This paper addresses the specific structures relating to beliefs connected with the Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus Laurenti 1768), a common species in the catchment basin of the Nile and which embodies divine punishment. After outlining a hieroglyphical, lexicological, anthropological and religious background relating to the crocodile, the author emphasizes, by means of a selection of hieroglyphic, Greek and Latin sources, the existence of several paradoxes. The saurian is considered according to two opposing ways : 1) as an animal which causes either a deifying death or a death expressing the guilt of the victim ; 2) as an animal embodying negative deities whose eradication is necessary since many accidents are caused by the saurian. Comparisons with the Madagascan and Dogon behaviours concerning this saurian suggest the existence of parallel death sentence structures based on fate and personified by Crocodylus niloticus.