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The Flying Snakes of Arabia

Extract

Herodotus has told us some queer tales but it is always unsafe to discredit them merely because they seem strange to us. Who would have thought that his story of the bald-headed Argippaioi who sat under trees judging the Scythians was literally true until the recent discovery in Russia of a felt wall hanging providing a contemporary illustration of these queer tribunals ?

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1 Compare Barnett R. D., Illustrated London News, 1 Jan. 1955, p. 26, and coloured supplement fig. 3; Rudenko S. I., Kultura Naseleniya Gorno-Altaya v Skifs'koe Vremya, Acad. U.S.S.R. 1953, pis. lxxxviii and xcv.

2 Or many-coloured.

3 Or ‘spines’; cf. Herodotus 4. 72, where inline-graphic means the whole spine.

4 Schoff W. H., The Periplus of the Erythraean Sea (Longmans, Green & Co., New York, 1912), p. 131.

1 Smith W. Robertson, Religion of thi Semites (1894), p. 133.

2 The tutelary deity of Pa-Uazt incident ally was Uazit, sometimes represented as a winged serpent.

3 Edmonds S. M., Elegy and Iambics II, Anacreontea (Loeb Edition), no. 35.

4 Science from an Easy Chair, p. 124; he notes that the Egyptian emblem for Uazi might be a stylized locust. Lawrence A. W., Herodotus, p. 185, note 1, quotes this theory but rejects it because of the bones Herodotus saw, without realizing that inline-graphic might mean the exuviae of the insects.

5 I hesitate to suggest that the word inline-graphic is related to aphis but I should be pleased if it were.

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The Classical Quarterly
  • ISSN: 0009-8388
  • EISSN: 1471-6844
  • URL: /core/journals/classical-quarterly
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