Tag: Greek Fire

Greek Fire, Poison Arrows & Scorpion Bombs: Biological and Chemical Warfare in the Ancient WorldGreek Fire, Poison Arrows & Scorpion Bombs: Biological and Chemical Warfare in the Ancient World by Adrienne Mayor

What, you thought napalm was a new thing? This book will disabuse your mind of that notion pronto. According to Mayor, mankind has been thinking up new and more horrible ways to spread terror and kill more people faster since before Alexander. Beehive bombs. Snake bombs. Poisonous spider bombs. Naphtha bombs. Arrows poisoned with snake venom or tipped with burning pitch to set the besieged city on fire. Catapulting the plague dead over the castle walls. There is no end, and, evidently, a very early beginning to mankind's ingenuity and bloodthirstiness.

Did you know rhododendrons were poisonous? And did you know that if bees fed on rhododendron nectar, that if you ate the honey they produced that it would kill you? It's how Colchis defeated Xenophon in 401 BC.

(more…)

# Permanent link to Snake bombs. That’s what I’m talkin’ ’bout.