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Listed 100 (total found 145) sub titles with search on: Mythology for wider area of: "CRETE Island GREECE" .


Mythology (145)

Ancient myths

DIKTI (Mountain) LASSITHI

The Birth of Zeus

  Many ancient myths are associated with Crete. According to one, Gaia (Mother Earth)emerged from Chaos and bore Uranus as she slept. Uranus (the sky) fathered several children, among them the seven Titans. The last of them, Kronos, married his sister Rhea. It was prophesied by Mother Earth and Uranus that one of Kronos’ sons would dethrone him. Kronos swallowed the children whole that Rhea bore each year, among them were Estia, Dimitra, Hera, Hades and Poseidon. When Rhea bore Zeus, Mother Earth hid him in the Spileo Dicteon Andron on Lassithi Plateau of Crete. Kronos believed that he had swallowed Zeus, but, in fact, he had swallowed a stone given to him by Rhea to trick him and spare this son.
   Zeus was raised by the nymph Adrasteia, her sister Io, and the goat-nymph Amalthia. The Kuretes clashed their spears against their shields to conceal the noise of the wailing baby. Zeus was nursed by the shepherds of the Nida Plateau in the Psiloritis (Idi) Mountains and lived in a cave, Spileo Ideon Andron on the Nida Plateau. He then approached Rhea and with her help made Kronos drink an emetic poison mixed with a honeyed drink. Kronos vomited up the brothers and sisters of Zeus. Zeus led them in a war against the Titans, which they eventually won.
   The above myths were widely accepted by the ancient world. A truly Cretan variation presents Zeus as dying and being reborn every year. The head of the dead Zeus is seen in the shape of a hill (Youktas) behind Iraklion and it is visible from a long distance as one approaches the city. This myth about Zeus’ death is a continuation and reflection of the beliefs of the ancient Minoans concerning the fertility goddess, who died and was reborn every year.

This text is cited Sep 2002 from the Crete TOURnet URL below, which contains images.


  (Zeus) wedded his sister Rhea; and since both Earth and Sky foretold him that he would be dethroned by his own son, he used to swallow his offspring at birth. His firstborn Hestia he swallowed, then Demeter and Hera, and after them Pluto and Poseidon. (1.1.5)
  Enraged at this, Rhea repaired to Crete, when she was big with Zeus, and brought him forth in a cave of Dicte. She gave him to the Curetes and to the nymphs Adrastia and Ida, daughters of Melisseus, to nurse. (1.1.6)
  So these nymphs fed the child on the milk of Amalthea; and the Curetes in arms guarded the babe in the cave, clashing their spears on their shields in order that Cronus might not hear the child's voice. But Rhea wrapped a stone in swaddling clothes and gave it to Cronus to swallow, as if it were the newborn child. (1.1.7)
  But when Zeus was full-grown, he took Metis, daughter of Ocean, to help him, and she gave Cronus a drug to swallow, which forced him to disgorge first the stone and then the children whom he had swallowed, and with their aid Zeus waged the war against Cronus and the Titans (1.1.8)
Commentary:
1.1.6. -
   According to Hesiod, Rhea gave birth to Zeus in Crete, and the infant god was hidden in a cave of Mount Aegeum (Hes. Th. 468-480). Diod. 5.70 mentions the legend that Zeus was born at Dicte in Crete, and that the god afterwards founded a city on the site. But according to Diodorus, or his authorities, the child was brought up in a cave on Mount Ida. The ancients were not agreed as to whether the infant god had been reared on Mount Ida or Mount Dicte. Apollodorus declares for Dicte, and he is supported by Verg. G. 4.153, Serv. Verg. A. 3.104, and the Vatican Mythographers (Scriptores rerum mythicarum Latini, ed. Bode, i. pp. 34, 79, First Vatican Mythographer 104; Second Vatican Mythographer 16). On the other hand the claim of Mount Ida is favoured by Callimachus, Hymn i.51; Ovid Fasti 4.207; and Lactantius Placidus on Statius, Theb. iv.784. The wavering of tradition on this point is indicated by Apollodorus, who, while he calls the mountain Dicte, names one of the god's nurses Ida
1.1.7. -
   As to the nurture of Zeus by the nymphs, see Callimachus, Hymn 1.46ff.; Diod. 5.70.2ff.; Ovid, Fasti v.111ff.; Hyginus, Fab. 139; Hyginus, Ast. ii.13; Serv. Verg. A. 3.104; Lactantius Placidus on Statius, Theb. iv.784; Scriptores rerum mythicarum Latini, ed. Bode, i. pp. 34, 79 (First Vatican Mythographer 104; Second Vatican Mythographer 16). According to Callimachus, Amalthea was a goat. Aratus also reported, if he did not believe, the story that the supreme god had been suckled by a goat (Strab. 8.7.5), and this would seem to have been the common opinion (Diod. 5.70.3; Hyginus, Ast. ii.13; Second Vatican Mythographer 16). According to one account, his nurse Amalthea hung him in his cradle on a tree ?in order that he might be found neither in heaven nor on earth nor in the sea? (Hyginus, Fab. 139). Melisseus, the father of his nurses Adrastia and Ida, is said to have been a Cretan king (Hyginus, Ast. ii.13); but his name is probably due to an attempt to rationalize the story that the infant Zeus was fed by bees. See Virgil, Geo. 1.149ff. with the note of Serv. Verg. G. 1.153; First Vatican Mythographer 104; Second Vatican Mythographer 16.
   As to the Curetes in their capacity of guardians of the infant Zeus, see Callimachus, Hymn i.52ff.; Strab. 10.3.11; Diod. 5.70, 2-4; Lucretius ii.633-639; Verg. G. 3.150ff.; Ovid, Fasti iv.207ff.; Hyginus, Fab. 139; Serv. Verg. A. 3.104; Lactantius Placidus on Statius, Theb. iv.784; Scriptores rerum mythicarum Latini, ed. Bode, i. pp. 34, 79 (First Vatican Mythographer 104; Second Vatican Mythographer 16). The story of the way in which they protected the divine infant from his inhuman parent by clashing their weapons may reflect a real custom, by the observance of which human parents endeavoured to guard their infants against the assaults of demons. See Folk-Lore in the Old Testament, iii.472ff.
   As to the trick by which Rhea saved Zeus from the maw of his father Cronus, see Hes. Th. 485ff.; Paus. 8.36.3; 9.2.7; 9.41.6; 10.24.6; Ovid, Fasti iv.199-206; Hyginus, Fab. 139; Serv. Verg. A. 3.104; Lactantius Placidus on Statius, Theb. iv.784; Scriptores rerum mythicarum Latini, ed. Bode, i. pp. 34, 79 (First Vatican Mythographer 104; Second Vatican Mythographer 16). The very stone which Cronus swallowed and afterwards spewed out was shown at Delphi down to the second century of our era; oil was daily poured on it, and on festival days unspun wool was laid on it (Paus. 10.24.6). We read that, on the birth of Zeus's elder brother Poseidon, his mother Rhea saved the baby in like manner by giving his father Cronus a foal to swallow, which the deity seems to have found more digestible than the stone, for he is not said to have spat it out again (Paus. 8.8.2). Phalaris, the notorious tyrant of Agrigentum, dedicated in the sanctuary of Lindian Athena in Rhodes a bowl which was enriched with a relief representing Cronus in the act of receiving his children at the hand of Rhea and swallowing them. An inscription on the bowl set forth that it was a present from the famous artist Daedalus to the Sicilian king Cocalus. These things we learn from a long inscription which was found in recent years at Lindus: it contains an inventory of the treasures preserved in the temple of Athena, together with historical notes upon them.

This extract is from: Apollodorus, Library and Epitome (ed. Sir James George Frazer, 1921). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.


  But Rhea was subject in love to Cronos and bore splendid children, Hestia, Demeter, and gold-shod Hera and strong Hades, pitiless in heart, who dwells under the earth, and the loud-crashing Earth-Shaker, and wise Zeus, father of gods and men, by whose thunder the wide earth is shaken. These great Cronos swallowed as each came forth from the womb to his mother's knees with this intent, that no other of the proud sons of Heaven should hold the kingly office amongst the deathless gods. For he learned from Earth and starry Heaven that he was destined to be overcome by his own son, strong though he was, through the contriving of great Zeus. Therefore he kept no blind outlook, but watched and swallowed down his children: and unceasing grief seized Rhea. But when she was about to bear Zeus, the father of gods and men, then she besought her own dear parents, Earth and starry Heaven, to devise some plan with her that the birth of her dear child might be concealed, and that retribution might overtake great, crafty Cronos for his own father and also for the children whom he had swallowed down. And they readily heard and obeyed their dear daughter, and told her all that was destined to happen touching Cronos the king and his stout-hearted son. So they sent her to Lyctus, to the rich land of Crete, when she was ready to bear great Zeus, the youngest of her children. Him did vast Earth receive from Rhea in wide Crete to nourish and to bring up. To that place came Earth carrying him swiftly through the black night to Lyctus first, and took him in her arms and hid him in a remote cave beneath the secret places of the holy earth on thick-wooded Mount Aegeum; but to the mightily ruling son of Heaven, the earlier king of the gods, she gave a great stone wrapped in swaddling clothes. Then he took it in his hands and thrust it down into his belly: wretch! he knew not in his heart that in place of the stone his son was left behind, unconquered and untroubled, and that he was soon to overcome him by force and might and drive him from his honors, himself to reign over the deathless gods.
  After that, the strength and glorious limbs of the prince increased quickly, and as the years rolled on, great Cronos the wily was beguiled by the deep suggestions of Earth, and brought up again his offspring, vanquished by the arts and might of his own son, and he vomited up first the stone which he had swallowed last. And Zeus set it fast in the wide-pathed earth at goodly Pytho under the glens of Parnassus, to be a sign thenceforth and a marvel to mortal men. And he set free from their deadly bonds the brothers of his father, sons of Heaven whom his father in his foolishness had bound. And they remembered to be grateful to him for his kindness, and gave him thunder and the glowing thunderbolt and lightning: for before that, huge Earth had hidden these. In them he trusts and rules over mortals and immortals.

This extract is from: Hesiod, Theogony. Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.


