from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A genus of poisonous serpents, including the rattlesnakes.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. The typical genus of rattlesnakes of the subfamily Crotalinæ, having most of the top of the head covered with scales like those of the back, a well-developed rattle, and the scutes under the tail (subcaudal) entire.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. large rattlesnakes; seldom bite unless startled or pursuing prey
Sorry, no etymologies found.
This is a plug for Red Rock Biologics crotalus snake vaccine, about $15.00 at your friendly vets ofice.
Yes | No | Report from crotalus wrote 26 weeks 4 days ago
And in truth, the noise of the crotalus can be shiver-inducing.
For anybody who's curious about what the crotalus sounds like - it's a wooden rattle-like implement used only once during the liturgical year, at the consecration of the elements on Maundy Thursday, in place of Sanctus bells - you can hear at the St. Thomas streaming audio page.
I posted about this once before, and at that time offered an image of a crotalus:
Today, the cerastes survives as a genus of small, venomous vipers, like this crazy-ass Sidewinder Desert Viper, AKA the crotalus cerastes.
EDIT: No crotalus here, but you can watch and listen to the liturgy of Maundy Thursday at Trinity Church in New York here.
They move; uncoil themselves, and join the _crotalus_; suddenly the room seems alive with the venomous creatures.
The fumes of the charcoal begin to affect me, my head grows hot; the pulse beats quicker; I fancy I hear strange noises; I think there are animals moving on the stone pavement; the fitful flame discloses a shining object, whose sinuous and gliding movements betrays the presence of the dreaded _crotalus_; it approaches my bed; its bead-like eyes glittering with a baleful light.
He is blowing the wind from his mouth; he has the eagle in his head-dress, the jaw with grinders, the peculiar eye, the four TLALOC dots over his ear and on it, the snake between his legs, curved in the form of a yoke (this is known to be a serpent by the conventional crotalus signs of jaw and rattles on it in nine places), the four TLALOC dots again in his head-dress, etc.
Studies in Central American Picture-Writing First Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 1879-80, Government Printing Office, Washington, 1881, pages 205-245