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Mythic Origins of the Minotaurs

by Donald Eric Kesler

After he ascended the throne of the Milenian Empire in 302 BC, King Minon struggled with his brothers for the right to rule. In order to prevent open rebellion Minon prayed to Protius to send him a snow-white bull, as a sign of approval. He was to sacrifice the bull in honour of Protius but decided to keep it instead because of its beauty. To punish Minon, Protius caused ProtiphaŽ, Minonís wife, to fall madly in love with the bull from the sea. She had Ixionalus the Academician magically transform her into a heifer. ProtiphaŽ copulated with the white bull. The offspring of their coupling was a monster called the Minotaur.

The Minotaur had the body of a man and the head, cloven feet and tail of a bull. ProtiphaŽ nursed him in his infancy, but he grew and became ferocious. Minon, after getting advice from the Wave Scryer of Protius, had Ixonalus the Academician construct a gigantic labyrinth to hold the Minotaur and his wife. Its location was near Minon's palace in Coris.

It was in this maze of death and destruction that the corrupt King Minon would banish those who would oppose him. In this harsh environment, ProtiphaŽ withered in spite of the efforts of her fierce but loving son. She lingered weakly for nine long years. With her last breath, she beseeched the immortals to spare the child that she still loved.

There is much debate over which immortal answered ProtiphaŽís prayer. Many claim that Protius uncharacteristically had mercy on his beastly grandson. Regardless, the prayer was answered. The Minotaur was never seen in Corisí labyrinth again. Within a few decades time, other Minotaurs were encountered and they claimed to be the offspring of the Minotaur of Coris.