Editor's information
More information for Zeus at Ancient Dodona, where the oldest sanctuary of the god. In Homer, besides Olympian (Il. 2.309, 24.140, Od. 1.60 etc.), he is also called Dodonaean and Pelasgian (Il. 16.233).


FESTOS (Minoan settlement) HERAKLIO

Lambrus & Galateia

Galateia. A daughter of Eurytius, and the wife of Lamprus. the son of Pandion, at Phaestus in Crete. Her husband, desirous of having a son, ordered her, if she should give birth to a daughter, to kill the infant. Galateia gave birth to a daughter, but, unable to comply with the cruel command of Lamprus, she was induced by dreams and soothsayers to bring up the child in the disguise of a boy, and under the name of Leucippus. When the maiden had thus grown up, Galateia, dreading the discovery of the secret and the anger of her husband, took refuge with her daughter in a temple of Leto, and prayed the goddess to change the girl into a youth. Leto granted the request, and hence the Phaestians offered up sacrifices to Leto Phytia (i. e. the creator), and celebrated a festival called ekdusia, in commemoration of the maiden having put off her female attire. (Anton. Lib. 17.)

This text is from: A dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology, 1873 (ed. William Smith). Cited Nov 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


GORTYS (Ancient city) HERAKLIO

The rape of Europe by Cretans

According to Persians story, some Greeks (they cannot say who) landed at Tyre in Phoenicia and carried off the king's daughter Europa. These Greeks must, I suppose, have been Cretans.


KNOSSOS (Minoan settlement) CRETE

Minotaur, Minotaurus

A bullheaded man, offspring of Pasiphae and a bull, shut up in the Labyrinth, Athenians send seven youths and seven damsels every year to be devoured by the, Theseus sent against the, killed by Theseus.


  Asterius dying childless, Minos wished to reign over Crete, but his claim was opposed. So he alleged that he had received the kingdom from the gods, and in proof of it he said that whatever he prayed for would be done. And in sacrificing to Poseidon he prayed that a bull might appear from the depths, promising to sacrifice it when it appeared. Poseidon did send him up a fine bull, and Minos obtained the kingdom, but he sent the bull to the herds and sacrificed another. (Being the first to obtain the dominion of the sea, he extended his rule over almost all the islands).
  But angry at him for not sacrificing the bull, Poseidon made the animal savage, and contrived that Pasiphae should conceive a passion for it. In her love for the bull she found an accomplice in Daedalus, an architect, who had been banished from Athens for murder. He constructed a wooden cow on wheels, took it, hollowed it out in the inside, sewed it up in the hide of a cow which he had skinned, and set it in the meadow in which the bull used to graze. Then he introduced Pasiphae into it; and the bull came and coupled with it, as if it were a real cow. And she gave birth to Asterius, who was called the Minotaur. He had the face of a bull, but the rest of him was human; and Minos, in compliance with certain oracles, shut him up and guarded him in the Labyrinth. Now the Labyrinth which Daedalus constructed was a chamber "that with its tangled windings perplexed the outward way".(Apollod.3.1.3)

  Minos not long afterwards (the murder of his son Androgeus at Athens by Athenian and Megarian conspirators - for wich see below Androgeus), being master of the sea, he attacked Athens with a fleet and captured Megara, then ruled by king Nisus, son of Pandion, and he slew Megareus, son of Hippomenes, who had come from Onchestus to the help of Nisus. Now Nisus perished through his daughter's treachery. For he had a purple hair on the middle of his head, and an oracle ran that when it was pulled out he should die; and his daughter Scylla fell in love with Minos and pulled out the hair. But when Minos had made himself master of Megara, he tied the damsel by the feet to the stern of the ship and drowned her.
  When the war lingered on and he could not take Athens, he prayed to Zeus that he might be avenged on the Athenians. And the city being visited with a famine and a pestilence, the Athenians at first, in obedience to an ancient oracle, slaughtered the daughters of Hyacinth, to wit, Antheis, Aegleis, Lytaea, and Orthaea, on the grave of Geraestus, the Cyclops; now Hyacinth, the father of the damsels, had come from Lacedaemon and dwelt in Athens. But when this was of no avail, they inquired of the oracle how they could be delivered; and the god answered them that they should give Minos whatever satisfaction he might choose. So they sent to Minos and left it to him to claim satisfaction. And Minos ordered them to send seven youths and the same number of damsels without weapons to be fodder for the Minotaur. Now the Minotaur was confined in a labyrinth, in which he who entered could not find his way out; for many a winding turn shut off the secret outward way. The labyrinth was constructed by Daedalus, whose father was Eupalamus, son of Metion, and whose mother was Alcippe; for he was an excellent architect and the first inventor of images. He had fled from Athens, because he had thrown down from the acropolis Talos, the son of his sister Perdix; for Talos was his pupil, and Daedalus feared that with his talents he might surpass himself, seeing that he had sawed a thin stick with a jawbone of a snake which he had found. But the corpse was discovered; Daedalus was tried in the Areopagus, and being condemned fled to Minos. And there Pasiphae having fallen in love with the bull of Poseidon, Daedalus acted as her accomplice by contriving a wooden cow, and he constructed the labyrinth, to which the Athenians every year sent seven youths and as many damsels to be fodder for the Minotaur.(Apollod.3.15.8)

  Theseus... was numbered among those who were to be sent as the third tribute to the Minotaur; or, as some affirm, he offered himself voluntarily. And as the ship had a black sail, Aegeus charged his son, if he returned alive, to spread white sails on the ship.
  And when he came to Crete, Ariadne, daughter of Minos, being amorously disposed to him, offered to help him if he would agree to carry her away to Athens and have her to wife. Theseus having agreed on oath to do so, she besought Daedalus to disclose the way out of the labyrinth. And at his suggestion she gave Theseus a clue when he went in; Theseus fastened it to the door, and, drawing it after him, entered in. And having found the Minotaur in the last part of the labyrinth, he killed him by smiting him with his fists; and drawing the clue after him made his way out again. And by night he arrived with Ariadne and the children at Naxos...(Apollod.E.1.7)
Commentary: The clearest description of the clue, with which the amorous Ariadne furnished Theseus, is given by the Scholiasts and Eustathius on Homer l.c.. From them we learn that it was a ball of thread which Ariadne had begged of Daedalus for the use of her lover. He was to fasten one end of the thread to the lintel of the door on entering into the labyrinth, and holding the ball in his hand to unwind the skein while he penetrated deeper and deeper into the maze, till he found the Minotaur asleep in the inmost recess; then he was to catch the monster by the hair and sacrifice him to Poseidon; after which he was to retrace his steps, gathering up the thread behind him as he went. According to the Scholiast on the Odyssey, the story was told by Pherecydes, whom later authors may have copied.

This extract is from: Apollodorus, Library and Epitome (ed. Sir James George Frazer, 1921). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.


