spuugslang, noun

Forms:
spoew-slang, spoog slangShow more Also spoew-slang, spoog slang, spugslang, spuigslang, spung slange, spungh slange, spuugh-slange, spuw slang, etc.
Origin:
South African Dutch, Afrikaans, DutchShow more South African Dutch, spuug (Afrikaans spoeg), from Dutch spugen to spit, + slang snake.
obs.
The rinkhals (sense 1), Hemachatus haemachatus.
1789 W. Paterson Narr. of Four Journeys 165The Spoog Slang, or Spitting Snake, has been mentioned to me by the inhabitants of the country, who say it will throw its poison to the distance of several yards.
1812 A. Plumptre tr. of H. Lichtenstein’s Trav. in Sn Afr. (1928) I. 95A very rare sort of serpent, called here the spugslang (the spurting snake)..is from three to four feet long, of a black colour, and..when attacked it will spurt out its venom.
1834 T. Pringle Afr. Sketches 280Another species of serpent..is about three feet in length...Its peculiar property is the faculty it possesses of spouting its venom in the face of an assailant...From this singular faculty, it is called by the Cape colonists the spuig-slang, or spirting-snake.
1849 A. Smith Illust. of Zoo. of S. Afr.: Reptilia Pl.21The latter (sc. colour variety C) is known throughout the Cape colony by the name of Spuugh-slang (spitting snake), and is so called from the power it is supposed to possess of ejecting poison to a distance.
[1883 M.A. Carey-Hobson Farm in Karoo 145It was of the kind called by the coloured people, ‘Sping Slang’ (Spitting Snake), which, when it is angered, raises itself and runs at its enemy; and the natives say that directly it gets the opportunity, it ejects a quantity of poison right into the eye of the being who has irritated it.]
1886 G.A. Farini Through Kalahari Desert 367While walking ahead of the waggons I saw a fullgrown capell or spungh slange, lying under a bank.
1911 Encycl. Brit. XXV. 299It shares with the cobra a third Dutch name, that of ‘spuw slang’ (spitting snake).
1923 R. Kipling Land & Sea Tales 34He gave us half-a-crown for a spuugh-slange — a kind of snake.
1931 R.L. Ditmars Snakes of World 172Another name [for the rinkhals] is Spoew-slang, applied from the reptile’s ‘spitting’ its poison.
The rinkhals (sense 1), Hemachatus haemachatus.

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