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350 BC

C ATEGORIES by Aristotle
translate d by E. M. Edghill 1 Things are said to
be name d 'e quivocally' whe n, though the y have a common name , the de finition
corre sponding with the name diffe rs for e ach. Thus, a re al man and a figure in a
picture can both lay claim to the name 'animal'; ye t the se are e quivocally so
name d, for, though the y have a common name , the de finition corre sponding with the
name diffe rs for e ach. For should any one de fine in what se nse e ach is an animal,
his de finition in the one case will be appropriate to that case only. On the othe r
hand, things are said to be name d 'univocally' which have both the name and the
de finition answe ring to the name in common. A man and an ox are both 'animal', and
the se are univocally so name d, inasmuch as not only the name , but also the
de finition, is the same in both case s: for if a man should state in what se nse e ach
is an animal, the state me nt in the one case would be ide ntical with that in the
othe r. Things are said to be name d 'de rivative ly', which de rive the ir name from
some othe r name , but diffe r from it in te rmination. Thus the grammarian de rive s his
name from the word 'grammar', and the courage ous man from the word 'courage '.
2 Forms of spe e ch are e ithe r simple or composite . Example s of the latte r are such
e xpre ssions as 'the man runs', 'the man wins'; of the forme r 'man', 'ox', 'runs',
'wins'. Of things the mse lve s some are pre dicable of a subje ct, and are ne ve r
pre se nt in a subje ct. Thus 'man' is pre dicable of the individual man, and is ne ve r
pre se nt in a subje ct. By be ing 'pre se nt in a subje ct' I do not me an pre se nt as
parts are pre se nt in a whole , but be ing incapable of e xiste nce apart from the said
subje ct. S ome things, again, are pre se nt in a subje ct, but are ne ve r pre dicable of
a subje ct. For instance , a ce rtain point of grammatical knowle dge is pre se nt in the
mind, but is not pre dicable of any subje ct; or again, a ce rtain white ne ss may be
pre se nt in the body (for colour re quire s a mate rial basis), ye t it is ne ve r
pre dicable of anything. Othe r things, again, are both pre dicable of a subje ct and
pre se nt in a subje ct. Thus while knowle dge is pre se nt in the human mind, it is
pre dicable of grammar. The re is, lastly, a class of things which are ne ithe r
pre se nt in a subje ct nor pre dicable of a subje ct, such as the individual man or the
individual horse . But, to spe ak more ge ne rally, that which is individual and has
the characte r of a unit is ne ve r pre dicable of a subje ct. Ye t in some case s the re
is nothing to pre ve nt such be ing pre se nt in a subje ct. Thus a ce rtain point of
grammatical knowle dge is pre se nt in a subje ct. 3
Whe n one thing is pre dicate d of anothe r, all that which is pre dicable of the
pre dicate will be pre dicable also of the subje ct. Thus, 'man' is pre dicate d of the
individual man; but 'animal' is pre dicate d of 'man'; it will, the re fore , be
pre dicable of the individual man also: for the individual man is both 'man' and
'animal'. If ge ne ra are diffe re nt and co-ordinate , the ir diffe re ntiae are
the mse lve s diffe re nt in kind. Take as an instance the ge nus 'animal' and the ge nus
'knowle dge '. 'With fe e t', 'two-foote d', 'winge d', 'aquatic', are diffe re ntiae of
'animal'; the spe cie s of knowle dge are not distinguishe d by the same diffe re ntiae .
One spe cie s of knowle dge doe s not diffe r from anothe r in be ing 'two-foote d'. But
whe re one ge nus is subordinate to anothe r, the re is nothing to pre ve nt the ir having
the same diffe re ntiae : for the gre ate r class is pre dicate d of the le sse r, so that
all the diffe re ntiae of the pre dicate will be diffe re ntiae also of the subje ct.
4 Expre ssions which are in no way composite signify substance , quantity, quality,
re lation, place , time , position, state , action, or affe ction. To ske tch my me aning
roughly, e xample s of substance are 'man' or 'the horse ', of quantity, such te rms as
'two cubits long' or 'thre e cubits long', of quality, such attribute s as 'white ',
'grammatical'. 'Double ', 'half', 'gre ate r', fall unde r the cate gory of re lation;
'in a the marke t place ', 'in the Lyce um', unde r that of place ; 'ye ste rday', 'last
ye ar', unde r that of time . 'Lying', 'sitting', are te rms indicating position,
'shod', 'arme d', state ; 'to lance ', 'to caute rize ', action; 'to be lance d', 'to be
caute rize d', affe ction. No one of the se te rms, in and by itse lf, involve s an
affirmation; it is by the combination of such te rms that positive or ne gative
state me nts arise . For e ve ry asse rtion must, as is admitte d, be e ithe r true or
false , whe re as e xpre ssions which are not in any way composite such as 'man',
'white ', 'runs', 'wins', cannot be e ithe r true or false .
5 S ubstance , in the true st and primary and most de finite se nse of the word, is
that which is ne ithe r pre dicable of a subje ct nor pre se nt in a subje ct; for
instance , the individual man or horse . But in a se condary se nse those things are
calle d substance s within which, as spe cie s, the primary substance s are include d;
also those which, as ge ne ra, include the spe cie s. For instance , the individual man
is include d in the spe cie s 'man', and the ge nus to which the spe cie s be longs is
'animal'; the se , the re fore -that is to say, the spe cie s 'man' and the ge nus
'animal,-are te rme d se condary substance s. It is plain from what has be e n said that
both the name and the de finition of the pre dicate must be pre dicable of the
subje ct. For instance , 'man' is pre dicte d of the individual man. Now in this case
the name of the spe cie s man' is applie d to the individual, for we use the te rm
'man' in de scribing the individual; and the de finition of 'man' will also be
pre dicate d of the individual man, for the individual man is both man and animal.
Thus, both the name and the de finition of the spe cie s are pre dicable of the
individual. With re gard, on the othe r hand, to those things which are pre se nt in a
subje ct, it is ge ne rally the case that ne ithe r the ir name nor the ir de finition is
pre dicable of that in which the y are pre se nt. Though, howe ve r, the de finition is
ne ve r pre dicable , the re is nothing in ce rtain case s to pre ve nt the name be ing use d.
For instance , 'white ' be ing pre se nt in a body is pre dicate d of that in which it is
pre se nt, for a body is calle d white : the de finition, howe ve r, of the colour white '
is ne ve r pre dicable of the body. Eve rything e xce pt primary substance s is e ithe r
pre dicable of a primary substance or pre se nt in a primary substance . This be come s
e vide nt by re fe re nce to particular instance s which occur. 'Animal' is pre dicate d of
the spe cie s 'man', the re fore of the individual man, for if the re we re no individual
man of whom it could be pre dicate d, it could not be pre dicate d of the spe cie s 'man'
at all. Again, colour is pre se nt in body, the re fore in individual bodie s, for if
the re we re no individual body in which it was pre se nt, it could not be pre se nt in
body at all. Thus e ve rything e xce pt primary substance s is e ithe r pre dicate d of
primary substance s, or is pre se nt in the m, and if the se last did not e xist, it
would be impossible for anything e lse to e xist. Of se condary substance s, the
spe cie s is more truly substance than the ge nus, be ing more ne arly re late d to
primary substance . For if any one should re nde r an account of what a primary
substance is, he would re nde r a more instructive account, and one more prope r to
the subje ct, by stating the spe cie s than by stating the ge nus. Thus, he would give
a more instructive account of an individual man by stating that he was man than by
stating that he was animal, for the forme r de scription is pe culiar to the
individual in a gre ate r de gre e , while the latte r is too ge ne ral. Again, the man who
give s an account of the nature of an individual tre e will give a more instructive
account by me ntioning the spe cie s 'tre e ' than by me ntioning the ge nus 'plant'.
More ove r, primary substance s are most prope rly calle d substance s in virtue of the
fact that the y are the e ntitie s which unde rlie e ve ry. e lse , and that e ve rything
e lse is e ithe r pre dicate d of the m or pre se nt in the m. Now the same re lation which
subsists be twe e n primary substance and e ve rything e lse subsists also be twe e n the
spe cie s and the ge nus: for the spe cie s is to the ge nus as subje ct is to pre dicate ,
since the ge nus is pre dicate d of the spe cie s, whe re as the spe cie s cannot be
pre dicate d of the ge nus. Thus we have a se cond ground for asse rting that the
spe cie s is more truly substance than the ge nus. Of spe cie s the mse lve s, e xce pt in
the case of such as are ge ne ra, no one is more truly substance than anothe r. We
should not give a more appropriate account of the individual man by stating the
spe cie s to which he be longe d, than we should of an individual horse by adopting the
same me thod of de finition. In the same way, of primary substance s, no one is more
truly substance than anothe r; an individual man is not more truly substance than an
individual ox. It is, the n, with good re ason that of all that re mains, whe n we
e xclude primary substance s, we conce de to spe cie s and ge ne ra alone the name
'se condary substance ', for the se alone of all the pre dicate s conve y a knowle dge of
primary substance . For it is by stating the spe cie s or the ge nus that we
appropriate ly de fine any individual man; and we shall make our de finition more
e xact by stating the forme r than by stating the latte r. All othe r things that we
state , such as that he is white , that he runs, and so on, are irre le vant to the
de finition. Thus it is just that the se alone , apart from primary substance s, should
be calle d substance s. Furthe r, primary substance s are most prope rly so calle d,
be cause the y
unde rlie and are the subje cts of e ve rything e lse . Now the same re lation that
subsists be twe e n primary substance and e ve rything e lse subsists also be twe e n the
spe cie s and the ge nus to which the primary substance be longs, on the one hand, and
e ve ry attribute which is not include d within the se , on the othe r. For the se are the
subje cts of all such. If we call an individual man 'skille d in grammar', the
pre dicate is applicable also to the spe cie s and to the ge nus to which he be longs.
This law holds good in all case s. It is a common characte ristic of all sub. stance
that it is ne ve r pre se nt in a subje ct. For primary substance is ne ithe r pre se nt in
a subje ct nor pre dicate d of a subje ct; while , with re gard to se condary substance s,
it is cle ar from the following argume nts (apart from othe rs) that the y are not
pre se nt in a subje ct. For 'man' is pre dicate d of the individual man, but is not
pre se nt in any subje ct: for manhood is not pre se nt in the individual man. In the
same way, 'animal' is also pre dicate d of the individual man, but is not pre se nt in
him. Again, whe n a thing is pre se nt in a subje ct, though the name may quite we ll be
applie d to that in which it is pre se nt, the de finition cannot be applie d. Ye t of
se condary substance s, not only the name , but also the de finition, applie s to the
subje ct: we should use both the de finition of the spe cie s and that of the ge nus
with re fe re nce to the individual man. Thus substance cannot be pre se nt in a
subje ct. Ye t this is not pe culiar to substance , for it is also the case that
diffe re ntiae cannot be pre se nt in subje cts. The characte ristics 'te rre strial' and
'two-foote d' are pre dicate d of the spe cie s 'man', but not pre se nt in it. For the y
are not in man. More ove r, the de finition of the diffe re ntia may be pre dicate d of
that of which the diffe re ntia itse lf is pre dicate d. For instance , if the
characte ristic 'te rre strial' is pre dicate d of the spe cie s 'man', the de finition
also of that characte ristic may be use d to form the pre dicate of the spe cie s 'man':
for 'man' is te rre strial. The fact that the parts of substance s appe ar to be
pre se nt in the whole , as in a subje ct, should not make us appre he nsive le st we
should have to admit that such parts are not substance s: for in e xplaining the
phrase 'be ing pre se nt in a subje ct', we state d' that we me ant 'othe rwise than as
parts in a whole '. It is the mark of substance s and of diffe re ntiae that, in all
propositions of which the y form the pre dicate , the y are pre dicate d univocally. For
all such propositions have for the ir subje ct e ithe r the individual or the spe cie s.
It is true that, inasmuch as primary substance is not pre dicable of anything, it
can ne ve r form the pre dicate of any proposition. But of se condary substance s, the
spe cie s is pre dicate d of the individual, the ge nus both of the spe cie s and of the
individual. S imilarly the diffe re ntiae are pre dicate d of the spe cie s and of the
individuals. More ove r, the de finition of the spe cie s and that of the ge nus are
applicable to the primary substance , and that of the ge nus to the spe cie s. For all
that is pre dicate d of the pre dicate will be pre dicate d also of the subje ct.
S imilarly, the de finition of the diffe re ntiae will be applicable to the spe cie s and
to the individuals. But it was state d above that the word 'univocal' was applie d to
those things which had both name and de finition in common. It is, the re fore ,
e stablishe d that in e ve ry proposition, of which e ithe r substance or a diffe re ntia
forms the pre dicate , the se are pre dicate d univocally. All substance appe ars to
signify that which is individual. In the case of primary substance this is
indisputably true , for the thing is a unit. In the case of se condary substance s,
whe n we spe ak, for instance , of 'man' or 'animal', our form of spe e ch give s the
impre ssion that we are he re also indicating that which is individual, but the
impre ssion is not strictly true ; for a se condary substance is not an individual,
but a class with a ce rtain qualification; for it is not one and single as a primary
substance is; the words 'man', 'animal', are pre dicable of more than one subje ct.
Ye t spe cie s and ge nus do not me re ly indicate quality, like the te rm 'white ';
'white ' indicate s quality and nothing furthe r, but spe cie s and ge nus de te rmine the
quality with re fe re nce to a substance : the y signify substance qualitative ly
diffe re ntiate d. The de te rminate qualification cove rs a large r fie ld in the case of
the ge nus that in that of the spe cie s: he who use s the word 'animal' is he re in
using a word of wide r e xte nsion than he who use s the word 'man'. Anothe r mark of
substance is that it has no contrary. What could be the contrary of any primary
substance , such as the individual man or animal? It has none . Nor can the spe cie s
or the ge nus have a contrary. Ye t this characte ristic is not pe culiar to substance ,
but is true of many othe r things, such as quantity. The re is nothing that forms the
contrary of 'two cubits long' or of 'thre e cubits long', or of 'te n', or of any
such te rm. A man may conte nd that 'much' is the contrary of 'little ', or 'gre at' of
'small', but of de finite quantitative te rms no contrary e xists. S ubstance , again,
doe s not appe ar to admit of variation of de gre e . I do not me an by this that one
substance cannot be more or le ss truly substance than anothe r, for it has alre ady
be e n state d' that this is the case ; but that no single substance admits of varying
de gre e s within itse lf. For instance , one particular substance , 'man', cannot be
more or le ss man e ithe r than himse lf at some othe r time or than some othe r man. One
man cannot be more man than anothe r, as that which is white may be more or le ss
white than some othe r white obje ct, or as that which is be autiful may be more or
le ss be autiful than some othe r be autiful obje ct. The same quality, more ove r, is
said to subsist in a thing in varying de gre e s at diffe re nt time s. A body, be ing
white , is said to be white r at one time than it was be fore , or, be ing warm, is said
to be warme r or le ss warm than at some othe r time . But substance is not said to be
more or le ss that which it is: a man is not more truly a man at one time than he
was be fore , nor is anything, if it is substance , more or le ss what it is.
S ubstance , the n, doe s not admit of variation of de gre e . The most distinctive mark
of substance appe ars to be that, while re maining nume rically one and the same , it
is capable of admitting contrary qualitie s. From among things othe r than substance ,
we should find ourse lve s unable to bring forward any which posse sse d this mark.
Thus, one and the same colour cannot be white and black. Nor can the same one
action be good and bad: this law holds good with e ve rything that is not substance .
But one and the se lfsame substance , while re taining its ide ntity, is ye t capable of
admitting contrary qualitie s. The same individual pe rson is at one time white , at
anothe r black, at one time warm, at anothe r cold, at one time good, at anothe r bad.
This capacity is found nowhe re e lse , though it might be maintaine d that a state me nt
or opinion was an e xce ption to the rule . The same state me nt, it is agre e d, can be
both true and false . For if the state me nt 'he is sitting' is true , ye t, whe n the
pe rson in que stion has rise n, the same state me nt will be false . The same applie s to
opinions. For if any one thinks truly that a pe rson is sitting, ye t, whe n that
pe rson has rise n, this same opinion, if still he ld, will be false . Ye t although
this e xce ption may be allowe d, the re is, ne ve rthe le ss, a diffe re nce in the manne r
in which the thing take s place . It is by the mse lve s changing that substance s admit
contrary qualitie s. It is thus that that which was hot be come s cold, for it has
e nte re d into a diffe re nt state . S imilarly that which was white be come s black, and
that which was bad good, by a proce ss of change ; and in the same way in all othe r
case s it is by changing that substance s are capable of admitting contrary
qualitie s. But state me nts and opinions the mse lve s re main unalte re d in all re spe cts:
it is by the alte ration in the facts of the case that the contrary quality come s to
be the irs. The state me nt 'he is sitting' re mains unalte re d, but it is at one time
true , at anothe r false , according to circumstance s. What has be e n said of
state me nts applie s also to opinions. Thus, in re spe ct of the manne r in which the
thing take s place , it is the pe culiar mark of substance that it should be capable
of admitting contrary qualitie s; for it is by itse lf changing that it doe s so. If,
the n, a man should make this e xce ption and conte nd that state me nts and opinions are
capable of admitting contrary qualitie s, his conte ntion is unsound. For state me nts
and opinions are said to have this capacity, not be cause the y the mse lve s unde rgo
modification, but be cause this modification occurs in the case of some thing e lse .
The truth or falsity of a state me nt de pe nds on facts, and not on any powe r on the
part of the state me nt itse lf of admitting contrary qualitie s. In short, the re is
nothing which can alte r the nature of state me nts and opinions. As, the n, no change
take s place in the mse lve s, the se cannot be said to be capable of admitting contrary
qualitie s. But it is by re ason of the modification which take s place within the
substance itse lf that a substance is said to be capable of admitting contrary
qualitie s; for a substance admits within itse lf e ithe r dise ase or he alth, white ne ss
or blackne ss. It is in this se nse that it is said to be capable of admitting
contrary qualitie s. To sum up, it is a distinctive mark of substance , that, while
re maining nume rically one and the same , it is capable of admitting contrary
qualitie s, the modification taking place through a change in the substance itse lf.
Le t the se re marks suffice on the subje ct of substance .
6 Quantity is e ithe r discre te or continuous. More ove r,
some quantitie s are such that e ach part of the whole has a re lative position to
the othe r parts: othe rs have within the m no such re lation of part to part.
