The God of peace will soon crush Satan...

Read on for a black mamba story from our Zambia correspondent. And no, this is not meant to be a parable...

From Ndola, Zambia, where he teaches at the Theological College of Central Africa, David Wegener writes:

While driving back from Lusaka several weeks ago, we were going through a section where there was knee-high grass on either side of the road. All of a sudden, I saw a large snake rearing its head up about a foot and a half off the ground. It was moving its head back and forth as if it was looking to cross the road.

As we passed by, I turned to Terri and said, “Did you see that snake? It looked like a black mamba. Should I go back and run over it?” So I turned the car around on the highway, drove back about one hundred meters, turned around again, made sure all the windows were rolled up and headed toward the snake.

As I ran over it, Terri screamed and the kids shouted when they saw it writhing around on the ground. I had to run over it two more times and then some passersby finished the job with a make-shift spear, a reminder that someday, “the God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet” (Romans 16:20).

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Tsk, tsk. That clicking sound you hear is all of your readership who are PETA members removing you from their "favorites".

I understand that if killed properly (with a machete, not a car), these snakes taste better than chicken.

I have to admit that I was looking forward to David W. jumping out of a tree, killing the snake with his bare hands, and then biting the snake's head off. However, considering it's one of the world's deadliest, a snake homicide via vehicle is still exhilarating.

Brandon:

Technically, only a snake can commit a "homicide" against a snake (likewise, only a man can commit "homicide" against a man), that's because the "homi" prefix means "same," i.e., killing of the same (kind).

In light of that, we might call this a "heterocide." :-)

You need to go back and redo some of those exercises in Wheelock's Latin, Pr. Trey.

The "hom-" syllable in homicide is from "homo," for "man." The remainder is from the Latin "caedere," to cut down or kill, "-cīdere" in compounds.

Thus, a matricide is the killing of one's own mother, patricide one's own father, fratricide one's own brother. suicide one's own self, insecticide the killing of insects.

You can also guess what these mean: algicide, amicicide, aphicide, avicide, bacillicide, bactericide, biocide, bovicide, ceticide, cimicide, deicide, ecocide, episcopicide, famicide, felicide, femicide, feticide, filicide, floricide, foeticide, formicide, fratricide, fungicide, genocide, germicide, giganticide, gynaecide, herbicide, hereticide, infanticide, insecticide, larvicide, liberticide, lupicide, mariticide, menticide, microbicide, miticide, molluscicide, muscicide, neonaticide, ovicide, parasiticide, parasuicide, parenticide, parricide, perdricide, pesticide, prolicide, pulicide, raticide, regicide, rodenticide, senicide, siblicide, silvicide, sororicide, speciocide, spermicide, sporicide, taeniacide, tauricide, trypanocide, tyrannicide, urbicide, ursicide, utricide, uxoricide, vaticide, verbicide, vermicide, vespacide, viricide, virucide, vulpicide, und so weiter.

Killing a serpent is serpenticide or, possibly, herpeticide.

I bow to the superior knowledge of Latin of Father Bill. :-)

But, even if it was for the wrong reason, i was stil right in this: a man killing a serpent is not homicide. ;-)

The Latin word for "snake killing" can never be known because that word, to my knowledge, was not used in any extant Latin document. Because we determine the words of a language by their usage by native speakers (or writers), it cannot, in reality, exist, nor ever be determined. It's form is only theoretical, which is why the good Father is unsure about the word and had to look up the parts, but not the word itself.

"Family of snake files 'breach of contract' suit on grounds that a 4 foot diameter rubber torus does not constitute a 'heel'."

I can see it now...

Could it be called "herpetocide," perhaps? And who cares what the Romans thought 1800 years before Linneaus started using Latin & Greek for categorization? :^)

After a little Googling I've concluded that the term we are looking for is anguicide. Nope, I'd never heard of anguis as a Latin term for snake, either, but 'twould appear to be the case. There is a plant, Aristolochia anguicida , known in English as Harlequin Dutchman's Pipe, which apparently has anti-venom properties. I guess in that case the anguicide indicates that it kills the snake's bite rather than the snake itself, but I still think the word suits our purposes, and the Wegeners may dub their vehicle Automobilia anguicida!

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