was the Greek god of medicine and healing (called Aesculapius in Rome). He was
the son of Apollo and the nymph Coronis according to legend, but most probably a
mortal who originally practiced healing in the area of Trikkala on the
Thessalian plain of central Greece and came later to be considered a god.
He’s most famous sanctuary was
located in Epidaurus. The temples of Asclepios are always associated with sacred
springs, whose waters carried the healing powers of the Earth.
The main attribute of Asclepius
is a physician's staff with an Asclepian snake wrapped around it; this is how he
was distinguished in the art of healing, and his attribute still survives to
this day as the symbol of the modern medical profession.
Shown as a venerable old man with thick
and wavy hair and a heavy beard, he wears his himation or cloak in the style
worn by learned teachers in the fouth and fifth centuries B.C., leaving most of
the breast uncovered.
The cock was also sacred to Asclepius
as was the bird sacrificed at his altar. It is said that Hippocrates was a
descendant of Asclepios. The top two statues are reproductions of a marble
original found in the Temple of Asclepios at Epidauros.
This Hippocratic Oath Wall Relief shows the famous hippocratic oath developed by
Hippocrates in Ancient Greece. The oath reads as follows:
I swear by Apollo Physician and Asclepios and Hygieia and Panacea and all the
gods and goddesses, making them my witnesses, that I will fulfill according to
my ability and judgment this oath and this covenant:
To hold him who has taught me this art as equal
to my parents and to live my life in partnership with him, and if he is in need
of money to give him a share of mine, and to regard his offspring as equal to my
brothers in male lineage and to teach them this art - if they desire to learn it
- without fee and covenant; to give a share of precepts and oral instruction and
all the other learning to my sons and to the sons of him who has instructed me
and to pupils who have signed the covenant and have taken an oath according to
the medical law, but no one else. I will apply dietetic measures for the benefit
of the sick according to my ability and judgment; I will keep them from harm and
injustice. I will neither give a deadly drug to anybody who asked for it, nor
will I make a suggestion to this effect. Similarly I will not give to a woman an
abortive remedy. In purity and holiness I will guard my life and my art.
antiquated for a Goddess site, but there you have it.)