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September 4, 1937

Le venin des araignées

JAMA. 1937;109(10):815. doi:10.1001/jama.1937.02780360063026

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This monograph, from the Pasteur Institute of Paris, is written by a physician-naturalist who has traveled extensively in the wilds of South America, has been associated with the Institut antiophidique de Butantan at São Paulo, Brazil, and has prepared antivenomous monovalent and polyvalent serums against the principal poisonous spiders of South America. The book is a comprehensive treatment of the subject based mainly on the author's experience with South American species. It is divided into three major parts. The first is a history of aranéisme, beginning with Aristotle and Pliny, and includes a discussion of tarantulism. The Spanish dance, the tarantella, had its origin in an epidemic collective neurosis, derivable from the convulsive symptoms and cries of patients suffering from the bites of the tarantula (Lycosa tarantula). The more accurate accounts of this disorder led the author to the opinion that the larger and better known tarantula got all the

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