Instance s of discre te quantitie s are numbe r and spe e ch; of continuous, line s,
surface s, solids, and, be side s the se , time and place . In the case of the parts of
a numbe r, the re is no common boundary at which the y join. For e xample : two five s
make te n, but the two five s have no common boundary, but are se parate ; the parts
thre e and se ve n also do not join at any boundary. Nor, to ge ne ralize , would it e ve r
be possible in the case of numbe r that the re should be a common boundary among the
parts; the y are always se parate . Numbe r, the re fore , is a discre te quantity. The
same is true of spe e ch. That spe e ch is a quantity is e vide nt: for it is me asure d in
long and short syllable s. I me an he re that spe e ch which is vocal. More ove r, it is a
discre te quantity for its parts have no common boundary. The re is no common
boundary at which the syllable s join, but e ach is se parate and distinct from the
re st. A line , on the othe r hand, is a continuous quantity, for it is possible to
find a common boundary at which its parts join. In the case of the line , this
common boundary is the point; in the case of the plane , it is the line : for the
parts of the plane have also a common boundary. S imilarly you can find a common
boundary in the case of the parts of a solid, name ly e ithe r a line or a plane .
S pace and time also be long to this class of quantitie s. Time , past, pre se nt, and
future , forms a continuous whole . S pace , like wise , is a continuous quantity; for
the parts of a solid occupy a ce rtain space , and the se have a common boundary; it
follows that the parts of space also, which are occupie d by the parts of the solid,
have the same common boundary as the parts of the solid. Thus, not only time , but
space also, is a continuous quantity, for its parts have a common boundary.
Quantitie s consist e ithe r of parts which be ar a re lative position e ach to e ach, or
of parts which do not. The parts of a line be ar a re lative position to e ach othe r,
for e ach lie s some whe re , and it would be possible to distinguish e ach, and to state
the position of e ach on the plane and to e xplain to what sort of part among the
re st e ach was contiguous. S imilarly the parts of a plane have position, for it
could similarly be state d what was the position of e ach and what sort of parts we re
contiguous. The same is true with re gard to the solid and to space . But it would be
impossible to show that the arts of a numbe r had a re lative position e ach to e ach,
or a particular position, or to state what parts we re contiguous. Nor could this be
done in the case of time , for none of the parts of time has an abiding e xiste nce ,
and that which doe s not abide can hardly have position. It would be be tte r to say
that such parts had a re lative orde r, in virtue of one be ing prior to anothe r.
S imilarly with numbe r: in counting, 'one ' is prior to 'two', and 'two' to 'thre e ',
and thus the parts of numbe r may be said to posse ss a re lative orde r, though it
would be impossible to discove r any distinct position for e ach. This holds good
also in the case of spe e ch. None of its parts has an abiding e xiste nce : whe n once a
syllable is pronounce d, it is not possible to re tain it, so that, naturally, as the
parts do not abide , the y cannot have position. Thus, some quantitie s consist of
parts which have position, and some of those which have not. S trictly spe aking,
only the things which I have me ntione d be long to the cate gory of quantity:
e ve rything e lse that is calle d quantitative is a quantity in a se condary se nse . It
is be cause we have in mind some one of the se quantitie s, prope rly so calle d, that
we apply quantitative te rms to othe r things. We spe ak of what is white as large ,
be cause the surface ove r which the white e xte nds is large ; we spe ak of an action or
a proce ss as le ngthy, be cause the time cove re d is long; the se things cannot in
the ir own right claim the quantitative e pithe t. For instance , should any one
e xplain how long an action was, his state me nt would be made in te rms of the time
take n, to the e ffe ct that it laste d a ye ar, or some thing of that sort. In the same
way, he would e xplain the size of a white obje ct in te rms of surface , for he would
state the are a which it cove re d. Thus the things alre ady me ntione d, and the se
alone , are in the ir intrinsic nature quantitie s; nothing e lse can claim the name in
its own right, but, if at all, only in a se condary se nse . Quantitie s have no
contrarie s. In the case of de finite quantitie s this is obvious; thus, the re is
nothing that is the contrary of 'two cubits long' or of 'thre e cubits long', or of
a surface , or of any such quantitie s. A man might, inde e d, argue that 'much' was
the contrary of 'little ', and 'gre at' of 'small'. But the se are not quantitative ,
but re lative ; things are not gre at or small absolute ly, the y are so calle d rathe r
as the re sult of an act of comparison. For instance , a mountain is calle d small, a
grain large , in virtue of the fact that the latte r is gre ate r than othe rs of its
kind, the forme r le ss. Thus the re is a re fe re nce he re to an e xte rnal standard, for
if the te rms 'gre at' and 'small' we re use d absolute ly, a mountain would ne ve r be
calle d small or a grain large . Again, we say that the re are many pe ople in a
village , and fe w in Athe ns, although those in the city are many time s as nume rous
as those in the village : or we say that a house has many in it, and a the atre fe w,
though those in the the atre far outnumbe r those in the house . The te rms 'two cubits
long, "thre e cubits long,' and so on indicate quantity, the te rms 'gre at' and
'small' indicate re lation, for the y have re fe re nce to an e xte rnal standard. It is,
the re fore , plain that the se are to be classe d as re lative . Again, whe the r we
de fine the m as quantitative or not, the y have no contrarie s: for how can the re be a
contrary of an attribute which is not to be appre he nde d in or by itse lf, but only
by re fe re nce to some thing e xte rnal? Again, if 'gre at' and 'small' are contrarie s,
it will come about that the same subje ct can admit contrary qualitie s at one and
the same time , and that things will the mse lve s be contrary to the mse lve s. For it
happe ns at time s that the same thing is both small and gre at. For the same thing
may be small in comparison with one thing, and gre at in comparison with anothe r, so
that the same thing come s to be both small and gre at at one and the same time , and
is of such a nature as to admit contrary qualitie s at one and the same mome nt. Ye t
it was agre e d, whe n substance was be ing discusse d, that nothing admits contrary
qualitie s at one and the same mome nt. For though substance is capable of admitting
contrary qualitie s, ye t no one is at the same time both sick and he althy, nothing
is at the same time both white and black. Nor is the re anything which is qualifie d
in contrary ways at one and the same time . More ove r, if the se we re contrarie s,
the y would the mse lve s be contrary to the mse lve s. For if 'gre at' is the contrary of
'small', and the same thing is both gre at and small at the same time , the n 'small'
or 'gre at' is the contrary of itse lf. But this is impossible . The te rm 'gre at',
the re fore , is not the contrary of the te rm 'small', nor 'much' of 'little '. And
e ve n though a man should call the se te rms not re lative but quantitative , the y would
not have contrarie s. It is in the case of space that quantity most plausibly
appe ars to admit of a contrary. For me n de fine the te rm 'above ' as the contrary of
'be low', whe n it is the re gion at the ce ntre the y me an by 'be low'; and this is so,
be cause nothing is farthe r from the e xtre mitie s of the unive rse than the re gion at
the ce ntre . Inde e d, it se e ms that in de fining contrarie s of e ve ry kind me n have
re course to a spatial me taphor, for the y say that those things are contrarie s
which, within the same class, are se parate d by the gre ate st possible distance .
Quantity doe s not, it appe ars, admit of variation of de gre e . One thing cannot be
two cubits long in a gre ate r de gre e than anothe r. S imilarly with re gard to numbe r:
what is 'thre e ' is not more truly thre e than what is 'five ' is five ; nor is one se t
of thre e more truly thre e than anothe r se t. Again, one pe riod of time is not said
to be more truly time than anothe r. Nor is the re any othe r kind of quantity, of all
that have be e n me ntione d, with re gard to which variation of de gre e can be
pre dicate d. The cate gory of quantity, the re fore , doe s not admit of variation of
de gre e . The most distinctive mark of quantity is that e quality and ine quality are
pre dicate d of it. Each of the afore said quantitie s is said to be e qual or une qual.
For instance , one solid is said to be e qual or une qual to anothe r; numbe r, too, and
time can have the se te rms applie d to the m, inde e d can all those kinds of quantity
that have be e n me ntione d. That which is not a quantity can by no me ans, it would
se e m, be te rme d e qual or une qual to anything e lse . One particular disposition or
one particular quality, such as white ne ss, is by no me ans compare d with anothe r in
te rms of e quality and ine quality but rathe r in te rms of similarity. Thus it is the
distinctive mark of quantity that it can be calle d e qual and une qual.
7 Those things are calle d re lative , which, be ing e ithe r said to be of some thing
e lse or re late d to some thing e lse , are e xplaine d by re fe re nce to that othe r thing.
For instance , the word 'supe rior' is e xplaine d by re fe re nce to some thing e lse , for
it is supe riority ove r some thing e lse that is me ant. S imilarly, the e xpre ssion
'double ' has this e xte rnal re fe re nce , for it is the double of some thing e lse that
is me ant. S o it is with e ve rything e lse of this kind. The re are , more ove r, othe r
re lative s, e .g. habit, disposition, pe rce ption, knowle dge , and attitude . The
significance
of all the se is e xplaine d by a re fe re nce to some thing e lse and in no othe r way.
Thus, a habit is a habit of some thing, knowle dge is knowle dge of some thing,
attitude is the attitude of some thing. S o it is with all othe r re lative s that have
be e n me ntione d. Those te rms, the n, are calle d re lative , the nature of which is
e xplaine d by re fe re nce to some thing e lse , the pre position 'of' or some othe r
pre position be ing use d to indicate the re lation. Thus, one mountain is calle d gre at
in comparison with son with anothe r; for the mountain claims this attribute by
comparison with some thing. Again, that which is calle d similar must be similar to
some thing e lse , and all othe r such attribute s have this e xte rnal re fe re nce . It is
to be note d that lying and standing and sitting are particular attitude s, but
attitude is itse lf a re lative te rm. To lie , to stand, to be se ate d, are not
the mse lve s attitude s, but take the ir name from the afore said attitude s. It is
possible for re lative s to have contrarie s. Thus virtue has a contrary, vice , the se
both be ing re lative s; knowle dge , too, has a contrary, ignorance . But this is not
the mark of all re lative s; 'double ' and 'triple ' have no contrary, nor inde e d has
any such te rm. It also appe ars that re lative s can admit of variation of de gre e .
For 'like ' and 'unlike ', 'e qual' and 'une qual', have the modifications 'more ' and
'le ss' applie d to the m, and e ach of the se is re lative in characte r: for the te rms
'like ' and 'une qual' be ar 'une qual' be ar a re fe re nce to some thing e xte rnal. Ye t,
again, it is not e ve ry re lative te rm that admits of variation of de gre e . No te rm
such as 'double ' admits of this modification. All re lative s have corre lative s: by
the te rm 'slave ' we me an the slave of a maste r, by the te rm 'maste r', the maste r of
a slave ; by 'double ', the double of its hall; by 'half', the half of its double ; by
'gre ate r', gre ate r than that which is le ss; by 'le ss,' le ss than that which is
gre ate r. S o it is with e ve ry othe r re lative te rm; but the case we use to e xpre ss
the corre lation diffe rs in some instance s. Thus, by knowle dge we me an knowle dge the
knowable ; by the knowable , that which is to be appre he nde d by knowle dge ; by
pe rce ption, pe rce ption of the pe rce ptible ; by the pe rce ptible , that which is
appre he nde d by pe rce ption. S ome time s, howe ve r, re ciprocity of corre lation doe s not
appe ar to e xist. This come s about whe n a blunde r is made , and that to which the
re lative is re late d is not accurate ly state d. If a man state s that a wing is
ne ce ssarily re lative to a bird, the conne xion be twe e n the se two will not be
re ciprocal, for it will not be possible to say that a bird is a bird by re ason of
its wings. The re ason is that the original state me nt was inaccurate , for the wing
is not said to be re lative to the bird qua bird, since many cre ature s be side s birds
have wings, but qua winge d cre ature . If, the n, the state me nt is made accurate , the
conne xion will be re ciprocal, for we can spe ak of a wing, having re fe re nce
ne ce ssarily to a winge d cre ature , and of a winge d cre ature as be ing such be cause of
its wings. Occasionally, pe rhaps, it is ne ce ssary to coin words, if no word e xists
by which a corre lation can ade quate ly be e xplaine d. If we de fine a rudde r as
ne ce ssarily having re fe re nce to a boat, our de finition will not be appropriate , for
the rudde r doe s not have this re fe re nce to a boat qua boat, as the re are boats
which have no rudde rs. Thus we cannot use the te rms re ciprocally, for the word
'boat' cannot be said to find its e xplanation in the word 'rudde r'. As the re is no
e xisting word, our de finition would pe rhaps be more accurate if we coine d some word
like 'rudde re d' as the corre lative of 'rudde r'. If we e xpre ss ourse lve s thus
accurate ly, at any rate the te rms are re ciprocally conne cte d, for the 'rudde re d'
thing is 'rudde re d' in virtue of its rudde r. S o it is in all othe r case s. A he ad
will be more accurate ly de fine d as the corre lative of that which is 'he ade d', than
as that of an animal, for the animal doe s not have a he ad qua animal, since many
animals have no he ad. Thus we may pe rhaps most e asily compre he nd that to which a
thing is re late d, whe n a name doe s not e xist, if, from that which has a name , we
de rive a ne w name , and apply it to that with which the first is re ciprocally
conne cte d, as in the afore said instance s, whe n we de rive d the word 'winge d' from
'wing' and from 'rudde r'. All re lative s, the n, if prope rly de fine d, have a
corre lative . I add this condition be cause , if that to which the y are re late d is
state d as haphazard and not accurate ly, the two are not found to be inte rde pe nde nt.
Le t me state what I me an more cle arly. Eve n in the case of acknowle dge d
corre lative s, and whe re name s e xist for e ach, the re will be no inte rde pe nde nce if
one of the two is de note d, not by that name which e xpre sse s the corre lative notion,
but by one of irre le vant significance . The te rm 'slave ,' if de fine d as re late d, not
to a maste r, but to a man, or a bipe d, or anything of that sort, is not
re ciprocally conne cte d with that in re lation to which it is de fine d, for the
state me nt is not e xact. Furthe r, if one thing is said to be corre lative with
anothe r, and the te rminology use d is corre ct, the n, though all irre le vant
attribute s should be re move d, and only that one attribute le ft in virtue of which
it was corre ctly state d to be corre lative with that othe r, the state d corre lation
will still e xist. If the corre lative of 'the slave ' is said to be 'the maste r',
the n, though all irre le vant attribute s of the said 'maste r', such as 'bipe d',
're ce ptive of knowle dge ', 'human', should be re move d, and the attribute 'maste r'
alone le ft, the state d corre lation e xisting be twe e n him and the slave will re main
the same , for it is of a maste r that a slave is said to be the slave . On the othe r
hand, if, of two corre lative s, one is not corre ctly te rme d, the n, whe n all othe r
attribute s are re move d and that alone is le ft in virtue of which it was state d to
be corre lative , the state d corre lation will be found to have disappe are d. For
suppose the corre lative of 'the slave ' should be said to be 'the man', or the
corre lative of 'the wing"the bird'; if the attribute 'maste r' be withdrawn from'
the man', the corre lation be twe e n 'the man' and 'the slave ' will ce ase to e xist,
for if the man is not a maste r, the slave is not a slave . S imilarly, if the
attribute 'winge d' be withdrawn from 'the bird', 'the wing' will no longe r be
re lative ; for if the so-calle d corre lative is not winge d, it follows that 'the
wing' has no corre lative . Thus it is e sse ntial that the corre late d te rms should be
e xactly de signate d; if the re is a name e xisting, the state me nt will be e asy; if
not, it is doubtle ss our duty to construct name s. Whe n the te rminology is thus
corre ct, it is e vide nt that all corre lative s are inte rde pe nde nt. C orre lative s are
thought to come into e xiste nce simultane ously. This is for the most part true , as
in the case of the double and the half. The e xiste nce of the half ne ce ssitate s the
e xiste nce of that of which it is a half. S imilarly the e xiste nce of a maste r
ne ce ssitate s the e xiste nce of a slave , and that of a slave implie s that of a
maste r; the se are me re ly instance s of a ge ne ral rule . More ove r, the y cance l one
anothe r; for if the re is no double it follows that the re is no half, and vice
ve rsa; this rule also applie s to all such corre lative s. Ye t it doe s not appe ar to
be true in all case s that corre lative s come into e xiste nce simultane ously. The
obje ct of knowle dge would appe ar to e xist be fore knowle dge itse lf, for it is
usually the case that we acquire knowle dge of obje cts alre ady e xisting; it would be
difficult, if not impossible , to find a branch of knowle dge the be ginning of the
e xiste nce of which was conte mporane ous with that of its obje ct. Again, while the
obje ct of knowle dge , if it ce ase s to e xist, cance ls at the same time the knowle dge
which was its corre lative , the conve rse of this is not true . It is true that if the
obje ct of knowle dge doe s not e xist the re can be no knowle dge : for the re will no
longe r be anything to know. Ye t it is e qually true that, if knowle dge of a ce rtain
obje ct doe s not e xist, the obje ct may ne ve rthe le ss quite we ll e xist. Thus, in the
case of the squaring of the circle , if inde e d that proce ss is an obje ct of
knowle dge , though it itse lf e xists as an obje ct of knowle dge , ye t the knowle dge of
it has not ye t come into e xiste nce . Again, if all animals ce ase d to e xist, the re
would be no knowle dge , but the re might ye t be many obje cts of knowle dge . This is
like wise the case with re gard to pe rce ption: for the obje ct of pe rce ption is, it
appe ars, prior to the act of pe rce ption. If the pe rce ptible is annihilate d,
pe rce ption also will ce ase to e xist; but the annihilation of pe rce ption doe s not
cance l the e xiste nce of the pe rce ptible . For pe rce ption implie s a body pe rce ive d
and a body in which pe rce ption take s place . Now if that which is pe rce ptible is
annihilate d, it follows that the body is annihilate d, for the body is a pe rce ptible
thing; and if the body doe s not e xist, it follows that pe rce ption also ce ase s to
e xist. Thus the annihilation of the pe rce ptible involve s that of pe rce ption. But
the annihilation of pe rce ption doe s not involve that of the pe rce ptible . For if the
animal is annihilate d, it follows that pe rce ption also is annihilate d, but
pe rce ptible s such as body, he at, swe e tne ss, bitte rne ss, and so on, will re main.
