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"Daughter of the Healing God, Aeclepiadae; fair and just Hygiea, you who prevents sickness, who grants us good health. You hold back the snakes that plague us. Their poison cannot taint us. Their fangs cannot bite us. All venom turns to sweet honey in sight of you. We honor you divine one."
―Inscription on Hygieia's statue.[src]
ACO Statue of Hygieia

Statue of Hygieia within a shrine

Hygieia was a daughter of Asklepios and the goddess of health, cleanliness and hygiene in Greek and Roman mythology.

History

5th century BCE

During the 5th century BCE statues of Hygieia, as well as other gods, littered the landscape of ancient Greece.[1]

1st century BCE

In the 1st century BCE, a shrine containing her statue was erected in the Green Mountains region of Libya. Unfortunately, the place was plagued by snakes.[2]

Behind the scenes

Aesclepiadae is a term used to refer to a group of people following Asclepius; in mythology, 'Aesclepiadae' includes all the sons and daughters of Asclepius. Among humans, the term was used of physicians, banding them together as a "clan of Aesclepiadae".[3]

The statue used in Assassin's Creed: Origins for Hygieia is based on Pietro Bazzanti's 19th century sculpture of the Greek goddess Hebe. In the same game, the same statue was used for Cyrene, and for Demeter and Nemesis in Assassin's Creed: Odyssey.

In Assassin's Creed: Odyssey, the relief featuring Asklepios and Hygieia feeding snakes is based on a Roman marble relief from 2nd century AD, making its presence anachronistic. The relief featuring Asklepios, Hygieia, and people with a bull is based on Pentelic marble sculpture from 4th century BCE.

Gallery

Appearances

References

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