Isthmian Games, one of the four great national festivals of Greece, celebrated on the isthmus of Corinth in April or May of every alternate year, in the second and fourth years of each Olympiad. The story of their origin is as follows: Athamas, king of Orchomenus, had by his second wife Ino a son named Meli-certes, whom together with his mother he pursued in a fit of madness. In order to escape from him they jumped into the sea. Ino was changed into a sea goddess, and the body of Melicertes was washed ashore and buried by his uncle Sisyphus, who was directed by the nereids to pay him heroic honors under the name of Palaemon. Sisyphus accordingly established the Isthmian games in honor of Neptune and Palaemon. The games, however, fell into disuse, and were for a time entirely interrupted, till Theseus organized them anew in honor of Neptune. In the 6th century B. C. they became Pan-Hellenic festivals. Until the overthrow of Corinth by Mummius (146 B. C), the games were conducted by the Corinthians, though the Athenians held the places of honor, theIsthmian Games 0900585 or front seats. The privilege was then given to the people of Sicyon. After the rebuilding of Corinth by Caesar, they were again managed by that city, but the people of Sicyon had the exclusive right to sit as judges. They continued regularly till Christianity began to spread, when they fell into decay, but were still celebrated under Constantino and Julian. The Isthmian games, like the Olympic, consisted of all kinds of athletic sports, wrestling, boxing, gymnastics of every sort, racing on foot and in chariots, and also contests in music and poetry. The Romans added to them gladiatorial shows and fights of wild beasts, which were continued to the time of the final decay of the festival. The prize was a simple garland of pine leaves. Solon, in his legislation, ordered the sum of 100 drachmae to be paid to any one who took a prize at the Isthmian games, and 500 to any one taking an Olympic prize.