Conon, Die Fragmente der Griechischen Historiker 26 F1, 45 = Brown, The Narratives of Konon pp. 301-8
Ἡ με΄, ὡς Ὀρφεὺς ὁ Οἰάγρου καὶ Καλλιόπης μιᾶς τῶν Μουσῶν ἐβασίλευε Μακεδόνων καὶ τῆς Ὀδρυσίδος, ἐπετήδευε δὲ μουσικήν, καὶ μάλιστα κιθαρωιδίαν· καί (φιλόμουσον γὰρ τὸ Θραικῶν καὶ Μακεδόνων γένος) ἤρεσκεν ἐν τούτοις διαφερόντως τῶι πλήθει. κατέσχε δὲ δόξα ὡς εἰς Ἅιδου κατάβοι ἔρωτι τῆς γυναικὸς Εὐριδίκης καὶ ὡς τὸν Πλούτωνα καὶ τὴν Κόρην ὠιδαῖς γοητεύσας δῶρον λάβοι τὴν γυναῖκα· ἀλλ’ οὐ γὰρ ὄνασθαι τῆς χάριτος ἀναβιωσκομένης, λαθόμενον τῶν περὶ αὐτῆς ἐντολῶν. οὕτως δὲ θέλγειν καὶ κατακηλεῖν αὐτὸν ὠιδαῖς εἶναι σοφόν, ὡς καὶ θηρία καὶ οἰωνοὺς καὶ δὴ καὶ ξύλα καὶ λίθους συμπερινοστεῖν ὑφ’ ἡδονῆς.
τελευτᾶι δὲ διασπασαμένων αὐτὸν τῶν Θραικίων καὶ Μακεδόνων γυναικῶν, ὅτι οὐ μετεδίδου αὐταῖς τῶν ὀργίων, τάχα μὲν καὶ κατ’ ἄλλας προφάσεις· φασὶ δ’ οὖν αὐτὸν δυστυχήσαντα περὶ γυναῖκα πᾶν ἐχθῆραι τὸ γένος. ἐφοίτα μὲν οὖν τακταῖς ἡμέραις ὡπλισμένων πλῆθος Θραικῶν καὶ Μακεδόνων ἐν Λιβήθροις, εἰς οἴκημα συνερχόμενον μέγα τε καὶ πρὸς τελετὰς εὖ πεποιημένον· ὁπότε δ’ ὀργιάζειν εἰσίασι, πρὸ τῶν πυλῶν ἀπετίθεσαν τὰ ὅπλα· ὃ αἱ γυναῖκες ἐπιτηρήσασαι καὶ τὰ ὅπλα ἁρπασάμεναι ὑπ’ ὀργῆς τῆς διὰ τὴν ἀτιμίαν τούς τε προσπίπτοντας κατειργάσαντο καὶ τὸν Ὀρφέα κατὰ μέλη ἔρριψαν εἰς τὴν θάλασσαν σποράδην.
Λοιμῶι δὲ τῆς χώρας, ὅτι μὴ ἀπηιτήθησαν δίκην αἱ γυναῖκες, κακουμένης δεόμενοι λωφῆσαι τὸ δεινόν, ἔλαβον χρησμόν, τὴν κεφαλὴν τὴν Ὀρφέως ἢν ἀνευρόντες θάψωσι, τυχεῖν ἀπαλλαγῆς. καὶ μόλις αὐτὴν περὶ τὰς ἐκβολὰς τοῦ Μέλητος δι’ ἁλιέως ἀνεῦρον ποταμοῦ, καὶ τότε ἄιδουσαν καὶ μηδὲν παθοῦσαν ὑπὸ τῆς θαλάσσης, μηδέ τι ἄλλο τῶν ὅσα κῆρες ἀνθρώπιναι νεκρῶν αἴσχη φέρουσιν, ἀλλ’ ἐπακμάζουσαν αὐτὴν καὶ ζωικῶι καὶ τότε αἵματι μετὰ πολὺν χρόνον ἐπανθοῦσαν. λαβόντες οὖν ὑπὸ σήματι μεγάλωι θάπτουσι, τέμενος αὐτῶι περιείρξαντες, ὃ τέως μὲν ἡρῶιον ἦν, ὕστερον δ’ ἐξενίκησεν ἱερὸν εἶναι. θυσίαις τε γὰρ καὶ ὅσοις ἄλλοις θεοὶ τιμῶνται γεραίρεται. ἔστι δὲ γυναιξὶ παντελῶς ἄβατον.
The forty-fifth narration. How Orpheus the son of Oeagrus and Calliope—one of the Muses—was king of the Macedonians and the Odrysian land, and practised music, especially singing to the accompaniment of the kithara. And in this he gave exceptional pleasure to the populace (for the race of Thracians and Macedonians is music-loving). And the belief prevailed that he went down to Hades out of love for his wife Eurydice and that, having ensorcelled Pluto and Kore with his songs, he received his wife as a gift. But he was not able to enjoy the favour of her revival, since he forgot the instructions about her. He was so skilled at bewitching and enchanting with his songs that even beasts and birds and, what is more, trees and rocks followed him around out of pleasure.
But he died when Thracian and Macedonian women tore him to pieces, because he would not give them a share in his rites—and perhaps also for other reasons. For they say that after the misfortunes he suffered with his wife he hated the entire female sex. So, on fixed days, a crowd of armed Thracians and Macedonians would come to Libethra, gathering in a large dwelling that was well suited for initiations. Whenever they went in to perform the orgiastic rites, they left their weapons in front of the gates. The women watched for this and after seizing the weapons because of their anger at the dishonour done to them, killed the men who attacked them and tore Orpheus apart, scattering his limbs into the sea.
But the land was being ravaged by a plague because the women had not paid the penalty and, when they begged for relief from the disaster, the citizens received an oracle that if they found and buried the head of Orpheus, they would meet with deliverance. With difficulty they found it, through the help of a fisherman, around the mouth of the river Meles, even then still singing and having suffered no harm from the sea, nor any other of the disfigurements of corpses which mortal deaths bring, but in perfect condition and blooming with living blood despite the considerable passage of time. So they took it and buried it beneath a great monument, enclosing it within a sacred precinct, which for a while was a hero-shrine but later won out as a temple. It is honoured with sacrifices and all the other things with which the gods are honoured. And it is absolutely forbidden for women to enter.