Cadmus is Europa’s sister. His father sends him to search for Europa and tells him not to return until he finds her. Cadmus looks everywhere, and at last asks Phoebus where he should go. On Phoebus’s orders, Cadmus founds a new city by following a stray cow to where it stops. After killing a dragon in a nearby stream, he sows the dragon’s teeth in the soil, which sprout citizens for his new city. Cadmus goes on to produce a long legacy until he finally abandons his city with his wife Harmonia, feeling that he has only experienced hardship there. He and Harmonia are eventually transformed into serpents, fulfilling a curse that was placed on Cadmus when he stared too long at the dragon he killed.
Cadmus Character Timeline in Metamorphoses
The timeline below shows where the character Cadmus appears in Metamorphoses. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Book 3: Cadmus
...to the opposite shore where he drops his bull’s disguise. Meanwhile, Agenor—Europa’s father—tells his son Cadmus to find Europa or else be exiled from his homeland. Cadmus searches everywhere and at... (full context)
Book 3: Actaeon
Book 3: Pentheus and Bacchus (1)
Book 4: Cadmus and Harmonia
Book 4: Perseus (1)