if this is the herod i’m thinking of who was eaten by worms in the book of acts, i always heard that it was the worms you get from eating undercooked pork. i wish i knew the reference that talks about it in the bible, but i’m too lazy to try to find out.
According to this
Scientific American article, from 2002, it was likely that Herod’s
Written accounts tell of:
Trichinella spiralis is the worm in uncooked pork.
That article in Scientific American is about Herod the Great. The character in
I, Claudius was his grandson, commonly called Herod Agrippa I. Both their deaths were strange, and Graves seems to have conflated the two stories in his novel.
Herod Agrippa’s death is described in Acts 12:21-23
And upon a set day Herod, arrayed in royal apparel, sat upon his throne, and made an oration unto them.
And the people gave a shout, [saying, It is] the voice of a god, and not of a man.
And immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the ghost.
His death described in greater detail by Josephus in
Antiquities of the Jews, book 19 (scroll down to Chapter 8, paragraph 2 near the bottom of the page.
and presently his flatterers cried out, one from one place, and another from another, (though not for his good,) that he was a god;
A severe pain also arose in his belly, and began in a most violent manner. He therefore looked upon his friends, and said, “I, whom you call a god, am commanded presently to depart this life; while Providence thus reproves the lying words you just now said to me; and I, who was by you called immortal, am immediately to be hurried away by death. But I am bound to accept of what Providence allots, as it pleases God; for we have by no means lived ill, but in a splendid and happy manner.” When he said this, his pain was become violent. Accordingly he was carried into the palace, and the rumor went abroad every where, that he would certainly die in a little time.
Now the king rested in a high chamber, and as he saw them below lying prostrate on the ground, he could not himself forbear weeping. And when he had been quite worn out by the pain in his belly for five days, he departed this life, being in the fifty-fourth year of his age, and in the seventh year of his reign;
The Death of Herod the Great is not, as far as I know, described in the Bible. Josephus describes the symptoms in book 17, ch. 6, para. 5
a fire glowed in him slowly, which did not so much appear to the touch outwardly, as it augmented his pains inwardly; for it brought upon him a vehement appetite to eating, which he could not avoid to supply with one sort of food or other. His entrails were also ex-ulcerated, and the chief violence of his pain lay on his colon; an aqueous and transparent liquor also had settled itself about his feet, and a like matter afflicted him at the bottom of his belly. Nay, further, his privy-member was putrefied, and produced worms; and when he sat upright, he had a difficulty of breathing, which was very loathsome, on account of the stench of his breath, and the quickness of its returns; he had also convulsions in all parts of his body, which increased his strength to an insufferable degree.
Ack! :smack: Sorry for my confusion over the Herods.