Red Lotus by Paul Heussenstamm

Today the modern cult of Antinous celebrates the Festival of the Red Lotus. 

The red Nile lotus is said to have sprung from drops of blood that fell from a man-eating lion slain by the Emperor Hadrian while on his tour of Libya in 130 CE. The death of Antinous in the Nile occurred some time later, during the visit of the Imperial entourage to Egypt. 

The red lotus has been associated with Antinous ever since his death. Because the lotus closes at night and sinks under the water, and re-emerges in the morning to bloom again, it is a symbol of rebirth that is especially appropriate for Antinous.


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