). The daughters of Minyas, the rich king of
Orchomenus and mythical ancestral hero of the race of the Minyae; their names were
Alcathoë (Alcithoë), Leucippé, and Arsippé. When the
worship of Dionysus was introduced into Boeotia, and all the other women wandered in frenzy
over the mountains in honour of the god, they alone remained at home, and profaned the
festival by working at their looms, in spite of the warning of the god, who had appeared to
them in the shape of a maiden. It was not till he had assumed the shapes of a bull, a lion,
and a panther, had made milk and wine flow from the yarnbeams, and had changed their weft into
grapes and vine-leaves, that they were terrified and drew lots who should offer a sacrifice to
the god; and Leucippé, on whom the lot fell, tore her own son Hippasus to pieces in
her Bacchic fury. They then raged about on the mountains till they were transformed into bats.
With this legend was connected the custom, that at the annual festival of Dionysus the priest
of the god was allowed to pursue the women of the Minyan race with a drawn sword and kill them
(Aelian, V. H.
iii. 42; Plutarch, Quaest. Gr.
38; Ovid, Met. iv. 1-40