Where does the word 'Rodent' come from?
It comes from the Latin word rodere which means "to gnaw"
Rat is a rodent. Its incisors never stop growing and hence, it will gnaw through anything to wear them down.
A rat's teeth are harder than iron, and its bite is six times stronger, relative to its size, than that of a great white shark.
“When a rat’s bite touches the bone, it makes you faint in a minute, and it bleeds dreadful – ah, most terrible – just as if you had been stuck with a penknife,” reported Jack Black of Battersea, the rat-catcher profiled in Henry Mayhew’s London Labour and the London Poor.
The famous author Jonathan Burt says: our phobia of rats is intimately tied up with our own self-image as humans. We despise rats for the very things we despise in ourselves: their filth, their lust, their disease, their destruction, their pointless, unbounded, never-ending consumption.
Burt quotes the 1930s bacteriologist Hans Zinsser, who singled out rats as humans’ closest rival as destroyers of life. “Neither of them is of the slightest earthly use to any other species of living things,” he wrote. “Gradually these two have spread across the earth, keeping pace with each other and unable to destroy each other, though continually hostile.”
Richard Ashley, emeritus professor of urban water at the University of Sheffield, has observed that rats never breed more than the available food supply can support; they also stick closely to family groups. He's been really impressed by their resilience, tenacity and capacity to survive.
Rats giggle when tickled. Rats can survive a 50ft (15m) fall, they can wade through water for 3 days and they can hold their breath for 3 minutes.
Well, if you are intrigued by these interesting details about rats and would want to know more about them, you need to read this superb article from where I've excerpted and collated the above information. This article is written in such a hilarious way that it was very enjoyable reading.
Are We Losing The Rat Race?
Richard Godwin, who has an awesome command of English and is the writer of this excellent article, has done MA (Hons) from Oxford University in French and Russian.
That's all my Blogging for now.
~ Aparna ~
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