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When all was prepared for flight he said, "Icarus, my son, I charge you to keep at a moderate height, for if you fly too low the damp will clog your wings, and if too high the heat will melt them.
I will try that way." So he set to work to fabricate wings for himself and his young son Icarus.
He wrought feathers together, beginning with the smallest and adding larger, so as to form an increasing surface.
The nearness of the blazing sun softened the wax which held the feathers together, and they came off.
He fluttered with his arms, but no feathers remained to hold the air.
He contrived to make his escape from his prison, but could not leave the island by sea, as the king kept strict watch on all the vessels, and permitted none to sail without being carefully searched.
"Minos may control the land and sea," said Daedalus, "but not the regions of the air.Travel between the extremes.” Out of youthful impetuousness, Icarus defies his father, flies too close to the sun which melts his wings of wax, causing him to plunge to his death in the sea below.Youthful exuberance and energy must be balanced and tempered.When at last the work was done, the artist, waving his wings, found himself buoyed upward, and hung suspended, poising himself on the beaten air.He next equipped his son in the same manner and taught him how to fly, as a bird tempts her young ones from the lofty nest into the air.If you fly too low, the sea’s mist will dampen the feathers that give you lift.Instead, aim for the middle course and avoid extremes.” However, Icarus was exhilarated by his newfound power of flight.It was an edifice with numberless winding passages and turnings opening into one another, and seeming to have neither beginning nor end, like the river Maeander, which returns on itself, and flows now onward, now backward, in its course to the sea.Daedalus built the labyrinth for King Minos, but afterwards lost the favour of the king, and was shut up in a tower.The larger ones he secured with thread and the smaller with wax, and gave the whole a gentle curvature like the wings of a bird.Icarus, the boy, stood and looked on, sometimes running to gather up the feathers which the wind had blown away, and then handling the wax and working it over with his fingers, by his play impeding his father in his labours.