3. The Teumesian Fox

Concerning the Teumesian fox, they say that it used to snatch Cadmeians and then devour them. This is silly. There is no land animal capable of snatching and carrying a person, and a fox is small and weak.

It happened like this. A Theban gentleman was called Alopex {= "fox"} because he was sly. He outmatched everyone when it came to wits. The king was afraid that he was plotting against him, so he drove him out of the city. Alopex assembled a great army along with some mercenaries and took possession of the ridge known as the Teumesian Ridge. Making this his base, he used to capture and carry off the Thebans. People would say, "Alopex commits his ravages, then runs away." A man of Athenian extraction named Cephalos came with a large army to help the Thebans. He killed Alopex and drove his army from the Teumesian Ridge. That is what happened; the other version is a myth.


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