Hygeia, Asclepius, and the Ancient Greek Deities of Healing

Video

Kelly Macquire
by
published on 07 February 2023

Apollo, although the god of medicine, wasn't the only deity in Greek mythology associated with healing, with many different deities in Ancient Greece including Hygeia and Asclepius, having responsibilities in the realms of healing, medicine, and health. Asclepius, under the tutelage of Chiron, excelled in the arts of medicine and healing. He could heal wounds made by bronze weapons and stones, and could heal limbs ravaged by the sun's heat or the cold of winter. He could remedy pain and affliction with soothing balms and draughts, and with songs or incantations.

Asclepius had numerous children, all with responsibilities in the realm of medicine and healing. According to Homer in his Iliad, Asclepius was the father of two mortals who were both powerful healers and fought in the Trojan War, Podalirius and Machaeon, although their mother isn’t mentioned. With his wife Epione, the goddess of soothing pain, Asclepius was the father of five daughters who, collectively, are known as the Asclepiades; Iaso, Aigle, Panakeia, Akeso, and Hygeia, although Hygeia is sometimes referred to as Asclepius’ wife, not daughter.

Both Asclepius and Hygeia had cults dedicated to them in antiquity as deities of healing and health. Hygeia was venerated in Athens and linked with Athena as Athena Hygeia, and a statue of the goddess was mounted on the Acropolis. Asclepius was particularly venerated at the sanctuary of Epidaurus called the Asklepieion which was founded in the 6th century BCE. This sanctuary was visited by people from all over Greece and was the most important healing centre in the ancient world.

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— CHAPTERS —
0:00​ Introduction
0:56 Apollo and Asclepius
3:10 The Asclepiades
5:20 The Worship of Asclepius and Hygeia
7:32 Outro

— WANT TO KNOW MORE? —
Asclepius https://www.worldhistory.org/Asclepius/
Hygeia, The Goddess of Health https://www.worldhistory.org/article/253/hygieia-the-goddess-of-health/
Ancient Greek Medicine
https://www.worldhistory.org/Greek_Medicine/
Greek Mythology https://www.worldhistory.org/Greek_Mythology/

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— ATTRIBUTIONS —
You can find all attribution and credits for images, animations, graphics and music here - https://worldhistory.typehut.com/hygeia-asclepius-and-the-ancient-greek-deities-of-healing-images-and-attributions-14441

The music used in this recording is the intellectual copyright of Michael Levy, a prolific composer for the recreated lyres of antiquity, and used with the creator's permission. Michael Levy's music is available to stream at all the major digital music platforms. Find out more on:
https://www.ancientlyre.com
https://open.spotify.com/artist/7Dx2vFEg8DmOJ5YCRm4A5v?si=emacIH9CRieFNGXRUyJ9
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ1X6F7lGMEadnNETSzTv8A

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#hygeia #asclepius #greekmythology

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About the Author

Kelly Macquire
Kelly is a graduate from Monash University who has completed her BA (Honours) in Ancient History and Archaeology, focussing on iconography and status in Pylos burials. She has a passion for mythology and the Aegean Bronze Age.

Cite This Work

APA Style

Macquire, K. (2023, February 07). Hygeia, Asclepius, and the Ancient Greek Deities of Healing. World History Encyclopedia. Retrieved from https://www.worldhistory.org/video/2907/hygeia-asclepius-and-the-ancient-greek-deities-of/

Chicago Style

Macquire, Kelly. "Hygeia, Asclepius, and the Ancient Greek Deities of Healing." World History Encyclopedia. Last modified February 07, 2023. https://www.worldhistory.org/video/2907/hygeia-asclepius-and-the-ancient-greek-deities-of/.

MLA Style

Macquire, Kelly. "Hygeia, Asclepius, and the Ancient Greek Deities of Healing." World History Encyclopedia. World History Encyclopedia, 07 Feb 2023. Web. 25 Feb 2024.

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