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Pherekydes of Athens 3F146 – Die Fragmente der griechischen Historiker 1, p. 97, ed. F. Jacoby, 2d ed. Leiden 1957.

SCHOL. SOPHOKL. OK 472:  the reference of a ‘dexterous man’ is to Daidalos, about whom Pherekydes speaks thus: Daidalos was born to Metion son of Erechtheus and Iphinoe, from whom the people at Athens are called Daidalidai. (Transl. Mary Emerson)  Greek Text

Bakchylides, Dithyrambs 26.5-7 – Bacchylidis Carmina cum fragmentis, p. 77, ed. B. Snell and H. Maehler. Leipzig 1970.

Hyginus, Fabulae 39

DAEDALUS: Daedalus, son of Eupalamus, who is said to have received the art of craftsmanship from Athena, threw down from the roof Perdix, son of his sister, envying his skill, because he first invented the saw. Because of this crime he went into exile from Athens to Crete to King Minos.  Latin Text

Diodoros Siculus, Library of History 4.76.1

Daedalus was an Athenian by birth and was known as one of the clan named Erechthids, since he was the son of Metion, the son of Eupalamus, the son of Erechtheus.   Greek Text

Apollodoros, Bibliotheke (library3.15.8

The labyrinth was constructed by Daedalus, whose father was Eupalamus, son of Metion, and whose mother was Alcippe.  Greek Text

Apollodorus, Bibliotheke (Library3.15.1

When Pandion died, his sons divided their father’s inheritance between them, and Erechtheus got the kingdom, and Butes got the priesthood of Athena and Poseidon Erechtheus. Erechtheus married Praxithea, daughter of Phrasimus by Diogenia, daughter of Cephisus, and had sons, to wit, Cecrops, Pandorus, and Metion; and daughters, to wit, Procris, Creusa, Chthonia, and Orithyia, who was carried off by Boreas.  Greek Text

Sophokles, Kamikoi fr 323 R – Tragicorum Graecorum Fragmenta 4, p. 310, ed. S.L. Radt. Göttingen 1977.

Named after a bird, the partridge [perdix], he came among the famous hills of the Athenians (Transl. Nick Gardner)

Diodoros Siculus, Library of History 4.76.4-7

But though Daedalus was an object of admiration because of his technical skill, yet he had to flee from his native land, since he had been condemned for murder for the following reason. Talos, a son of the sister of Daedalus, was receiving his education in the home of Daedalus, while he was still a lad in years. [5] But being more gifted than his teacher he invented the potter’s wheel, and then, when once he had come by chance upon a jawbone of a snake and with it had sawn through a small piece of wood, he tried to imitate the jaggedness of the serpent’s teeth. Consequently he fashioned a saw out of iron, by means of which he would saw the lumber which he used in his work, and for this accomplishment he gained the reputation of having discovered a device which would be of great service to the art of building. He likewise discovered also the tool for describing a circle and certain other cunningly contrived devices whereby he gained for himself great fame. [6] But Daedalus, becoming jealous of the youth and feeling that his fame was going to rise far above that of his teacher, treacherously slew the youth. And being detected in the act of burying him, he was asked what he was burying, whereupon he replied, “I am inhuming a snake.” Here a man may well wonder at the strange happening, that the same animal that led to the thought of devising the saw should also have been the means through which the murder came to be discovered. [7] And Daedalus, having been accused and adjudged guilty of murder by the court of the Areopagites, at first fled to one of the demes of Attica, the inhabitants of which, we are told, were named after him Daedalidae.   Greek Text

Apollodoros, Bibliotheke (Library3.15.8

The labyrinth was constructed by Daedalus, whose father was Eupalamus, son of Metion, and whose mother was Alcippe; for he was an excellent architect and the first inventor of images. He had fled from Athens, because he had thrown down from the acropolis Talos, the son of his sister Perdix; for Talos was his pupil, and Daedalus feared that with his talents he might surpass himself, seeing that he had sawed a thin stick with a jawbone of a snake which he had found. But the corpse was discovered; Daedalus was tried in the Areopagus, and being condemned fled to Minos. And there Pasiphae having fallen in love with the bull of Poseidon, Daedalus acted as her accomplice by contriving a wooden cow, and he constructed the labyrinth, to which the Athenians every year sent seven youths and as many damsels to be fodder for the Minotaur.  Greek Text

Pausanias, Description of Greece 1.21.4

On the way to the Athenian Acropolis from the theater is the tomb of Calos. Daedalus murdered this Calos, who was his sister’s son and a student of his craft, and therefore he fled to Crete; afterwards he escaped to Cocalus in Sicily.  Greek Text

Clement of Alexandria, Protrepticus 4.47

Do not, then, entertain any doubt, that of the gods called at Athens venerable, Scopas made two of the stone called Lychnis, and Calos the one which they are reported to have had placed between them, as Polemon shows in the fourth of his books addressed to Timæus.  Greek Text

Ovid, Metamorphoses 8.236-59

He found the body on an island shore,
now called Icaria, and at once prepared
to bury the unfortunate remains;
but while he labored a pert partridge near,
observed him from the covert of an oak,
and whistled his unnatural delight.

Know you the cause? ‘Twas then a single bird,
the first one of its kind. ‘Twas never seen
before the sister of Daedalus had brought
him Perdix, her dear son, to be his pupil.
And as the years went by the gifted youth
began to rival his instructor’s art.

He took the jagged backbone of a fish,
and with it as a model made a saw,
with sharp teeth fashioned from a strip of iron.
And he was first to make two arms of iron,
smooth hinged upon the center, so that one
would make a pivot while the other, turned,
described a circle. Wherefore Daedalus
enraged and envious, sought to slay the youth
and cast him headlong from Minerva’s fane,—
then spread the rumor of an accident.

But Pallas, goddess of ingenious men,
saving the pupil changed him to a bird,
and in the middle of the air he flew
on feathered wings; and so his active mind—
and vigor of his genius were absorbed
into his wings and feet; although the name
of Perdix was retained.

The Partridge hides
in shaded places by the leafy trees
its nested eggs among the bush’s twigs;
nor does it seek to rise in lofty flight,
for it is mindful of its former fall.  Latin Text

Hyginus, Fabulae 39

DAEDALUS: Daedalus, son of Eupalamus, who is said to have received the art of craftsmanship from Athena, threw down from the roof Perdix, son of his sister, envying his skill, because he first invented the saw. Because of this crime he went into exile from Athens to Crete to King Minos.  Latin Text

Photios, Lexicon – Photii Patriarchae Lexicon, Vol. 2, p. 76, ed S. A. Naber. 1865.

Greek Text

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Edited by Nick Gardner, Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Classics, Univ. of Georgia, April 24, 2016.

Updated by Elena Bianchelli, Retired Senior Lecturer of Classical Languages and Culture, Univ. of Georgia, April 2023

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