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Sarpedon Carried by Messengers Sleep and Death: from Mortality to Immortality?

  • Maria L. Zou
    Affiliations
    Historical Researcher, 2500 Hudson-Aurora Rd, Hudson, OH, 44236-2324, USA
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  • George S. Bause
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author at: 5247 Wilson Mills Rd, No. 282, Cleveland, OH, 44143-3016, USA. Tel.: +1 440 725 0785; fax: +1 888 734 6342.
    Affiliations
    Clinical Associate Professor, Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, 11100 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH, 44106, USA

    Clinical Associate Professor, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine, 2124 Cornell Rd, Cleveland, OH, 44106, USA

    Honorary Curator, American Society of Anesthesiologists' Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology, 1061 American Lane, Schaumburg, IL, 60173-4973, USA
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Published:August 15, 2016DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.janh.2016.06.006
      Dating from ca. 390 BCE (Fig. 1), an Etruscan cista (basket) handle captures a tragic scene from the Trojan War, as described in Book XVI of Homer's Iliad.
      • Pope A
      The Iliad of Homer.
      After a Trojan ally, King Sarpedon of Lykia, was slain in battle, the Achaeans (ancient Greeks) dishonored him by stripping his body and confiscating his bronze armor. They abandoned Sarpedon's naked remains in a pile of blood-covered weapons. Only then did Zeus direct his son, the god Apollo, to recover the corpse from the debris and to wash and dress fallen Lykian King Sarpedon for honorable burial in his native land, where Sarpedon would be immortalized as a demi-god and “quasi-divine” hero.
      • Saraçoğlu A
      Hero concept in the light of Homer's Iliad and the death of Sarpedon, Lycian warrior.
      Fig. 1
      Fig. 1Part of an Etruscan cista (basket) dating back to ca. 390 BCE, this bronze handle features Sleep or Hypnos (left), dead King Sarpedon of Lykia, and Death or Thanatos (right). As recounted in Homer's Iliad, Trojan ally Sarpedon was slain by Patroclus, friend of Greek hero Achilles.
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      References

        • Pope A
        The Iliad of Homer.
        vol. 4. T. Johnson, London, UK1719: 87-120
        • Saraçoğlu A
        Hero concept in the light of Homer's Iliad and the death of Sarpedon, Lycian warrior.
        Anadolu/Anatolia. 2005; 29: 57-79
        • Pope A
        An essay on criticism.
        W. Lewis, London, UK1711: 14