A much thornier question concerns the history of Engl. stun. Old English had the verb stunian “crash, resound, roar; impinge; dash.” It looks like a perfect etymon of stun. Skeat thought so at the beginning of his etymological career and never changed his opinion. He compared stunian with a group of words meaning “to groan”: Icelandic stynja, Dutch stenen, German stöhnen, and their cognates elsewhere. Those are almost certainly related to thunder. Apparently, the congeners of tonare did not always denote a great amount of din.

Anatoly Liberman examines the etymology of ‘stun’ as illustrated by Thor, god of thunder, summoning his energy to grasp s mobile

GIF via thor-lover-of-poppingtarts


Pseudoxyrhopus tritaeniatus Mocquard, 1894


This species is known to occur along the length of the eastern rainforest belt of Madagascar, from Masoala in the north to Andohahela in the south.

Morphology & Colouration:

Pseudoxyrhopus tritaeniatus is among the largest members of the genus Pseudoxyrhopus, reaching lengths of up to one metre. It is characterised by 25 dorsal scale rows at midbody, a character it shares with only two other congeners, P. microps and P. ankafinaensis.

The colouration of P. tritaeniatus is striking and unique in Madagascar, reminding somewhat of Oreocryptophis porphyraceus coxi. The snake is typically red, with four or five black dorsal stripes.


Pseudoxyrhopus tritaeniatus is a nocturnal, terrestrial snake. It is known to eat rodents, but its diet may consist of other mammals, small reptiles, and possibly fish and birds if it can get them. During the day, it is known to seek shelter under rotten wood.

Conservation Status:

Pseudoxyrhopus tritaeniatus is currently listed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List, due to its wide distribution inside well protected areas.

Systematics and Taxonomy:

Pseudoxyrhopus tritaeniatus is unmistakable. It is not currently clear which species are its closest relatives, but it is quite possible that Pmicrops is among them, given its similarities in scale counts, size, and overall appearance.


Animalia-Chordata-Reptilia-Serpentes-Lamprophiidae-Pseudoxyrhophiinae-Pseudoxyrhopus-P. tritaeniatus

First photo by Sara Ruane, second by leopardcat, third by Bernard Dupont.

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"Let us do something. While we have the chance! It is not every day that we are needed. Not indeed that we personally are needed. Others would meet the case equally well, if not better. To all mankind they were addressed, those cries for help still ringing in our ears! But at this place, at this moment of time, all mankind is us, whether we like it or not. Let us make the most of it, before it is too late! Let us represent worthily for once the foul brood to which a cruel fate consigned us! what do you say? It is true that when with folded arms we weigh the pros and cons we are no less a credit to our species. The tiger bounds to the help of his congeners without the least reflexion, or else he slinks away into the depths of the thickets. But that is not the question. What are we doing here, that is the question. And we are blessed in this, that we happen to know the answer. Yes, in this immense confusion one thing alone is clear. We are waiting for Godot to come—”

- Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot

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Polychlorinated biphenyl congener distributions in burbot: evidence for a latitude effect

We compared the distributions of the congeners of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) detected in whole-body samples of burbot (Lota lota) from Great Slave Lake and Lake Erie. Total PCB concentrations in Great Slave Lake burbot were about 1/60 of the c