Again, pe rce ption is ge ne rate d at the same time as the pe rce iving subje ct, for it
come s into e xiste nce at the same time as the animal. But the pe rce ptible sure ly
e xists be fore pe rce ption; for fire and wate r and such e le me nts, out of which the
animal is itse lf compose d, e xist be fore the animal is an animal at all, and be fore
pe rce ption. Thus it would se e m that the pe rce ptible e xists be fore pe rce ption. It
may be que stione d whe the r it is true that no substance
is re lative , as se e ms to be the case , or whe the r e xce ption is to be made in the
case of ce rtain se condary substance s. With re gard to primary substance s, it is
quite true that the re is no such possibility, for ne ithe r whole s nor parts of
primary substance s are re lative . The individual man or ox is not de fine d with
re fe re nce to some thing e xte rnal. S imilarly with the parts: a particular hand or
he ad is not de fine d as a particular hand or he ad of a particular pe rson, but as the
hand or he ad of a particular pe rson. It is true also, for the most part at le ast,
in the case of se condary substance s; the spe cie s 'man' and the spe cie s 'ox' are not
de fine d with re fe re nce to anything outside the mse lve s. Wood, again, is only
re lative in so far as it is some one 's prope rty, not in so far as it is wood. It is
plain, the n, that in the case s me ntione d substance is not re lative . But with re gard
to some se condary substance s the re is a diffe re nce of opinion; thus, such te rms as
'he ad' and 'hand' are de fine d with re fe re nce to that of which the things indicate d
are a part, and so it come s about that the se appe ar to have a re lative characte r.
Inde e d, if our de finition of that which is re lative was comple te , it is ve ry
difficult, if not impossible , to prove that no substance is re lative . If, howe ve r,
our de finition was not comple te , if those things only are prope rly calle d re lative
in the case of which re lation to an e xte rnal obje ct is a ne ce ssary condition of
e xiste nce , pe rhaps some e xplanation of the dile mma may be found. The forme r
de finition doe s inde e d apply to all re lative s, but the fact that a thing is
e xplaine d with re fe re nce to some thing e lse doe s not make it e sse ntially re lative .
From this it is plain that, if a man de finite ly appre he nds a re lative thing, he
will also de finite ly appre he nd that to which it is re lative . Inde e d this is se lf-
e vide nt: for if a man knows that some particular thing is re lative , assuming that
we call that a re lative in the case of which re lation to some thing is a ne ce ssary
condition of e xiste nce , he knows that also to which it is re late d. For if he doe s
not know at all that to which it is re late d, he will not know whe the r or not it is
re lative . This is cle ar, more ove r, in particular instance s. If a man knows
de finite ly that such and such a thing is 'double ', he will also forthwith know
de finite ly that of which it is the double . For if the re is nothing de finite of
which he knows it to be the double , he doe s not know at all that it is double .
Again, if he knows that a thing is more be autiful, it follows ne ce ssarily that he
will forthwith de finite ly know that also than which it is more be autiful. He will
not me re ly know inde finite ly that it is more be autiful than some thing which is le ss
be autiful, for this would be supposition, not knowle dge . For if he doe s not know
de finite ly that than which it is more be autiful, he can no longe r claim to know
de finite ly that it is more be autiful than some thing e lse which is le ss be autiful:
for it might be that nothing was le ss be autiful. It is, the re fore , e vide nt that if
a man appre he nds some re lative thing de finite ly, he ne ce ssarily knows that also
de finite ly to which it is re late d. Now the he ad, the hand, and such things are
substance s, and it is possible to know the ir e sse ntial characte r de finite ly, but it
doe s not ne ce ssarily follow that we should know that to which the y are re late d. It
is not possible to know forthwith whose he ad or hand is me ant. Thus the se are not
re lative s, and, this be ing the case , it would be true to say that no substance is
re lative in characte r. It is pe rhaps a difficult matte r, in such case s, to make a
positive state me nt without more e xhaustive e xamination, but to have raise d
que stions with re gard to de tails is not without advantage .
8 By 'quality' I me an that in virtue of which pe ople are said to be such and such.
Quality is a te rm that is use d in many se nse s. One sort of quality le t us call
'habit' or 'disposition'. Habit diffe rs from disposition in be ing more lasting and
more firmly e stablishe d. The various kinds of knowle dge and of virtue are habits,
for knowle dge , e ve n whe n acquire d only in a mode rate de gre e , is, it is agre e d,
abiding in its characte r and difficult to displace , unle ss some gre at me ntal
uphe aval take s place , through dise ase or any such cause . The virtue s, also, such as
justice , se lf-re straint, and so on, are not e asily dislodge d or dismisse d, so as to
give place to vice . By a disposition, on the othe r hand, we me an a condition that
is e asily change d and quickly give s place to its opposite . Thus, he at, cold,
dise ase , he alth, and so on are dispositions. For a man is dispose d in one way or
anothe r with re fe re nce to the se , but quickly change s, be coming cold inste ad of
warm, ill inste ad of we ll. S o it is with all othe r dispositions also, unle ss
through lapse of time a disposition has itse lf be come inve te rate and almost
impossible to dislodge : in which case we should pe rhaps go so far as to call it a
habit. It is e vide nt that me n incline to call those conditions habits which are of
a more or le ss pe rmane nt type and difficult to displace ; for those who are not
re te ntive of knowle dge , but volatile , are not said to have such and such a 'habit'
as re gards knowle dge , ye t the y are dispose d, we may say, e ithe r be tte r or worse ,
towards knowle dge . Thus habit diffe rs from disposition in this, that while the
latte r in e phe me ral, the forme r is pe rmane nt and difficult to alte r. Habits are at
the same time dispositions, but dispositions are not ne ce ssarily habits. For those
who have some spe cific habit may be said also, in virtue of that habit, to be thus
or thus dispose d; but those who are dispose d in some spe cific way have not in all
case s the corre sponding habit. Anothe r sort of quality is that in virtue of which,
for e xample , we call me n good boxe rs or runne rs, or he althy or sickly: in fact it
include s all those te rms which re fe r to inborn capacity or incapacity. S uch things
are not pre dicate d of a pe rson in virtue of his disposition, but in virtue of his
inborn capacity or incapacity to do some thing with e ase or to avoid de fe at of any
kind. Pe rsons are calle d good boxe rs or good runne rs, not in virtue of such and
such a disposition, but in virtue of an inborn capacity to accomplish some thing
with e ase . Me n are calle d he althy in virtue of the inborn capacity of e asy
re sistance to those unhe althy influe nce s that may ordinarily arise ; unhe althy, in
virtue of the lack of this capacity. S imilarly with re gard to softne ss and
hardne ss. Hardne ss is pre dicate d of a thing be cause it has that capacity of
re sistance which e nable s it to withstand disinte gration; softne ss, again, is
pre dicate d of a thing by re ason of the lack of that capacity. A third class within
this cate gory is that of affe ctive qualitie s and affe ctions. S we e tne ss, bitte rne ss,
sourne ss, are e xample s of this sort of quality, toge the r with all that is akin to
the se ; he at, more ove r, and cold, white ne ss, and blackne ss are affe ctive qualitie s.
It is e vide nt that the se are qualitie s, for those things that posse ss the m are
the mse lve s said to be such and such by re ason of the ir pre se nce . Hone y is calle d
swe e t be cause it contains swe e tne ss; the body is calle d white be cause it contains
white ne ss; and so in all othe r case s. The te rm 'affe ctive quality' is not use d as
indicating that those things which admit the se qualitie s are affe cte d in any way.
Hone y is not calle d swe e t be cause it is affe cte d in a spe cific way, nor is this
what is me ant in any othe r instance . S imilarly he at and cold are calle d affe ctive
qualitie s, not be cause those things which admit the m are affe cte d. What is me ant is
that the se said qualitie s are capable of producing an 'affe ction' in the way of
pe rce ption. For swe e tne ss has the powe r of affe cting the se nse of taste ; he at, that
of touch; and so it is with the re st of the se qualitie s. White ne ss and blackne ss,
howe ve r, and the othe r colours, are not said to be affe ctive qualitie s in this
se nse , but -be cause the y the mse lve s are the re sults of an affe ction. It is plain
that many change s of colour take place be cause of affe ctions. Whe n a man is
ashame d, he blushe s; whe n he is afraid, he be come s pale , and so on. S o true is
this, that whe n a man is by nature liable to such affe ctions, arising from some
concomitance of e le me nts in his constitution, it is a probable infe re nce that he
has the corre sponding comple xion of skin. For the same disposition of bodily
e le me nts, which in the forme r instance was mome ntarily pre se nt in the case of an
acce ss of shame , might be a re sult of a man's natural te mpe rame nt, so as to produce
the corre sponding colouring also as a natural characte ristic. All conditions,
the re fore , of this kind, if cause d by ce rtain pe rmane nt and lasting affe ctions, are
calle d affe ctive qualitie s. For pallor and duskine ss of comple xion are calle d
qualitie s, inasmuch as we are said to be such and such in virtue of the m, not only
if the y originate in natural constitution, but also if the y come about through long
dise ase or sunburn, and are difficult to re move , or inde e d re main throughout life .
For in the same way we are said to be such and such be cause of the se . Those
conditions, howe ve r, which arise from cause s which may e asily be re nde re d
ine ffe ctive or spe e dily re move d, are calle d, not qualitie s, but affe ctions: for we
are not said to be such virtue of the m. The man who blushe s through shame is not
said to be a constitutional blushe r, nor is the man who be come s pale through fe ar
said to be constitutionally pale . He is said rathe r to have be e n affe cte d. Thus
such conditions are calle d affe ctions, not qualitie s. In like manne r the re are
affe ctive qualitie s and affe ctions of the soul. That te mpe r with which a man is
born and which has its origin in ce rtain de e p-se ate d affe ctions is calle d
a quality. I me an such conditions as insanity, irascibility, and so on: for pe ople
are said to be mad or irascible in virtue of the se . S imilarly those abnormal
psychic state s which are not inborn, but arise from the concomitance of ce rtain
othe r e le me nts, and are difficult to re move , or altoge the r pe rmane nt, are calle d
qualitie s, for in virtue of the m me n are said to be such and such. Those , howe ve r,
which arise from cause s e asily re nde re d ine ffe ctive are calle d affe ctions, not
qualitie s. S uppose that a man is irritable whe n ve xe d: he is not e ve n spoke n of as
a bad-te mpe re d man, whe n in such circumstance s he lose s his te mpe r some what, but
rathe r is said to be affe cte d. S uch conditions are the re fore te rme d, not qualitie s,
but affe ctions. The fourth sort of quality is figure and the shape that be longs to
a thing; and be side s this, straightne ss and curve dne ss and any othe r qualitie s of
this type ; e ach of the se de fine s a thing as be ing such and such. Be cause it is
triangular or quadrangular a thing is said to have a spe cific characte r, or again
be cause it is straight or curve d; in fact a thing's shape in e ve ry case give s rise
to a qualification of it. Rarity and de nsity, roughne ss and smoothne ss, se e m to be
te rms indicating quality: ye t the se , it would appe ar, re ally be long to a class
diffe re nt from that of quality. For it is rathe r a ce rtain re lative position of the
parts composing the thing thus qualifie d which, it appe ars, is indicate d by e ach of
the se te rms. A thing is de nse , owing to the fact that its parts are close ly
combine d with one anothe r; rare , be cause the re are inte rstice s be twe e n the parts;
smooth, be cause its parts lie , so to spe ak, e ve nly; rough, be cause some parts
proje ct be yond othe rs. The re may be othe r sorts of quality, but those that are
most prope rly so calle d have , we may safe ly say, be e n e nume rate d. The se , the n, are
qualitie s, and the things that take the ir name from the m as de rivative s, or are in
some othe r way de pe nde nt on the m, are said to be qualifie d in some spe cific way. In
most, inde e d in almost all case s, the name of that which is qualifie d is de rive d
from that of the quality. Thus the te rms 'white ne ss', 'grammar', 'justice ', give us
the adje ctive s 'white ', 'grammatical', 'just', and so on. The re are some case s,
howe ve r, in which, as the quality unde r conside ration has no name , it is impossible
that those posse sse d of it should have a name that is de rivative . For instance , the
name give n to the runne r or boxe r, who is so calle d in virtue of an inborn
capacity, is not de rive d from that of any quality; for lob those capacitie s have no
name assigne d to the m. In this, the inborn capacity is distinct from the scie nce ,
with re fe re nce to which me n are calle d, e .g. boxe rs or wre stle rs. S uch a scie nce is
classe d as a disposition; it has a name , and is calle d 'boxing' or 'wre stling' as
the case may be , and the name give n to those dispose d in this way is de rive d from
that of the scie nce . S ome time s, e ve n though a name e xists for the quality, that
which take s its characte r from the quality has a name that is not a de rivative . For
instance , the upright man take s his characte r from the posse ssion of the quality of
inte grity, but the name give n him is not de rive d from the word 'inte grity'. Ye t
this doe s not occur ofte n. We may the re fore state that those things are said to be
posse sse d of some spe cific quality which have a name de rive d from that of the
afore said quality, or which are in some othe r way de pe nde nt on it. One quality may
be the contrary of anothe r; thus justice is the contrary of injustice , white ne ss of
blackne ss, and so on. The things, also, which are said to be such and such in
virtue of the se qualitie s, may be contrary the one to the othe r; for that which is
unjust is contrary to that which is just, that which is white to that which is
black. This, howe ve r, is not always the case . Re d, ye llow, and such colours, though
qualitie s, have no contrarie s. If one of two contrarie s is a quality, the othe r
will also be a quality. This will be e vide nt from particular instance s, if we apply
the name s use d to de note the othe r cate gorie s; for instance , grante d that justice
is the contrary of injustice and justice is a quality, injustice will also be a
quality: ne ithe r quantity, nor re lation, nor place , nor inde e d any othe r cate gory
but that of quality, will be applicable prope rly to injustice . S o it is with all
othe r contrarie s falling unde r the cate gory of quality. Qualitie s admit of
variation of de gre e . White ne ss is pre dicate d of one thing in a gre ate r or le ss
de gre e than of anothe r. This is also the case with re fe re nce to justice . More ove r,
one and the same thing may e xhibit a quality in a gre ate r de gre e than it did
be fore : if a thing is white , it may be come white r. Though this is ge ne rally the
case , the re are e xce ptions. For if we should say that justice admitte d of variation
of de gre e , difficultie s might e nsue , and this is true with re gard to all those
qualitie s which are dispositions. The re are some , inde e d, who dispute the
possibility of variation he re . The y maintain that justice and he alth cannot ve ry
we ll admit of variation of de gre e the mse lve s, but that pe ople vary in the de gre e in
which the y posse ss the se qualitie s, and that this is the case with grammatical
le arning and all those qualitie s which are classe d as dispositions. Howe ve r that
may be , it is an incontrove rtible fact that the things which in virtue of the se
qualitie s are said to be what the y are vary in the de gre e in which the y posse ss
the m; for one man is said to be be tte r ve rse d in grammar, or more he althy or just,
than anothe r, and so on. The qualitie s e xpre sse d by the te rms 'triangular' and
'quadrangular' do not appe ar to admit of variation of de gre e , nor inde e d do any
that have to do with figure . For those things to which the de finition of the
triangle or circle is applicable are all e qually triangular or circular. Those , on
the othe r hand, to which the same de finition is not applicable , cannot be said to
diffe r from one anothe r in de gre e ; the square is no more a circle than the
re ctangle , for to ne ithe r is the de finition of the circle appropriate . In short, if
the de finition of the te rm propose d is not applicable to both obje cts, the y cannot
be compare d. Thus it is not all qualitie s which admit of variation of de gre e .
Whe re as none of the characte ristics I have me ntione d are pe culiar to quality, the
fact that like ne ss and unlike ne ss can be pre dicate d with re fe re nce to quality only,
give s to that cate gory its distinctive fe ature . One thing is like anothe r only with
re fe re nce to that in virtue of which it is such and such; thus this forms the
pe culiar mark of quality. We must not be disturbe d be cause it may be argue d that,
though proposing to discuss the cate gory of quality, we have include d in it many
re lative te rms. We did say that habits and dispositions we re re lative . In
practically all such case s the ge nus is re lative , the individual not. Thus
knowle dge , as a ge nus, is e xplaine d by re fe re nce to some thing e lse , for we me an a
knowle dge of some thing. But particular branche s of knowle dge are not thus
e xplaine d. The knowle dge of grammar is not re lative to anything e xte rnal, nor is
the knowle dge of music, but the se , if re lative at all, are re lative only in virtue
of the ir ge ne ra; thus grammar is said be the knowle dge of some thing, not the
grammar of some thing; similarly music is the knowle dge of some thing, not the music
of some thing. Thus individual branche s of knowle dge are not re lative . And it is
be cause we posse ss the se individual branche s of knowle dge that we are said to be
such and such. It is the se that we actually posse ss: we are calle d e xpe rts be cause
we posse ss knowle dge in some particular branch. Those particular branche s,
the re fore , of knowle dge , in virtue of which we are some time s said to be such and
such, are the mse lve s qualitie s, and are not re lative . Furthe r, if anything should
happe n to fall within both the cate gory of quality and that of re lation, the re
would be nothing e xtraordinary in classing it unde r both the se he ads.
9 Action and affe ction both admit of contrarie s and also of variation of de gre e .
He ating is the contrary of cooling, be ing he ate d of be ing coole d, be ing glad of
be ing ve xe d. Thus the y admit of contrarie s. The y also admit of variation of de gre e :
for it is possible to he at in a gre ate r or le ss de gre e ; also to be he ate d in a
gre ate r or le ss de gre e . Thus action and affe ction also admit of variation of
de gre e . S o much, the n, is state d with re gard to the se cate gorie s. We spoke ,
more ove r, of the cate gory of position whe n we we re de aling with that of re lation,
and state d that such te rms de rive d the ir name s from those of the corre sponding
attitude s. As for the re st, time , place , state , since the y are e asily
inte lligible , I say no more about the m than was said at the be ginning, that in the
cate gory of state are include d such state s as 'shod', 'arme d', in that of place 'in
the Lyce um' and so on, as was e xplaine d be fore . 1 0
The propose d cate gorie s have , the n, be e n ade quate ly de alt with. We must ne xt
e xplain the various se nse s in which the te rm 'opposite ' is use d. Things are said to
be oppose d in four se nse s: (i) as corre lative s to one anothe r, (ii) as contrarie s
to one anothe r, (iii) as privative s to positive s, (iv) as affirmative s to
ne gative s. Le t me ske tch my me aning in outline . An instance of the use of the word
'opposite ' with re fe re nce to corre lative s is afforde d by the e xpre ssions 'double '
and 'half'; with re fe re nce to contrarie s by 'bad' and 'good'. Opposite s in the
se nse of 'privative s' and 'positive s' are ' blindne ss' and 'sight'; in the se nse of
affirmative s and ne gative s, the propositions 'he sits', 'he doe s not sit'. (i)
Pairs of opposite s which fall unde r the cate gory
of re lation are e xplaine d by a re fe re nce of the one to the othe r, the re fe re nce
be ing indicate d by the pre position 'of' or by some othe r pre position. Thus, double
is a re lative te rm, for that which is double is e xplaine d as the double of
some thing. Knowle dge , again, is the opposite of the thing known, in the same se nse ;
and the thing known also is e xplaine d by its re lation to its opposite , knowle dge .
