How effectively does the description of Nag in paragraph 23 evoke the image that he is a snake to be feared?

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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Nag's appearance is described for the first time when Rikki-tikki is in the garden of the bungalow speaking to Darzee, the tailorbird. While Darzee is telling Rikki-tikki about how Nag ate one of her eggs that fell out of her nest the previous day, Nag sneaks up behind Rikki-tikki and spreads his massive hood. Kipling writes,

Then inch by inch out of the grass rose up the head and spread hood of Nag, the big black cobra, and he was five feet long from tongue to tail. When he had lifted one-third of himself clear of the ground, he stayed balancing to and fro exactly as a dandelion tuft balances in the wind, and he looked at Rikki-tikki with the wicked snake's eyes that never change their expression, whatever the snake may be thinking of (2).

Nag is depicted as a massive cobra with wicked, piercing eyes. His black appearance adds to his foreboding, ominous presence, which strikes fear in the animals currently living at the estate. Nag does not change his intimidating expression, and his eyes are described as being "wicked." Overall, Nag's long black body, massive hood, and piercing eyes portray him as a dangerous, malevolent snake to be feared. Nag proceeds to speak to Rikki-tikki while his evil wife, Nagaina, attacks the mongoose from behind. Fortunately, Darzee warns Rikki-tikki, who avoids Nagaina's strike at the last second.