Origin of Idea that Snakes Sting

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Abstract

WILL you kindly inform me as to the origin of the idea that snakes sting? Froude, in “The English in Ireland,” page 356, vol. i., writes: “The clergy started as if stung by a snake.” Archdeacon Farrar, in “Darkness and Dawn,” uses the metaphor of snakes stinging. Sir T. Browne (“Vulgar Errors”) says “That snakes and vipers sting,” &c, &c, “is not easily to be justified. It is not fair to bring in Shakespeare as to a matter of natural history.

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FRAMPTON, C. Origin of Idea that Snakes Sting. Nature 46, 418 (1892) doi:10.1038/046418d0

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