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Memnonides. An account of these birds is given by Aelian (de Anim. Nat., V. 1), who calls them “Μέμνονες”. He says that the Troad is visited every autumn from Parium and Cyzicus by a flock of black birds resembling hawks, but not flesh-eaters. These divide into two bodies at the cenotaph of Memnon (his body was carried by his mother to Susa, the city built by his father Tithonus), and there fight until the half of them are killed, when the rest depart as they came. Pliny (H. N. X. xxvi. 74) gives a similar account, except that the birds are said to come from Ethiopia, where every fifth year they behave in the same way at the palace of Memnon. According to another version of the story, it was Memnon's companions, who, in their grief for his loss, were turned to birds. See Sir G. W. Cox, Introduction to Mythology and Folklore, for an explanation of the story, in connection with which it is to be remembered that the Ethiopians are often mentioned as an Asiatic people. Memnon in some accounts brings an army from India.

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    • Pliny the Elder, Naturalis Historia, 5.1
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