Nectar was the drink of the immortal gods, according to the early Greek poets, and was served around to them by the hands of Hebe or Ganymede. It is confounded by some of the ancient writers with ambrosia, the food of the gods. Thus Sappho and Alcman make nectar the food of the gods, and ambrosia their drink. But nectar is the name given by Homer, Hesiod, Pindar, and the Greek poets generally, and by the Romans, to the beverage of the gods. Homer describes nectar as resembling red wine, and represents its continued use as causing immortality. By the later poets, nectar and ambrosia are represented as of most delicious odor; and sprinkling with nectar, or anointing with ambrosia, is spoken of as conferring perpetual youth, and these acts are assumed as the symbols of everything most delightful to the taste.

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