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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature


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occurs in the margin of Acts 16:16, a spirit of Python, where the text of the A. V. reads a spirit of divination. The word Python (Πύθων in Greek mythology) is the name of a serpent, or dragon slain by Apollo, then transferred to Apollo himself; in later times used for diviners, soothsayers, held to be inspired of the Pythian Apollo (Plutarch, De Delect.; Orac. c. q.). The Pythones, like the obolth, "familiar spirits," among the idolatrous Hebrews (Leviticus 19:31; 1 Samuel 28:3; 1 Samuel 28:7-9), were called ventriloquists because the god or spirit was supposed to be in them, and to speak from their bellies without any motion of the lips. (See NECROMANCY).

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McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Python'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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