Tag Archives: boiling frog

Illustrations: The Boiled Frog

“If you stick a frog in a boiling pan of water, he’ll try to jump out. But if you stick a frog in a pan of cold water and gradually heat it up, the frog will sit there until he boils to death.”

This charming bit of folks lore is used to show us that if we accept even a little wordiness into our lives that we’ll soon be boiled to death in a steaming pot of apathy. Whether or not that’s actually the case, there’s one small problem with the illustration…it’s completely bogus.

From Snopes.com

The legend is entirely incorrect! The ‘critical thermal maxima’ of many species of frogs have been determined by several investigators. In this procedure, the water in which a frog is submerged is heated gradually at about 2 degrees Fahrenheit per minute. As the temperature of the water is gradually increased, the frog will eventually become more and more active in attempts to escape the heated water. If the container size and opening allow the frog to jump out, it will do so.