Philobiblon: Eye of toad and ...

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Eye of toad and ...

In the utterly useless but satisfying facts category:

The word toady comes from "toad-eater": "a quack's or mountebank's assistant who would eat, or pretend to eat, a toad so he could be cured by the medicine man. In those days, toads were considered to be poisonous. Actually, a toad's parotoid glands and warts do secrete a poison that tastes bad and in some species will kill small predators."

Found via the fascinating C18 email list.

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