For the thing known is e xplaine d as that which is known by some thing, that is, by
knowle dge . S uch things, the n, as are opposite the one to the othe r in the se nse of
be ing corre lative s are e xplaine d by a re fe re nce of the one to the othe r. (ii)
Pairs of opposite s which are contrarie s are not in any way inte rde pe nde nt, but are
contrary the one to the othe r. The good is not spoke n of as the good of the had,
but as the contrary of the bad, nor is white spoke n of as the white of the black,
but as the contrary of the black. The se two type s of opposition are the re fore
distinct. Those contrarie s which are such that the subje cts in which the y are
naturally pre se nt, or of which the y are pre dicate d, must ne ce ssarily contain e ithe r
the one or the othe r of the m, have no inte rme diate , but those in the case of which
no such ne ce ssity obtains, always have an inte rme diate . Thus dise ase and he alth are
naturally pre se nt in the body of an animal, and it is ne ce ssary that e ithe r the one
or the othe r should be pre se nt in the body of an animal. Odd and e ve n, again, are
pre dicate d of numbe r, and it is ne ce ssary that the one or the othe r should be
pre se nt in numbe rs. Now the re is no inte rme diate be twe e n the te rms of e ithe r of
the se two pairs. On the othe r hand, in those contrarie s with re gard to which no
such ne ce ssity obtains, we find an inte rme diate . Blackne ss and white ne ss are
naturally pre se nt in the body, but it is not ne ce ssary that e ithe r the one or the
othe r should be pre se nt in the body, inasmuch as it is not true to say that
e ve rybody must be white or black. Badne ss and goodne ss, again, are pre dicate d of
man, and of many othe r things, but it is not ne ce ssary that e ithe r the one quality
or the othe r should be pre se nt in that of which the y are pre dicate d: it is not true
to say that e ve rything that may be good or bad must be e ithe r good or bad. The se
pairs of contrarie s have inte rme diate s: the inte rme diate s be twe e n white and black
are gre y, sallow, and all the othe r colours that come be twe e n; the inte rme diate
be twe e n good and bad is that which is ne ithe r the one nor the othe r. S ome
inte rme diate qualitie s have name s, such as gre y and sallow and all the othe r
colours that come be twe e n white and black; in othe r case s, howe ve r, it is not e asy
to name the inte rme diate , but we must de fine it as that which is not e ithe r
e xtre me , as in the case of that which is ne ithe r good nor bad, ne ithe r just nor
unjust. (iii) 'privative s' and 'Positive s' have re fe re nce to the same subje ct.
Thus, sight and blindne ss have re fe re nce to the e ye . It is a unive rsal rule that
e ach of a pair of opposite s of this type has re fe re nce to that to which the
particular 'positive ' is natural. We say that that is capable of some particular
faculty or posse ssion has suffe re d privation whe n the faculty or posse ssion in
que stion is in no way pre se nt in that in which, and at the time at which, it should
naturally be pre se nt. We do not call that toothle ss which has not te e th, or that
blind which has not sight, but rathe r that which has not te e th or sight at the time
whe n by nature it should. For the re are some cre ature s which from birth are without
sight, or without te e th, but the se are not calle d toothle ss or blind. To be
without some faculty or to posse ss it is not the same as the corre sponding
'privative ' or 'positive '. 'S ight' is a 'positive ', 'blindne ss' a 'privative ', but
'to posse ss sight' is not e quivale nt to 'sight', 'to be blind' is not e quivale nt to
'blindne ss'. Blindne ss is a 'privative ', to be blind is to be in a state of
privation, but is not a 'privative '. More ove r, if 'blindne ss' we re e quivale nt to
'be ing blind', both would be pre dicate d of the same subje ct; but though a man is
said to be blind, he is by no me ans said to be blindne ss. To be in a state of
'posse ssion' is, it appe ars, the opposite of be ing in a state of 'privation', just
as 'positive s' and 'privative s' the mse lve s are opposite . The re is the same type of
antithe sis in both case s; for just as blindne ss is oppose d to sight, so is be ing
blind oppose d to having sight. That which is affirme d or de nie d is not itse lf
affirmation or de nial. By 'affirmation' we me an an affirmative proposition, by
'de nial' a ne gative . Now, those facts which form the matte r of the affirmation or
de nial are not propositions; ye t the se two are said to be oppose d in the same se nse
as the affirmation and de nial, for in this case also the type of antithe sis is the
same . For as the affirmation is oppose d to the de nial, as in the two propositions
'he sits', 'he doe s not sit', so also the fact which constitute s the matte r of the
proposition in one case is oppose d to that in the othe r, his sitting, that is to
say, to his not sitting. It is e vide nt that 'positive s' and 'privative s' are not
oppose d e ach to e ach in the same se nse as re lative s. The one is not e xplaine d by
re fe re nce to the othe r; sight is not sight of blindne ss, nor is any othe r
pre position use d to indicate the re lation. S imilarly blindne ss is not said to be
blindne ss of sight, but rathe r, privation of sight. Re lative s, more ove r,
re ciprocate ; if blindne ss, the re fore , we re a re lative , the re would be a re ciprocity
of re lation be twe e n it and that with which it was corre lative . But this is not the
case . S ight is not calle d the sight of blindne ss. That those te rms which fall
unde r the he ads of 'positive s' and 'privative s' are not oppose d e ach to e ach as
contrarie s, e ithe r, is plain from the following facts: Of a pair of contrarie s such
that the y have no inte rme diate , one or the othe r must ne e ds be pre se nt in the
subje ct in which the y naturally subsist, or of which the y are pre dicate d; for it is
those , as we prove d,' in the case of which this ne ce ssity obtains, that have no
inte rme diate . More ove r, we cite d he alth and dise ase , odd and e ve n, as instance s.
But those contrarie s which have an inte rme diate are not subje ct to any such
ne ce ssity. It is not ne ce ssary that e ve ry substance , re ce ptive of such qualitie s,
should be e ithe r black or white , cold or hot, for some thing inte rme diate be twe e n
the se contrarie s may ve ry we ll be pre se nt in the subje ct. We prove d, more ove r, that
those contrarie s have an inte rme diate in the case of which the said ne ce ssity doe s
not obtain. Ye t whe n one of the two contrarie s is a constitutive prope rty of the
subje ct, as it is a constitutive prope rty of fire to be hot, of snow to be white ,
it is ne ce ssary de te rminate ly that one of the two contrarie s, not one or the othe r,
should be pre se nt in the subje ct; for fire cannot be cold, or snow black. Thus, it
is not the case he re that one of the two must ne e ds be pre se nt in e ve ry subje ct
re ce ptive of the se qualitie s, but only in that subje ct of which the one forms a
constitutive prope rty. More ove r, in such case s it is one me mbe r of the pair
de te rminate ly, and not e ithe r the one or the othe r, which must be pre se nt. In the
case of 'positive s' and 'privative s', on the othe r hand, ne ithe r of the afore said
state me nts holds good. For it is not ne ce ssary that a subje ct re ce ptive of the
qualitie s should always have e ithe r the one or the othe r; that which has not ye t
advance d to the state whe n sight is natural is not said e ithe r to be blind or to
se e . Thus 'positive s' and 'privative s' do not be long to that class of contrarie s
which consists of those which have no inte rme diate . On the othe r hand, the y do not
be long e ithe r to that class which consists of contrarie s which have an
inte rme diate . For unde r ce rtain conditions it is ne ce ssary that e ithe r the one or
the othe r should form part of the constitution of e ve ry appropriate subje ct. For
whe n a thing has re ache d the stage whe n it is by nature capable of sight, it will
be said e ithe r to se e or to be blind, and that in an inde te rminate se nse ,
signifying that the capacity may be e ithe r pre se nt or abse nt; for it is not
ne ce ssary e ithe r that it should se e or that it should be blind, but that it should
be e ithe r in the one state or in the othe r. Ye t in the case of those contrarie s
which have an inte rme diate we found that it was ne ve r ne ce ssary that e ithe r the one
or the othe r should be pre se nt in e ve ry appropriate subje ct, but only that in
ce rtain subje cts one of the pair should be pre se nt, and that in a de te rminate
se nse . It is, the re fore , plain that 'positive s' and 'privative s' are not oppose d
e ach to e ach in e ithe r of the se nse s in which contrarie s are oppose d. Again, in
the case of contrarie s, it is possible that the re should be change s from e ithe r
into the othe r, while the subje ct re tains its ide ntity, unle ss inde e d one of the
contrarie s is a constitutive prope rty of that subje ct, as he at is of fire . For it
is possible that that that which is he althy should be come dise ase d, that which is
white , black, that which is cold, hot, that which is good, bad, that which is bad,
good. The bad man, if he is be ing brought into a be tte r way of life and thought,
may make some advance , howe ve r slight, and if he should once improve , e ve n e ve r so
little , it is plain that he might change comple te ly, or at any rate make ve ry gre at
progre ss; for a man be come s more and more e asily move d to virtue , howe ve r small the
improve me nt was at first. It is, the re fore , natural to suppose that he will make
ye t gre ate r progre ss than he has made in the past; and as this proce ss goe s on, it
will change him comple te ly and e stablish him in the contrary state , provide d he is
not hinde re d by lack of time . In the case of 'positive s' and 'privative s', howe ve r,
change in both dire ctions
is impossible . The re may be a change from posse ssion to privation, but not from
privation to posse ssion. The man who has be come blind doe s not re gain his sight;
the man who has be come bald doe s not re gain his hair; the man who has lost his
te e th doe s not grow his grow a ne w se t. (iv) S tate me nts oppose d as affirmation and
ne gation be long manife stly to a class which is distinct, for in this case , and in
this case only, it is ne ce ssary for the one opposite to be true and the othe r
false . Ne ithe r in the case of contrarie s, nor in the case of corre lative s, nor in
the case of 'positive s' and 'privative s', is it ne ce ssary for one to be true and
the othe r false . He alth and dise ase are contrarie s: ne ithe r of the m is true or
false . 'Double ' and 'half' are oppose d to e ach othe r as corre lative s: ne ithe r of
the m is true or false . The case is the same , of course , with re gard to 'positive s'
and 'privative s' such as 'sight' and 'blindne ss'. In short, whe re the re is no sort
of combination of words, truth and falsity have no place , and all the opposite s we
have me ntione d so far consist of simple words. At the same time , whe n the words
which e nte r into oppose d state me nts are contrarie s, the se , more than any othe r se t
of opposite s, would se e m to claim this characte ristic. 'S ocrate s is ill' is the
contrary of 'S ocrate s is we ll', but not e ve n of such composite e xpre ssions is it
true to say that one of the pair must always be true and the othe r false . For if
S ocrate s e xists, one will be true and the othe r false , but if he doe s not e xist,
both will be false ; for ne ithe r 'S ocrate s is ill' nor 'S ocrate s is we ll' is true ,
if S ocrate s doe s not e xist at all. In the case of 'positive s' and 'privative s', if
the subje ct doe s not e xist at all, ne ithe r proposition is true , but e ve n if the
subje ct e xists, it is not always the fact that one is true and the othe r false . For
'S ocrate s has sight' is the opposite of 'S ocrate s is blind' in the se nse of the
word 'opposite ' which applie s to posse ssion and privation. Now if S ocrate s e xists,
it is not ne ce ssary that one should be true and the othe r false , for whe n he is not
ye t able to acquire the powe r of vision, both are false , as also if S ocrate s is
altoge the r non-e xiste nt. But in the case of affirmation and ne gation, whe the r the
subje ct e xists or not, one is always false and the othe r true . For manife stly, if
S ocrate s e xists, one of the two propositions 'S ocrate s is ill', 'S ocrate s is not
ill', is true , and the othe r false . This is like wise the case if he doe s not e xist;
for if he doe s not e xist, to say that he is ill is false , to say that he is not ill
is true . Thus it is in the case of those opposite s only, which are opposite in the
se nse in which the te rm is use d with re fe re nce to affirmation and ne gation, that
the rule holds good, that one of the pair must be true and the othe r false .
1 1 That the contrary of a good is an e vil is shown by induction: the contrary of
he alth is dise ase , of courage , cowardice , and so on. But the contrary of an e vil is
some time s a good, some time s an e vil. For de fe ct, which is an e vil, has e xce ss for
its contrary, this also be ing an e vil, and the me an. which is a good, is e qually
the contrary of the one and of the othe r. It is only in a fe w case s, howe ve r, that
we se e instance s of this: in most, the contrary of an e vil is a good. In the case
of contrarie s, it is not always ne ce ssary that if one e xists the othe r should also
e xist: for if all be come he althy the re will be he alth and no dise ase , and again, if
e ve rything turns white , the re will be white , but no black. Again, since the fact
that S ocrate s is ill is the contrary of the fact that S ocrate s is we ll, and two
contrary conditions cannot both obtain in one and the same individual at the same
time , both the se contrarie s could not e xist at once : for if that S ocrate s was we ll
was a fact, the n that S ocrate s was ill could not possibly be one . It is plain that
contrary attribute s must ne e ds be pre se nt in subje cts which be long to the same
spe cie s or ge nus. Dise ase and he alth re quire as the ir subje ct the body of an
animal; white and black re quire a body, without furthe r qualification; justice and
injustice re quire as the ir subje ct the human soul. More ove r, it is ne ce ssary that
pairs of contrarie s should in all case s e ithe r be long to the same ge nus or be long
to contrary ge ne ra or be the mse lve s ge ne ra. White and black be long to the same
ge nus, colour; justice and injustice , to contrary ge ne ra, virtue and vice ; while
good and e vil do not be long to ge ne ra, but are the mse lve s actual ge ne ra, with te rms
unde r the m. 1 2 The re are four se nse s in which one
thing can be said to be 'prior' to anothe r. Primarily and most prope rly the te rm
has re fe re nce to time : in this se nse the word is use d to indicate that one thing is
olde r or more ancie nt than anothe r, for the e xpre ssions 'olde r' and 'more ancie nt'
imply gre ate r le ngth of time . S e condly, one thing is said to be 'prior' to anothe r
whe n the se que nce of the ir be ing cannot be re ve rse d. In this se nse 'one ' is 'prior'
to 'two'. For if 'two' e xists, it follows dire ctly that 'one ' must e xist, but if
'one ' e xists, it doe s not follow ne ce ssarily that 'two' e xists: thus the se que nce
subsisting cannot be re ve rse d. It is agre e d, the n, that whe n the se que nce of two
things cannot be re ve rse d, the n that one on which the othe r de pe nds is calle d
'prior' to that othe r. In the third place , the te rm 'prior' is use d with re fe re nce
to any orde r, as in the case of scie nce and of oratory. For in scie nce s which use
de monstration the re is that which is prior and that which is poste rior in orde r; in
ge ome try, the e le me nts are prior to the propositions; in re ading and writing, the
le tte rs of the alphabe t are prior to the syllable s. S imilarly, in the case of
spe e che s, the e xordium is prior in orde r to the narrative . Be side s the se se nse s of
the word, the re is a fourth. That which is be tte r and more honourable is said to
have a natural priority. In common parlance me n spe ak of those whom the y honour and
love as 'coming first' with the m. This se nse of the word is pe rhaps the most far-
fe tche d. S uch, the n, are the diffe re nt se nse s in which the te rm 'prior' is use d.
Ye t it would se e m that be side s those me ntione d the re is ye t anothe r. For in those
things, the be ing of e ach of which implie s that of the othe r, that which is in any
way the cause may re asonably be said to be by nature 'prior' to the e ffe ct. It is
plain that the re are instance s of this. The fact of the be ing of a man carrie s with
it the truth of the proposition that he is, and the implication is re ciprocal: for
if a man is, the proposition whe re in we alle ge that he is true , and conve rse ly, if
the proposition whe re in we alle ge that he is true , the n he is. The true
proposition, howe ve r, is in no way the cause of the be ing of the man, but the fact
of the man's be ing doe s se e m some how to be the cause of the truth of the
proposition, for the truth or falsity of the proposition de pe nds on the fact of the
man's be ing or not be ing. Thus the word 'prior' may be use d in five se nse s.
1 3 The te rm 'simultane ous' is primarily and most appropriate ly applie d to those
things the ge ne sis of the one of which is simultane ous with that of the othe r; for
in such case s ne ithe r is prior or poste rior to the othe r. S uch things are said to
be simultane ous in point of time . Those things, again, are 'simultane ous' in point
of nature , the be ing of e ach of which involve s that of the othe r, while at the same
time ne ithe r is the cause of the othe r's be ing. This is the case with re gard to the
double and the half, for the se are re ciprocally de pe nde nt, since , if the re is a
double , the re is also a half, and if the re is a half, the re is also a double , while
at the same time ne ithe r is the cause of the be ing of the othe r. Again, those
spe cie s which are distinguishe d one from anothe r and oppose d one to anothe r within
the same ge nus are said to be 'simultane ous' in nature . I me an those spe cie s which
are distinguishe d e ach from e ach by one and the same me thod of division. Thus the
'winge d' spe cie s is simultane ous with the 'te rre strial' and the 'wate r' spe cie s.
