"the coils of Medusa’s snakes"
Medusa, by Carvaggio, 16th century
Public DomainMedusa, by Carvaggio, 16th century - Credit: wikimedia commons

 Medusa is a monstrous gorgon from Greek mythology whose fearsome gaze could turn a man to stone. She is described and represented in art as a woman, sometimes winged, with snakes in place of hair. She was killed by the hero Perseus, who used a polished shield to watch her without being turned to stone.


Medusa on a Red-Figure Hydria
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeMedusa on a Red-Figure Hydria - Credit: Dorieo/Wikimedia Commons