by Heather R. Darsie
By Unknown medieval monk (Medieval bestiary) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
The Scitalis is a gorgeous, lazy, predatory serpent. It lies about all day, waiting to hypnotize its prey with the dazzling colours of its back. Stunned by the Scitalis’ beauty, the poor beast who stopped to admire the Scitalis is then devoured. The Scitalis has a very high body temperature, too. The Bestiary says, “It is so hot that even in winter it will expose its glowing body in the open air.” Apparently, the cold does not effect it.
What do you think of the Scitalis?
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Sources & Suggested Reading
- Barber, Richard: translation and introduction. Bestiary: Being an English Version of the Bodleian Library, Oxford. M.S. Bodley 764. P.189. All original miniatures reproduced in facsimile. Woodbridge: 1999.