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Minotaur



Depiction of Theseus slaying the Minotaur on a vase
Depiction of Theseus slaying the Minotaur on a vase
One of the more unlikely conceptions of Greek mythology, the offspring of Pasiphaë and a bull, for which she had developed a passion, gratified through the contrivance of Poseidon. The queen placed herself in an artificial cow made by Daedalus, and so became the mother of the monster, half-man half-bull, a man with a bull's head. Minos, the husband of Pasiphaë, shut him up in the Cnossian Labyrinth, and there fed him with the seven youths and seven maidens, whom Athens was obliged t supply at fixed periods, as a tribute, until Theseus, with the help of Ariadne, slew the monster.


Related entry

   • Theseus and the Minotaur (Encyclopedia of Science)