The legendary food of the gods. It conferred immortality, and was served to them by Hebe and Ganymede, and was brought up by doves.

In Homer, ambrosia was the food of the immortals and nectar their drink. Sappho and Anaxandrides, however, spoke of ambrosia as the drink of the gods and of nectar as the food.

The name has been said to come from the Greek a, privative, brotos, "mortal." Eating the food made the gods not mortal, i.e. immortal. However, the connection might be coincidental.



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  • Leach, Maria, ed. (1984). Funk & Wagnalls Standard Dictionary of Folklore, Mythology, and Legend. New York: HarperCollins.