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Crete Mythology Jul 17

Several myths have been created during centuries concerning Crete. They used to represent the way people think and how they tried to explain strange phenomena and events. Below the most well-known myths are presented.

The Birth of Zeus in the Diktian Cave:

After Kronos and the other Titans had overthrown their father, Ouranos, they inherited rule of the cosmos. Kronos was much like his father in that he had a very violent side; when he took his sister Rhea as his wife, it was foretold that one of his children would rise up against him and overthrow him, like he had his father. He resorted to a more permanent solution than Ouranos upon hearing this; he swallowed them.

After he had disposed of five children this way, Rhea was absolutely desperate to save her last child. Seeking help from her mother, she devised a plan. When the time came for her to give birth, she fled to Mount Dicte on the fertile island of Crete; then, instead of giving Kronos Zeus, she swaddled a rock in thick blankets and presented it to him; he promptly shoved it down his throat.

About a year later, Kronos finally vomited the children he thought he had permanently disposed of. They joined with Zeus, who had grown up healthy and strong away from his cannibalistic father on the island of Crete. Together they overthrew their father and took over rule over the world. Zeus won control over the skies, his brother Poseidon ruled over the oceans, and Hades ruled over the underworld.

The Minotaur and the Labyrinth, Theseus and Ariadne:

Crete Mythology

Before Minos became king, he asked the Greek god Poseidon to assure him that he was to receive the throne. Poseidon sent a white bull on condition Minos would sacrifice the bull back to the god. Indeed, a bull of unmatched beauty came out of the sea. King Minos, after seeing it, found it so beautiful that he instead sacrificed another bull. Poseidon was very angry when he realized what had been done so he caused Minos’s wife, Pasiphae, to be overcome with a fit of madness in which she fell in love with the bull. Pasiphae went to Daedalus for assistance, and Daedalus devised a way for her to satisfy her passions. He constructed a hollow wooden cow covered with cowhide for Pasiphae to hide in and allow the bull to mount her. The result of this union was the Minotaur.

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Category: Crete Mythology
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