  Not long afterwards there came from Crete for the third time the collectors of the tribute. Now as to this tribute, most writers agree that because Androgeos was thought to have been treacherously killed within the confines of Attica, not only did Minos harass the inhabitants of that country greatly in war, but Heaven also laid it waste, for barrenness and pestilence smote it sorely, and its rivers dried up; also that when their god assured them in his commands that if they appeased Minos and became reconciled to him, the wrath of Heaven would abate and there would be an end of their miseries, they sent heralds and made their supplication and entered into an agreement to send him every nine years a tribute of seven youths and as many maidens. And the most dramatic version of the story declares that these young men and women, on being brought to Crete, were destroyed by the Minotaur in the Labyrinth, or else wandered about at their own will and, being unable to find an exit, perished there; and that the Minotaur, as Euripides says, was "A mingled form and hybrid birth of monstrous shape", and that "Two different natures, man and bull, were joined in him".
  Philochorus, however, says that the Cretans do not admit this, but declare that the Labyrinth was a dungeon, with no other inconvenience than that its prisoners could not escape; and that Minos instituted funeral games in honor of Androgeos, and as prizes for the victors, gave these Athenian youth, who were in the meantime imprisoned in the Labyrinth and that the victor in the first games was the man who had the greatest power at that time under Minos, and was his general, Taurus by name, who was not reasonable and gentle in his disposition, but treated the Athenian youth with arrogance and cruelty. And Aristotle himself also, in his Constitution of Bottiaea, clearly does not think that these youths were put to death by Minos, but that they spent the rest of their lives as slaves in Crete. And he says that the Cretans once, in fulfillment of an ancient vow, sent an offering of their first-born to Delphi, and that some descendants of those Athenians were among the victims, and went forth with them; and that when they were unable to support themselves there, they first crossed over into Italy and dwelt in that country round about Iapygia, and from there journeyed again into Thrace and were called Bottiaeans; and that this was the reason why the maidens of Bottiaea, in performing a certain sacrifice, sing as an accompaniment "To Athens let us go!"
  And verily it seems to be a grievous thing for a man to be at enmity with a city which has a language and a literature. For Minos was always abused and reviled in the Attic theaters, and it did not avail him either that Hesiod called him "most royal," or that Homer styled him "a confidant of Zeus," but the tragic poets prevailed, and from platform and stage showered obloquy down upon him, as a man of cruelty and violence. And yet they say that Minos was a king and lawgiver, and that Rhadamanthus was a judge under him, and a guardian of the principles of justice defined by him.
  Accordingly, when the time came for the third tribute, and it was necessary for the fathers who had youthful sons to present them for the lot, fresh accusations against Aegeus arose among the people, who were full of sorrow and vexation that he who was the cause of all their trouble alone had no share in the punishment, but devolved the kingdom upon a bastard and foreign son, and suffered them to be left destitute and bereft of legitimate children. These things troubled Theseus, who, thinking it right not to disregard but to share in the fortune of his fellow-citizens, came forward and offered himself independently of the lot. The citizens admired his noble courage and were delighted with his public spirit, and Aegeus, when he saw that his son was not to be won over or turned from his purpose by prayers and entreaties, cast the lots for the rest of the youths.
  Hellanicus, however, says that the city did not send its young men and maidens by lot, but that Minos himself used to come and pick them out, and that he now pitched upon Theseus first of all, following the terms agreed upon. And he says the agreement was that the Athenians should furnish the ship, and that the youths should embark and sail with him carrying no warlike weapon, and that if the Minotaur was killed the penalty should cease.
  On the two former occasions, then, no hope of safety was entertained, and therefore they sent the ship with a black sail, convinced that their youth were going to certain destruction; but now Theseus encouraged his father and loudly boasted that he would master the Minotaur, so that he gave the pilot another sail, a white one, ordering him, if he returned with Theseus safe, to hoist the white sail, but otherwise to sail with the black one, and so indicate the affliction.
  Simonides, however, says that the sail given by Aegeus was not white, but ?a scarlet sail dyed with the tender flower of luxuriant holm-oak,? and that he made this a token of their safety. Moreover, the pilot of the ship was Phereclus, son of Amarsyas, as Simonides says; but Philochorus says that Theseus got from Scirus of Salamis Nausithous for his pilot, and Phaeax for his look-out man, the Athenians at that time not yet being addicted to the sea, and that Scirus did him this favour because one of the chosen youths, Menesthes, was his daughter's son. And there is evidence for this in the memorial chapels for Nausithous and Phaeax which Theseus built at Phalerum near the temple of Scirus, and they say that the festival of the Cybernesia, or Pilot's Festival, is celebrated in their honor.
  When the lot was cast, Theseus took those upon whom it fell from the prytaneium and went to the Delphinium, where he dedicated to Apollo in their behalf his suppliant's badge. This was a bough from the sacred olive-tree, wreathed with white wool. Having made his vows and prayers, he went down to the sea on the sixth day of the month Munychion, on which day even now the Athenians still send their maidens to the Delphinium to propitiate the god. And it is reported that the god at Delphi commanded him in an oracle to make Aphrodite his guide, and invite her to attend him on his journey, and that as he sacrificed the usual she-goat to her by the sea-shore, it became a he-goat (tragos) all at once, for which reason the goddess has the surname Epitragia.
  When he reached Crete on his voyage, most historians and poets tell us that he got from Ariadne, who had fallen in love with him, the famous thread, and that having been instructed by her how to make his way through the intricacies of the Labyrinth, he slew the Minotaur and sailed off with Ariadne and the youths. And Pherecydes says that Theseus also staved in the bottoms of the Cretan ships, thus depriving them of the power to pursue. And Demon says also that Taurus, the general of Minos, was killed in a naval battle in the harbor as Theseus was sailing out. But as Philochorus tells the story, Minos was holding the funeral games, and Taurus was expected to conquer all his competitors in them, as he had done before, and was grudged his success. For his disposition made his power hateful, and he was accused of too great intimacy with Pasiphae. Therefore when Theseus asked the privilege of entering the lists, it was granted him by Minos. And since it was the custom in Crete for women to view the games, Ariadne was present, and was smitten with the appearance of Theseus, as well as filled with admiration for his athletic prowess, when he conquered all his opponents. Minos also was delighted with him, especially because he conquered Taurus in wrestling and disgraced him, and therefore gave back the youths to Theseus, besides remitting its tribute to the city.
  Cleidemus, however, gives a rather peculiar and ambitious account of these matters, beginning a great way back. There was, he says, a general Hellenic decree that no trireme should sail from any port with a larger crew than five men, and the only exception was Jason, the commander of the Argo, who sailed about scouring the sea of pirates. Now when Daedalus fled from Crete in a merchant-vessel to Athens, Minos, contrary to the decrees, pursued him with his ships of war, and was driven from his course by a tempest to Sicily, where he ended his life. And when Deucalion, his son, who was on hostile terms with the Athenians, sent to them a demand that they deliver up Daedalus to him, and threatened, if they refused, to put to death the youth whom Minos had received from them as hostages, Theseus made him a gentle reply, declining to surrender Daedalus, who was his kinsman and cousin, being the son of Merope, the daughter of Erechtheus. But privately he set himself to building a fleet, part of it at home in the township of Thymoetadae, far from the public road, and part of it under the direction of Pittheus in Troezen, wishing his purpose to remain concealed. When his ships were ready, he set sail, taking Daedalus and exiles from Crete as his guides, and since none of the Cretans knew of his design, but thought the approaching ships to be friendly, Theseus made himself master of the harbor, disembarked his men, and got to Gnossus before his enemies were aware of his approach. Then joining battle with them at the gate of the Labyrinth, he slew Deucalion and his body-guard. And since Ariadne was now at the head of affairs, he made a truce with her, received back the youthful hostages, and established friendship between the Athenians and the Cretans, who took oath never to begin hostilities.
  There are many other stories about these matters, and also about Ariadne, but they do not agree at all. Some say that she hung herself because she was abandoned by Theseus; others that she was conveyed to Naxos by sailors and there lived with Oenarus the priest of Dionysus, and that she was abandoned by Theseus because he loved another woman: "Dreadful indeed was his passion for Aigle child of Panopeus".
This verse Peisistratus expunged from the poems of Hesiod, according to Hereas the Megarian, just as, on the other hand, he inserted into the Inferno of Homer the verse: "Theseus, Peirithous, illustrious children of Heaven", (Hom. Od. 11.631) and all to gratify the Athenians. Moreover, some say that Ariadne actually had sons by Theseus, Oenopion and Staphylus, and among these is Ion of Chios, who says of his own native city: "This, once, Theseus's son founded, Oenopion.
  Now the most auspicious of these legendary tales are in the mouths of all men, as I may say; but a very peculiar account of these matters is published by Paeon the Amathusian. He says that Theseus, driven out of his course by a storm to Cyprus, and having with him Ariadne, who was big with child and in sore sickness and distress from the tossing of the sea, set her on shore alone, but that he himself, while trying to succour the ship, was borne out to sea again. The women of the island, accordingly, took Ariadne into their care, and tried to comfort her in the discouragement caused by her loneliness, brought her forged letters purporting to have been written to her by Theseus, ministered to her aid during the pangs of travail, and gave her burial when she died before her child was born. Paeon says further that Theseus came back, and was greatly afflicted, and left a sum of money with the people of the island, enjoining them to sacrifice to Ariadne, and caused two little statuettes to be set up in her honor, one of silver, and one of bronze. He says also that at the sacrifice in her honor on the second day of the month Gorpiaeus, one of their young men lies down and imitates the cries and gestures of women in travail; and that they call the grove in which they show her tomb, the grove of Ariadne Aphrodite.
  Some of the Naxians also have a story of their own, that there were two Minoses and two Ariadnes, one of whom, they say, was married to Dionysus in Naxos and bore him Staphylus and his brother, and the other, of a later time, having been carried off by Theseus and then abandoned by him, came to Naxos, accompanied by a nurse named Corcyne, whose tomb they show; and that this Ariadne also died there, and has honors paid her unlike those of the former, for the festival of the first Ariadne is celebrated with mirth and revels, but the sacrifices performed in honor of the second are attended with sorrow and mourning.
  On his voyage from Crete, Theseus put in at Delos, and having sacrificed to the god and dedicated in his temple the image of Aphrodite which he had received from Ariadne, he danced with his youths a dance which they say is still performed by the Delians, being an imitation of the circling passages in the Labyrinth, and consisting of certain rhythmic involutions and evolutions. This kind of dance, as Dicaearchus tells us, is called by the Delians The Crane, and Theseus danced it round the altar called Keraton, which is constructed of horns (kerata) taken entirely from the left side of the head. They say that he also instituted athletic contests in Delos, and that the custom was then begun by him of giving a palm to the victors.
  It is said, moreover, that as they drew nigh the coast of Attica, Theseus himself forgot, and his pilot forgot, such was their joy and exultation, to hoist the sail which was to have been the token of their safety to Aegeus, who therefore, in despair, threw himself down from the rock and was dashed in pieces. But Theseus, putting in to shore, sacrificed in person the sacrifices which he had vowed to the gods at Phalerum when he set sail, and then dispatched a herald to the city to announce his safe return. The messenger found many of the people bewailing the death of their king, and others full of joy at his tidings, as was natural, and eager to welcome him and crown him with garlands for his good news. The garlands, then, he accepted, and twined them about his herald's staff and on returning to the sea-shore, finding that Theseus had not yet made his libations to the gods, remained outside the sacred precincts, not wishing to disturb the sacrifice. But when the libations were made, he announced the death of Aegeus. Thereupon, with tumultuous lamentation, they went up in haste to the city. Whence it is, they say, that to this day, at the festival of the Oschophoria, it is not the herald that is crowned, but his herald's staff, and those who are present at the libations cry out: "Eleleu! Iou! Iou!" the first of which cries is the exclamation of eager haste and triumph, the second of consternation and confusion.

This extract is from: Plutarch's Lives (ed. Bernadotte Perrin, 1914). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.


Talos

   A brazen man, the work of Hephaestus, and given by Zeus to Minos, king of Crete, to watch that island, which he did by walking about it three times every day. When strangers approached he heated himself red hot and then embraced them, or, according to another version, threw showers of stones upon them. He had one vein in his body through which his blood ran and was stopped by a nail or plug in his foot. This plug Medea drew out by magic, and he bled to death.

This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Oct 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


nbsp; The name of the Talaea Mountains refers to the giant Talos, who played an important role in Cretan mythology. Talos was the guardian of the island of Crete. He circumnavigated it three times a day in order to protect it from intruders. This giant, who was made of bronze and had a unique vein running from his neck to his heel, was invention of Hephaestus. Talos was unarmed, however he was able to hurl enormous rocks at hostile vessels when they approached Crete, while at the same time his bronze body glowed so that everything he touched was destroyed by fire. He was also responsible for the laws being obeyed in the country. During his walks through the island he was holding the plaques in his hands, on which the laws were written. This mythical giant would never have died, if it had not been for the Argonauts who passed the island on the vessel "Argo" and Medea, the witch, who helped them escape Talos' destructive blow. She kept him immobile so that she could approach him and take away the small bronze pin at his heel, which sealed the unique vein of his body. Thus the "blood of the gods" ran from his body and the hero collapsed.

This text is cited Nov 2003 from the Tourism Promotion Committee of Rethymno Prefecture URL below, which contains image.


