What is a Minotaur?


Man-eating Monster

The Minotaur of Greek legend was a man-eating monster with the head of a bull and the body of a man.

The Minotaur (pronounced MIN O TAWR) was a mythical monster with the head of a bull and the body of a man.

One of the myths of ancient Greece told that King Minos of Crete, an island in the Mediterranean Sea, kept the Minotaur imprisoned in a labyrinth—a winding maze of passageways from which no one could escape.

It happened that Androgeos, son of King Minos, was killed by the people in a town in Greece.  As a punishment King Minos sacrificed seven Greek youths and seven maidens each year to the Minotaur (who ate them).  The Greek hero Theseus, at last, killed the Minotaur and escaped from the labyrinth by following a thread.

Nowadays, we do not believe in myths.  But there probably was a King Minos.  And it so happens that the ruins of an ancient palace on the island of Crete has so many winding passageways that it resembles the legendary labyrinth!–Dick Rogers

1 Comment

  1. The original Minotaur of Greek mythology actually had a name – Asterius. He was the love-child of Pasiphae, the Queen of Crete and… a bull. Which explains why he had the head of a bull and the body of a man. (In most descriptions of later minotaurs, they also have the legs and tail of a bull, as well as the head, but the original Minotaur seemed to just have the head of a bull.) Naturally, the king was not exactly thrilled that his wife banged a bull and gave him a mutant step-son, but it was pretty much his fault to begin with.

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