Ariadne and Theseus

Theseus was among the youths of Athens who was to be sacrificed to the half-man, half-bull Minotaur which lived deep in a labyrinth on the island of Crete.

Ariadne loved Theseus and arranged to help him. She learned from Daedalus, the architect of the labyrinth, that one could kill the monster but would never escape the labyrinth - except by unraveling a string on the way in and following it on the way out.

Theseus used this strategy, killed the Minotaur, and escaped with Ariadne from Crete. After a night of passion, she never saw him again. 

Tradition has it that the gods had forced Theseus to leave Ariadne. Nonetheless, one wonders about the effect this experience might have had on Ariadne's attachment working models and her willingness to serve as a secure base in subsequent relationships.

thes-ari.jpg (13732 bytes)

Ariadne and Theseus 

Detail from a two-handled vase
Crete, c. 725 - 650 BC

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