Sarpedon (in classical Greek: Σαρπηδών; romaniz.: Sarpédon) was the son of Evander (or Zeus, according to some authors) and Deidamia (or Laodamia), daughter of Bellerophon. Her mortal father was Evander, son of Sarpedon, son of Zeus and Europa. Bellerophon was married to Philonoe, daughter of Iobates, king of Lycia.
He was king of the region of Lycia bordered by the River Scamander and was known as being a just and valorous man. During the Trojan War, he assisted Priam with numerous troops and was one of the most intrepid defenders of Troy.
Sarpedon was said to be of gigantic stature. One day he advanced toward Patroclus, who was crushing the Trojans on the battlefield, and wanted to confront him.
Zeus, seeing that his son was near death in the face of his adversary's efforts, took pity on Sarpedon; knowing that his destiny at that moment was to die, he wished to elude Fate and keep him from death for once. At the cost of Hera's rebuke, Zeus finally agreed to let him fall to the ground, but at the same time he rained down blood on the ground to honor the death of his beloved son.
As soon as Sarpedon was killed, the Achaeans and Trojans fought over Sarpedon's spoils, after Glaucus was incited to fight by the Trojans, and Patroclus by the Greeks. The latter succeeded only in transporting Sarpedon's weapons to their ships.
Apollo, by order of Zeus, came to fetch the warrior's body from the battlefield, washed it in the waters of the Scamander, anointed it with ambrosia, dressed it in immortal robes, and left it in the hands of Hypnos (Sleep) and Tânatus (Death), who promptly transported it to Lycia, in the midst of his people.