In his grief on account of Ariadne, Theseus forgot to spread white sails on his ship when he stood for port; and Aegeus, seeing from the acropolis the ship with a black sail, supposed that Theseus had perished; so he cast himself down and died.1
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1 Compare Diod. 4.61.6ff.; Plut. Thes. 22; Paus. 1.22.5; Hyginus, Fab. 43; Serv. Verg. A. 3.74; Scriptores rerum mythicarum Latini, ed. Bode, i. p. 117 （Second Vatican Mythographer 125）. The three Latin writers say that Aegeus threw himself into the sea, which was hence called the Aegean after him. The Greek writers say that he cast himself down from the rock of the acropolis. Pausanius describes the exact point from which he fell, to wit the lofty bastion at the western end of the acropolis, on which in after ages the elegant little temple of Wingless Victory stood and still stands. It commands a wonderful view over the ports of Athens and away across the sea to Aegina and the coast of Peloponnese, looming clear and blue through the diaphanous Attic air in the far distance. A better look out the old man could not have chosen from which to watch, with straining eyes, for the white or scarlet sail of his returning son.
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