THE TAUROS KRETAIOS (Cretan Bull) was a handsome bull sent forth from the sea by Poseidon. Queen Pasiphae of Krete lusted after the animal and coupled with it by hiding inside a wooden cow crafted by the artificer Daidalos (Daedalus). She later gave birth to the Minotauros (Minotaur), a man with the head of a bull.

Herakles was commanded to fetch the Kretan Bull as one of his Twelve Labours. Upon completion of this task he set the creature free and it eventually found its way to the Athenian town of Marathon where it laid waste to the countryside. There it was finally destroyed by the hero Theseus.

The gods placed the bull among the stars as the Constellation Taurus, along with the Hydra, Nemean Lion and other creatures from the labours of Herakles.


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