St. John's locusts

Lammers lammers at FMNH785.FMNH.ORG
Thu Nov 16 11:31:48 CST 1995

Hmm.  Well, shows you can't trust everything you read in your textbooks,
children.  For the record, my assertion that the locusts were leguminous
and not orthopterous stems from: A. F. Hill, Economic Botany, McGraw-Hill,
1952 (second edition), page 346 (where the Prodigal Son is also mentioned
as dining on them).  I guess I bought it because (not knowing much about
Jewish dietary law), I assumed insects wouldn't be kosher.  It would be
interesting to know the Hebrew/Aramaic/Greek or other Middle Eastern
names for the carob; if it was so important to them, they surely had a
name for it.  Perhaps they, too, saw the same similarity as later people,
and dubbed in akris?

Thomas G. Lammers
Dept. Botany
Field Museum of Natural History
lammers at

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