The se are distinguishe d within the same ge nus, and are oppose d e ach to e ach, for
the ge nus 'animal' has the 'winge d', the 'te rre strial', and the 'wate r' spe cie s,
and no one of the se is prior or poste rior to anothe r; on the contrary, all such
things appe ar to be 'simultane ous' in nature . Each of the se also, the te rre strial,
the winge d, and the wate r spe cie s, can be divide d again into subspe cie s. Those
spe cie s, the n, also will be 'simultane ous' point of nature , which, be longing to the
same ge nus, are distinguishe d e ach from e ach by one and the same me thod of
diffe re ntiation. But ge ne ra are prior to spe cie s, for the se que nce of the ir be ing
cannot be re ve rse d. If the re is the spe cie s 'wate r-animal', the re will be the ge nus
'animal', but grante d the be ing of the ge nus 'animal', it doe s not follow
ne ce ssarily that the re will be the spe cie s 'wate r-animal'. Those things,
the re fore , are said to be 'simultane ous' in nature , the be ing of e ach of which
involve s that of the othe r, while at the same time ne ithe r is in any way the cause
of the othe r's be ing; those spe cie s, also, which are distinguishe d e ach from e ach
and oppose d within the same ge nus. Those things, more ove r, are 'simultane ous' in
the unqualifie d se nse of the word which come into be ing at the same time .
1 4 The re are six sorts of move me nt: ge ne ration, de struction, incre ase , diminution,
alte ration, and change of place . It is e vide nt in all but one case that all the se
sorts of move me nt are distinct e ach from e ach. Ge ne ration is distinct from
de struction, incre ase and change of place from diminution, and so
on. But in the case of alte ration it may be argue d that the proce ss ne ce ssarily
implie s one or othe r of the othe r five sorts of motion. This is not true , for we
may say that all affe ctions, or ne arly all, produce in us an alte ration which is
distinct from all othe r sorts of motion, for that which is affe cte d ne e d not suffe r
e ithe r incre ase or diminution or any of the othe r sorts of motion. Thus alte ration
is a distinct sort of motion; for, if it we re not, the thing alte re d would not only
be alte re d, but would forthwith ne ce ssarily suffe r incre ase or diminution or some
one of the othe r sorts of motion in addition; which as a matte r of fact is not the
case . S imilarly that which was unde rgoing the proce ss of incre ase or was subje ct to
some othe r sort of motion would, if alte ration we re not a distinct form of motion,
ne ce ssarily be subje ct to alte ration also. But the re are some things which unde rgo
incre ase but ye t not alte ration. The square , for instance , if a gnomon is applie d
to it, unde rgoe s incre ase but not alte ration, and so it is with all othe r figure s
of this sort. Alte ration and incre ase , the re fore , are distinct. S pe aking
ge ne rally, re st is the contrary of motion. But the diffe re nt forms of motion have
the ir own contrarie s in othe r forms; thus de struction is the contrary of
ge ne ration, diminution of incre ase , re st in a place , of change of place . As for
this last, change in the re ve rse dire ction would se e m to be most truly its
contrary; thus motion upwards is the contrary of motion downwards and vice ve rsa.
In the case of that sort of motion which ye t re mains, of those that have be e n
e nume rate d, it is not e asy to state what is its contrary. It appe ars to have no
contrary, unle ss one should de fine the contrary he re also e ithe r as 're st in its
quality' or as 'change in the dire ction of the contrary quality', just as we
de fine d the contrary of change of place e ithe r as re st in a place or as change in
the re ve rse dire ction. For a thing is alte re d whe n change of quality take s place ;
the re fore e ithe r re st in its quality or change in the dire ction of the contrary may
be calle d the contrary of this qualitative form of motion. In this way be coming
white is the contrary of be coming black; the re is alte ration in the contrary
dire ction, since a change of a qualitative nature take s place .
1 5 The te rm 'to have ' is use d in various se nse s. In the first place it is use d
with re fe re nce to habit or disposition or any othe r quality, for we are said to
'have ' a pie ce of knowle dge or a virtue . The n, again, it has re fe re nce to quantity,
as, for instance , in the case of a man's he ight; for he is said to 'have ' a he ight
of thre e or four cubits. It is use d, more ove r, with re gard to appare l, a man be ing
said to 'have ' a coat or tunic; or in re spe ct of some thing which we have on a part
of ourse lve s, as a ring on the hand: or in re spe ct of some thing which is a part of
us, as hand or foot. The te rm re fe rs also to conte nt, as in the case of a ve sse l
and whe at, or of a jar and wine ; a jar is said to 'have ' wine , and a corn-me asure
whe at. The e xpre ssion in such case s has re fe re nce to conte nt. Or it re fe rs to that
which has be e n acquire d; we are said to 'have ' a house or a fie ld. A man is also
said to 'have ' a wife , and a wife a husband, and this appe ars to be the most re mote
me aning of the te rm, for by the use of it we me an simply that the husband live s
with the wife . Othe r se nse s of the word might pe rhaps be found, but the most
ordinary one s have all be e n e nume rate d. -THE END-
350 BC HIS TORY OF ANIMALS
by Aristotle translate d by D'Arcy We ntworth Thompson
Book I 1 OF the parts of animals some are
simple : to wit, all such as divide into parts uniform with the mse lve s, as fle sh
into fle sh; othe rs are composite , such as divide into parts not uniform with
the mse lve s, as, for instance , the hand doe s not divide into hands nor the face into
face s. And of such as the se , some are calle d not parts me re ly, but limbs or
me mbe rs. S uch are those parts that, while e ntire in the mse lve s, have within
the mse lve s othe r dive rse parts: as for instance , the he ad, foot, hand, the arm as a
whole , the che st; for the se are all in the mse lve s e ntire parts, and the re are othe r
dive rse parts be longing to the m. All those parts that do not subdivide into
parts uniform with the mse lve s are compose d of parts that do so subdivide , for
instance , hand is compose d of fle sh, sine ws, and bone s. Of animals, some re se mble
one anothe r in all the ir parts, while othe rs have parts whe re in the y diffe r.
S ome time s the parts are ide ntical in form or spe cie s, as, for instance , one man's
nose or e ye re se mble s anothe r man's nose or e ye , fle sh fle sh, and bone bone ; and in
like manne r with a horse , and with all othe r animals which we re ckon to be of one
and the same spe cie s: for as the whole is to the whole , so e ach to e ach are the
parts se ve rally. In othe r case s the parts are ide ntical, save only for a diffe re nce
in the way of e xce ss or de fe ct, as is the case in such animals as are of one and
the same ge nus. By 'ge nus' I me an, for instance , Bird or Fish, for e ach of the se is
subje ct to diffe re nce in re spe ct of its ge nus, and the re are many spe cie s of fishe s
and of birds. Within the limits of ge ne ra, most of the parts as a rule e xhibit
diffe re nce s through contrast of the prope rty or accide nt, such as colour and shape ,
to which the y are subje ct: in that some are more and some in a le ss de gre e the
subje ct of the same prope rty or accide nt; and also in the way of multitude or
fe wne ss, magnitude or parvitude , in short in the way of e xce ss or de fe ct. Thus in
some the te xture of the fle sh is soft, in othe rs firm; some have a long bill,
othe rs a short one ; some have abundance of fe athe rs, othe rs have only a small
quantity. It happe ns furthe r that some have parts that othe rs have not: for
instance , some have spurs and othe rs not, some have cre sts and othe rs not; but as a
ge ne ral rule , most parts and those that go to make up the bulk of the body are
e ithe r ide ntical with one anothe r, or diffe r from one anothe r in the way of
contrast and of e xce ss and de fe ct. For 'the more ' and 'the le ss' may be re pre se nte d
as 'e xce ss' or 'de fe ct'. Once again, we may have to do with animals whose parts
are ne ithe r ide ntical in form nor ye t ide ntical save for diffe re nce s in the way of
e xce ss or de fe ct: but the y are the same only in the way of analogy, as, for
instance , bone is only analogous to fish-bone , nail to hoof, hand to claw, and
scale to fe athe r; for what the fe athe r is in a bird, the scale is in a fish. The
parts, the n, which animals se ve rally posse ss are dive rse from, or ide ntical with,
one anothe r in the fashion above de scribe d. And the y are so furthe rmore in the way
of local disposition: for many animals have ide ntical organs that diffe r in
position; for instance , some have te ats in the bre ast, othe rs close to the thighs.
Of the substance s that are compose d of parts uniform (or homoge ne ous) with
the mse lve s, some are soft and moist, othe rs are dry and solid. The soft and moist
are such e ithe r absolute ly or so long as the y are in the ir natural conditions, as,
for instance , blood, se rum, lard, sue t, marrow, spe rm, gall, milk in such as have
it fle sh and the like ; and also, in a diffe re nt way, the supe rfluitie s, as phle gm
and the e xcre tions of the be lly and the bladde r. The dry and solid are such as
sine w, skin, ve in, hair, bone , gristle , nail, horn (a te rm which as applie d to the
part involve s an ambiguity, since the whole also by virtue of its form is
de signate d horn), and such parts as pre se nt an analogy to the se . Animals diffe r
from one anothe r in the ir mode s of subsiste nce , in the ir actions, in the ir habits,
and in the ir parts. C once rning the se diffe re nce s we shall first spe ak in broad and
ge ne ral te rms, and subse que ntly we shall tre at of the same with close re fe re nce to
e ach particular ge nus. Diffe re nce s are manife ste d in mode s of subsiste nce , in
habits, in actions pe rforme d. For instance , some animals live in wate r and othe rs
on land. And of those that live in wate r some do so in one way, and some in
anothe r: that is to say, some live and fe e d in the wate r, take in and e mit wate r,
and cannot live if de prive d of wate r, as is the case with the gre at majority of
fishe s; othe rs ge t the ir food and spe nd the ir days in the wate r, but do not take in
wate r but air, nor do the y bring forth in the wate r. Many of the se cre ature s are
furnishe d with fe e t, as the otte r, the be ave r, and the crocodile ; some are
furnishe d with wings, as the dive r and the gre be ; some are de stitute of fe e t, as
the wate r-snake . S ome cre ature s ge t the ir living in the wate r and cannot e xist
outside it: but for all that do not take in e ithe r air or wate r, as, for instance ,
the se a-ne ttle and the oyste r. And of cre ature s that live in the wate r some live in
the se a, some in rive rs, some in lake s, and some in marshe s, as the frog and the
ne wt. Of animals that live on dry land some take in air and e mit it, which
phe nome na are te rme d 'inhalation' and 'e xhalation'; as, for instance , man and all
such land animals as are furnishe d with lungs. Othe rs, again, do not inhale air,
ye t live and find the ir suste nance on dry land; as, for instance , the wasp, the
be e , and all othe r inse cts. And by 'inse cts' I me an such cre ature s as have nicks or
notche s on the ir bodie s, e ithe r on the ir be llie s or on both backs and be llie s.
And of land animals many, as has be e n said, de rive the ir subsiste nce from the
wate r; but of cre ature s that live in and inhale wate r not a single one de rive s its
subsiste nce from dry land. S ome animals at first live in wate r,
and by and by change the ir shape and live out of wate r, as is the case with rive r
worms, for out of the se the gadfly de ve lops. Furthe rmore , some animals are
stationary, and some are e rratic. S tationary animals are found in wate r, but no
such cre ature is found on dry land. In the wate r are many cre ature s that live in
close adhe sion to an e xte rnal obje ct, as is the case with se ve ral kinds of oyste r.
And, by the way, the sponge appe ars to be e ndowe d with a ce rtain se nsibility: as a
proof of which it is alle ge d that the difficulty in de taching it from its moorings
is incre ase d if the move me nt to de tach it be not cove rtly applie d. Othe r
cre ature s adhe re at one time to an obje ct and de tach the mse lve s from it at othe r
time s, as is the case with a spe cie s of the so-calle d se a-ne ttle ; for some of the se
cre ature s se e k the ir food in the night-time loose and unattache d. Many cre ature s
are unattache d but motionle ss, as is the case with oyste rs and the so-calle d
holothuria. S ome can swim, as, for instance , fishe s, molluscs, and crustace ans,
such as the crawfish. But some of the se last move by walking, as the crab, for it
is the nature of the cre ature , though it live s in wate r, to move by walking. Of
land animals some are furnishe d with wings, such as birds and be e s, and the se are
so furnishe d in diffe re nt ways one from anothe r; othe rs are furnishe d with fe e t. Of
the animals that are furnishe d with fe e t some walk, some cre e p, and some wriggle .
But no cre ature is able only to move by flying, as the fish is able only to swim,
for the animals with le athe rn wings can walk; the bat has fe e t and the se al has
impe rfe ct fe e t. S ome birds have fe e t of little powe r, and are the re fore calle d
Apode s. This little bird is powe rful on the wing; and, as a rule , birds that
re se mble it are we ak-foote d and strong winge d, such as the swallow and the dre panis
or (?) Alpine swift; for all the se birds re se mble one anothe r in the ir habits and
in the ir plumage , and may e asily be mistake n one for anothe r. (The apus is to be
se e n at all se asons, but the dre panis only afte r rainy we athe r in summe r; for this
is the time whe n it is se e n and capture d, though, as a ge ne ral rule , it is a rare
bird.) Again, some animals move by walking on the ground as we ll as by swimming
in wate r. Furthe rmore , the following diffe re nce s are manife st in the ir mode s of
living and in the ir actions. S ome are gre garious, some are solitary, whe the r the y
be furnishe d with fe e t or wings or be fitte d for a life in the wate r; and some
partake of both characte rs, the solitary and the gre garious. And of the gre garious,
some are dispose d to combine for social purpose s, othe rs to live e ach for its own
se lf. Gre garious cre ature s are , among birds, such as the pige on, the crane , and
the swan; and, by the way, no bird furnishe d with crooke d talons is gre garious. Of
cre ature s that live in wate r many kinds of fishe s are gre garious, such as the so-
calle d migrants, the tunny, the pe lamys, and the bonito. Man, by the way,
pre se nts a mixture of the two characte rs, the gre garious and the solitary.
S ocial cre ature s are such as have some one common obje ct in vie w; and this prope rty
is not common to all cre ature s that are gre garious. S uch social cre ature s are man,
the be e , the wasp, the ant, and the crane . Again, of the se social cre ature s some
submit to a rule r, othe rs are subje ct to no gove rnance : as, for instance , the crane
and the se ve ral sorts of be e submit to a rule r, whe re as ants and nume rous othe r
cre ature s are e ve ry one his own maste r. And again, both of gre garious and of
solitary animals, some are attache d to a fixe d home and othe rs are e rratic or
nomad. Also, some are carnivorous, some graminivorous, some omnivorous: whilst
some fe e d on a pe culiar die t, as for instance the be e s and the spide rs, for the be e
live s on hone y and ce rtain othe r swe e ts, and the spide r live s by catching flie s;
and some cre ature s live on fish. Again, some cre ature s catch the ir food, othe rs
tre asure it up; whe re as othe rs do not so. S ome cre ature s provide the mse lve s with
a dwe lling, othe rs go without one : of the forme r kind are the mole , the mouse , the
ant, the be e ; of the latte r kind are many inse cts and quadrupe ds. Furthe r, in
re spe ct to locality of dwe lling place , some cre ature s dwe ll unde r ground, as the
lizard and the snake ; othe rs live on the surface of the ground, as the horse and
the dog. make to the mse lve s hole s, othe rs do not S ome are nocturnal, as the owl
and the bat; othe rs live in the daylight. More ove r, some cre ature s are tame and
some are wild: some are at all time s tame , as man and the mule ; othe rs are at all
time s savage , as the le opard and the wolf; and some cre ature s can be rapidly tame d,
as the e le phant. Again, we may re gard animals in anothe r light. For, whe ne ve r a
race of animals is found dome sticate d, the same is always to be found in a wild
condition; as we find to be the case with horse s, kine , swine , (me n), she e p, goats,
and dogs. Furthe r, some animals e mit sound while othe rs are mute , and some are
e ndowe d with voice : of the se latte r some have articulate spe e ch, while othe rs are
inarticulate ; some are give n to continual chirping and twitte ring some are prone to
sile nce ; some are musical, and some unmusical; but all animals without e xce ption
e xe rcise the ir powe r of singing or chatte ring chie fly in conne xion with the
inte rcourse of the se xe s. Again, some cre ature s live in the fie lds, as the
cushat; some on the mountains, as the hoopoe ; some fre que nt the abode s of me n, as
the pige on. S ome , again, are pe culiarly salacious, as the partridge , the barn-
door cock and the ir conge ne rs; othe rs are incline d to chastity, as the whole tribe
of crows, for birds of this kind indulge but rare ly in se xual inte rcourse . Of
marine animals, again, some live in the ope n se as, some ne ar the shore , some on
rocks. Furthe rmore , some are combative unde r offe nce ; othe rs are provide nt for
de fe nce . Of the forme r kind are such as act as aggre ssors upon othe rs or re taliate
whe n subje cte d to ill usage , and of the latte r kind are such as me re ly have some
me ans of guarding the mse lve s against attack. Animals also diffe r from one
anothe r in re gard to characte r in the following re spe cts. S ome are good-te mpe re d,
sluggish, and little prone to fe rocity, as the ox; othe rs are quick te mpe re d,
fe rocious and unte achable , as the wild boar; some are inte llige nt and timid, as the
stag and the hare ; othe rs are me an and tre ache rous, as the snake ; othe rs are noble
and courage ous and high-bre d, as the lion; othe rs are thorough-bre d and wild and
tre ache rous, as the wolf: for, by the way, an animal is highbre d if it come from a
noble stock, and an animal is thorough-bre d if it doe s not de fle ct from its racial
characte ristics. Furthe r, some are crafty and mischie vous, as the fox; some are
spirite d and affe ctionate and fawning, as the dog; othe rs are e asy-te mpe re d and
e asily dome sticate d, as the e le phant; othe rs are cautious and watchful, as the
goose ; othe rs are je alous and se lf-conce ite d, as the pe acock. But of all animals
man alone is capable of de libe ration. Many animals have me mory, and are capable
of instruction; but no othe r cre ature e xce pt man can re call the past at will.
With re gard to the se ve ral ge ne ra of animals, particulars as to the ir habits of
life and mode s of e xiste nce will be discusse d more fully by and by.