(Argonauts) putting to sea from there (Anaphi), they were hindered from touching at Crete by Talos. Some say that he was a man of the Brazen Race, others that he was given to Minos by Hephaestus; he was a brazen man, but some say that he was a bull. He had a single vein extending from his neck to his ankles, and a bronze nail was rammed home at the end of the vein. This Talos kept guard, running round the island thrice every day; wherefore, when he saw the Argo standing inshore, he pelted it as usual with stones. His death was brought about by the wiles of Medea, whether, as some say, she drove him mad by drugs, or, as others say, she promised to make him immortal and then drew out the nail, so that all the ichor gushed out and he died. But some say that Poeas shot him dead in the ankle.
Commentary: Talos would seem to have been a bronze image of the sun represented as a man with a bull's head. In his account of the death of Talos our author again differs from Apollonius Rhodius, according to whom Talos perished through grazing his ankle against a jagged rock, so that all the ichor in his body gushed out. This incident seems to have been narrated by Sophocles in one of his plays (Scholiast on Ap. Rhod., Argon. iv.1638; The Fragments of Sophocles, ed. A. C. Pearson, i.110ff.). The account, mentioned by Apollodorus, which referred the death of Talos to the spells of Medea, is illustrated by a magnificent vase-painting, in the finest style, which represents Talos swooning to death in presence of the Argonauts, while the enchantress Medea stands by, gazing grimly at her victim and holding in one hand a basket from which she seems to be drawing with the other the fatal herbs.

This extract is from: Apollodorus, Library and Epitome (ed. Sir James George Frazer, 1921). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.



The Seventh Labor of Heracles - The Cretan Bull

  The seventh labour he enjoined on him was to bring the Cretan bull. Acusilaus says that this was the bull that ferried across Europa for Zeus; but some say it was the bull that Poseidon sent up from the sea when Minos promised to sacrifice to Poseidon what should appear out of the sea. And they say that when he saw the beauty of the bull he sent it away to the herds and sacrificed another to Poseidon; at which the god was angry and made the bull savage. To attack this bull Hercules came to Crete, and when, in reply to his request for aid, Minos told him to fight and catch the bull for himself, he caught it and brought it to Eurystheus, and having shown it to him he let it afterwards go free. But the bull roamed to Sparta and all Arcadia, and traversing the Isthmus arrived at Marathon in Attica and harried the inhabitants.

This extract is from: Apollodorus, Library and Epitome (ed. Sir James George Frazer, 1921). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.


  The land of the Cretans and especially that by the river Tethris was ravaged by a bull. It would seem that in the days of old the beasts were much more formidable to men, for example the Nemean lion, the lion of Parnassus, the serpents in many parts of Greece, and the boars of Calydon, Eryrmanthus and Crommyon in the land of Corinth, so that it was said that some were sent up by the earth, that others were sacred to the gods, while others had been let loose to punish mankind. And so the Cretans say that this bull was sent by Poseidon to their land because, although Minos was lord of the Greek Sea, he did not worship Poseidon more than any other god. They say that this bull crossed from Crete to the Peloponnesus, and came to be one of what are called the Twelve Labours of Heracles. When he was let loose on the Argive plain he fled through the isthmus of Corinth, into the land of Attica as far as the Attic parish of Marathon, killing all he met, including Androgeos, son of Minos. Minos sailed against Athens with a fleet, not believing that the Athenians were innocent of the death of Androgeos, and sorely harassed them until it was agreed that he should take seven maidens and seven boys for the Minotaur that was said to dwell in the Labyrinth at Cnossus. But the bull at Marathon Theseus is said to have driven afterwards to the Acropolis and to have sacrificed to the goddess; the offering commemorating this deed was dedicated by the parish of Marathon.

This extract is from: Pausanias. Description of Greece (ed. W.H.S. Jones, Litt.D., & H.A. Ormerod, 1918). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.


  After the complicated business with the Stymphalian Birds, Hercules easily disposed of the Cretan Bull.
  At that time, Minos, King of Crete, controlled many of the islands in the seas around Greece, and was such a powerful ruler that the Athenians sent him tribute every year. There are many bull stories about Crete. Zeus, in the shape of a bull, had carried Minos' mother Europa to Crete, and the Cretans were fond of the sport of bull-leaping, in which contestants grabbed the horns of a bull and were thrown over its back.
  Minos himself, in order to prove his claim to the throne, had promised the sea-god Poseidon that he would sacrifice whatever the god sent him from the sea. Poseidon sent a bull, but Minos thought it was too beautiful to kill, and so he sacrificed another bull. Poseidon was furious with Minos for breaking his promise. In his anger, he made the bull rampage all over Crete, and caused Minos' wife Pasiphae to fall in love with the animal. As a result, Pasiphae gave birth to the Minotaur, a monster with the head of a bull and the body of a man. Minos had to shut up this beast in the Labyrinth, a huge maze underneath the palace, and every year he fed it prisoners from Athens.
  When Hercules got to Crete, he easily wrestled the bull to the ground and drove it back to King Eurystheus. Eurystheus let the bull go free. It wandered around Greece, terrorizing the people, and ended up in Marathon, a city near Athens.
  The Athenian hero Theseus tied up some loose ends of this story. He killed the Cretan Bull at Marathon. Later, he sailed to Crete, found his way to the center of the Labyrinth, and killed the Minotaur.

This text is cited July 2004 from Perseus Project URL bellow, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Heracles. 7. The Cretan bull. According to Acusilaus, this bull was the same as the one which had carried Europa across the sea; according to others, he had been sent out of the sea by Poseidon, that Minos might sacrifice him to the god of the sea. But Minos was so charmed with the beauty of the animal, that he kept it, and sacrificed another in its stead. Poseidon punished Minos, by making the fine bull mad, and causing it to make great havoc in the island. Heracles was ordered by Eurystheus to catch the bull, and Minos, of course, willingly allowed him to do so. Heracles accomplished the task, and brought the bull home on his shoulders, but he then set the animal free again. The bull now roamed about through Greece, and at last came to Marathon, where we meet it again in the stories of Theseus. (Apollod. ii. 5.7; Paus. i. 27. 9, v. 10.2; Hygin. Fab. 30; Diod. iv. 13, &c.; Serv. ad Aen. viii. 294.)

This text is from: A dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology, 1873 (ed. William Smith). Cited Nov 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Theseus fetching the ring out of the sea

When Minos was taking Theseus and the rest of the company of young folk to Crete he fell in love with Periboea, and on meeting with determined opposition from Theseus, hurled insults at him and denied that he was a son of Poseidon, since he could not recover for him the signet-ring, which he happened to be wearing, if he threw it into the sea. With these words Minos is said to have thrown the ring, but they say that Theseus came up from the sea with that ring and also with a gold crown that Amphitrite gave him.


Glaucus

Son of Minos and Pasiphae, drowned in a jar of honey, brought to life by a magic herb, taught the art of divination by Polyidus, but forgets it, raised from the dead by Aesculapius.


  Glaucus, while he was yet a child, in chasing a mouse fell into a jar of honey and was drowned. On his disappearance Minos made a great search and consulted diviners as to how he should find him. The Curetes told him that in his herds he had a cow of three different colors, and that the man who could best describe that cow's color would also restore his son to him alive. So when the diviners were assembled, Polyidus, son of Coeranus, compared the color of the cow to the fruit of the bramble, and being compelled to seek for the child he found him by means of a sort of divination. But Minos declaring that he must recover him alive, he was shut up with the dead body. And while he was in great perplexity, he saw a serpent going towards the corpse. He threw a stone and killed it, fearing to be killed himself if any harm befell the body. But another serpent came, and, seeing the former one dead, departed, and then returned, bringing a herb, and placed it on the whole body of the other; and no sooner was the herb so placed upon it than the dead serpent came to life. Surprised at this sight, Polyidus applied the same herb to the body of Glaucus and raised him from the dead.6
Minos had now got back his son, but even so he did not suffer Polyidus to depart to Argos until he had taught Glaucus the art of divination. Polyidus taught him on compulsion, and when he was sailing away he bade Glaucus spit into his mouth. Glaucus did so and forgot the art of divination.
Commentary:
1. The cow or calf (for so Hyginus describes it) was said to change colour twice a day, or once every four hours, being first white, then red, and then black. The diviner Polyidus solved the riddle by comparing the colour of the animal to a ripening mulberry, which is first white, then red, and finally black.
2. Coeranus is said to have discovered the drowned boy by observing an owl which had perched on a wine-cellar and was driving away bees.
3. According to another account (Apoll. 3.10.3) , Glaucus was raised from the dead by Aesculapius.

This extract is from: Apollodorus, Library and Epitome (ed. Sir James George Frazer, 1921). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.


Glaucus. One of the sons of the Cretan king Minos by Pasiphae or Crete. When yet a boy, while he was playing at ball (Hygin. Fab 136), or while pursuing a mouse (Apollod. iii. 3.1, &c.), he fell into a cask full of honey, and died in it. Minos for a long time searched after his son in vain, and was at length informed by Apollo or the Curetes that the person who should devise the most appropriate comparison between a cow, which could assume three different colours, and any other object, should find the boy and restore him to his father. Minos assembled his soothsayers, but as none of them was able to do what was required, a stranger, Polyidus of Argos, solved the problem by likening the cow to a mulberry, which is at first white, then red, and in the end black. Polyidus, who knew nothing of the oracle, was thus compelled by his own wisdom to restore Glaucus to his father. By his prophetic powers he discovered that Glaucus had not perished in the sea, and being guided by an owl (glaux) and bees, he found him in the cask of honey. (Aelian, H. A. v. 2.) Minos now further demanded the restoration of his son to life. As Polyidus could not accomplish this, Minos, who attributed his refusal to obstinacy, ordered him to be entombed alive with the body of Glaucus. When Polyidus was thus shut up in the vault, he saw a serpent approaching the dead body, and killed the animal. Presently another serpent came, carrying a herb, with which it covered the dead serpent. The dead serpent was thereby restored to life, and when Polyidus covered the body of Glaucus with the same herb, the boy at once rose into life again. Both shouted for assistance from without; and when Minos heard of it, he had the tomb opened. In his delight at having recovered his child, he munificently rewarded Polyidus, and sent him back to his country. (Comp. Tzetz. ad Lycoph. 811; Palaephat. 27; Apollod. iii. 10.3; Schol. ad Eurip. Alcest.; Hygin. P. A. ii. 14; Schol. ad Pind. Pyth. iii. 96.) The story of the Cretan Glaucus and Polyidus was a favourite subject with the ancient poets and artists; it was not only represented in mimic dances (Lucian, de Saltat. 49), but Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides made it the subject of separate dramatic compositions. (Welcker, Die Griech. Tragoed. vol. i., vol. ii.)

