In this silent movie from 1924 starring Douglas Fairbanks, a court magician for the Mongol Prince has a staff carved like a snake, covered with scales, with a round latticed orb on top. There is a snake inside the orb which has a hole big enough so the snake can poke its head out and bite someone (but apparently, it can't escape through the hole, which doesn't make any sense.)
Fairbanks steals a magic golden apple and needs a dead person to demonstrate that the apple can bring them back to life. He orders his henchman to use the snake orb to kill a fisherman. The snake doesn't even bite the guy but he keels over and turns black anyway.
The snake looks like either a Long-nosed Snake or a small California Kingsnake, we don't see it very well.