Ibycus

Poet from the Greek city of Rhegium on the very toe of Italy, who lived in the first half of the 6th century BC. When he was offered o become the dictator of the city, he refused and went traveling instead. He ended up on Samos, where he enjoyed life at the court of Polycrates.

Ibycus was known to have a passion for boys, and there is definitely a homosexual stroke in his poetry. Not much of his work has survived, but we know he wrote mythological stories as well as personal love poems.

He also wrote choral poetry, and is said to have invent the victory ode. He had a great love for nature, especially birds, which was to affect his fate in a rather bizarre way: he was attacked and killed by robbers, and as he died, he said that the cranes that flew above their heads would revenge him. The villains went to a nearby village, and soon some cranes flew over the city. One of them then said "look, the avengers of Ibycus", which the crowd heard and apprehended them.


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