This text is from: A dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology, 1873 (ed. William Smith). Cited Nov 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


LYKTOS (Ancient city) KASTELI

The birth of Zeus

  When she (Rhea) was about to bear Zeus, the father of gods and men, then she besought her own dear parents, Earth and starry Heaven, to devise some plan with her that the birth of her dear child might be concealed, and that retribution might overtake great, crafty Cronos for his own father and also for the children whom he had swallowed down. And they readily heard and obeyed their dear daughter, and told her all that was destined to happen touching Cronos the king and his stout-hearted son. So they sent her to Lyctus, to the rich land of Crete, when she was ready to bear great Zeus, the youngest of her children. Him did vast Earth receive from Rhea in wide Crete to nourish and to bring up. To that place came Earth carrying him swiftly through the black night to Lyctus first, and took him in her arms and hid him in a remote cave beneath the secret places of the holy earth on thick-wooded Mount Aegeum; but to the mightily ruling son of Heaven, the earlier king of the gods, she gave a great stone wrapped in swaddling clothes. Then he took it in his hands and thrust it down into his belly: wretch! he knew not in his heart that in place of the stone his son was left behind, unconquered and untroubled, and that he was soon to overcome him by force and might and drive him from his honors, himself to reign over the deathless gods.

This extract is from: Hesiod, Theogony. Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.


Colonizations by the inhabitants

MILATOS (Ancient city) NEAPOLI

Settled Miletus in Caria

Ephorus says: Miletus was first founded and fortified above the sea by the Cretans, where the Miletus of olden times is now situated, being settled by Sarpedon, who brought colonists from the Cretan Miletus and named the city after that Miletus, the place formerly being in the possession of the Leleges; but later Neleus and his followers fortified the present city. (Strabo 14.1.6)
Not only the Carians, who in earlier times were islanders, but also the Leleges, as they say, became mainlanders with the aid of the Cretans, who founded, among other places, Miletus, having taken Sarpedon from the Cretan Miletus as founder; and they settled the Termilae in the country which is now called Lycia; and they say that these settlers were brought from Crete by Sarpedon, a brother of Minos and Rhadamanthus, and that he gave the name Termilae to the people who were formerly called Milyae, as Herodotus says, and were in still earlier times called Solymi, but that when Lycus the son of Pandion went over there he named the people Lycians after himself. Now this account represents the Solymi and the Lycians as the same people, but the poet makes a distinction between them.


The Milesians themselves give the following account of their earliest history. For two generations, they say, their land was called Anactoria, during the reigns of Anax, an aboriginal, and of Asterius his son; but when Miletus landed with an army of Cretans both the land and the city changed their name to Miletus. Miletus and his men came from Crete, fleeing from Minos, the son of Europa; the Carians, the former inhabitants of the land, united with the Cretans. But to resume. When the Ionians had overcome the ancient Milesians they killed every male, except those who escaped at the capture of the city, but the wives of the Milesians and their daughters they married. (Pausanias 7.2.5)


Constellations

DIKTI (Mountain) LASSITHI

Greater Bear, Ursa Major

  Several ancient stories explain how the bear got in the sky. One is the story of the nymph Adrasteia, who risked everything to save the life of the infant Zeus, who would later grow up to be king of the gods. (Warning: This tale may not be suitable for those who find child-eating and goat sucking offensive, which come to think of it, is just about everybody.)
Cronus, the father of Zeus, was boss of the universe. He was afraid that one of his offspring would eventually grow up to take his place, so he swallowed his children whole as soon as they were born.
As you might imagine, Cronus' wife Rhea got fed up with his disgusting table manners. When Zeus (or Jupiter, to use his Roman name) was born, Rhea spirited the infant away to a cave on the island of Crete, where Zeus was taken care of by a group of beautiful nymphs.
One of the young sprites was Adrasteia, who placed the mighty child in a golden cradle.
To feed her charge, she let Zeus drink the milk of the she- goat Amaltheia right out of the goat, so to speak. Hey, it was fresher that way, I guess.
To entertain him, she fashioned a golden ball. When he threw the brilliant orb upward, it left a fiery trail across the sky.
Zeus grew up to overthrow his father, just as Cronus had feared. If Father Time had not eaten his children, Zeus probably wouldn't have been so anxious to dethrone the old man, so Cronus was the instrument of his own undoing. Now there's an important parenting tip you won't find in Doctor Spock. Don't eat your children.
We see Zeus to this day as the planet Jupiter, a brilliant point of light high in the southern sky as darkness falls. Occasionally, he still throws his golden ball. That's why we see shooting stars flash across the sky.
Even so, living in the sky is a lonely business, so Zeus brought his old nursemaid to live with him as the constellation Ursa Major.
I'm not certain why he turned poor Adrasteia into an ugly, old bear, but I'm pretty sure that the goat had something to do with it.


The Small Bear, Ursa Minor

The Birth of Zeus
The Small Bear has to do with the birth of Zeus.
  Zeus was an immortal god, but he was born, nevertheless. His mother was Rhea, whom the Romans knew as Ops or Cybele. His father was Cronus, who was Saturn to the Romans. Cronus was the youngest of the elder gods known as the Titans. Because of a prophecy that one of his children would dethrone him, Cronus disposed of his children as they were born. He swallowed them! Cronus had already disposed of several children this way by the time that Zeus was born.
Fooling the Old Man
  Rhea fooled Cronus by wrapping a stone in the swaddling clothes of the baby Zeus. So Cronus swallowed the stone, thinking that he had disposed of the baby. Rhea had Zeus smuggled to the island of Crete, where the nymphs Adrasteia and Ida looked after him in the cave known as Dicte. The cave was protected by the Cretan warriors known as Curetes, who stood outside the cave making a racket to prevent the cries of the baby from being heard by Cronus.
Barfing Up the Kids
  The baby Zeus remained in the cave for a year. Eventually he overthrew Cronus and forced him to regurgitate the children that he had swallowed. These children became the leaders of the younger gods, who in a ten year war overturned the rule of the Titans to take command of the cosmos.
The Nurses May Be the Bears
  The Lesser Bear is identified in classical mythology with the nymph Ida. Some say that the Greater Bear is sometimes identified as Adrasteia. It is not explained how the nymphs got changed into bears.
Callisto, The Greater Bear
  The Greater Bear, Ursa Major, is more often identified as Callisto, one of the nymphs who formed the retinue of Artemis (Diana to the Romans). Callisto is one of the many conquests of Zeus.
Prof. Arnold V. Lesikar, ed.
Dept. of Physics, Astronomy, and Engineering Science,
St. Cloud State University, St. Cloud, MN


According to Aratus, the constellation represents one of the two nymphs who raised the new-born Zeus: in particular it is Ida, while the other, Adrastea, is identified in Ursa Maior.


The goat Capra, On the constellation Charioteer

Zeus transformed her horn into the legendary Kornukopia (Horn of Plenty) and placed Amaltheia amongst the stars as the constellation Capra.

"On his [the constellation Charioteer] the goat Capra stands, and in his left hand the Kids seem to be placed. They tell this story about him ... Parmeniscus say that a certain Melisseus was king in Crete, and to his daughters Jove [Zeus] was brought to nurse. Since they did not have milk, they furnished him a she-goat, Amalthea by name, who is said to have reared him. She often bore twin kids, and at the very time that Jove was brought to her to nurse, had borne a pair. And so because of the kindness of the mother, the kids, too were placed among the constellations. Cleostratus of Tenedos is said to have first pointed out these kids among the stars. But Musaeus says Jove was nursed by Themis and the nympha Amalthea, to whom he was given by Ops [Rhea], his mother. Now Amalthea had as a pet a certain goat which is said to have nursed Jove ... But when Jupiter [Zeus], confident in his youth, was preparing for war against the Titanes, oracular reply was given to him that if he wished to win, he should carry on the war protected with the skin of a goat, aigos, and the head of the Gorgon. The Greeks call this the aegis. When this was done, as we have shown above, Jupiter, overcoming the Titanes, gained possession of the kingdom. Covering the remaining bones of the goat with a skin, he gave life to them and memorialised them, picturing them with stars. Afterwards he gave to Minerva [Athena] the aegis with which he had been protected". (Hyginus Astronomica 2.13)


GORTYS (Ancient city) HERAKLIO

Taurus (The Bull)

  Europa was the beautiful daughter of the king of Tyre, Agenor. Zeus (Jupiter), the King of the gods according to Greek mythology, saw Europa as she was gathering flowers by the sea a nd immediately fell in love with her. Zeus transformed himself into the form of a magnificent white bull and appeared in the sea shore where Europa was playing. The great bull walked gently over to where Europa stood and knelt at her feet. The appearance and movements of the bull were so gentle that Europa spread flowers about his neck and dared to climb upon his back. But suddenly, the bull rushed over the sea abducting Europa. Only then the bull revealed its true identity and took Europa to the Mediterranean island of Crete. There, Zeus cast off the shape of the white bull, and back into his human form, made Europa his lover beneath a simple cypress tree. Europa became the first queen of Crete and had by Zeus three sons. At last, Zeus reproduced the shape of the white bull, used by Zeus to seduce Europa, in the stars. Even today we can recognize its shape in the constellation Taurus.


Europa, the moon of Zeus

Europa is named after the beautiful Phoenician princess who, according to Greek mythology, Zeus saw gathering flowers and immediately fell in love with. Zeus transformed himself into a white bull and carried Europa away to the island of Crete. He then revealed his true identity and Europa became the first queen of Crete. By Zeus, she mothered Trojan war contemporaries Minos, Rhadamanthus, and Sarpedon. Zeus later re-created the shape of the white bull in the stars which is now known as the constellation Taurus.


