Europa, a Phoenician princess, daughter of King Agenor of Tyre, was gathering flowers with her ladies by the seashore when they came across a beautiful white bull. Tempted by its beauty, Europa stroked the bull, which sat down and allowed her attentions. She and her maids garlanded the bull with flowers, until Europa was brave enough to sit on its back. Instantly it sprang up, swimming into the sea.
Legendarily, the bull took Europa to Crete, where it revealed itself to be Zeus, and fathered upon Europa three sons: Sarpedon, Rhadamanthus, and Minos – who was either the first King of Crete, whose wife Pasiphae was made to love another white bull by Poseidon in revenge for Minos’ lack of correct worship, fathering the Minotaur, or the ancestor of that same king.
Europa was also given by Zeus, in some versions of the Myth, three gifts: Talos, the bronze giant; Laelaps, the hunting dog that never failed to catch its prey; and a spear that never missed its target, all of which items found their way into later myths.
Europa also had the continent next to Crete named after her.
Picture taken at the bay of Ancient Lissos, Southern Crete, after an extremely sweaty climb up, over and down into the gorge it’s in!
Comix drawn in transit!