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Laocoon

[La-ok'-o-on ]. A son of Priam, famous for the tragic fate of himself and his two sons, who were crushed to death by serpents. The group representing these three in their death agony, now in the Vatican, was discovered in 1506, on the Esquiline Hill (Rome). It is a single block of marble, and was the work of Agesander of Rhodes and two other sculptors. Thomson has described the group in his Liberty, pt. iv. (Virgil Æneid, ii. 40 etc., 212 etc.)

The miserable sire,
Wrapped with his sons in Fate's severest grasp
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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