Half-man half-bull, all awesome. I’m sure you’re all familiar with his labyrinth tenure, but the Minotaur’s story actually begins with King Minos of Crete. After he ascended to the throne, Minos prayed to Poseidon, beseeching him to send a white bull as a sign of his good will and approval. Minos was supposed to sacrifice the bull in honour of Poseidon and the ancient Greek custom of re-gifting, but Minos thought the bull was just too handsome to give up.
Poseidon is a lot of things, but a push-over isn’t one of them. In response to this slight he had Aphrodite make Minos’ wife fall in love with the bull, and not just in the way your girlfriend “loves” cats either. Pasiphae was so into ol’ Ferdinand that she had a hollow wooden cow constructed. She then climbed inside her clever disguise and then bull and woman consummated their forbidden love. Mere mortals cannot comprehend how awkward this must have made things between Minos and Pasiphae.
The moral of this story is NEVER mess with Poseidon. His tricks put him right at the top of the “creative vengeance” list with legends like Zeus and Van Wilder.
The product of this icky passion was the monstrous Minotaur. It was an unnatural being, and as such could not be sustained by natural means. It gave up on nursing pretty quickly and developed a taste for man-flesh. The beast was so dangerous that under the advice of the oracle at Delphi, king Minos commissioned Daedalus to construct the infamous labyrinth. Within the many twists and turns of the maze dwelt the mighty Minotaur, feeding on the sacrifices of Athenian youths until his famed battle with Theseus.
Stay tuned for the exciting conclusion called: “The Story of Theseus: A demi-god who tolerates no Bull-sh*t” next time on, By The Gods!