Minotaur, Ancient Myths series, Niue Island 2017, 5 Dollars, 2 oz, 50 mm, antique finish high relief coin with brass spiked ball insert, client: Magikos-Coins, producer: Mint of Poland.
The “Minotaur” is following the “Trojan Horse” coin in the Ancient Myths series.
On the reverse: the clumsy creature with the head of a bull, runs towards Theseus. In his right hand he holds the labrys (a double-bitted Minoan ax), while in the left — a chain of the flail with a huge spike ball. Under his feet there are a lot of skulls, skeletons and remains of weapons of his victims. Theseus defends himself with a magic sword. At his hip hangs a ball of thread. He got the thread from Ariadne, so that he could find his way out of the Labyrinth. In the background we see the walls of the Labyrinth with many traces of fighting. Minos, the king of Crete is looking at the whole scene from the terrace of his palace at Knossos. Minos had Daedalus construct a gigantic labyrinth to hold the Minotaur.
On the obverse: an ancient Greek soldier keeps the entrance to the Labyrinth. Two crossed labryses hang on the right column (the word labyrinthos comes from the word labrys in Lydian language). King Minos kept them to defend himself from Minotaur. On the lintel of the entrance we see the Greek word λαβύρινθος and on top of the building a famous sculpture of Antonio Canova: Theseus stomping the vanquished Minotaur. It’s a kind of artistic counterpoint, similar to the Laocoön Group on the “Trojan Horse” coin. An outline of the scene of Theseus fighting with Minotaur was engraved on a vase with spears, near the right column of the obverse.