A belated entry to ABC Wednesday: a weekly challenge to create a blog entry based on the next letter of the alphabet. It's hosted by Mrs Nesbitt. Eldritch told me to join in.
For a very long time dragons have had a bad press, in spite of the fact that they are actually quite harmless beasts. Eldritch is one of the kindest, sweetest plushies that you could ever want to meet. He is good to his brother Bamburgh and looks after his young bovine cousins. You can find out more about them on Eldritch's own blog here.
Dragons have a lot of relatives. One of them is the Australian bunyip but a better-known one is the basilisk. Basilisks are fearsome creatures with bodies like snakes. But they hold their top halves off the ground as they slither along. All parts of the basilisk are toxic, but the worst is its breath which can wither trees and poison streams and rivers.
Even harsher, though, is the basilisk's stare. That can kill an animal with one glance. Only three things can withstand it: the weasel is immune to all forms of basilisk poison;a crowing cockerel will drive a basilisk away; and the plant rue, which the weasel uses to heal itself if it is hurt in a basilisk battle.
The photo isn't a basilisk of course. Otherwise we'd all be dead! It's a Naga serpent goddess on a Nepalese temple lamp used in Hindu ceremonies. It's in the museum at Kedleston Hall in Derbyshire.