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As to the basilisk,1 a creature which the very serpents fly from, which kills by its odour even, and which proves fatal to man by only looking upon him, its blood has been marvellously extolled by the magicians.2 This blood is thick and adhesive, like pitch, which it resembles also in colour: dissolved in water, they say, it becomes of a brighter red than that of cinnabar. They attribute to it also the property of ensuring success to petitions preferred to potentates, and to prayers even offered to the gods; and they regard it as a remedy for various diseases, and as an amulet preservative against all noxious spells. Some give it the name of "Saturn's blood."

1 See B. viii. c. 33.

2 The Magi of the East, probably.

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    • A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities (1890), CALA´TOR
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