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date: 22 September 2023



  • Emily Kearns


  • Greek Myth and Religion

Talos (Τάλως‎‎) (1) was an animated bronze man, in the usual account made by Hephaestus to guard Europa; later the guardian of Crete. There are several variant accounts of his origin and function. He kept strangers off by throwing stones (Ap. Rhod. 4. 1638–88), or burned them (Simonides, in Page, PMG568), or heated himself red-hot and clasped them in his arms (Eust. Od. 20. 302). His vital fluid was kept in a magic membrane in his foot; Medea cast him into a magic sleep and cut the membrane, thus killing him. (2) Nephew of Daedalus, sometimes called Kalos or Perdix (the latter is also given as his mother's name). Daedalus was jealous of his inventive talent and so killed him. According to Apollodorus(6) (3. 15. 8), his invention was to make a saw from a snake's jaw-bone.


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  • F. Frontisi-Ducroux, Dédale (1975), 121–134.
  • E. Federico, Annali di archeologia e storia antica (archeol.), 95–120.
  • M. Dickie, PLSS (1990), 267 ff.
  • S. Morris, Daidalos and the Origins of Greek Art (1992), 259–261.
  • Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae 7. 1 (1994), 834–837.
  • R. Buxton in C. Atherton (ed.), Monster and Monstrosity in Greek and Roman Culture (2002), 83–112.