Every new stroke of civilization has cost the lives of countless brave men, who have fallen defeated by the "dragon," in their efforts to win the apples of the Hesperides, or the fleece of gold. Fallen in their efforts to overcome the old, half sordid savagery of the lower stages of creation, and win the next stage.
D.H. (David Herbert) Lawrence (1885–1930), British author. repr. in The Short Novels, vol. 2, eds. George J. Zytaruk and James T. Boulton (1981). St. Mawr (1925).
The Dragon in the legend of the Hesperides guarded the golden apples that were thought to have been the symbol of immortality. Hercules, in the eleventh of his twelve labors, slew the dragon and carried away some of the apples.