Warning: This work has been rated 16+ for violence and mature content.
Theseus and the Minotaur is a well-known Greek myth that incorporates elements of romance, adventure, action, tragedy, and violence. The main character in this story was a man named Theseus, who was born to Aethra. It is uncertain who his father is, since Aethra was with both Posiedon and Aegus, king of Athens, but it is likely that Aegus was the father. Aegus hid his sandals and tunic under a large boulder and told Aethra that if they had a son, he should come up here and get the sandals and tunic before coming to find him. Theseus was born, and on his sixteenth birthday, Aethra took him up and told him to lift the boulder.
Theseus lifted the boulder without difficulty and retrieved the sandals and tunic, then journeying by land to Athens, disobeying his mother's pleas for him to take the safer route by sea. Along the way, Theseus met with several thieves and bandits, but managed to outsmart them all and arrived at Athens unharmed.
When he arrived at Athens, Aegus' new wife, Medea, saw that Theseus was Aegus' son. Due to her jealousy, she plotted with Aegus to poison Theseus' wine. Aegus, unaware that Theseus was his son, agreed, and just as Theseus was about to drink the wine, Aegus recognized the sword at Theseus' side and knocked the wine cup aside, saving his son. Both Aegus and Theseus were filled with joy at their reunion, and lived happily for several months.
However, one day near the spring equinox, Theseus saw a ship with a black mast sailing to Athens. He questioned his father about the ship, but Aegus refused to tell his son what had happened. Theseus then went and asked the captain of the ship, who told him that he had delivered the Minotaur's yearly tribute of seven young men and seven women to be fed to the Minotaur. The Minotaur, a half-man half-bull who resided in a Labyrinth under King Minos' palace, was the son of Queen Pasiphae and a bull, who had fallen in love as the result of a curse. After King Minos' son had been killed in a journey to Crete, King Minos demanded that every year, seven tributes would be sent to the Labyrinth as food for the Bull.
Theseus, outraged, pleaded with his father to be sent in place of one of the tributes the next time they were sent away. King Aegus attempted to dissuade Theseus, but Theseus was determined to slay the monster. He promised his father that if he defeated the Minotaur, he would replace the black sails with white sails as a signal to all.
The next year, Theseus set sail with the other tributes for Crete, and when he arrived, Princess Ariadne fell in love with him and gave him a spool of string, instructing him to leave the string as a way to lead him out of the Labyrinth after he killed the Minotaur. Theseus took her advice and killed the Minotaur once he was inside the Labyrinth, then led the other tributes out safely. Triumphantly, he sailed back with Ariadne and stopped at Naxos to have a celebratory feast.
In one version of the myth, Theseus deliberately leaves Ariadne behind on Naxos when he sails to Crete, but another version states that Theseus accidentally left Ariadne behind. Regardless, Theseus forgot his promise to his father, and kept the black sails up as he sailed back.
His father, who was waiting on a cliff near the sea for Theseus' return, saw the black sails and was so distressed that his son had been killed he jumped from the cliff to his death into the Aegean sea, named for this tragedy.
The tale of Theseus and the Minotaur tells the story of a brave young hero, determined to save his fellow Athenians from the horrible Minotaur through his wits and strength, overcoming all obstacles to successfully slay a dangerous beast and bring peace to his people once again.
Author's Note: This is a retelling of the classic Greek myth Theseus and the Minotaur for school. All of my information is from online encyclopedias, and it's 669 words, so please let me know what you think! I would appreciate any and all grammatical notes and ways to make this better in any way. I want to hand in a solid essay, since this will be one of my first grades in writing for this trimester, so thank you for any help! If I am factually incorrect anywhere, PLEASE feel free to call me out on that as well.