having slain the dragon which guarded the fountain of Dircë, in Boeotia, sowed the teeth of the monster, when a number of armed men sprang up and surrounded Cadmus with intent to kill him. By the counsel of Minerva, he threw a precious stone among the armed men, who, striving for it, killed one another. The foundation of the fable is this: Cadmus having slain a famous freebooter that infested Boeotia, his banditti set upon him to revenge their captain's death; but Cadmus sent a bribe, for which they quarrelled and slew each other.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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