Icarus, Daedalus And Sicily

Icarus got carried away with the ability to fly. His father Daedalus, an inventor, craftsman, and artist, created two sets of wings for Icarus and himself to escape imprisonment in Crete. Daedalus instructed Icarus not to fly too high and not to fly too low: The heat of the sun would melt the wax holding the feathers of the wings together and the water from the sea would soak the feathers, rendering them too heavy to fly. But alas, sons don’t always listen to their fathers, and regretfully, Icarus flew too high, which melted his wings. He fell to his death in the sea.

This statue (pictured) at the sculpture garden of Teatro Andromeda in Agrigento province illustrates Icarus’ sad fate.

Daedalus and Icarus’ legend from ancient Greek mythology is significant in Agrigento and its environs because it is believed that Daedalus used his wings to successfully fly west and arrive at this area of Sicily where at Kamikos, he met the powerful Sicanian king Kokalos.

Daedalus was a smart guy, therefore good to have around. King Kokalos (also a smart guy) understood this, so when Minos (The King from the labyrinth of the Minotaur, who had imprisoned Daedalus back in Crete) came looking for the inventor, Kokalos with the help of his daughters, snuffed out Minos in a bath of steamy boiling water. Our cunning hero Daedalus remained at Kamikos, which is believed to be the modern hilltop town of Sant’Angelo Muxaro (AG).

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