Reptiles -- dragons and snakes

From: Peter Larsen <>
Date: Sun, 10 Jun 2001 21:57:33 -0500

Mikko Rintasaari asks:

>How do you people see the (dream)dragons of Glorantha?

        I think they are all very different. Some are squat, like Texas Horned Lizards, others are long and sinewy. Some fly, some don't (or aren't seen to). Some have wings, but haven't been seen to fly; some fly without visible wings. Some have teeth; some have beaks; some have barbels around their mouths; some have more than one set of eyes. Some can't be seen at all. I'd be willing to believe that none of the True Dragons look alike, even in their basic organization -- they are the molds the world was cast from.

        Needless to say, Dream Dragons vary as much, if not more than their creators, although there may well be a "lineage" visible.


>In the lands of the Orlanthi (Dragon Pass) the example snake is listed as
>a cottonmouth. Isn't that an American rattlesnake? If my orlanthi would
>see a snake with a rattling tail they would be crying chaos! And with good
>cause, I'd say.

        The cottonmouth is a large venomous snake that is semi-aquatic, mostly living in swampy areas. The rattlesnake prefers drier climates and is (I believe) a little smaller, although both can grow to startling lengths. Either can kill you. Check out:

On the University of Texas General Libraries' web site for a picture from an early 20th C snake farm. (Oh the thrills of living in Texas...).

        Whether Dragon Pass is wet enough for cottonmouths (also known as water moccasins) is another question, although I'm sure Delecti's Marsh is chock full of them. I suppose the clans around the Marsh have anti-snake magics -- some subcult of Ernalda that can command them, cure their poison, etc. No doubt a more sinister take on the same subcult can be found in Esrolia (what's a matriarchy without deadly serpent worshippers, I ask you?).

Peter Larsen

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