IDI (Mountain) RETHYMNO

Capricornus, Capricorn, "The Sea Goat"

In Greek mythology, the constellation was variously associated with the gate through which the souls of the dead passed, with a legendary goat said to have nursed the infant Zeus (and by metaphorical extension, the Sun), and with a myth in which the god Pan (lower half goat, human torso and head with goat horns) tried to escape the monster Typhon by turning into a fish; he managed to morph only his lower half.


Capra

Capra or Capella (Aix). The brightest star in the constellation of the Auriga, or Charioteer, and said to have been originally the nymph or goat who nursed the infant Zeus in Crete.


Amalthea

Jupiter V, the innermost satellite of Jupiter. Diameter about 140 km; i = 0°.4, e = 0.0028, period 0.498 days. Discovered by Barnard in 1892. (also called Barnard's satellite)


Adrastea

Adrasteia, a Cretan nymph, daughter of Melisseus, to whom Rhea entrusted the infant Zeus to be reared in the Dictaean grotto. In this office Adrasteia was assisted by her sister Ida and the Curetes (Apollod. i. 1.6; Callimach. hymn. in Jov. 47), whom the scholiast on Callimachus calls her brothers. Apollonius Rhodius (iii. 132, &c.) relates that she gave to the infant Zeus a beautiful globe (sphaira) to play with, and on some Cretan coins Zeus is represented sitting upon a globe.


Metis

Metis is the innermost known satellite of Jupiter. It was named after a Titaness who was a consort of Zeus (Jupiter). Metis and Adrastea lie within Jupiter's main ring and may be the source of material for the ring.


Auriga

We also see Auriga depicted as a warm-hearted herdsman holding a she-goat, with two kids nearby. The she-goat raised Zeus when he was an infant, by giving him her milk. Zeus was hidden in Mt. Ida from his father Cronus. Cronus habitually ate his children, and Zeus was the only survivor.


Cynosura

Cynosura (Kunosoura). A nymph of Ida in Crete, one of the nurses of Zeus, and afterwards changed into a constellation.


Eponymous founders or settlers

FESTOS (Minoan settlement) HERAKLIO

Phaestus

Son of Herakles, king of Sicyon, sacrifices to Herakles, migrates to Crete. (Paus. 2,6,7)


GORTYS (Ancient city) HERAKLIO

Gortys

It is also said that all the surviving sons of Tegeates, namely, Cydon, Archedius and Gortys, migrated of their own free will to Crete, and that after them were named the cities Cydonia, Gortyna and Catreus. The Cretans dissent from the account of the Tegeans, saying that Cydon was a son of Hermes and of Acacallis, daughter of Minos, that Catreus was a son of Minos, and Gortys a son of Rhadamanthys.


Gortys, a son of Tegeates and Maera, who, according to an Arcadian tradition, buik the town of Gortyn, in Crete. The Cretans regarded him as a son of Rhadamanthys. (Paus. viii. 53.2)


KATRI (Ancient city) KANDANOS

Catreus

Son of Tegeates from Arcadia


KYDONIA (Ancient city) CHANIA

Cydon, Kydon

It is also said that all the surviving sons of Tegeates, namely, Cydon, Archedius and Gortys, migrated of their own free will to Crete, and that after them were named the cities Cydonia, Gortyna and Catreus.(Paus.8.53.4)


Cydon (Kudon), the founder of the town of Cydonia in Crete. According to a tradition of Tegea, he was a son of Tegeates or of Hermes by Acacallis, the daughter of Minos, whereas others described him as a son of Apollo by Acacallis. (Paus. viii. 53.2; Steph. Byz. s. v. Kudonia ; Schol. ad Apollon. Rhod. iv. 1491)


LYKTOS (Ancient city) KASTELI

Lyctus

Lyctus (Luktos), a son of Lycaon, and the mythical founder of the ancient town of Lyctos in Crete. (Hom. Il. ii. 647; Eustath. ad Hom.; Steph. Byz. s. v.)


Founders

IERAPYTNA (Ancient city) IERAPETRA

Cyrbas, Kyrbas

Cyrbas, a comrade of these (Curetes), who was the founder of Hierapytna (Strabo 10.3.19)


ITANOS (Ancient city) ITANOS

Itanos

The traditional founder was Itanos, a son of Phoinix or bastard son of one of the Kouretes.


KATRI (Ancient city) KANDANOS

Archedius

Son of Tegeates.


TEGEA (Ancient city) CHANIA

Archedius

Son of Tegeates.


Gods & demigods

AMNISSOS (Ancient city) HERAKLIO

Amnisus

The rivergod Amnisus


CRETE (Island) GREECE

Plutus, (Ploutos)

The Greek personification of riches; born in Crete as the son of Demeter and her beloved Iasion or Iasius, whom Zeus, out of jealousy, killed with lightning. He was supposed to have been blinded by Zeus, so that he might distribute his gifts without choice. In Thebes and Athens he was represented as a child on the arm of Tyche and of Irene.


Demeter, bright goddess, was joined in sweet love with the hero Iasion in a thrice-ploughed fallow in the rich land of Crete, and bore Plutus, a kindly god who goes everywhere over land and the sea's wide back, and he makes rich the man who finds him and into whose hands he comes, bestowing great wealth upon him.


But when the bright goddess (Demeter) had taught them all, they went to Olympus to the gathering of the other gods. And there they dwell beside Zeus who delights in thunder, awful and reverend goddesses. Right blessed is he among men on earth whom they freely love: soon they do send Plutus as guest to his great house, Plutus who gives wealth to mortal men.



Iasion or Iasius (or Iasios). Son of Zeus and Electra, beloved by Demeter, who, in a thrice-ploughed field (tripolos), became by him the mother of Pluto or Plutus in Crete. He was slain by Zeus with a thunderbolt. From Iasion came the patronymic Iasides, a name given to Palinurus, as a descendant of Atlas.


Zeus Arbius

Arbius (Arbios), a surname of Zeus, derived from mount Arbias in Crete, where he was worshipped. (Steph. Byz. s. v. Apbis.)


Apollo Hylatus

Hylatus (Hulatos), a surname of Apollo derived from the town of Hyle in Crete, which was sacred to him. (Lycophr. 448, with Tzetzes' note; Steph. Byz. s. v. Hgle; Eustath. ad Hom. )


The Birth of Zeus

For more myths & history of Crete change the ID=32 up to 69


DIKTI (Mountain) LASSITHI

Dictaeus

Dictaeus, (Diktaios), a surname of Zeus, derived from mount Dicte in the eastern part of Crete. Zeus Dictaeus had a temple at Prasus, on the banks of the river Pothereus. (Strab. x.)


DIKTINA (Ancient sanctuary) KOLYMBARI

Britomartis, Dictynna

The Cretans say (the story of Aphaea is Cretan ) that Carmanor, who purified Apollo alter he had killed Pytho, was the father of Lubulus, and that the daughter of Zeus and of Carme, the daughter of Eubulus, was Britomartis. She took delight, they say, in running and in the chase, and was very dear to Artemis. Fleeing from Minos, who had fallen in love with her, she threw herself into nets which had been cast (aphemena ) for a draught of fishes. She was made a goddess by Artemis, and she is worshipped, not only by the Cretans, but also by the Aeginetans, who say that Britomartis shows herself in their island. Her surname among the Aeginetans is Aphaea; in Crete it is Dictynna (Goddess of Nets ).

This extract is from: Pausanias. Description of Greece (ed. W.H.S. Jones, Litt.D., & H.A. Ormerod, 1918). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.


Britomartis, appears to have originally been a Cretan divinity of hunters and fishermen. Her name is usually derived from britus, sweet or blessing, and martis, i. e. marna, a maiden, so that the name would mean, the sweet or blessing maiden. (Paus. iii. 14.2; Solin. 11.) After the introduction of the worship of Artemis into Crete, Britomartis, between whom and Artemis there were several points of resemblance, was placed in some relation to her: Artemis, who loved her, assumed her name and was worshipped under it, and in the end the two divinities became completely identified, as we see from the story which lakes Britomartis a daughter of Leto. (Callim. Hymn. in Dian. 189, with the Schol.; Paus. ii. 30.3; Schol. ad Aristoph. Ran. 1402; Eurip. Iphig. Taur. 126; Aristoph. Ran. 1358; Virg. Cir. 305.) The myths of Britomartis is given by some of the authorities just referred to. She was a daughter of Zeus and Carme, the daughter of Eubulus. She was a nymph, took great delight in wandering about hunting, and was beloved by Artemis. Minos, who likewise loved her, pursued her for nine months, but she fled from him and at last threw herself into the nets which had been set by fishermen, or leaped from mount Dictynnaeum into the sea, where she became entangled in the nets, but was saved by Artemis, who now made her a goddess. She was worshipped not only in Crete, but appeared to the inhabitants of Aegina, and was there called Aphaea, whereas in Crete she received the surname Dictymna or Dictynna (from diktuon, a net; comp. Diod. v. 76). According to another tradition, Britomartis was fond of solitude, and had vowed to live in perpetual maidenhood. From Phoenicia (for this tradition calls her mother Carme, a daughter of Phoenix) she went to Argos, to the daughters of Erasinus, and thence to Cephallenia, where she received divine honours from the inhabitants under the name of Laphria. From Cephallenia she came to Crete, where she was pursued by Minos; but she fled to the sea-coast, where fishermen concealed her under their nets, whence she derived the surname Dictynna. A sailor, Andromedes, carried her from Crete to Aegina, and when, on landing there, he made an attempt upon her chastity, she fled from his vessel into a grove, and disappeared in the sanctuary of Artemis. The Aeginetans now built a sanctury to her, and worshipped her as a goddess. (Anton. Lib. 40.) These wanderings of Britomartis unquestionably indicate the gradual diffusion of her worship in the various maritime places of Greece mentioned in the legend. Her connexion and ultimate identification with Artemis had naturally a modifying influence upon the notions entertained of each of them. As Britomartis had to do with fishermen and sailors, and was the protectress of harbours and navigation generally, this feature was transferred to Artemis also, as we see especially in the Arcadian Artemis; and the temples of the two divinities, therefore, stood usually on the banks of rivers or on the sea-coast. As, on the other hand, Artemis was considered as the goddess of the moon, Britomartis likewise appears in this light: her disappearance in the sea, and her identification with the Aeginetan Aphaea, who was undoubtedly a goddess of the moon, seem to contain sufficient proof of this, which is confirmed by the fact, that on some coins of the Roman empire Dictynna appears with the crescent. Lastly, Britomartis was like Artemis drawn into the mystic worship of Hecate, and even identified with her. (Eurip. Hippol. 141, with the Schol.; comp. Miiller, Aeginet., &c.; Hock, Kreta, ii., &c.; Dict. of. Ant.s. v. Diktunnia.)

