medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture Hi, Mariano,

Not quite,  "Viper" is spelled  tsadek-peh-ayin... "tsepah."

Back in May 2004 there was a discussion on Isa 14:29 where the progression
is
nakash > tsepah > seraph  [snake->viper->perhaps the desert krait]

Me sticking my tuppence in:

>The simplest level of taxonomic classification is visual and by what we
>would call Family, which is to be expected without microscopes and lab
>tools. Isaiah 14:29 lists our modern classifications of Suborder Serpentes
>by taxonomic Families: Superfamily Colubroidea (snakes) -> Family Viperidea
>(vipers) -> ??Family Elapidae (cobras, coral snakes, and relatives).
>The "seraph" of these passages may be the small and deadly member of the
>Family Elapidae, the desert krait.

I can't recall at the moment if basilisk was translated into OE, but they
usually came up with translations of critters, not transliterations, e.g. the
plague locust was translated as a bumble bee -- and I sure hope nobody
tried to eat one.

Basilisk, according to the OED, is imported into English from French and
they give no etymology. My Babiniote [Lexico Neas Ellenikes Glossas]
doesn't give the etymology on this one. According to Liddell, Scott,
Jones, the critter may be the Egyptian Cobra, again without etymology --
but the "Basili-" part certainly could come from "king cobra." Then the
cobra supposedly freezes its prey...  which would account for the powers
of this perhaps not entirely mythological beastie.

Hope all this is of some help,

Rochelle

Mariano Paniello wrote:
[log in to unmask]" type="cite">Rochelle Altman wrote:

Dont need a substitute for "Basilisk." Basilisk is a Greek translation of
the Hebrew word for "viper."

*I thought Hebrew for viper was epheh or ephah. Surely basilisk derives from
basileus?

MP

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