The Blind Worm Or Slow Worm


This reptile is a snake, varying from twelve to eighteen inches long.

Its head is small, and its movements very rapid. At the slightest noise,

it darts away in a moment, and hides among rocks, stones, or rank grass.

It is said to have no eyes, but this is a popular mistake--hence,

however, its name, Blind Worm. This beautiful timid creature is often

wantonly cut into pieces by its cruel and mistaken captors, for they

credit it with the possession of evil propensities. It is said that,

could it see, it would be a formidable enemy to man and beast. This

supposition has found strength and sanction in doggerel verse. The Blind

Worm is said to address the adder as follows:--

If I could see,

As well as thee,

Man nor beast

Should ne'er pass me.

Another version of these lines, heard in Shropshire, on the borders of

Wales, is:--

If I had one eye,

As thou hast two,

No man should live,

Nor beast should loo (low).

These doggerel lines indicate clearly the dread in which this innocent

snake is held.