Obscurus Books is eternally thankful to Harry James Potter for offering to translate Salazar Slytherin's History of Parseltongue. Now available in English, Latin, Spanish, Chinese and in the original Parseltongue, here is an excerpt from the book:
Parseltongue, a language now viewed as a mark, a mark of Darkness and evil. But this now hated language was once viewed as a mark of a healer, prophet and high priest/priestess. How has the truth of this ancient and noble gift been corrupted so completely that its past has been entirely forgotten?
Parseltongue is the language of serpents and other magical serpentine creatures such as the Runespore, Naga, Basilisk, Ashwinder, Sea Serpents and even Wyverns. Any human being who can speak Parseltongue is known as a Parselmouth or ‘Snake-Speaker’. While the commonly hereditary gift of Parseltongue is now viewed as a rare skill, this was not always the case. There was once a time when there were many Parselmouths roaming this planet but now these numbers have dwindled to a short few due to interbreeding with non-Parselmouths. This interbreeding has caused this once revered gift to become a whisper. There are many historical legends which inadvertently speak of the creation of Parselmouths and all will be touched on in this book. But let me finish this introduction with a final message: forget what you think you know about Parselmouths and the gift of Parseltongue because the truth is like nothing you could ever imagine.
Chapter One: The Origins of Parseltongue and Parselmouths
All around the world there have been snake deities; Gods and Goddesses who could speak to snakes and serpents. And there were also serpentine creatures themselves which were revered as deities. From the Feathered Serpent of the Americas to the Naga of Eastern Asia Serpent deities have been around since the dawn of time. So are Parselmouths the mortal children of these great beings? Or are we something else entirely?
The Feathered Serpent is a prominent deity found in multiple religions in the Americas. To the Aztecs it was called Quetzalcoatl, to the Mayans this deity was called Kukulkan, Q'ug'umatz and Tohil. Instead of being some mystical single deity as the Muggles during believed, these species of serpent are actually distant relatives of the Chinese wind dragons and Wyverns which are believed to have flown over from Asia and evolved as a separate species, complete with their own identifiable characteristics. These feathered serpents are now under the classification of serpentine dragon like their featherless cousin the Wyvern.
A Wyvern is a magical winged serpent with a barbed tail which is as sharp as the blade of a freshly polished sword and unlike their cousins, dragons; Wyverns have no legs and are incapable of breathing fire. Instead these flying serpents with leathery bat-like wings are capable of creating one of the most deadly venoms on the planet. This species also is capable of biting their prey and not injecting their venom as is quite common during hatching season since baby Wyverns are unable to eat poisoned meat. Like the Feathered Serpents, Wyverns are under the classification of serpentine dragons.
Now, the Naga were deities found in Hinduism and Buddhism throughout Asia who took the form of a large snake – specifically the King Cobra. These 'deities’ had the upper body of a mortal human being but the lower body of a serpent. A male Naga is called a Nag while a female Naga is called a Nagi or Nagini. In India, Nagas are considered to be spirits of nature and the protectors of springs, wells and rivers. They bring rain, and thus fertility, but are also thought to bring disasters such as floods and drought. According to traditions Nagas are only malevolent to humans when they have been mistreated. In many countries throughout Asia, the Naga concept has been merged with local traditions of great and wise serpents or dragons. In Tibet, the Naga were equated with theklu, which dwell in lakes or underground streams and supposedly guard great treasures. In China, the Naga were equated with thelóngor the Chinese dragon.
However, in a Cambodian creation myth, the Naga were a reptilian race which ruled over a large empire on a group of islands in the Pacific Ocean. Now here is where the first myth about the creation of Parselmouths begins. In the legend the Naga King of this vast empire had a very beautiful daughter named Nagini. And it is said that, on the day of her betrothal to a Nag of much wealth and power, she fled the Naga Empire and made her way to India. There, while hiding in a river Nagini saw a man get thrown from his horse, which had spooked at the sight of a snake in the reeds beside the river. Seeing that the man couldn’t swim and was sure to drown, beautiful Nagini saved the man’s life by swimming him to the banks of the river.
“I am indebted to you, fair maiden,” said the man, “as a reward I will make you my wife”
But the man had not yet seen that Nagini was half serpent since the murky river hid her lower half. It was then that Nagini revealed her true form to the man. He was shocked and asked her if she was a Goddess to which she replied; “I am no Goddess but I am a Princess to a vast empire in the stars and I would be honoured to be your wife”
In reply the man said, “Well I am no mere peasant either. I am the Brahman, Kaundiya. I own vast lands and you will be my Queen.”
From the eventual union of Nagini and Kaundiya sprung the beginnings of the Cambodian people and possibly the first Parselmouths in existence. Even today there are still Cambodians, both Muggle and Magical, who say that they are 'Born from the Naga’.
So, are Parselmouths the children of a Naga princess and an Indian Brahman? Or are we the descendents of an entirely different magical race?
A History of Parseltongue by Salazar Slytherin is available in both our store at 18A Diagon Alley, London or through Instant Owl Service!simply click on our postal address or 'instant owl service’ to get your copy today!
But I love my new companion, Clara, Clara Oswald. In my new incarnation I sometimes find it difficult to talk to people. I sometimes get things wrong. And sometimes I might appear a little bit rude, or a little bit sharp; I don’t mean to be. She’s helping me improve my manners, so I love her. [x]