It’s a year to the day since Kim Kardashian called Taylor Swift a snake for denying she knew she would be referenced on Kanye West’s song “Famous.”
In honor of this momentous occasion, we’ve put together a list of the top five snakes in literature!
1. Kaa: The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling
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In Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book, Kaa is both mentor and friend to Mowgli and uses hypnoses to rescue him from some sticky situations. However, in the Disney movie, Kaa is a sly antagonist who repeatedly attempts to hypnotize Mowgli in an attempt to eat him. Seems like this character is a little two faced!
2. The Basilisk: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K Rowling
Image Courtesy of Villains Wiki
The Basilisk lurks in the depths of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, awaiting the heir of Slytherin. While three of the four Hogwarts founders were accepting of Muggle-borns, Slytherin founder Salazar Slytherin was not. He left the basilisk in the Chamber of Secrets in the hopes that one day his heir would release her so that she could purge the school of those he deemed unworthy to study there.
In the second book of the series, Harry Potter faces the Basilisk, who vanquishes her with the help of Fawkes the Phoenix and the Sword of Gryffindor. Even though she is eventually defeated, the Basilisk is definitely one of the scariest serpents in literature!
3. The Incredibly Deadly Viper: The Reptile Room by Lemony Snicket
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‘The Incredibly Deadly Viper’ is arguably the hero of the third installment of Lemony Snicket’s ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events. The snake created a distraction by pretending to attack Sunny while the children escaped the clutches of the evil Count Olaf. While snakes are notoriously sly, this guy is a welcome change from the stereotype and really saves the Baudelaire orphans in this spooky tale.
4. The Swamp Adder: The Adventure of the Speckled Band by Arthur Conan Doyle
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The Swamp Adder turns out to be the murder weapon in this famous Sherlock Holmes story! The dying words of Julia Stoner identify her killer as ‘the speckled band.’ Holmes and Watson eventually find out that it was ‘the squat diamond-shaped head and puffed neck of a loathsome serpent!’ Swamp adders don’t actually exist, and it has been speculated that the story’s description most closely resembles the Indian cobra.
5. Mr. Crowley: Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
In this comedy about the birth of Satan, Mr. Crowley is a snake demon who originally tempted Eve to eat the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. He spends much of the novel in human form, but then again, so do a lot of snakes. *ba dum tss*
Featured image courtesy of Time and Mahashweta Burma