2 C ommon to all animals are the organs whe re by the y take food and the organs
whe re into the y take it; and the se are e ithe r ide ntical with one anothe r, or are
dive rse in the ways above spe cifie d: to wit, e ithe r ide ntical in form, or varying
in re spe ct of e xce ss or de fe ct, or re se mbling one anothe r analogically, or
diffe ring in position. Furthe rmore , the gre at majority of animals have othe r
organs be side s the se in common, whe re by the y discharge the re siduum of the ir food:
I say, the gre at majority, for this state me nt doe s not apply to all. And, by the
way, the organ whe re by food is take n in is calle d the mouth, and the organ
whe re into it is take n, the be lly; the re mainde r of the alime ntary syste m has a
gre at varie ty of name s. Now the re siduum of food is twofold in kind, we t and
dry, and such cre ature s as have organs re ce ptive of we t re siduum are invariably
found with organs re ce ptive of dry re siduum; but such as have organs re ce ptive of
dry re siduum ne e d not posse ss organs re ce ptive of we t re siduum. In othe r words, an
animal has a bowe l or inte stine if it have a bladde r; but an animal may have a
bowe l and be without a bladde r. And, by the way, I may he re re mark that the organ
re ce ptive of we t re siduum is te rme d 'bladde r', and the organ re ce ptive of dry
re siduum 'inte stine or 'bowe l'. 3 Of animals
othe rwise , a gre at many have , be side s the organs above -me ntione d, an organ for
e xcre tion of the spe rm: and of animals capable of ge ne ration one se cre te s into
anothe r, and the othe r into itse lf. The latte r is te rme d 'fe male ', and the forme r
'male '; but some animals have ne ithe r male nor fe male . C onse que ntly, the organs
conne cte d with this function diffe r in form, for some animals have a womb and
othe rs an organ analogous the re to. The above -me ntione d organs, the n, are the most
indispe nsable parts of animals; and with some of the m all animals without
e xce ption, and with othe rs animals for the most part, must ne e ds be provide d.
One se nse , and one alone , is common to all animals-the se nse of touch.
C onse que ntly, the re is no spe cial name for the organ in which it has its se at; for
in some groups of animals the organ is ide ntical, in othe rs it is only analogous.
4 Eve ry animal is supplie d with moisture , and, if the animal be de prive d of the
same by natural cause s or artificial me ans,
de ath e nsue s: furthe r, e ve ry animal has anothe r part in which the moisture is
containe d. The se parts are blood and ve in, and in othe r animals the re is some thing
to corre spond; but in the se latte r the parts are impe rfe ct, be ing me re ly fibre and
se rum or lymph. Touch has its se at in a part uniform and homoge ne ous, as in the
fle sh or some thing of the kind, and ge ne rally, with animals supplie d with blood, in
the parts charge d with blood. In othe r animals it has its se at in parts analogous
to the parts charge d with blood; but in all case s it is se ate d in parts that in
the ir te xture are homoge ne ous. The active facultie s, on the contrary, are se ate d
in the parts that are he te roge ne ous: as, for instance , the busine ss of pre paring
the food is se ate d in the mouth, and the office of locomotion in the fe e t, the
wings, or in organs to corre spond. Again, some animals are supplie d with blood,
as man, the horse , and all such animals as are , whe n full-grown, e ithe r de stitute
of fe e t, or two-foote d, or four-foote d; othe r animals are bloodle ss, such as the
be e and the wasp, and, of marine animals, the cuttle -fish, the crawfish, and all
such animals as have more than four fe e t. 5
Again, some animals are viviparous, othe rs oviparous, othe rs ve rmiparous or 'grub-
be aring'. S ome are viviparous, such as man, the horse , the se al, and all othe r
animals that are hair-coate d, and, of marine animals, the ce tace ans, as the
dolphin, and the so-calle d S e lachia. (Of the se latte r animals, some have a tubular
air-passage and no gills, as the dolphin and the whale : the dolphin with the air-
passage going through its back, the whale with the air-passage in its fore he ad;
othe rs have uncove re d gills, as the S e lachia, the sharks and rays.) What we te rm
an e gg is a ce rtain comple te d re sult of conce ption out of which the animal that is
to be de ve lops, and in such a way that in re spe ct to its primitive ge rm it come s
from part only of the e gg, while the re st se rve s for food as the ge rm de ve lops. A
'grub' on the othe r hand is a thing out of which in its e ntire ty the animal in its
e ntire ty de ve lops, by diffe re ntiation and growth of the e mbryo. Of viviparous
animals, some hatch e ggs in the ir own inte rior, as cre ature s of the shark kind;
othe rs e nge nde r in the ir inte rior a live foe tus, as man and the horse . Whe n the
re sult of conce ption is pe rfe cte d, with some animals a living cre ature is brought
forth, with othe rs an e gg is brought to light, with othe rs a grub. Of the e ggs,
some have e gg-she lls and are of two diffe re nt colours within, such as birds' e ggs;
othe rs are soft-skinne d and of uniform colour, as the e ggs of animals of the shark
kind. Of the grubs, some are from the first capable of move me nt, othe rs are
motionle ss. Howe ve r, with re gard to the se phe nome na we shall spe ak pre cise ly
he re afte r whe n we come to tre at of Ge ne ration. Furthe rmore , some animals have
fe e t and some are de stitute the re of. Of such as have fe e t some animals have two, as
is the case with me n and birds, and with me n and birds only; some have four, as the
lizard and the dog; some have more , as the ce ntipe de and the be e ; but allsoe ve r
that have fe e t have an e ve n numbe r of the m. Of swimming cre ature s that are
de stitute of fe e t, some have wingle ts or fins, as fishe s: and of the se some have
four fins, two above on the back, two be low on the be lly, as the gilthe ad and the
basse ; some have two only,-to wit, such as are e xce e dingly long and smooth, as the
e e l and the conge r; some have none at all, as the murae na, but use the se a just as
snake s use dry ground-and by the way, snake s swim in wate r in just the same way. Of
the shark-kind some have no fins, such as those that are flat and long-taile d, as
the ray and the sting-ray, but the se fishe s swim actually by the undulatory motion
of the ir flat bodie s; the fishing frog, howe ve r, has fins, and so like wise have all
such fishe s as have not the ir flat surface s thinne d off to a sharp e dge . Of
those swimming cre ature s that appe ar to have fe e t, as is the case with the
molluscs, the se cre ature s swim by the aid of the ir fe e t and the ir fins as we ll, and
the y swim most rapidly backwards in the dire ction of the trunk, as is the case with
the cuttle -fish or se pia and the calamary; and, by the way, ne ithe r of the se latte r
can walk as the poulpe or octopus can. The hard-skinne d or crustace ous animals,
like the crawfish, swim by the instrume ntality of the ir tail-parts; and the y swim
most rapidly tail fore most, by the aid of the fins de ve lope d upon that me mbe r. The
ne wt swims by me ans of its fe e t and tail; and its tail re se mble s that of the
she atfish, to compare little with gre at. Of animals that can fly some are
furnishe d with fe athe re d wings, as the e agle and the hawk; some are furnishe d with
me mbranous wings, as the be e and the cockchafe r; othe rs are furnishe d with le athe rn
wings, as the flying fox and the bat. All flying cre ature s posse sse d of blood have
fe athe re d wings or le athe rn wings; the bloodle ss cre ature s have me mbranous wings,
as inse cts. The cre ature s that have fe athe re d wings or le athe rn wings have e ithe r
two fe e t or no fe e t at all: for the re are said to be ce rtain flying se rpe nts in
Ethiopia that are de stitute of fe e t. C re ature s that have fe athe re d wings are
classe d as a ge nus unde r the name of 'bird'; the othe r two ge ne ra, the le athe rn-
winge d and me mbrane -winge d, are as ye t without a ge ne ric title . Of cre ature s
that can fly and are bloodle ss some are cole opte rous or she ath-winge d, for the y
have the ir wings in a she ath or shard, like the cockchafe r and the dung-be e tle ;
othe rs are she athle ss, and of the se latte r some are dipte rous and some
te trapte rous: te trapte rous, such as are comparative ly large or have the ir stings in
the tail, dipte rous, such as are comparative ly small or have the ir stings in front.
The cole opte ra are , without e xce ption, de void of stings; the dipte ra have the sting
in front, as the fly, the horse fly, the gadfly, and the gnat. Bloodle ss animals
as a ge ne ral rule are infe rior in point of size to bloode d animals; though, by the
way, the re are found in the se a some fe w bloodle ss cre ature s of abnormal size , as
in the case of ce rtain molluscs. And of the se bloodle ss ge ne ra, those are the
large st that dwe ll in milde r climate s, and those that inhabit the se a are large r
than those living on dry land or in fre sh wate r. All cre ature s that are capable
of motion move with four or more points of motion; the bloode d animals with four
only: as, for instance , man with two hands and two fe e t, birds with two wings and
two fe e t, quadrupe ds and fishe s se ve rally with four fe e t and four fins. C re ature s
that have two wingle ts or fins, or that have none at all like se rpe nts, move all
the same with not le ss than four points of motion; for the re are four be nds in
the ir bodie s as the y move , or two be nds toge the r with the ir fins. Bloodle ss and
many foote d animals, whe the r furnishe d with wings or fe e t, move with more than four
points of motion; as, for instance , the dayfly move s with four fe e t and four wings:
and, I may obse rve in passing, this cre ature is e xce ptional not only in re gard to
the duration of its e xiste nce , whe nce it re ce ive s its name , but also be cause though
a quadrupe d it has wings also. All animals move alike , four-foote d and many-
foote d; in othe r words, the y all move cross-corne r-wise . And animals in ge ne ral
have two fe e t in advance ; the crab alone has four.
6 Ve ry e xte nsive ge ne ra of animals, into which othe r subdivisions fall, are the
following: one , of birds; one , of fishe s; and anothe r, of ce tace ans. Now all the se
cre ature s are bloode d. The re is anothe r ge nus of the hard-she ll kind, which is
calle d oyste r; anothe r of the soft-she ll kind, not as ye t de signate d by a single
te rm, such as the spiny crawfish and the various kinds of crabs and lobste rs; and
anothe r of molluscs, as the two kinds of calamary and the cuttle -fish; that of
inse cts is diffe re nt. All the se latte r cre ature s are bloodle ss, and such of the m as
have fe e t have a goodly numbe r of the m; and of the inse cts some have wings as we ll
as fe e t. Of the othe r animals the ge ne ra are not e xte nsive . For in the m one
spe cie s doe s not compre he nd many spe cie s; but in one case , as man, the spe cie s is
simple , admitting of no diffe re ntiation, while othe r case s admit of
diffe re ntiation, but the forms lack particular de signations. S o, for instance ,
cre ature s that are qudape dal and unprovide d with wings are bloode d without
e xce ption, but some of the m are viviparous, and some oviparous. S uch as are
viviparous are hair-coate d, and such as are oviparous are cove re d with a kind of
te sse llate d hard substance ; and the te sse llate d bits of this substance are , as it
we re , similar in re gard to position to a scale . An animal that is bloode d and
capable of move me nt on dry land, but is naturally unprovide d with fe e t, be longs to
the se rpe nt ge nus; and animals of this ge nus are coate d with the te sse llate d horny
substance . S e rpe nts in ge ne ral are oviparous; the adde r, an e xce ptional case , is
viviparous: for not all viviparous animals are hair-coate d, and some fishe s also
are viviparous. All animals, howe ve r, that are hair-coate d are viviparous. For,
by the way, one must re gard as a kind of hair such prickly hairs as he dge hogs and
porcupine s carry; for the se spine s pe rform the office of hair, and not of fe e t as
is the case with similar parts of se a-urchins. In the ge nus that combine s all
viviparous quadrupe ds are many spe cie s, but unde r no common appe llation. The y are
only name d as it we re one by one , as we say man, lion, stag, horse , dog, and so on;
though, by the way, the re is a sort of ge nus that e mbrace s all cre ature s that have
bushy mane s and bushy tails, such as the horse , the ass, the mule , the je nne t, and
the animals
that are calle d He mioni in S yria,-from the ir e xte rnally re se mbling mule s, though
the y are not strictly of the same spe cie s. And that the y are not so is prove d by
the fact that the y mate with and bre e d from one anothe r. For all the se re asons, we
must take animals spe cie s by spe cie s, and discuss the ir pe culiaritie s se ve rally'
The se pre ce ding state me nts, the n, have be e n put forward thus in a ge ne ral way, as a
kind of fore taste of the numbe r of subje cts and of the prope rtie s that we have to
conside r in orde r that we may first ge t a cle ar notion of distinctive characte r and
common prope rtie s. By and by we shall discuss the se matte rs with gre ate r
minute ne ss. Afte r this we shall pass on to the discussion of cause s. For to do
this whe n the inve stigation of the de tails is comple te is the prope r and natural
me thod, and that whe re by the subje cts and the pre misse s of our argume nt will
afte rwards be re nde re d plain. In the first place we must look to the constitue nt
parts of animals. For it is in a way re lative to the se parts, first and fore most,
that animals in the ir e ntire ty diffe r from one anothe r: e ithe r in the fact that
some have this or that, while the y have not that or this; or by pe culiaritie s of
position or of arrange me nt; or by the diffe re nce s that have be e n pre viously
me ntione d, de pe nding upon dive rsity of form, or e xce ss or de fe ct in this or that
particular, on analogy, or on contrasts of the accide ntal qualitie s. To be gin
with, we must take into conside ration the parts of Man. For, just as e ach nation is
wont to re ckon by that mone tary standard with which it is most familiar, so must we
do in othe r matte rs. And, of course , man is the animal with which we are all of us
the most familiar. Now the parts are obvious e nough to physical pe rce ption.
Howe ve r, with the vie w of obse rving due orde r and se que nce and of combining
rational notions with physical pe rce ption, we shall proce e d to e nume rate the parts:
firstly, the organic, and afte rwards the simple or non-composite .
7 The chie f parts into which the body as a whole is subdivide d, are the he ad,
the ne ck, the trunk (e xte nding from the ne ck to the privy parts), which is calle d
the thorax, two arms and two le gs. Of the parts of which the he ad is compose d
the hair-cove re d portion is calle d the 'skull'. The front portion of it is te rme d
'bre gma' or 'sinciput', de ve lope d afte r birth-for it is the last of all the bone s
in the body to acquire solidity,-the hinde r part is te rme d the 'occiput', and the
part inte rve ning be twe e n the sinciput and the occiput is the 'crown'. The brain
lie s unde rne ath the sinciput; the occiput is hollow. The skull consists e ntire ly of
thin bone , rounde d in shape , and containe d within a wrappe r of fle shle ss skin.
The skull has suture s: one , of circular form, in the case of wome n; in the case of
me n, as a ge ne ral rule , thre e me e ting at a point. Instance s have be e n known of a
man's skull de void of suture altoge the r. In the skull the middle line , whe re the
hair parts, is calle d the crown or ve rte x. In some case s the parting is double ;
that is to say, some me n are double crowne d, not in re gard to the bony skull, but
in conse que nce of the double fall or se t of the hair.
8 The part that lie s unde r the skull is calle d the 'face ': but in the case of
man only, for the te rm is not applie d to a fish or to an ox. In the face the part
be low the sinciput and be twe e n the e ye s is te rme d the fore he ad. Whe n me n have large
fore he ads, the y are slow to move ; whe n the y have small one s, the y are fickle ; whe n
the y have broad one s, the y are apt to be distraught; whe n the y have fore he ads
rounde d or bulging out, the y are quick-te mpe re d.
9 Unde rne ath the fore he ad are two e ye brows. S traight e ye brows are a sign of
softne ss of disposition; such as curve in towards the nose , of harshne ss; such as
curve out towards the te mple s, of humour and dissimulation; such as are drawn in
towards one anothe r, of je alousy. Unde r the e ye brows come the e ye s. The se are
naturally two in numbe r. Each of the m has an uppe r and a lowe r e ye lid, and the
hairs on the e dge s of the se are te rme d 'e ye lashe s'. The ce ntral part of the e ye
include s the moist part whe re by vision is e ffe cte d, te rme d the 'pupil', and the
part surrounding it calle d the 'black'; the part outside this is the 'white '. A
part common to the uppe r and lowe r e ye lid is a pair of nicks or corne rs, one in the
dire ction of the nose , and the othe r in the dire ction of the te mple s. Whe n the se
are long the y are a sign of bad disposition; if the side toward the nostril be
fle shy and comb-like , the y are a sign of dishone sty. All animals, as a ge ne ral
rule , are provide d with e ye s, e xce pting the ostracode rms and othe r impe rfe ct
cre ature s; at all e ve nts, all viviparous animals have e ye s, with the e xce ption of
the mole . And ye t one might asse rt that, though the mole has not e ye s in the full
se nse , ye t it has e ye s in a kind of a way. For in point of absolute fact it cannot
se e , and has no e ye s visible e xte rnally; but whe n the oute r skin is re move d, it is
found to have the place whe re e ye s are usually situate d, and the black parts of the
e ye s rightly situate d, and all the place that is usually de vote d on the outside to
e ye s: showing that the parts are stunte d in de ve lopme nt, and the skin allowe d to
grow ove r. 1 0 Of the e ye the white is pre tty
much the same in all cre ature s; but what is calle d the black diffe rs in various
animals. S ome have the rim black, some distinctly blue , some gre yish-blue , some
gre e nish; and this last colour is the sign of an e xce lle nt disposition, and is
particularly we ll adapte d for sharpne ss of vision. Man is the only, or ne arly the
only, cre ature , that has e ye s of dive rse colours. Animals, as a rule , have e ye s of
one colour only. S ome horse s have blue e ye s. Of e ye s, some are large , some
small, some me dium-size d; of the se , the me dium-size d are the be st. More ove r, e ye s
some time s protrude , some time s re ce de , some time s are ne ithe r protruding nor
re ce ding. Of the se , the re ce ding e ye is in all animals the most acute ; but the last
kind are the sign of the be st disposition. Again, e ye s are some time s incline d to
wink unde r obse rvation, some time s to re main ope n and staring, and some time s are
dispose d ne ithe r to wink nor stare . The last kind are the sign of the be st nature ,
and of the othe rs, the latte r kind indicate s impude nce , and the forme r inde cision.