This text is from: A dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology, 1873 (ed. William Smith). Cited Oct 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


   Britomartis, "sweet maid". A Cretan goddess, supposed to dispense happiness, and whose worship extended throughout the islands and along the coasts of the Mediterranean. Like Artemis, with whom she was sometimes identified, she was the patroness of hunters, fishermen, and sailors, and also goddess of birth and of health. Her sphere was Nature in its greatness and its freedom. As goddess of the sea she bore the name of Dictynna, the supposed derivation of which from the Greek diktuon, "a net," was explained by the following legend. She was the danghter of a huntress much beloved by Zeus and Artemis. Minos loved her, and followed her for nine months over valley and mountain, through forest and swamp, till he nearly overtook her, when she leaped from a high rock into the sea. She was saved by falling into some nets, and Artemis made her a goddess.

This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Oct 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


  The daughter of Zeus and Carme, who became the Cretan goddess of fishermen and hunters. Artemis loved her deeply, but Britomartis had no relationships with men. King Minos wanted her, but she refused him. He then started chasing her, and when he had almost caught up with her she leapt from Mt. Dictynnaeus into the sea. There she got caught in a fishing net and was rescued the last minute by Artemis who made her a goddess.
  Later Britomartis was also worshipped on Aegina where her temple, Aphaea, can still be seen.
  Another version tells us she was Phoenician, and that she lived on Cephalonia, where she was worshipped as Laphria, before she went to Crete.

This text is cited Sept 2003 from the In2Greece URL below.




IDI (Mountain) RETHYMNO

Heptaporus

Heptaporus, (Heptaporos), a son of Oceanus and Tethys, was the god of a small river near Mount Ida. (Hom. Il. xii. 20; Hes. Theog. 341; Strab. pp.587, 602.)


Gods & heroes related to the location

Hopladamos

Hopladamos, one of the Gigantes who accompanied and protected Rhea when she was on the point of giving birth to Zeus. (Paus. viii. 32. 4, 36.2.)


GORTYS (Ancient city) HERAKLIO

Atymnius

Atymnius (Atumnios or Atumnos), a son of Zeus and Cassiopeia, a beautiful boy, who was beloved by Sarpedon (Apollod. iii. 1.2). Others call him a son of Phoenix (Schol. ad Apollon. ii. 178). He seems to have been worshipped at Gortyn in Crete together with Europa. Two other mythical personages of this name occur in Quint. Smyrn. iii. 300, and Hom. Il. xvi. 317, &c.


KATRI (Ancient city) KANDANOS

Menelaus

For nine days he (Paris) was entertained by Menelaus; but on the tenth day, Menelaus having gone on a journey to Crete to perform the obsequies of his mother's father Catreus, Alexander persuaded Helen to go off with him. And she abandoned Hermione, then nine years old, and putting most of the property on board, she set sail with him by night


Heroes

CRETE (Island) GREECE

Rhacius

Leads Cretan colony to Asia, marries Manto , daughter of Tiresias.


ELYROS (Ancient city) ANATOLIKO SELINO

Phylacides & Philander

On the mountains of Crete there is still in my time a city called Elyrus. Now the citizens sent to Delphi a bronze goat, which is suckling the babies, Phylacides and Philander. The Elyrians say that these were children of Apollo by the nymph Acacallis, and that Apollo mated with Acacallis in the house of Carmanor in the city of Tarrha.


IDI (Mountain) RETHYMNO

Dactyls or Curetes

   (Kouretes). In Cretan mythology the Curetes were demigods armed with weapons of brass, to whom the new-born child Zeus was committed by his mother Rhea for protection against his father Cronus. They drowned the cries of the child by striking their spears against their shields. They gave their name to the priests of the Cretan goddess Rhea and of the Idaean Zeus, who performed noisy war-dances at the festivals of those deities.
   (Daktuloi). Fabulous beings, to whom the discovery of iron, and of the art of working it by means of fire, was ascribed. Mount Ida, in Phrygia, is said to have been the original seat of the Dactyli, whence they are usually called Idaean (Idaioi) Dactyli. In Phrygia they were connected with the worship of Rhea, or Cybele. They are sometimes confounded or identified with the Curetes, Corybantes, and Cabeiri.
   The name Daktuloi ("Fingers") is variously explained from their number being five or ten, or because they dwelt at the foot (en daktulois) of Mount Ida. The original number seems to have been three--i. e. Kelmis (Kelmis) the Smelter, Damnameneus (Damnameneus) the Hammer, and Acmon (Akmon) the Anvil. This number was afterwards increased to five, then to ten, to fiftytwo, and finally to one hundred.

This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Nov 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Dactyli, (Daktuloi), the Dactyls of mount Ida in Phrygia, fabulous beings to whom the discovery of iron and the art of working it by means of fire was ascribed. Their name Dactyls, that is, Fingers, is accounted for in various ways; by their number being five or ten, or by the fact of their serving Rhea just as the fingers serve the hand, or by the story of their having lived at the foot (en daktulois) of mount Ida. (Pollux, ii. 4; Strab. x.; Diod. v. 64.) Most of our authorities describe Phrygia as the original seat of the Dactyls. (Diod. xvii. 7; Schol. ad Apollon. Rhod. i. 1126; Strab. l. c.) There they were connected with the worship of Rhea. They are sometimes confounded or identified with the Curetes, Corybantes, Cabeiri, and Telchines; or they are described as the fathers of the Cabeiri and Corybantes. (Strab. x.; Schol. ad Arat. 33; Serv. ad Virg. Georg. iv. 153.) This confusion with the Cabeiri also accounts for Samothrace being in some accounts described as their residence (Diod. v. 64; comp. Arnob. adv. Gent. iii. 41); and Diodorus states, on the authority of Cretan historians, that the Dactyls had been occupied in incantations and other magic pursuits; that thereby they excited great wonder in Samothrace, and that Orpheus was their disciple in these things. Their connexion or identification with the Curetes even led to their being regarded as the same as the Roman Penates. (Arnob. iii. 40.) According to a tradition in Clemens Alexandrinus (Strom. i.) the Dactyls did not discover the iron in the Phrygian Ida, but in the island of Cyprus; and others again transfer them to mount Ida in Crete, although the ancient traditions of the latter island scarcely contain any traces of early working in metal there. (Apollon. Rhod. i. 1129; Plin. H. N. vii. 57.) Their number appears to have originally been three: Celmis (the smelter), Damnameneus (the hammer), and Acmon (the anvil). (Schol. ad Apollon. l. c.). To these others were subsequently added, such as Scythes, the Phrygian, who invented the smelting of iron (Clem. Alex. Strom. i. p. 362), Heracles (Strab. l. c.), and Delas. (Euseb. Praep. Evang. x.) Apollonius Rhodius mentions the hero Titias and Cyllenus as the principal Dactyls, and a local tradition of Elis mentioned, besides Heracles, Paconius, Epimedes, Jasius, and Idas or Acesidas as Dactyls; but these seem to have been beings altogether different from the Idaean Dactyls, for to judge from their names, they must have been healing divinities. (Paus. v. 7.4, 14.5, 8.1, vi. 21.5; Strab. viii.) Their number is also stated to have been five, ten (five male and five female ones), fifty-two, or even one hundred. The tradition which assigns to them the Cretan Ida as their habitation, describes them as the earliest inhabitants of Crete, and as having gone thither with Mygdon (or Minos) from Phrygia, and as having discovered the iron in mount Berecynthus. (Diod. v. 64; Cic. de Nat. Deor. iii. 16.) With regard to the real nature of the Dactyls, they seem to be no more than the mythical representatives of the discoverers of iron and of the art of smelting metals with the aid of fire, for the importance of this art is sufficiently great for the ancients to ascribe its invention to supernatural beings. The original notion of the Dactyls was afterwards extended, and they are said to have discovered various other things which are useful or pleasing to man ; thus they are reported to have introduced music from Phrygia into Greece, to have invented rhythm, especially the dactylic rhythm. (Plut. de Mus. 5 ; Diomedes, p. 474, ed. Putsch; Clem. Alex. Strom. i.) They were in general looked upon as mysterious sorcerers, and are therefore also described as the inventors of the Ephesian incantation formulae; and persons when suddenly frightened used to pronounce the names of the Dactyls as words of magic power. (Plut. de Fac. in Orb. Lun. 30; compare Lobeck, de Idaeis Dactylis; Welcker, Die Aeschyl. Trib., &c.)

This text is from: A dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology, 1873 (ed. William Smith). Cited Oct 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Idaean Dactyls, Curetes : Perseus Project Index



Idean Dactyli discovered iron

Hesiod says, that iron was discovered in Crete, by the Idean Dactyli.
Commentary:
According to Pausanias, the art of forging iron was discovered by Glaucus of Chios. Strabo ascribes it to the Idean Dactyli, and the art of manufacturing utensils of bronze and iron to the Telchines; the former were inhabitants of Crete, the latter of Rhodes.


Metals in Antiquity (iron)


KNOSSOS (Minoan settlement) CRETE

Androgeos, Androgeus

Androgeos. A son of Minos, king of Crete, by Pasiphae. Visiting Athens at the first celebration of the Panathenaea, he won victories over all the champions, when King Aegeus, out of jealousy, sent him to fight the bull of Marathon, which killed him. According to another account he was slain in an ambush. Minos avenged his son by making the Athenians send seven youths and seven maidens every nine years as victims of the Minotaur.

