Icarus (Greek: Ἴκαρος, Íkaros, Etruscan: Vikare) is the son of Daedalus in Greek mythology. The main and most well-known story involving Icarus is the tale of his attempt to escape Crete with wings crafted by his father. Daedalus warned him not to fly too close to the Sun, but he ignored the advice and fell out of the sky causing his death. Today, Icarus is seen as the mythical pioneer in Greece's attempt to conquer the skies and the Hellenic Air Force Academy is named after him.
Daedalus, Icarus's father, who was a remarkable Athenian craftsman who was exiled in the palace of Knossos by King Minos. He was exiled because of his involvement in helping Theseus, who survived the Labyrinth and defeated the Minotaur. He had given Minos's daughter, Ariadne, a ball of string (clew), which she used to help Theseus, Minos's enemy.
Along with himself, Icarus was also imprisoned. Daedalus fashioned a pair of wings for his son and him, which they attempted to use to escape. Icarus was warned not to fly too close to the Sun, nor too close to the water. However, Icarus ignored his father's words and flew too close to the Sun. The wax on his wings melted from the Sun's heat and it caused Icarus to fall and die. The sea in which he fell in became known as the Icarian Sea.
Hellenistic writers give the tale variants, which has Icarus escape from Crete via boat provided by Pasiphaë. Daedalus had constructed the first sails for the boat. Icarus when en route to Sicily fell into the water and
drowned. Heracles erected a tomb for him.
In Popular Culture
- Icarus appears in the hit video game God of War II. He is killed by Kratos who later uses his wings.
- Icarus' wings make an appearance as available equipment in the video game Hero of Sparta II.
- He is the star of a nintendo game series known as Kid Icarus.
In Video games