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The Wings of Icarus


"Daedalus lived on the ancient Greek island of Crete with his son Icarus. Daedalus could build anything. But Icarus was not as brilliant as his father.

One day, the king heard that Daedalus had done some work for one of the king's enemies. The king was very angry. He ordered Daedalus and his son imprisoned. So Daedalus and his son Icarus were locked in the labyrinth, from which there is no escape.

Fortunately, the king forgot that Daedalus had built the labyrinth, a kind of maze, and knew how to get out. So Daedalus and Icarus escaped.

The king called for his guards, who chased after them. Daedalus and Icarus were still trapped on the island. They could not get away by walking, and the king's ships guarded the sea. Icarus said, "If only we could fly, we could escape!"

Icarus' Flight

Then Daedalus had an idea. "We will escape by flying! I shall build wings!" he said. And so the amazing Daedalus worked hard, sewing each feather with string. He held the wings together with wax.

By evening, the wings were ready. Icarus tested his wings . . . and they worked! "Look at me! I'm flying!" cried Icarus.

But Daedalus had a warning for his son. "Tomorrow, do not fly too close to the water, or the dampness will make your wings heavy. And do not fly too close to the sun, or the heat will melt your wings. Make sure to follow me, and everything will be fine."

Icarus' Fall The next morning, Daedalus flew a safe path between the sea and the sun. Icarus was following his father but flew higher and higher. "Look how high I can fly!" sang Icarus. He didn't notice that the sun was melting the wax on his wings.

Daedalus yelled, "Icarus, my son! Your wings! They're melting!" But Icarus was too high to hear him. He flew higher, and higher, and higher. His wings melted completely.

Icarus realized he had made a mistake, but it was too late. He fell into the sea! He didn't listen to his father's warnings, so that was the end of Icarus."


"The legend of Icarus can be taken as a fable, a story with a moral, a warning about defying our place in nature under the surveillance of god(s). By the way...which was first, Icarus fall or Adam and Eve's fall from Eden ?
But contrary to what it might seem, that message is not a matter of the past. We are reminded from time to time of the dangers lurking behind our technologies." (source)

"Hubris (hybris): -Arrogance; excessive self-pride and self-confidence. Hubris, a Greek term for insolence, referred to the emotions in Greek tragic heroes that led them ignore warnings from the gods and thus invite catastrophe."

Icarus flew too high, he came too close the gods in his self-pride and self-confidence(hubris), and was punished!

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