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The story that Pythagoras was murdered because he refused to pass through a bean field (which was his only way of escape) owing to his aversion to beans is as untrue as so many other legends of antiquity. When there was trouble at Crotona and his work there became impossible, he simply removed in 515 to Metapontum, the capital city of a small state, and continued there until he died peacefully. His ban on beans in the diet of his followers applied to the large "fava" bean, as it is called in Italy where he then lived, or the "horse bean," as it is now called in some other European countries. This definitely contains a poisonous element, and I remember two cases of food poisoning in villagers who had eaten too largely of them during my sojourn in Greece.

-- Notebooks Category 15: The Orient > Chapter 6: Related Entries > # 30

-- Perspectives > Chapter 15: The Orient > # 32

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