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[9] And at his suggestion she gave Theseus a clue when he went in; Theseus fastened it to the door, and, drawing it after him, entered in.1 And having found the Minotaur in the last part of the labyrinth, he killed him by smiting him with his fists; and drawing the clue after him made his way out again. And by night he arrived with Ariadne and the children2 at Naxos. There Dionysus fell in love with Ariadne and carried her off;3 and having brought her to Lemnos he enjoyed her, and begat Thoas, Staphylus, Oenopion, and Peparethus.4

1 Compare Scholiast on Hom. Od. xi.322, Scholiast on Hom. Il. xviii.590; Eustathius on Hom. Od. xi.320, p. 1688; Diod. 4.61.4; Plut. Thes. 19; Hyginus, Fab. 42; Serv. Verg. A. 6.14, and on Georg. i.222; Lactantius Placidus on Statius, Theb. xii.676; Scriptores rerum mythicarum Latini, ed. Bode, i. pp. 16, 116ff. (First Vatican Mythographer 43; Second Vatican Mythographer 124). The clearest description of the clue, with which the amorous Ariadne furnished Theseus, is given by the Scholiasts and Eustathius on Homer l.c.. From them we learn that it was a ball of thread which Ariadne had begged of Daedalus for the use of her lover. He was to fasten one end of the thread to the lintel of the door on entering into the labyrinth, and holding the ball in his hand to unwind the skein while he penetrated deeper and deeper into the maze, till he found the Minotaur asleep in the inmost recess; then he was to catch the monster by the hair and sacrifice him to Poseidon; after which he was to retrace his steps, gathering up the thread behind him as he went. According to the Scholiast on the Odyssey (l.c.), the story was told by Pherecydes, whom later authors may have copied.

2 That is, the boys and girls whom he had rescued from the Minotaur.

3 Compare Diod. 4.61.5; Plut. Thes. 20; Paus. 1.20.3; Paus. 10.29.4; Scholiast on Ap. Rhod., Argon. iii.997; Scholiast on Theocritus ii.45; Catul. 64.116ff.; Ovid, Her. x.; Ovid, Ars Am. i.527ff.; Ov. Met. 8.174ff.; Hyginus, Fab. 43; Serv. Verg. G. 1.222; Scriptores rerum mythicarum Latini, ed. Bode, i. pp. 116ff. (Second Vatican Mythographer 124). Homer's account of the fate of Ariadne is different. He says (Hom. Od. 11.321-325) that when Theseus was carrying off Ariadne from Crete to Athens she was slain by Artemis in the island of Dia at the instigation of Dionysus. Later writers, such as Diodorus Siculus identified Dia with Naxos, but it is rather “the little island, now Standia, just off Heraclaion, on the north coast of Crete. Theseus would pass the island in sailing for Athens” (Merry on Hom. Od. xi.322). Apollodorus seems to be the only extant ancient author who mentions that Dionysus carried off Ariadne from Naxos to Lemnos and had intercourse with her there.

4 Compare Scholiast on Ap. Rhod., Argon. iii.997. Others said that Ariadne bore Staphylus and Oenopion to Theseus (Plut. Thes. 20).

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