1 1 Furthe rmore , the re is a portion of the he ad, whe re by an animal he ars, a part
incapable of bre athing, the 'e ar'. I say 'incapable of bre athing', for Alcmae on is
mistake n whe n he says that goats inspire through the ir e ars. Of the e ar one part is
unname d, the othe r part is calle d the 'lobe '; and it is e ntire ly compose d of
gristle and fle sh. The e ar is constructe d inte rnally like the trumpe t-she ll, and
the inne rmost bone is like the e ar itse lf, and into it at the e nd the sound make s
its way, as into the bottom of a jar. This re ce ptacle doe s not communicate by any
passage with the brain, but doe s so with the palate , and a ve in e xte nds from the
brain towards it. The e ye s also are conne cte d with the brain, and e ach of the m lie s
at the e nd of a little ve in. Of animals posse sse d of e ars man is the only one that
cannot move this organ. Of cre ature s posse sse d of he aring, some have e ars, whilst
othe rs have none , but me re ly have the passage s for e ars visible , as, for e xample ,
fe athe re d animals or animals coate d with horny te sse llate s. Viviparous animals,
with the e xce ption of the se al, the dolphin, and those othe rs which afte r a similar
fashion to the se are ce tace ans, are all provide d with e ars; for, by the way, the
shark-kind are also viviparous. Now, the se al has the passage s visible whe re by it
he ars; but the dolphin can he ar, but has no e ars, nor ye t any passage s visible . But
man alone is unable to move his e ars, and all othe r animals can move the m. And the
e ars lie , with man, in the same horizontal plane with the e ye s, and not in a plane
above the m as is the case with some quadrupe ds. Of e ars, some are fine , some are
coarse , and some are of me dium te xture ; the last kind are be st for he aring, but
the y se rve in no way to indicate characte r. S ome e ars are large , some small, some
me dium-size d; again, some stand out far, some lie in close and tight, and some take
up a me dium position; of the se such as are of me dium size and of me dium position
are indications of the be st disposition, while the large and outstanding one s
indicate a te nde ncy to irre le vant talk or chatte ring. The part inte rce pte d be twe e n
the e ye , the e ar, and the crown is te rme d the 'te mple '. Again, the re is a part of
the counte nance that se rve s as a passage for the bre ath, the 'nose '. For a man
inhale s and e xhale s by this organ, and sne e zing is e ffe cte d by its me ans: which
last is an outward rush of colle cte d bre ath, and is the only mode of bre ath use d as
an ome n and re garde d as supe rnatural. Both inhalation and e xhalation go right on
from the nose towards the che st; and with the nostrils alone and se parate ly it is
impossible to inhale or e xhale , owing to the fact that the inspiration and
re spiration take place from the che st along the windpipe , and not by any portion
conne cte d with the he ad; and inde e d it is possible for a cre ature to live without
using this proce ss of nasal re spiration. Again, sme lling take s place by me ans of
the nose ,-sme lling, or the se nsible discrimination of odour. And the nostril admits
of e asy motion, and is not, like the e ar, intrinsically immovable . A part of it,
compose d of gristle , constitute s, a se ptum or partition, and part is an ope n
passage ; for the nostril consists of two se parate channe ls. The nostril (or nose )
of the e le phant is long and strong,
and the animal use s it like a hand; for by me ans of this organ it draws obje cts
towards it, and take s hold of the m, and introduce s its food into its mouth, whe the r
liquid or dry food, and it is the only living cre ature that doe s so.
Furthe rmore , the re are two jaws; the front part of the m constitute s the chin, and
the hinde r part the che e k. All animals move the lowe r jaw, with the e xce ption of
the rive r crocodile ; this cre ature move s the uppe r jaw only. Ne xt afte r the nose
come two lips, compose d of fle sh, and facile of motion. The mouth lie s inside the
jaws and lips. Parts of the mouth are the roof or palate and the pharynx. The
part that is se nsible of taste is the tongue . The se nsation has its se at at the tip
of the tongue ; if the obje ct to be taste d be place d on the flat surface of the
organ, the taste is le ss se nsibly e xpe rie nce d. The tongue is se nsitive in all othe r
ways whe re in fle sh in ge ne ral is so: that is, it can appre ciate hardne ss, or warmth
and cold, in any part of it, just as it can appre ciate taste . The tongue is
some time s broad, some time s narrow, and some time s of me dium width; the last kind is
the be st and the cle are st in its discrimination of taste . More ove r, the tongue is
some time s loose ly hung, and some time s faste ne d: as in the case of those who mumble
and who lisp. The tongue consists of fle sh, soft and spongy, and the so-calle d
'e piglottis' is a part of this organ. That part of the mouth that splits into
two bits is calle d the 'tonsils'; that part that splits into many bits, the 'gums'.
Both the tonsils and the gums are compose d of fle sh. In the gums are te e th,
compose d of bone . Inside the mouth is anothe r part, shape d like a bunch of
grape s, a pillar stre ake d with ve ins. If this pillar ge ts re laxe d and inflame d it
is calle d 'uvula' or 'bunch of grape s', and it the n has a te nde ncy to bring about
suffocation. 1 2 The ne ck is the part be twe e n
the face and the trunk. Of this the front part is the larynx land the back part the
ur The front part, compose d of gristle , through which re spiration and spe e ch is
e ffe cte d, is te rme d the 'windpipe '; the part that is fle shy is the oe sophagus,
inside just in front of the chine . The part to the back of the ne ck is the e pomis,
or 'shoulde r-point'. The se the n are the parts to be me t with be fore you come to
the thorax. To the trunk the re is a front part and a back part. Ne xt afte r the
ne ck in the front part is the che st, with a pair of bre asts. To e ach of the bre asts
is attache d a te at or nipple , through which in the case of fe male s the milk
pe rcolate s; and the bre ast is of a spongy te xture . Milk, by the way, is found at
time s in the male ; but with the male the fle sh of the bre ast is tough, with the
fe male it is soft and porous. 1 3 Ne xt afte r the
thorax and in front come s the 'be lly', and its root the 'nave l'. Unde rne ath this
root the bilate ral part is the 'flank': the undivide d part be low the nave l, the
'abdome n', the e xtre mity of which is the re gion of the 'pube s'; above the nave l the
'hypochondrium'; the cavity common to the hypochondrium and the flank is the gut-
cavity. S e rving as a brace girdle to the hinde r parts is the pe lvis, and he nce
it ge ts its name (osphus), for it is symme trical (isophue s) in appe arance ; of the
fundame nt the part for re sting on is te rme d the 'rump', and the part whe re on the
thigh pivots is te rme d the 'socke t' (or ace tabulum). The 'womb' is a part
pe culiar to the fe male ; and the 'pe nis' is pe culiar to the male . This latte r organ
is e xte rnal and situate d at the e xtre mity of the trunk; it is compose d of two
se parate parts: of which the e xtre me part is fle shy, doe s not alte r in size , and is
calle d the glans; and round about it is a skin de void of any spe cific title , which
inte gume nt if it be cut asunde r ne ve r grows toge the r again, any more than doe s the
jaw or the e ye lid. And the conne xion be twe e n the latte r and the glans is calle d the
fre num. The re maining part of the pe nis is compose d of gristle ; it is e asily
susce ptible of e nlarge me nt; and it protrude s and re ce de s in the re ve rse dire ctions
to what is obse rvable in the ide ntical organ in cats. Unde rne ath the pe nis are two
'te sticle s', and the inte gume nt of the se is a skin that is te rme d the 'scrotum'.
Te sticle s are not ide ntical with fle sh, and are not altoge the r dive rse from it. But
by and by we shall tre at in an e xhaustive way re garding all such parts.
1 4 The privy part of the fe male is in characte r opposite to that of the male . In
othe r words, the part unde r the pube s is hollow or re ce ding, and not, like the male
organ, protruding. Furthe r, the re is an 'ure thra' outside the womb; which organ
se rve s as a passage for the spe rm of the male , and as an outle t for liquid
e xcre tion to both se xe s). The part common to the ne ck and che st is the 'throat';
the 'armpit' is common to side , arm, and shoulde r; and the 'groin' is common to
thigh and abdome n. The part inside the thigh and buttocks is the 'pe rine um', and
the part outside the thigh and buttocks is the 'hypoglutis'. The front parts of
the trunk have now be e n e nume rate d. The part be hind the che st is te rme d the
'back'. 1 5 Parts of the back are a pair of
'shoulde rblade s', the 'back-bone ', and, unde rne ath on a le ve l with the be lly in the
trunk, the 'loins'. C ommon to the uppe r and lowe r part of the trunk are the 'ribs',
e ight on e ithe r side , for as to the so-calle d se ve n-ribbe d Ligyans we have not
re ce ive d any trustworthy e vide nce . Man, the n, has an uppe r and a lowe r part, a
front and a back part, a right and a le ft side . Now the right and the le ft side are
pre tty we ll alike in the ir parts and ide ntical throughout, e xce pt that the le ft
side is the we ake r of the two; but the back parts do not re se mble the front one s,
ne ithe r do the lowe r one s the uppe r: only that the se uppe r and lowe r parts may be
said to re se mble one anothe r thus far, that, if the face be plump or me agre , the
abdome n is plump or me agre to corre spond; and that the le gs corre spond to the arms,
and whe re the uppe r arm is short the thigh is usually short also, and whe re the
fe e t are small the hands are small corre spondingly. Of the limbs, one se t,
forming a pair, is 'arms'. To the arm be long the 'shoulde r', 'uppe r-arm', 'e lbow',
'fore -arm', and 'hand'. To the hand be long the 'palm', and the five 'finge rs'. The
part of the finge r that be nds is te rme d 'knuckle ', the part that is infle xible is
te rme d the 'phalanx'. The big finge r or thumb is single -jointe d, the othe r finge rs
are double jointe d. The be nding both of the arm and of the finge r take s place from
without inwards in all case s; and the arm be nds at the e lbow. The inne r part of the
hand is te rme d the palm', and is fle shy and divide d by joints or line s: in the case
of long-live d pe ople by one or two e xte nding right across, in the case of the
short-live d by two, not so e xte nding. The joint be twe e n hand and arm is te rme d the
'wrist'. The outside or back of the hand is sine wy, and has no spe cific
de signation. The re is anothe r duplicate limb, the 'le g'. Of this limb the
double -knobbe d part is te rme d the 'thigh-bone ', the sliding part of the 'kne e cap',
the double -bone d part the 'le g'; the front part of this latte r is te rme d the
'shin', and the part be hind it the 'calf', whe re in the fle sh is sine wy and ve nous,
in some case s drawn upwards towards the hollow be hind the kne e , as in the case of
pe ople with large hips, and in othe r case s drawn downwards. The lowe r e xtre mity of
the shin is the 'ankle ', duplicate in e ithe r le g. The part of the limb that
contains a multiplicity of bone s is the 'foot'. The hinde r part of the foot is the
'he e l'; at the front of it the divide d part consists of 'toe s', five in numbe r; the
fle shy part unde rne ath is the 'ball'; the uppe r part or back of the foot is sine wy
and has no particular appe llation; of the toe , one portion is the 'nail' and
anothe r the 'joint', and the nail is in all case s at the e xtre mity; and toe s are
without e xce ption single jointe d. Me n that have the inside or sole of the foot
clumsy and not arche d, that is, that walk re sting on the e ntire unde r-surface of
the ir fe e t, are prone to rogue ry. The joint common to thigh and shin is the 'kne e '.
The se , the n, are the parts common to the male and the fe male se x. The re lative
position of the parts as to up and down, or to front and back, or to right and
le ft, all this as re gards e xte rnals might safe ly be le ft to me re ordinary
pe rce ption. But for all that, we must tre at of the m for the same re ason as the one
pre viously brought forward; that is to say, we must re fe r to the m in orde r that a
due and re gular se que nce may be obse rve d in our e xposition, and in orde r that by
the e nume ration of the se obvious facts due atte ntion may be subse que ntly give n to
those parts in me n and othe r animals that are dive rse in any way from one anothe r.
In man, above all othe r animals, the te rms 'uppe r' and 'lowe r' are use d in harmony
with the ir natural positions; for in him, uppe r and lowe r have the same me aning as
whe n the y are applie d to the unive rse as a whole . In like manne r the te rms, 'in
front', 'be hind', 'right' and 'le ft', are use d in accordance with the ir natural
se nse . But in re gard to othe r animals, in some case s the se distinctions do not
e xist, and in othe rs the y do so, but in a vague way. For instance , the he ad with
all animals is up and above in re spe ct to the ir bodie s; but man alone , as has be e n
said, has, in maturity, this part uppe rmost in re spe ct to the mate rial unive rse .
Ne xt afte r the he ad come s the ne ck, and the n the che st and the back: the one in
front and the othe r be hind. Ne xt afte r the se come the be lly, the loins, the se xual
parts, and the haunche s; the n the thigh and shin; and, lastly,
the fe e t. The le gs be nd frontwards, in the dire ction of actual progre ssion, and
frontwards also lie s that part of the foot which is the most e ffe ctive of motion,
and the fle xure of that part; but the he e l lie s at the back, and the ankle bone s lie
late rally, e arwise . The arms are situate d to right and le ft, and be nd inwards: so
that the conve xitie s forme d by be nt arms and le gs are practically face to face with
one anothe r in the case of man. As for the se nse s and for the organs of
se nsation, the e ye s, the nostrils, and the tongue , all alike are situate d
frontwards; the se nse of he aring, and the organ of he aring, the e ar, is situate d
side ways, on the same horizontal plane with the e ye s. The e ye s in man are , in
proportion to his size , ne are r to one anothe r than in any othe r animal. Of the
se nse s man has the se nse of touch more re fine d than any animal, and so also, but in
le ss de gre e , the se nse of taste ; in the de ve lopme nt of the othe r se nse s he is
surpasse d by a gre at numbe r of animals. 1 6 The
parts, the n, that are e xte rnally visible are arrange d in the way above state d, and
as a rule have the ir spe cial de signations, and from use and wont are known
familiarly to all; but this is not the case with the inne r parts. For the fact is
that the inne r parts of man are to a ve ry gre at e xte nt unknown, and the conse que nce
is that we must have re course to an e xamination of the inne r parts of othe r animals
whose nature in any way re se mble s that of man. In the first place the n, the
brain lie s in the front part of the he ad. And this holds alike with all animals
posse sse d of a brain; and all bloode d animals are posse sse d the re of, and, by the
way, molluscs as we ll. But, taking size for size of animal, the large st brain, and
the moiste st, is that of man. Two me mbrane s e nclose it: the stronge r one ne ar the
bone of the skull; the inne r one , round the brain itse lf, is fine r. The brain in
all case s is bilate ral. Be hind this, right at the back, come s what is te rme d the
'ce re be llum', diffe ring in form from the brain as we may both fe e l and se e . The
back of the he ad is with all animals e mpty and hollow, whate ve r be its size in the
diffe re nt animals. For some cre ature s have big he ads while the face be low is small
in proportion, as is the case with round-face d animals; some have little he ads and
long jaws, as is the case , without e xce ption, among animals of the mane -and-tail
spe cie s. The brain in all animals is bloodle ss, de void of ve ins, and naturally
cold to the touch; in the gre at majority of animals it has a small hollow in its
ce ntre . The brain-caul around it is re ticulate d with ve ins; and this brain-caul is
that skin-like me mbrane which close ly surrounds the brain. Above the brain is the
thinne st and we ake st bone of the he ad, which is te rme d or 'sinciput'. From the
e ye the re go thre e ducts to the brain: the large st and the me dium-size d to the
ce re be llum, the le ast to the brain itse lf; and the le ast is the one situate d
ne are st to the nostril. The two large st one s, the n, run side by side and do not
me e t; the me dium-size d one s me e t-and this is particularly visible in fishe s,-for
the y lie ne are r than the large one s to the brain; the smalle st pair are the most
wide ly se parate from one anothe r, and do not me e t. Inside the ne ck is what is
te rme d the oe sophagus (whose othe r name is de rive d oe sophagus from its le ngth and
narrowne ss), and the windpipe . The windpipe is situate d in front of the oe sophagus
in all animals that have a windpipe , and all animals have one that are furnishe d
with lungs. The windpipe is made up of gristle , is sparingly supplie d with blood,
and is stre ake d all round with nume rous minute ve ins; it is situate d, in its uppe r
part, ne ar the mouth, be low the ape rture forme d by the nostrils into the mouth-an
ape rture through which, whe n me n, in drinking, inhale any of the liquid, this
liquid finds its way out through the nostrils. In be twixt the two ope nings come s
the so-calle d e piglottis, an organ capable of be ing drawn ove r and cove ring the
orifice of the windpipe communicating with the mouth; the e nd of the tongue is
attache d to the e piglottis. In the othe r dire ction the windpipe e xte nds to the
inte rval be twe e n the lungs, and he re upon bifurcate s into e ach of the two divisions
of the lung; for the lung in all animals posse sse d of the organ has a te nde ncy to
be double . In viviparous animals, howe ve r, the duplication is not so plainly
disce rnible as in othe r spe cie s, and the duplication is le ast disce rnible in man.
And in man the organ is not split into many parts, as is the case with some
vivipara, ne ithe r is it smooth, but its surface is une ve n. In the case of the
ovipara, such as birds and oviparous quadrupe ds, the two parts of the organ are
se parate d to a distance from one anothe r, so that the cre ature s appe ar to be
furnishe d with a pair of lungs; and from the windpipe , itse lf single , the re branch
off two se parate parts e xte nding to e ach of the two divisions of the lung. It is
attache d also to the gre at ve in and to what is de signate d the 'aorta'. Whe n the
windpipe is charge d with air, the air passe s on to the hollow parts of the lung.
The se parts have divisions, compose d of gristle , which me e t at an acute angle ; from
the divisions run passage s through the e ntire lung, giving off smalle r and smalle r
ramifications. The he art also is attache d to the windpipe , by conne xions of fat,
gristle , and sine w; and at the point of juncture the re is a hollow. Whe n the
windpipe is charge d with air, the e ntrance of the air into the he art, though
impe rce ptible in some animals, is pe rce ptible e nough in the large r one s. S uch are
the prope rtie s of the windpipe , and it take s in and throws out air only, and take s
in nothing e lse e ithe r dry or liquid, or e lse it cause s you pain until you shall
have coughe d up whate ve r may have gone down. The oe sophagus communicate s at the
top with the mouth, close to the windpipe , and is attache d to the backbone and the
windpipe by me mbranous ligame nts, and at last finds its way through the midriff
into the be lly. It is compose d of fle sh-like substance , and is e lastic both
le ngthways and bre adthways. The stomach of man re se mble s that of a dog; for it
is not much bigge r than the bowe l, but is some what like a bowe l of more than usual
width; the n come s the bowe l, single , convolute d, mode rate ly wide . The lowe r part of
the gut is like that of a pig; for it is broad, and the part from it to the
buttocks is thick and short. The caul, or gre at ome ntum, is attache d to the middle
of the stomach, and consists of a fatty me mbrane , as is the case with all othe r
animals whose stomachs are single and which have te e th in both jaws. The
me se nte ry is ove r the bowe ls; this also is me mbranous and broad, and turns to fat.
