Study Guide

Commendation: The Golden Feather

Case Description: The International Society of Aeronautics awards Daedalus with its highest commendation, the Golden Feather, for being the first inventor to successfully achieve manpowered flight. Daedalus crafted his wings of feathers and wax so that he and his son, Icarus, could escape the tower in which King Minos had imprisoned them. Unfortunately, Icarus died as father and son were gliding across the Mediterranean. Daedalus was not faulted in this incident, however, as Icarus did not heed his father's warnings to not fly too close to the sun. When Icarus disobeyed and flew too high, the wax of the wings melted, and he plummeted to his death in the sea.