Ye serpents, ye offspring of vipers (opei gennhmata ecidnwn). These blistering words come as a climax and remind one of the Baptist ( Luke 3:17 ) and of the time when the Pharisees accused Jesus of being in league with Beelzebub ( Luke 12:34 ). They cut to the bone like whip-cords. How shall ye escape (pw pughte). Deliberate subjunctive. There is a curse in the Talmud somewhat like this: "Woe to the house of Annas! Woe to their serpent-like hissings."