Ladon was a hundred-headed serpent, the offspring of Typhon and Echidna. His main assignment was guarding the tree of golden apples that belonged to the Hesperides. His name can hardly derive from ladanon, 'ladanum' (a type of gum resin, not to be confused with laudanum, which is an invented word). Perhaps it is a worn-down form of some such name as Laodamon, meaning 'tamer of men'. Compare Laodamas and Laodamia.