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Lemnian Deed

(A). One of unusual barbarity and cruelty. The phrase arose from two horrible massacres perpetrated by the Lemnians: the first was the murder of all the men and male children on the island by the women; and the other was the murder by the men of all the children born in the island of Athenian parents.

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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