Click HERE to check out all my Greek Mythology Products
In Greek mythology, Midas or King Midas (in Greek Μίδας) is popularly remembered for his ability to turn everything he touched into gold: the Midas touch.
Dionysus, in Greek mythology, god of wine and vegetation, who showed mortals how to cultivate grapevines and make wine.
A wood deity, companion and teacher of Dionysus.
Historically, it is known that a Midas was king of Phrygia in the late eighth century BCE. Phrygia had many kings who bore the name Midas.
Once, as Ovid relates in Metamorphoses X Dionysus found his old schoolmaster and foster father, the satyr Silenus, missing. The old satyr had been drinking wine, and had wandered away drunk, and was found by some Phrygian peasants, who carried him to their king, Midas (alternatively, he passed out in Midas' rose garden). Midas recognized him, and treated him hospitably, entertaining him for ten days and nights with politeness, while Silenus entertained Midas and his friends with stories and songs.
On the eleventh day he brought Silenus back to Dionysus in Lydia. Dionysus offered Midas his choice of whatever reward he wanted. Midas asked that whatever he might touch should be changed into gold.
In alchemy, the transmutation of an object into gold is known as chrysopoeia.
So Midas, king of Lydia, swelled at first with pride when he found he could transform everything he touched to gold: but when he beheld his food grow rigid and his drink harden into golden ice then he understood that this gift was a bane and in his loathing for gold cursed his prayer" (Claudian, In Rufinem). In a version told by Nathaniel Hawthorne, he found that when he touched his daughter, she turned into a statue as well.
Smyrna, Daughter of Midas
The Midas Touch
The Midas touch, or the gift of profiting from whatever one undertakes, is named for a legendary king of Phrygia. Midas was granted the power to transmute whatever he touched into gold.
Now he hated the gift he had coveted. He prayed to Dionysus, begging to be delivered from starvation. Dionysus heard and consented; he told Midas to wash in the river Pactolus. He did so, and when he touched the waters, the power passed into the river, and the river sands became changed into gold. This explained why the river Pactolus was so rich in gold
Austin Powers in Goldmember
~ I yuv goooold! The look of it! The shmell of it! The tashte of it! The texture!~Goldmember
~ It did sound a little wet, there didn't it? Right at the end! Oooh! Heh heh heh. Let's have a smell all right? Ooh, everyone likes their own brand, don't they? Oh, this is magic! Hmmm, wafting, wafting. Ok, analysis. Ooh, smells like carrots in throw-up! Ooh that could gag a maggot!
Nigel Powers: There are two kinds of people I can't stand in this world. People who are intolerant of other people's cultures, and the Dutch.