viper

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viper

 [vi´per]
1. any snake of the viperid and crotalid families (the true vipers and the pit vipers).
2. a term sometimes used to refer to any venomous snake.
Old World viper true viper.
pit viper any of a family of venomous snakes found in North America including the many types of rattlesnakes (genera Crotalus and Sistrurus), as well as the copperheads and water moccasins (both of genus Agkistrodon).
Russell's viper Vipera russellii, a true viper of Southeast Asia whose venom (Russell's viper venom) is used in blood tests.
true viper any of a large family of venomous snakes found in Africa, parts of Europe, Asia, and adjacent islands, but not in the Americas or Australia; it includes cobras and adders, among others. Called also Old World viper, viperid, and viperine.

vi·per

(vī'pĕr),
A member of the snake family Viperidae.
[L. vipera, serpent, snake]

viper

(vī′pər)
n.
1. Any of various venomous snakes of the family Viperidae, having a thick heavy body and a single pair of long hollow fangs, especially the Eurasian and African species of the subfamily Viperinae, which lack the sensory pits of the pit vipers.
2. Any of several harmless snakes sometimes believed to be venomous.
References in periodicals archive ?
(15) Providing a counterpart for the image of the mother "mis bas tout un noeud de viperes" ("spawning a clutch of snakes") in "Benediction," the poem thus suggests that the skeleton of "Danse Macabre" is also in some sense identified with the poet's mother.
Que je m'oblige a leurs menees & pourquoy faire & pour leur servir de planche a la royaute, queje couve en mon sein les viperes qui me rongeront, que je couvre sous les Heurs de Lys ces croisettes de Lorraine, que de Roy je devienne chef de bande, que le peuple sache que [...] si je n'ay le courage pour punir les entrepreneurs, ils n'ont ny honte ny crainte de poursuivre l'entreprinse.
On trouve les traces de Meduse, et parfois de ses soeurs, au fil des siecles chez Pindare (<<threne sinistre des Gorgones farouches>>), chez Euripide (<<fille de la Nuit, avec ses viperes aux cent tetes bruyantes>>), chez Platon (<<Gorgones et Pegases et des multitudes etranges creatures inconcevables et monstrueuses>>), etc.