This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Androgeus (Androgeos), a son of Minos and Pasiphae, or Crete, who is said to have conquered all his opponents in the games of the Panathenaea at Athens. This extraordinary good luck, however, became the cause of his destruction, though the mode of his death is related differently. According to some accounts Aegeus sent the man he dreaded to fight against the Marathonian bull, who killed him; according to others, he was assassinated by his defeated rivals on his road to Thebes, whither he was going to take part in a solemn contest (Apollod. iii. 1.2, 15.7; Paus. i. 27.9). According to Diodorus (iv. 60) it was Aegeus himself who had him murdered near Oenoe, on the road to Thebes, because he feared lest Androgeus should support the sons of Pallas against him. Hyginus (Fab. 41) makes him fall in a battle during the war of his father Minos against the Athenians (See some different accounts in Plut. Thes. 15; Serv. ad Aen. vi. 14). But the common tradition is, that Minos made war on the Athenians in consequence of the death of his son. Propertius (ii. 1. 64) relates that Androgeus was restored to life by Aesculapius. He was worshipped in Attica as a hero, an altar was erected to him in the port of Phalerus (Paus. i. 1.4), and games, androgeonia, were celebrated in his honour every year in the Cerameicus (see Androgeonia.) He was also worshipped under the name Eurugues, i. e. he who ploughs or possesses extensive fields, whence it has been inferred that originally Androgeus was worshipped as the introducer of agriculture into Attica.

This text is from: A dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology, 1873 (ed. William Smith). Cited July 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Aegeus... celebrated the games of the Panathenian festival, in which Androgeus, son of Minos, vanquished all comers. Him Aegeus sent against the bull of Marathon, by which he was destroyed. But some say that as he journeyed to Thebes to take part in the games in honor of Laius, he was waylaid and murdered by the jealous competitors.But when the tidings of his death were brought to Minos, as he was sacrificing to the Graces in Paros, he threw away the garland from his head and stopped the music of the flute, but nevertheless completed the sacrifice; hence down to this day they sacrifice to the Graces in Paros without flutes and garlands.
Cimmentary: This account of the murder of Androgeus is repeated almost verbally by the Scholiast on Plat. Minos 321a. Compare Diod. 4.60.4ff.; Zenobius, Cent. iv.6; Scholiast on Hom. Il. xviii.590. All these writers mention the distinction won by Androgeus in the athletic contests of the Panathenian festival as the ultimate ground of his undoing. Serv. Verg. A. 6.14 and Lactantius Placidus on Statius, Achill. 192 say that, as an eminent athlete who beat all competitors in the games, Androgeus was murdered at Athens by Athenian and Megarian conspirators. Paus. 1.27.10 mentions the killing of Androgeus by the Marathonian bull. According to Hyginus, Fab. 41, Androgeus was killed in battle during the war which his father Minos waged with the Athenians.

This extract is from: Apollodorus, Library and Epitome (ed. Sir James George Frazer, 1921). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.


Another deed of Theseus they have represented in an offering, and the story about it is as follows: The land of the Cretans and especially that by the river Tethris was ravaged by a bull. It would seem that in the days of old the beasts were much more formidable to men, for example the Nemean lion, the lion of Parnassus, the serpents in many parts of Greece, and the boars of Calydon, Eryrmanthus and Crommyon in the land of Corinth, so that it was said that some were sent up by the earth, that others were sacred to the gods, while others had been let loose to punish mankind. And so the Cretans say that this bull was sent by Poseidon to their land because, although Minos was lord of the Greek Sea, he did not worship Poseidon more than any other god. They say that this bull crossed from Crete to the Peloponnesus, and came to be one of what are called the Twelve Labours of Heracles. When he was let loose on the Argive plain he fled through the isthmus of Corinth, into the land of Attica as far as the Attic parish of Marathon, killing all he met, including Androgeos, son of Minos. Minos sailed against Athens with a fleet, not believing that the Athenians were innocent of the death of Androgeos, and sorely harassed them until it was agreed that he should take seven maidens and seven boys for the Minotaur that was said to dwell in the Labyrinth at Cnossus. But the bull at Marathon Theseus is said to have driven afterwards to the Acropolis and to have sacrificed to the goddess; the offering commemorating this deed was dedicated by the parish of Marathon.

This extract is from: Pausanias. Description of Greece (ed. W.H.S. Jones, Litt.D., & H.A. Ormerod, 1918). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.



TARRA (Ancient city) SFAKIA

Carmanor

Carmanor (Karmanor), a Cretan of Tarrha, father of Eubulus and Chrysothemis. He was said to have received and purified Apollo and Artemis, after they had slain the monster Python, and it was in the house of Carmanor that Apollo formed his connexion with the nymph Acacallis. (Paus. ii. 7.7, 30.3, x. 16.2, 7.2)


Chrysothemis, the poet, son of Carmanor

Chrysothemis (Chrusothemis) There are four mythical females of this name (Hygin. Fab. 170, Poet. Astr. ii. 25; Diod. v. 22; Hom. Il. ix. 287), and one male, a son of Carmanor, the priest of Apollo at Tarrha in Crete. He is said to have been a poet, and to have won the first victory in the Pythian games by a hymn on Apollo. (Paus. x. 7.2)


Eubulus

Eubulus, (Euboulos), a son of Carmanor and father of Carme. (Paus. ii. 30. § 3.) This name likewise occurs as a surname of several divi nities who were regarded as the authors of good counsel, or as well-disposed; though when applied to Hades, it is, like Eubuleus, a mere euphemism. (Orph. Hymn. 17. 12, 29. 6, 55. 3)


Heroines

DIKTINA (Ancient sanctuary) KOLYMBARI

Carme

Carme (Karme), a daughter of Eubulus, who became by Zeus the mother of Britomartis (Paus. ii. 30.2). Antoninus Liberalis (40) describes her as a grand-daughter of Agenor, and daughter of Phoenix.


GORTYS (Ancient city) HERAKLIO

Europa (Europe)

  Europa, the daughter of Agenor, son of Poseidon and Telephassa, was so beautiful that Zeus fell in love with her and managed to make her his thanks to a daring plan. One beautiful morning, as Europa was playing in the flowery meadows with her female companions, Zeus approached the girls transformed into a white and tame bull, having a sweet expression and a golden crescent on his forehead. The girls were charmed by the presence of Zeus as a bull and started examining him with awe. Europa, smiling and joyful jumped on his back and immediately the animal rushed to the sea. Zeus had achieved his goal and was travelling with his beloved Europa on his back. To please the god, the seas went calm, dolphins were jumping around the divine bull and the Nereids were dancing.
  The final destination was Crete and in particular Gortyna where Zeus was joined in a "sacred marriage" with Europa, beneath a plane tree which has never lost its leaves ever since. It is interesting that the coins of Gortyna found had maintained the memory of this scene. One can see Europa seated on the trunk of the sacred tree, while on the other side of the coin the bull looks at her for one last time.
  The union of Europa and Zeus resulted in the birth of three sons: Minos, Rhadamanthys and Sarpedon. Then Zeus gave Europa for marriage to the king of Crete, Asterios, and they adopted the children of Zeus, whom they raised with great love, and who inherited the kingdom of Asterios.
  Upon death, Europa was honoured by gods and man alike. It was also said that one of the continents on earth was named after her as Europe. She was worshipped with the name of Hellotis and at the celebrations, the Hellotia a celebration of joy for the blossoming of nature, people used to weave wreaths around her thighs as an indication of fertility.
  It was believed that Europa was initially a nymph, daughter of Oceanus. This version coincides with the myth of cosmogony in that the lands arose from the ocean. According to another similar version, Europa seems to be the personification of a brilliant meteor or a bright star. Europa, the daughter of Telephassa, "the one who shines from afar", might have been a figure for the moon, each morning eloping with the solar bull and each night appearing brilliant on the dark sky.

This text is cited Nov 2003 from the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs URL below.


Europa, (Europe). A daughter of Agenor (called by some Phoenix), king of Phoenicia. Zeus, becoming enamoured of her, according to the old legend, changed himself into a beautiful white bull, and approached her, "breathing saffron from his mouth," as she was gathering flowers with her companions in a mead near the seashore. Europa, delighted with the tameness and beauty of the animal, caressed him, crowned him with flowers, and at length ventured to mount on his back. The disguised god immediately made off with his burden, plunged into the sea, and swam with Europa to the island of Crete, landing not far from Gortyna. Here he resumed his own form, and beneath a plane-tree soothed and caressed the trembling maiden. The offspring of their union were Minos, Rhadamanthus, and Sarpedon. Asterius, king of Crete, subsequently married Europa, and reared her sons.

This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Nov 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Having now run over the family of Inachus and described them from Belus down to the Heraclids, we have next to speak of the house of Agenor. For as I have said, Libya had by Poseidon two sons, Belus and Agenor. Now Belus reigned over the Egyptians and begat the aforesaid sons; but Agenor went to Phoenicia, married Telephassa, and begat a daughter Europa and three sons, Cadmus, Phoenix, and Cilix. But some say that Europa was a daughter not of Agenor but of Phoenix. Zeus loved her, and turning himself into a tame bull, he mounted her on his back and conveyed her through the sea to Crete. There Zeus bedded with her, and she bore Minos, Sarpedon, and Rhadamanthys; but according to Homer, Sarpedon was a son of Zeus by Laodamia, daughter of Bellerophon. On the disappearance of Europa her father Agenor sent out his sons in search of her, telling them not to return until they had found Europa. With them her mother, Telephassa, and Thasus, son of Poseidon, or according to Pherecydes, of Cilix, went forth in search of her. But when, after diligent search, they could not find Europa, they gave up the thought of returning home, and took up their abode in divers places; Phoenix settled in Phoenicia; Cilix settled near Phoenicia, and all the country subject to himself near the river Pyramus he called Cilicia; and Cadmus and Telephassa took up their abode in Thrace and in like manner Thasus founded a city Thasus in an island off Thrace and dwelt there.

This extract is from: Apollodorus, Library and Epitome (ed. Sir James George Frazer, 1921). Cited Nov 2003 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.



Asterion

Asterion or Asterius (Asterios), a son of Teutamus, and king of the Cretans, who married Europa after she had been carried to Crete by Zeus. He also brought up the three sons, Minos, Sarpedon, and Rhadamanthys whom she had by the father of the gods. (Apollod. iii. 1., &c.; Diod. iv. 60)


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