Sharnina Ariadna Borisovna, PhD in history, lector, The Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia (Moika Embankment, dom 48,
Sharnina A. B. Intrusion of Galli into Delphi and festival Soteria (the inviolability of the sanctuaries and the states — from the custom to the agreement), Religiya. Tserkov’. Obshchestvo. Issledovaniya i publikatsii po teologii i religii [Religion. Church. Society: Research and publications in the field of theology and religious studies], Saint-Petersburg, 2014, vol. 3, pp. 136–157.
For about 300 years there were only four Panhellenic Festivals and the religious truce — Olympia, Pythia, Nemea and Isthmia— in the Ancient Greece. The Aetolians were the first to obtain a recognition of the Soteria as Panhellenic Festival. Aetolians’ activity of a reorganization of the Soteria was the first example of a cults’ application for diplomacy. In the letter of invitation to the first penteteric festival of the Soteria in 246 B.C. Aetolian propaganda emphized the Aetolian role in the defense of the sanctuary of Apollo at Delphi in 279 B.C. against the Gallic forces and legitimized their control of Delphi. Thanks to the reorganization of the Soteria the Aetolians established communications with the numerous Greek cities. They granted the inviolability of their sanctuaries in exchange for a recognition of the Soteria. Greek states obtained the protection from Aetolian pirates.
Other states followed Aetolians’ example and invited all Greeks to take part in their festivals and asked them for a recognition of Panhellenic festival and of the inviolability of the sanctuary and the state (the festival of the Muses in Thespiai, the Asclepia at the Cos etc.). The Attalids of Pergamon, the Seleucids, The Ptolemies used their festivals in the forein policy and the royal propaganda. After reorganization of the Soteria, the agreement sealed the inviolability of the sanctuaries and the states.