Fame at Any Cost…


Today in History, July 21: 356 – “Fame at any cost”. The Ephesians had built the Temple of Artemis (Diana in Greek) to honor the goddess. It made it’s home of Epheus (in modern day Turkey) famous, being one of the 7 wonders of the world. It would be destroyed and rebuilt at least 3 times, first by flood, then by arson, and then by war. The second time, it had just been rebuilt when an arsonist set fire to the timbers supporting it’s roof, destroying it again. When captured, the arsonist admitted openly that he had committed the act to secure his name in history. It was ruled that he would be put to death, his name was not to be spoken on pain of death, and his name was removed from all records. He got his wish, however, when the historian Theopompus recorded his name in the next century. Thus we have the term Herostratic Fame…fame at any cost.

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