most well known myths from Rhodes, the island in Greece where he is originally from. The myth surrounds the island of Rhodes and involves Helios, which is the sun in Greek. The myth begins with the day the Greek Gods met to decide who would be the patron god for each island/ region. Zeus gifted a beautiful island that was beginning to emerge from the ocean to Apollo. This island is Rhodos, and this is why the patron god of Rhodos is Apollo. I.T informed me that Rhodes has more days with Sun than any other place, even while other places are more South and should be receiving more sunlight than Rhodes. The god sun is Apollo, and I.T says Apollo was carrying the sun behind his horses as he rode across the universe. Apollo rode with his horses and the Sun, and he would stop more times in Rhodos, hence why Rhodes has more sun. 


I recently went to Greece for the first time, specifically in the islands of Rhodes and Athens. I spent the majority of the time in Rhodes, where I.T is from. I.T introduced me and my fellow USC peers to the history of Rhodes, which is his true home. As I walked the streets of Rhodes, I saw symbols of Apollo carved into buildings. At the center of all the symbols, Apollo’s head was always located. I.E informed us that in the head of Apollo is the symbol for Rhodes. Through this myth, I was able to see how the Greek people also use creation stories to explain how parts of Greece came to be. Some Greeks also believe that Rhodes is the most sunny place on Earth because of their Patron God, and they use Apollo to explain this. In Rhodes, people greatly praise Apollo, and they carefully cherish the Acropolis of Rhodes, where the remains of the temple of Apollo is also located.