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It is difficult to determine which is right. There is another story also not generally received; some persons affirming that Minos was a foreigner, others that he was a native of the island. Homer seems to support the latter opinion, when he says, that

“ Minos, the guardian of Crete, was the first offspring of Jupiter.1

Il. xiii. 450.

It is generally admitted with regard to Crete that in ancient times it was governed by good laws, and induced the wisest of the Greeks to imitate its form of government, and particularly the Lacedæmonians, as Plato shows in his ‘Laws,’ and Ephorus has described in his work ‘Europe.’ Afterwards there was a change in the government, and for the most part for the worse. For the Tyrrheni, who chiefly infested our sea, were followed by the Cretans, who succeeded to the haunts and piratical practices of the former people, and these again afterwards were subject to the devastations of the Cilicians. But the Romans destroyed them all after the conquest of Crete,2 and demolished the piratical strongholds of the Cilicians. At present Cnossus has even a colony of Romans.

1 Il. xiii. 450.

2 The Cretan war was conducted by Q. Metellus, proconsul, who from thence obtained the cognomen of Creticus.

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