Minotaur was the familiar half-bull, half-man who was the off - spring of Pasiphaë and a bull and who was kept by king Minos in a labyrinth at Knossos. The name is really a title, meaning 'Minos' bull' (Minos and- tauros, 'bull'). It sometimes comes as something of a surprise to learn that the Minotaur actually had a name - Asterius or Asterion. The Minotaur was slain by Perseus, of course.