Kathleen Miller millerk at NYTIMES.COM
Tue Apr 27 13:03:47 UTC 1999

I just finished this one for Mr. Safire. His curiousity was piqued by a
Times Magazine article back in October. The OED has Edmund Spenser's Faerie
Queene 1590 - "Betwixt them both was but a little stride, That did the
house of Rishesse from Hell-mouth divide." Kipling used it as well.
Almost all of the other references I could find (that didn't come from
Buffy) had to do with the stage design of Medieval plays. They depicted the
mouth to hell as a huge dragon's (Leviathan's)gaping mouth.

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