[Sca-cooks] Alligators was: Magpies

Terry Decker t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net
Mon Mar 3 21:43:16 PST 2008

Long and pointy is usually crocodile.  Short and rounded, alligator.

If these were mummies rather than dead and dessicated, then they could be 
artifacts of either the late Medieval/Renaissance or the Napoleonic periods. 
The would likely be mummified crocs from the Ancient Egyptian worship of 
Sobek, tied to water and fertility.  From about the 15th Century, Egyptian 
mummies were imported into Europe to be ground up and used as medicine 
(although in truth, the active ingredients, so to speak, were the resins 
(mummeria) used in the embalming).  If they are from the Napoleonic period, 
they are just curiosities.


>I don't know if this has been mentioned, but it seems that a 
> alligator (long sorta pointy snout rather than rounded) hung in most of 
> the
> apothecary shops and were sort of a required charm for an alchemist.  Now 
> I
> must admit that I'm going from some etchings that I don't have to hand and
> the memory of three "historic apothecary shops" I saw in Germany. One was 
> in
> Heidelberg Castle near the big wine vat. Possibly they were out of our
> period however.
> Regina

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