Apollo was one of the ancient Greek gods, about whom stories were told thousands of years ago. He was the god of music, poetry, light, and the art of healing.
Apollo was the son of Zeus, the king of the ancient Greek gods, and was second in importance only to his father. His twin sister was Artemis, the moon goddess, called Diana by the ancient Romans. Apollo was considered the friend and adviser of mankind, and especially of young men.
Those who worshipped Apollo believed that if he became angry at somebody, that person would die. He was the bringer of light and the god of the sun. He was also the protector of flocks and herds of animals. Apollo was the father of Asclepius, also called aesculapius (about whom there is a separate article), the god of healing and medicine.
The wolf, deer, swan, raven and mouse were animals sacred to Apollo and under his special protection. Apollo was usually attended by the nine Muses, the goddesses who ruled over all the arts, such as music, poetry, and dancing. Statues of Apollo usually show him as a young and beautiful man, wearing a laurel wreath on his head and carrying a lyre, an ancient stringed musical instrument like a harp. The most famous ancient Greek statue of Apollo is in1 the Belvedere, a part of the Vatican, or palace of the pope, in Rome, Italy.