Sources : Scorpion

Aristotle [ca. 350 BCE] (De animalibus, Book 4, 7.4; 5, 21.3; 8, 28.1): [Book 4, 7.4] [The scorpion] is the only insect that has a long tail; it has claws... [Book 5, 21.3] The land-scorpions also bring forth many egg-like maggots, upon which they incubate. When the young ones are perfect, they drive out and destroy their parents like spiders, for they are frequently eleven in number.[Book 8, 28.1] All the scorpions about Pharus and other places are not painful, but in Caria and other localities they are frequent, and large, and fierce, and their sting is fatal to either man or beast, even to sows, which are but little influenced by the bite of other creatures, and black sows are more easily affected than others. The swine die very soon after being stung, if they come near the water. - [Cresswell translation, 1887]

Ovid [1st century CE] (The Metamorphoses, Book 15, 361-390): If you remove the hollow claws of land-crabs, and put the rest under the soil, a scorpion, with its curved and threatening tail, will emerge from the parts interred... - [Kline translation]

Lucan [1st century CE] (Pharsalia, book 9, verse 926-931): Who would deem / A puny scorpion had strength to slay? / Yet with his threatening coils and barb erect / He won the glory of Orion slain ; So bear the stars their witness. - [Ridley, 1919, Volume 2, Page 245]

Pliny the Elder [1st century CE] (Natural History, Book 11, 30): Land scorpions also like spiders produce grubs resembling eggs and die in the same way as spiders; they are a horrible plague, poisonous like snakes, except that they inflict a worse torture by dispatching the victim with a lingering death lasting three days, their wound being always fatal to girls and almost absolutely so to women, but to men only in the morning, when they are coming out of their holes, before they emit their yet unsated poison by some accidental stroke. Their tail is always engaged in striking and does not stop practicing at any moment, lest it should ever miss an opportunity it strikes both a sideways stroke and one with the tail bent up. Apollodorus states that these insects emit a white poison, and he divides them into nine kinds, chiefly by their colors, a superfluous task, since he does not let us know which he pronounces to be the least deadly. He says that some have a pair of stings, and that the males are fiercest - for he attributes coupling to these creatures - but that they can be recognized by their long slender shape; and that all are poisonous at midday, when they have got hot from the warmth of the sun, and also that when they are thirsty they cannot have their fill of drinking. It is also agreed that those with six joints in the tail are more savage - for the majority have five. This curse of Africa is actually given the power of flight by a south wind, which supports their arms when they spread them out like oars. Apollodorus before mentioned definitely states that some possess wings. The Psylli tribe, who by importing the poisons of all the other countries for their own profit have filled Italy with foreign evils, have tried to bring these creatures here also, but they have proved unable to live this side of the climate of Sicily. Nevertheless they are sometimes seen in Italy, though these are harmless, and in many other places, for instance in the neighborhood of Pharos in Egypt. In Scythia they kill even pigs, which normally are exceptionally immune to such poisons, black pigs indeed more quickly, if they plunge into water. For a human victim the ashes of the creatures themselves drunk in wine are thought to be a cure. It is thought that to be dipped in oil is a great disaster to geckos [stellonibus, newts] as well as scorpions; but geckos at least are harmless; these too are bloodless, and are shaped like a lizard; equally scorpions are believed to do no harm whatever to any bloodless creatures. Some think that they also devour their own offspring, and that only one is left, a specially clever one that by perching on his mothers haunches secures himself by this position against both her tail and her bite; and that this one is the avenger of the rest, as he finally kills their parent with a blow from above. They are produced in broods of eleven. - [Rackham translation]

Gaius Julius Solinus [3rd century CE] (De mirabilibus mundi / Polyhistor, Chapter 27.33): Scorpions ... are reckoned worms, not serpents. - [Arwen Apps translation, 2011]

Isidore of Seville [7th century CE] (Etymologies, Book 11, 4:3; 12, 5.4; 12, 6.17): [Book 11, 4.3] Indeed, many creatures naturally undergo mutation and, when they decay, are transformed into different species – for instance ... scorpions from crabs. Thus Ovid: If you take its curved arms from a crab on the shore a scorpion will emerge and threaten with its hooked tail. [Book 12, 5:4] Scorpions are land vermin; they are counted more appropriately among the vermin than among the snakes. The scorpion is an animal armed with a sting, and was named from this in Greek, because it stings with its tail and infuses venom through the bow-shaped wound. It is characteristic of the scorpion that it does not attack the palm of the hand. [Book 12, 6:17] If ten crabs are tied with basil, all of the scorpions in that area will gather together. - [Barney, Lewis, et. al. translation]

