Throughout nearly all of antiquity, the legendary Greek physician, Asclepius, son of Apollo and Coronis, was not only the primary representative of divine healing, but also so influential in the religious life of later centuries that, as Emma J. Edelstein and Ludwig Edelstein point out, "in the final stages of paganism, of all genuinely Greek gods, [he] was judged the foremost antagonist of Christ." Providing an overview of all facets of the Asclepius phenomenon, this book, first published in two volumes in 1945, comprises a unique collection of the literary references and inscriptions in ancient texts—given in both the original and translation—to the deity, his life, his deeds, his cult, and his temples, as well as an extended analysis of them.
"It will remain the cornerstone for future study." -- Philosophical Review
"A useful and scholarly work which in certain respects makes considerable contributions to our knowledge and appreciation of Asclepius." -- Martin P. Nilsson, American Journal of Philology
Emma J. Edelstein (1904-1958), a classical scholar, received her doctorate from the University of Heidelberg in 1933. She is the author of Xenophontisches und platonisches bild des Sokrates. Ludwig Edelstein (1902-1965), professor of classics, philosophy, and the history of medicine, taught at the Johns Hopkins University, the University of Washington, the University of California, and the Rockefeller Institute (later Rockefeller University). He is the author of The Hippocratic Oath: Text, Translation, Interpretation, The Idea of Progress in Classical Antiquity, and The Meaning of Stoicism. Gary Ferngren is professor of history at Oregon State University.