24 Facts About Daedalus


In Greek mythology, Daedalus was a skillful architect and craftsman, seen as a symbol of wisdom, knowledge and power.

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Daedalus is the father of Icarus, the uncle of Perdix, and possibly the father of Iapyx.

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Daedalus's parentage was supplied as a later addition, with various authors attributing different parents to him.

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Daedalus's father is claimed to be either Eupalamus, Metion, or Palamaon.

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Daedalus had two sons: Icarus and Iapyx, along with a nephew named either Talos, Calos, or Perdix.

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Athenians made Cretan-born Daedalus Athenian-born, the grandson of the ancient king Erechtheus, claiming that Daedalus fled to Crete after killing his nephew.

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Daedalus is first mentioned in roughly 1400 BC on the Knossian Linear B tablets.

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Daedalus is not mentioned again in literature until the fifth century BC, but he is widely praised as an inventor, artist, and architect, though classical sources disagree on which inventions exactly are attributable to him.

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Daedalus is said to have carved statues so spirited they appeared to be living and moving.

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Daedalus gave his name, eponymously, to many Greek craftsmen and many Greek contraptions and inventions that represented dextrous skill.

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Pausanias claims that Daedalus was not the name given to the inventor at birth, but that he was named so later after the daedala.

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Daedalus was so proud of his achievements that he could not bear the idea of a rival.

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Daedalus's sister had placed her son under his charge to be taught the mechanical arts as an apprentice.

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Daedalus's nephew is named variously as Perdix, Talos, or Calos, although some sources say that Perdix was the name of Daedalus' sister.

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Daedalus put two pieces of iron together, connecting them at one end with a rivet, and sharpening the other ends, and made a pair of compasses.

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Daedalus was so envious of his nephew's accomplishments that he attempted to murder him by throwing him down from the Acropolis in Athens.

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Daedalus created the Labyrinth on Crete, in which the Minotaur was kept.

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Daedalus built a hollow, wooden cow, covered in real cow hide for Pasiphae, so she could mate with the bull.

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Ovid, in his Metamorphoses, suggests that Daedalus constructed the Labyrinth so cunningly that he himself could barely escape it after he built it.

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Since Minos controlled the land routes as well, Daedalus set to work to make wings for himself and his son Icarus.

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When both were prepared for flight, Daedalus warned Icarus not to fly too high, because the heat of the sun would melt the wax and the wings would break, nor too low, because the sea foam would soak the feathers and make them heavy and he would fall.

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Daedalus presented a spiral seashell and asked for a string to be run through it.

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When he reached Camicus, King Cocalus, knowing Daedalus would be able to solve the riddle, accepted the shell and gave it to Daedalus.

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Daedalus tied the string to an ant which, lured by a drop of honey at one end, walked through the seashell stringing it all the way through.

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