|“||You do not control me, young fool. All this time, I have been controlling you! A soul for a soul, yes. But it is not your sister who will return from the dead. It is I, as soon as I slay the inventor!||”|
Minos was a Greek demigod son of Zeus and the mortal princess Europa. He was the manipulative, vengeful king of Crete. After his death, Minos along with his brothers, Aeacus and Rhadamanthus, became Judges of the Dead.
Minos, along with his brothers, Rhadamanthus and Sarpedon, was raised by King Asterion of Crete. When Asterion died, his throne was claimed by Minos, who banished his brothers. Minos reigned over Crete and the islands of the Aegean Sea three generations before the Trojan War. He constructed a palace at Knossos, where for a period of nine years, he received instruction from his father, Zeus, in the legislation in which he gave to the island. He was the author of the Cretan constitution and the founder of its naval supremacy.
Minos took Pasiphaë, daughter of the sun god Helios, as his wife and queen. With her, he fathered four sons, Catreus, Androgeus, Deucalion, and Glaucus, and four daughters, Acalle, Ariadne, Xenodice and Phaedra. By Deucalion, he was the grandfather of Idomeneus, who led the Cretans during the Trojan War.
When his son Androgeos had won the Panathenaeic Games, the king, Aegeus, sent him to Marathon to fight a bull, resulting in the death of Androgeos. Outraged, Minos went to Athens to avenge his son, and on the way he camped at Megara. The king there at the time was Nisos (one of Aegeus' brothers), and his strength came from his hair. His daughter, Scylla, fell in love with Minos and cut off her father's purple hair so Minos could conquer the city. After his triumph, he punished Scylla for her treachery against her father by tying her to a boat and dragging her until she drowned. On arriving in Attica, he asked Zeus to punish the city, and the god struck it with plague and hunger. An oracle told the Athenians to meet any of Minos' demands if they wanted to escape further punishment. Minos then demanded Athens to send seven boys and seven girls to Crete every nine years to be sacrificed to the Minotaur.
Minos himself is said to have died at Camicus in Sicily, in pursuit of Daedalus, who had given Ariadne the clue by which she guided Theseus through the Labyrinth. He was killed by the daughters of Cocalus, king of Agrigentum, who poured boiling water over him while he was taking a bath. Subsequently, his remains were sent back to the Cretans, who placed them in a sarcophagus, on which was inscribed: "The tomb of Minos, the son of Zeus." Upon his death, Minos was succeeded by his eldest son, Catreus, though he and his son, Althaimenes, died soon afterwards and the throne of Crete passed onto Minos' only surviving son, Deucalion.
The earlier legend knows Minos as a beneficent ruler, legislator, and suppressor of piracy. His constitution was said to have formed the basis of that of Lycurgus for Sparta. In accordance with this, after his death he was appointed as one of the judge of the dead in the Underworld.
After his death Minos became a judge of the dead in the Underworld. He finds Nico di Angelo, son of Hades, and teaches him how to access his powers so he can manipulate him into killing Daedalus in revenge for his unjust, however much deserved, death.
Percy Jackson and Annabeth Chase heard a prophecy about their quest "rising or falling by the ghost king's hand", and try to warn Nico. Nico is still angry with Percy because he blames him for his sister Bianca's death, but when they raise the spirit of Bianca, she gently admonishes him for raising her spirit, and for blaming Percy for so long, when it was her own fault she died.
Nico then distrusted Minos, but the ghost king got the better of him. He told Nico that Percy and Annabeth were in danger, and led him into a trap that led to Nico being captured by agents of Kronos. Percy and Annabeth soon come, and they rescue Nico from Kronos' clutches. Minos tried to retaliate but was banished by Nico who corrects Minos and proclaims himself the "Ghost King" thus making sense of part of the prophecy. It was Nico who had allowed them to succeed or fail (in this case, the former).
In the end, Daedalus has Nico release his spirit to the Underworld so the Labyrinth can disappear because his life is tied to it. So, Minos tries to get his revenge by judging him unfairly (by boiling him in cheese fondue for eternity) but no one listens to him, Daedalus is given the job of building bridges and underpasses in the Fields of Asphodel to ease traffic congestion (by the order of Hades, in his impatience with commute time from his palace to the gates), and Minos does not have his revenge for his death.
King Minos was mentioned by the immortal sorceress Pasiphaë as her husband. Later, he is mentioned by Hazel Levesque when she taunts Pasiphaë on how she'll always be defeated by demigods, citing how Minos betrayed her as a perfect example.
Minos is described in The Battle of the Labyrinth as a very tall and imposing man in white robes, with a thin royal circlet of gold on his head. His beard was pointed like a spear blade, while his eyes glittered cruelly. Ten years later, while visiting King Cocalus, Minos's pointed beard had gone gray, while he himself looked thinner, but the same cold cruel light shined from his eyes, and Minos still looked so tall and serious, that he made Cocalus look silly in comparison, according to Percy.
After death, Minos's soul looked like a "faint shimmering image of a man", though he gradually began looking more and more lifelike, and right before Nico usurped his "Ghost King" title, Minos looked almost solid — a pale bearded king with maliciously cold eyes and tendrils of Mist coiling off his robes.
- Aerokinesis: As a son of Zeus, Minos presumably has the ability to control and manipulate air.
- Electrokinesis: As a son of Zeus, Minos presumably has the ability to control lightning and static electricity.
- Necromancy: After his death Minos was made a Judge of the dead and had control of the dead allowing him to summon spirits of his former soldiers. His power over the dead was weaker than Nico who dispersed his soldiers and forced him to the underworld.
Shortly after Nico initially ran away from Camp Half-Blood, he was found in the Labyrinth by the ghost of King Minos, who intended to manipulate the son of Hades into killing Daedalus in revenge for his unjust, however much deserved, death. In order to gain Nico's trust, Minos leads him through the maze of the Labyrinth, saved him multiple times, and taught him how to utilize his infernal demigod powers. It is most likely that Minos was also the one to teach Nico to shadow travel. In the end, however, Nico realized Minos' malevolent goals, and banished him back to the Underworld, stripping him of his Ghost King title, and taking it for himself.
Years later, in The Blood of Olympus, Nico has several flashbacks of Minos in his dreams. It is also revealed that Nico's experience with Minos made him realize that most specters held only as much power as one allows them to. Hence, the son of Hades has learned to shield himself from specters' influence, and can even turn the tables now, bending them to his will.
- Both Minos and his wife Pasiphaë were a secondary antagonist in the penultimate books of the two series (The Battle of the Labyrinth and The House of Hades respectively).
- Both happen to be the fourth book in each series.
- He and other judges' Egyptian equivalent are a set of judgment gods such as Disturber.
- He made Chris Rodriguez insane, to a point that only Dionysus, the god of madness, could cure him.