Peacocks and Poison--one last time

James L. Fitzgerald jfitzge1 at UTK.EDU
Fri Mar 12 00:10:40 UTC 1999

I tried to post this qualification earlier, but it did not make it to
Indology.  In my haste this morning I simplified the issue of the peacock's
ingesting poison too much--I had in mind only the notion of its eating
poison plants, which is not present in the passage (MBh 12.120.4-16).  But
the fifteenth zloka refers to snakes and enemies that are enraged and
"overly venomous."  The notion of the peacock's consuming venomous snakes
is, of course, relevant to the question.

Jim Fitzgerald

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