Thomas of Cantimpré [circa 1200-1272 CE] (Liber de natura rerum, Serpents 8.36; 8.40): [Thomas describes the scorpion as both a serpent and a worm] [Serpents 8.36] A scorpion is a serpent, as Solinus says, which is said to have a charming and virgin-like face. But it certainly has a poisonous sting in its knotted tail, with which it stings and infects any that approach it. But it strikes once with a slanted blow and once with a bent tail; and it never ceases to look for opportunities to strike. Those infected with its poison die a protracted death over three days. It is said that some have two stings, and that the males are very savage to each other. But the males are distinguished by their thinness and length. Apollodorus clearly says that there are some that can fly. The people of Psilli, by regurgitating poisons from the limbs of men, filled Italy with foreign evils. Hence they tried to bring these also into Italy, but they could not live in the country. They are, however, sometimes seen in Italy, but most of them are harmless. For a man who has been stung by a scorpion, the remedy is thought to be the drinking of the ashes of them in wine. The Liber Kyrannidarum says that a common scorpion roasted and secretly given as food causes a stone in the bladder to break and dissolve without pain. They give birth to eggs in the form of worms. Those which the father wants to devour, but place themselves on their mother's hips, are safe. The scorpion is the only insect that has a tail, and arms, and a spike in the tail. Scorpions lay eggs in spring and likewise in autumn. The scorpion, as Aristotle says, has two stings. The scorpion lives in the earth. As the Experimentator says, if a black pig is struck by a scorpion, it will undoubtedly die; but a pig of another color sometimes escapes, though not always. If you drown a scorpion in oil, it immediately revives under the sun when vinegar is poured over it. Oil clogs, vinegar opens pores. Scorpions, as Jerome says, strike with an arched wound (that is, triangular). [Serpents 8.40] Tarans is a serpent, as Pliny says, of the genus of scorpions. [Thomas seems to be generally describing the scorpion here] It is small, it has wings, it flies and is destructive. For whoever is afflicted dies, unless he is assisted by tyriaca [a herbal remedy], or by medical remedies. Italy generally has these, but many times they are harmless; The East, indeed, has many, but they are always poisonous. It usually lives for twenty days or more without food. Killed and putrefied in oil, the oil itself is a remedy against poisons and stings. - [Badke translation/paraphrase]

Bartholomaeus Anglicus [13th century CE] (Liber de proprietatibus rerum, Book18.97): A Scorpion, as Isidore sayth, libro .12. is a lande Worme, with a crooked sting in the tayle, and hath that name Scorpio in Gréeke, for it stingeth with the tayle, and sheddeth venimme in the crooked wound. And it is his propertie, that he smiteth never nor hurteth never the palme of the hand, as he sayth: And this maner scorpion commeth of Scorte that is sweet, and of Pogo, that is to feine, for before he feineth pleasance. By likenesse of the worme Scorpion a bush of thornes, & of briers, & knotted braunches of roddes be called stinging. Also a signe in heaven is called Scorpio. For when the Sunne is in that signe, wée féele first stinging of colde. Therefore Horace sayth. Maturina parum tunc cautos frigora ledunt. The morow cold grieveth but litle. Also an arow that is venimed is called Scorpio, for when it commeth out of the bow unto a man, & hitteth him, if sheddeth venim, & for that cause it hath that name Scorpio. And of al these it is said in this vearse following. Scorpius est signum, vemusque, sagitta, flagellum. The effect of this vearse is saith before. And Plin[ius] li. 11. ca. 26. speketh of Scorpions, & saith, that they bring forth small wormes, shapen as egges, & bréedeth fervent & right pestelentiall venim, as serpents do. And the venim of Scorpions noieth & gréeveth thrée dayes full sore, & afterward flaseth with soft death, but it be holpen & succoured the sooner. And ye Scorpion smiteth maidens with deaths stroke, when he smiteth & stingeth them, & women also: But he smiteth not men so soone, & grieveth most & noieth in the morow tide, those yt they finde in theyr wayes, when they come out of their dens, or if it happeneth yt they shed venim by any smiting. The Scorpions taile is alway redy to smite & sting, & ceaseth in no moment of gréeving or noieng, if he have any occassion or cause: & hée stingeth and smiteth a slont, & sheddeth in the smiting white venim. Apoderus is author, & describeth many maner of gréevous scorpions by double colour, some have stings, & among these scorpions the males bée most grievous, & namely in time of love, and these scorpions be smaller and longer then other. And of them all the venim is most gréevous a little after the midst of the daye, in the great and fervent heate of the Sun, and also when they thirst, and have certeine knots or rivells in the taile, and the mo such they have, the venim is the worse, and they have sometime such knots sixe or seven. Apolodius meaneth, yt in Affrica some Scorpions have feathers, and those bée full gréevous: and because of winning, Inchanters gathereth venime of divers lands, and labour for to beare these winged Scorpions into Italy, but they may not live under heven within the country of Italy. But such Scorpions bée sometime séene in Italy, but they be not gréevous. And in Scithia they smite blacke Swine, so that they die soone, but they bath them in water afterward. To a man smitten of ye scorpion, ashes of scorpions burnt, dronke in wine, is remedy. Also scorpions drowned in oile, helpeth & succoureth beasts that bée strong with scorpions. The Scorpion hurteth no Beast that hath any bloud, & some Scorpions bréed & bring forth a leaven young scorpions. And it is sayd, that the Scorpions eateth them sometime, but one of them that is most slie leapeth on the thigh of the Scorpionesse, and sitteth there safe & sure from the stinging of the taile, and from the biting of the mouth, and this slaieth the hée, and worketh the death of his young, and kinde ordeineth this provision, for such a pestilentiall kinde should not multiply too much. Huc usque Plinius. libro. 11. And Aristotle lib. 7. sayth, that some Scorpions doe eate some venimous thinges, and have the worse venime, and so Dragons doe eate Scorpions, and those bée worst. Against stinging of Scorpions bée manye remedyes, as it is sayde before in libro de Venenis, where it is perfectly treated. - [Batman]