ὁ ἡμέτερος πρόγονος Ἀ. Asclepius in Homer is not more than ἰητὴρ ἀμύμων: in Pindar (Pyth. III.) and later poets he is the son of Apollo and Coronis. The earliest seats of his worship seem to have been Thessaly and Boeotia, and his cult, as a “chthonic” and “mantic” deity, may have its roots in a primitive ophiolatry (see Rohde, Psyche I. 141 ff.). Cp. Orph. Fr. 272 διὸ καὶ οἱ θεολόγοι τὴν μὲν εἰς Ἀσκληπιὸν ἀναφέρουσιν ὑγίειαν τὴν ἰατρικὴν πᾶσαν τῶν παρὰ φύσιν κτλ. Also Orph. H. 67, addressed to A. as Ἰητὴρ πάντων, Ἀσκληπιέ, δέσποτα παιάν κτλ. The Asclepiadae were a recognized medical guild, with hereditary traditions; their most famous schools were at Cos and Cnidus, for which see the account in Gomperz G. T. (E. tr.) vol. I. pp. 275 ff.: cp. Phaedrus 270 C (with Thompson's note). οἵδε οἱ ποιηταὶ. The “deictic” οἵδε points to the presence of Aristophanes and Agathon.
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