It is attache d to the gre at ve in and the aorta, and the re run through it a numbe r
of ve ins close ly packe d toge the r, e xte nding towards the re gion of the bowe ls,
be ginning above and e nding be low. S o much for the prope rtie s of the oe sophagus,
the windpipe , and the stomach. 1 7 The he art has
thre e cavitie s, and is situate d above the lung at the division of the windpipe , and
is provide d with a fatty and thick me mbrane whe re it faste ns on to the gre at ve in
and the aorta. It lie s with its tape ring portion upon the aorta, and this portion
is similarly situate d in re lation to the che st in all animals that have a che st. In
all animals alike , in those that have a che st and in those that have none , the ape x
of the he art points forwards, although this fact might possibly e scape notice by a
change of position unde r disse ction. The rounde d e nd of the he art is at the top.
The ape x is to a gre at e xte nt fle shy and close in te xture , and in the cavitie s of
the he art are sine ws. As a rule the he art is situate d in the middle of the che st in
animals that have a che st, and in man it is situate d a little to the le ft-hand
side , le aning a little way from the division of the bre asts towards the le ft bre ast
in the uppe r part of the che st. The he art is not large , and in its ge ne ral shape
it is not e longate d; in fact, it is some what round in form: only, be it re me mbe re d,
it is sharp-pointe d at the bottom. It has thre e cavitie s, as has be e n said: the
right-hand one the large st of the thre e , the le ft-hand one the le ast, and the
middle one inte rme diate in size . All the se cavitie s, e ve n the two small one s, are
conne cte d by passage s with the lung, and this fact is re nde re d quite plain in one
of the cavitie s. And be low, at the point of attachme nt, in the large st cavity the re
is a conne xion with the gre at ve in (ne ar which the me se nte ry lie s); and in the
middle one the re is a conne xion with the aorta. C anals le ad from the he art into
the lung, and branch off just as the windpipe doe s, running all ove r the lung
paralle l with the passage s from the windpipe . The canals from the he art are
uppe rmost; and the re is no common passage , but the passage s through the ir having a
common wall re ce ive the bre ath and pass it on to the he art; and one of the passage s
conve ys it to the right cavity, and the othe r to the le ft. With re gard to the
gre at ve in and the aorta we shall, by and by, tre at of the m toge the r in a
discussion de vote d to the m and to the m alone . In all animals that are furnishe d
with a lung, and that are both inte rnally and e xte rnally viviparous, the lung is of
all organs the most richly supplie d with blood; for the lung is throughout spongy
in te xture , and along by e ve ry single pore in it go branche s from the gre at ve in.
Those who imagine it to be e mpty are altoge the r mistake n; and the y are le d into
the ir e rror by the ir obse rvation of lungs re move d from animals unde r disse ction,
out of which organs the blood had all e scape d imme diate ly afte r de ath. Of the
othe r inte rnal organs the he art alone contains
blood. And the lung has blood not in itse lf but in its ve ins, but the he art has
blood in itse lf; for in e ach of its thre e cavitie s it has blood, but the thinne st
blood is what it has in its ce ntral cavity. Unde r the lung come s the thoracic
diaphragm or midriff, attache d to the ribs, the hypochondria and the backbone , with
a thin me mbrane in the middle of it. It has ve ins running through it; and the
diaphragm in the case of man is thicke r in proportion to the size of his frame than
in othe r animals. Unde r the diaphragm on the right-hand side lie s the 'live r',
and on the le ft-hand side the 'sple e n', alike in all animals that are provide d with
the se organs in an ordinary and not pre te rnatural way; for, be it obse rve d, in some
quadrupe ds the se organs have be e n found in a transpose d position. The se organs are
conne cte d with the stomach by the caul. To outward vie w the sple e n of man is
narrow and long, re se mbling the se lf-same organ in the pig. The live r in the gre at
majority of animals is not provide d with a 'gall-bladde r'; but the latte r is
pre se nt in some . The live r of a man is round-shape d, and re se mble s the same organ
in the ox. And, by the way, the abse nce above re fe rre d to of a gall-bladde r is at
time s me t with in the practice of augury. For instance , in a ce rtain district of
the C halcidic se ttle me nt in Euboe a the she e p are de void of gall-bladde rs; and in
Naxos ne arly all the quadrupe ds have one so large that fore igne rs whe n the y offe r
sacrifice with such victims are be wilde re d with fright, unde r the impre ssion that
the phe nome non is not due to natural cause s, but bode s some mischie f to the
individual offe re rs of the sacrifice . Again, the live r is attache d to the gre at
ve in, but it has no communication with the aorta; for the ve in that goe s off from
the gre at ve in goe s right through the live r, at a point whe re are the so-calle d
'portals' of the live r. The sple e n also is conne cte d only with the gre at ve in, for
a ve in e xte nds to the sple e n off from it. Afte r the se organs come the 'kidne ys',
and the se are place d close to the backbone , and re se mble in characte r the same
organ in kine . In all animals that are provide d with this organ, the right kidne y
is situate d highe r up than the othe r. It has also le ss fatty substance than the
le ft-hand one and is le ss moist. And this phe nome non also is obse rvable in all the
othe r animals alike . Furthe rmore , passage s or ducts le ad into the kidne ys both
from the gre at ve in and from the aorta, only not into the cavity. For, by the way,
the re is a cavity in the middle of the kidne y, bigge r in some cre ature s and le ss in
othe rs; but the re is none in the case of the se al. This latte r animal has kidne ys
re se mbling in shape the ide ntical organ in kine , but in its case the organs are
more solid than in any othe r known cre ature . The ducts that le ad into the kidne ys
lose the mse lve s in the substance of the kidne ys the mse lve s; and the proof that the y
e xte nd no farthe r re sts on the fact that the y contain no blood, nor is any clot
found the re in. The kidne ys, howe ve r, have , as has be e n said, a small cavity. From
this cavity in the kidne y the re le ad two conside rable ducts or ure te rs into the
bladde r; and othe rs spring from the aorta, strong and continuous. And to the middle
of e ach of the two kidne ys is attache d a hollow sine wy ve in, stre tching right along
the spine through the narrows; by and by the se ve ins are lost in e ithe r loin, and
again be come visible e xte nding to the flank. And the se off-branchings of the ve ins
te rminate in the bladde r. For the bladde r lie s at the e xtre mity, and is he ld in
position by the ducts stre tching from the kidne ys, along the stalk that e xte nds to
the ure thra; and pre tty we ll all round it is faste ne d by fine sine wy me mbrane s,
that re se mble to some e xte nt the thoracic diaphragm. The bladde r in man is,
proportionate ly to his size , tole rably large . To the stalk of the bladde r the
private part is attache d, the e xte rnal orifice s coale scing; but a little lowe r
down, one of the ope nings communicate s with the te sticle s and the othe r with the
bladde r. The pe nis is gristly and sine wy in its te xture . With it are conne cte d the
te sticle s in male animals, and the prope rtie s of the se organs we shall discuss in
our ge ne ral account of the said organ. All the se organs are similar in the
fe male ; for the re is no diffe re nce in re gard to the inte rnal organs, e xce pt in
re spe ct to the womb, and with re fe re nce to the appe arance of this organ I must
re fe r the re ade r to diagrams in my 'Anatomy'. The womb, howe ve r, is situate d ove r
the bowe l, and the bladde r lie s ove r the womb. But we must tre at by and by in our
page s of the womb of all fe male animals vie we d ge ne rally. For the wombs of all
fe male animals are not ide ntical, ne ithe r do the ir local dispositions coincide .
The se are the organs, inte rnal and e xte rnal, of man, and such is the ir nature and
such the ir local disposition. Book II
1 With re gard to animals in ge ne ral, some parts or organs are common to all, as
has be e n said, and some are common only to particular ge ne ra; the parts, more ove r,
are ide ntical with or diffe re nt from one anothe r on the line s alre ady re pe ate dly
laid down. For as a ge ne ral rule all animals that are ge ne rically distinct have the
majority of the ir parts or organs diffe re nt in form or spe cie s; and some of the m
the y have only analogically similar and dive rse in kind or ge nus, while the y have
othe rs that are alike in kind but spe cifically dive rse ; and many parts or organs
e xist in some animals, but not in othe rs. For instance , viviparous quadrupe ds
have all a he ad and a ne ck, and all the parts or organs of the he ad, but the y
diffe r e ach from othe r in the shape s of the parts. The lion has its ne ck compose d
of one single bone inste ad of ve rte brae ; but, whe n disse cte d, the animal is found
in all inte rnal characte rs to re se mble the dog. The quadrupe dal vivipara inste ad
of arms have fore le gs. This is true of all quadrupe ds, but such of the m as have
toe s have , practically spe aking, organs analogous to hands; at all e ve nts, the y use
the se fore -limbs for many purpose s as hands. And the y have the limbs on the le ft-
hand side le ss distinct from those on the right than man. The fore -limbs the n
se rve more or le ss the purpose of hands in quadrupe ds, with the e xce ption of the
e le phant. This latte r animal has its toe s some what indistinctly de fine d, and its
front le gs are much bigge r than its hinde r one s; it is five -toe d, and has short
ankle s to its hind fe e t. But it has a nose such in prope rtie s and such in size as
to allow of its using the same for a hand. For it e ats and drinks by lifting up its
food with the aid of this organ into its mouth, and with the same organ it lifts up
article s to the drive r on its back; with this organ it can pluck up tre e s by the
roots, and whe n walking through wate r it spouts the wate r up by me ans of it; and
this organ is capable of be ing crooke d or coile d at the tip, but not of fle xing
like a joint, for it is compose d of gristle . Of all animals man alone can le arn
to make e qual use of both hands. All animals have a part analogous to the che st
in man, but not similar to his; for the che st in man is broad, but that of all
othe r animals is narrow. More ove r, no othe r animal but man has bre asts in front;
the e le phant, ce rtainly, has two bre asts, not howe ve r in the che st, but ne ar it.
More ove r, also, animals have the fle xions of the ir fore and hind limbs in
dire ctions opposite to one anothe r, and in dire ctions the re ve rse of those obse rve d
in the arms and le gs of man; with the e xce ption of the e le phant. In othe r words,
with the viviparous quadrupe ds the front le gs be nd forwards and the hind one s
backwards, and the concavitie s of the two pairs of limbs thus face one anothe r.
The e le phant doe s not sle e p standing, as some we re wont to asse rt, but it be nds its
le gs and se ttle s down; only that in conse que nce of its we ight it cannot be nd its
le g on both side s simultane ously, but falls into a re cumbe nt position on one side
or the othe r, and in this position it goe s to sle e p. And it be nds its hind le gs
just as a man be nds his le gs. In the case of the ovipara, as the crocodile and
the lizard and the like , both pairs of le gs, fore and hind, be nd forwards, with a
slight swe rve on one side . The fle xion is similar in the case of the multipe ds;
only that the le gs in be twe e n the e xtre me e nds always move in a manne r inte rme diate
be twe e n that of those in front and those be hind, and accordingly be nd side ways
rathe r than backwards or forwards. But man be nds his arms and his le gs towards the
same point, and the re fore in opposite ways: that is to say, he be nds his arms
backwards, with just a slight inclination inwards, and his le gs frontwards. No
animal be nds both its fore -limbs and hind-limbs backwards; but in the case of all
animals the fle xion of the shoulde rs is in the opposite dire ction to that of the
e lbows or the joints of the fore le gs, and the fle xure in the hips to that of the
kne e s of the hind-le gs: so that since man diffe rs from othe r animals in fle xion,
those animals that posse ss such parts as the se move the m contrariwise to man.
Birds have the fle xions of the ir limbs like those of the quadrupe ds; for, although
bipe ds, the y be nd the ir le gs backwards, and inste ad of arms or front le gs have
wings which be nd frontwards. The se al is a kind of impe rfe ct or cripple d
quadrupe d; for just be hind the shoulde r-blade its front fe e t are place d, re se mbling
hands, like the front paws of the be ar; for the y are furnishe d with five toe s, and
e ach of the toe s has thre e fle xions and a nail of inconside rable size . The hind
fe e t are also furnishe d with five toe s; in the ir fle xions and nails the y re se mble
the front fe e t, and in shape the y re se mble a fish's tail. The move me nts
of animals, quadrupe d and multipe d, are crosswise , or in diagonals, and the ir
e quilibrium in standing posture is maintaine d crosswise ; and it is always the limb
on the right-hand side that is the first to move . The lion, howe ve r, and the two
spe cie s of came ls, both the Bactrian and the Arabian, progre ss by an amble ; and the
action so calle d is whe n the animal ne ve r ove rpasse s the right with the le ft, but
always follows close upon it. Whate ve r parts me n have in front, the se parts
quadrupe ds have be low, in or on the be lly; and whate ve r parts me n have be hind,
the se parts quadrupe ds have above on the ir backs. Most quadrupe ds have a tail; for
e ve n the se al has a tiny one re se mbling that of the stag. Re garding the tails of
the pithe coids we must give the ir distinctive prope rtie s by and by animal All
viviparous quadrupe ds are hair-coate d, whe re as man has only a fe w short hairs
e xce pting on the he ad, but, so far as the he ad is conce rne d, he is hairie r than any
othe r animal. Furthe r, of hair-coate d animals, the back is hairie r than the be lly,
which latte r is e ithe r comparative ly void of hair or smooth and void of hair
altoge the r. With man the re ve rse is the case . Man also has uppe r and lowe r
e ye lashe s, and hair unde r the armpits and on the pube s. No othe r animal has hair in
e ithe r of the se localitie s, or has an unde r e ye lash; though in the case of some
animals a fe w straggling hairs grow unde r the e ye lid. Of hair-coate d quadrupe ds
some are hairy all ove r the body, as the pig, the be ar, and the dog; othe rs are
e spe cially hairy on the ne ck and all round about it, as is the case with animals
that have a shaggy mane , such as the lion; othe rs again are e spe cially hairy on the
uppe r surface of the ne ck from the he ad as far as the withe rs, name ly, such as have
a cre ste d mane , as in the case with the horse , the mule , and, among the
undome sticate d horne d animals, the bison. The so-calle d hippe laphus also has a
mane on its withe rs, and the animal calle d pardion, in e ithe r case a thin mane
e xte nding from the he ad to the withe rs; the hippe laphus has, e xce ptionally, a be ard
by the larynx. Both the se animals have horns and are clove n-foote d; the fe male ,
howe ve r, of the hippe laphus has no horns. This latte r animal re se mble s the stag in
size ; it is found in the te rritory of the Arachotae , whe re the wild cattle also are
found. Wild cattle diffe r from the ir dome sticate d conge ne rs just as the wild boar
diffe rs from the dome sticate d one . That is to say the y are black, strong looking,
with a hook-nose d muzzle , and with horns lying more ove r the back. The horns of the
hippe laphus re se mble those of the gaze lle . The e le phant, by the way, is the
le ast hairy of all quadrupe ds. With animals, as a ge ne ral rule , the tail
corre sponds with the body as re gards thickne ss or thinne ss of hair-coating; that
is, with animals that have long tails, for some cre ature s have tails of altoge the r
insignificant size . C ame ls have an e xce ptional organ whe re in the y diffe r from
all othe r animals, and that is the so-calle d 'hump' on the ir back. The Bactrian
came l diffe rs from the Arabian; for the forme r has two humps and the latte r only
one , though it has, by the way, a kind of a hump be low like the one above , on
which, whe n it kne e ls, the we ight of the whole body re sts. The came l has four te ats
like the cow, a tail like that of an ass, and the privy parts of the male are
dire cte d backwards. It has one kne e in e ach le g, and the fle xure s of the limb are
not manifold, as some say, although the y appe ar to be so from the constricte d shape
of the re gion of the be lly. It has a huckle -bone like that of kine , but me agre and
small in proportion to its bulk. It is clove n-foote d, and has not got te e th in both
jaws; and it is clove n foote d in the following way: at the back the re is a slight
cle ft e xte nding as far up as the se cond joint of the toe s; and in front the re are
small hoove s on the tip of the first joint of the toe s; and a sort of we b passe s
across the cle ft, as in ge e se . The foot is fle shy unde rne ath, like that of the
be ar; so that, whe n the animal goe s to war, the y prote ct its fe e t, whe n the y ge t
sore , with sandals. The le gs of all quadrupe ds are bony, sine wy, and fle shle ss;
and in point of fact such is the case with all animals that are furnishe d with
fe e t, with the e xce ption of man. The y are also unfurnishe d with buttocks; and this
last point is plain in an e spe cial de gre e in birds. It is the re ve rse with man; for
the re is scarce ly any part of the body in which man is so fle shy as in the buttock,
the thigh, and the calf; for the part of the le g calle d gastroe ne mia or is fle shy.
Of bloode d and viviparous quadrupe ds some have the foot clove n into many parts, as
is the case with the hands and fe e t of man (for some animals, by the way, are many-
toe d, as the lion, the dog, and the pard); othe rs have fe e t clove n in twain, and
inste ad of nails have hoove s, as the she e p, the goat, the de e r, and the
hippopotamus; othe rs are unclove n of foot, such for instance as the solid-hoove d
animals, the horse and the mule . S wine are e ithe r clove n-foote d or unclove n-foote d;
for the re are in Illyria and in Pae onia and e lse whe re solid-hoove d swine . The
clove n-foote d animals have two cle fts be hind; in the solid-hoove d this part is
continuous and undivide d. Furthe rmore , of animals some are horne d, and some are
not so. The gre at majority of the horne d animals are clove n-foote d, as the ox, the
stag, the goat; and a solid-hoove d animal with a pair of horns has ne ve r ye t be e n
me t with. But a fe w animals are known to be single d-horne d and single -hoove d, as
the Indian ass; and one , to wit the oryx, is single horne d and clove n-hoove d. Of
all solid-hoove d animals the Indian ass alone has an astragalus or huckle -bone ; for
the pig, as was said above , is e ithe r solid-hoove d or clove n-foote d, and
conse que ntly has no we ll-forme d huckle -bone . Of the clove n foote d many are provide d
with a huckle -bone . Of the many-finge re d or many-toe d, no single one has be e n
obse rve d to have a huckle -bone , none of the othe rs any more than man. The lynx,
howe ve r, has some thing like a he miastragal, and the lion some thing re se mbling the
sculptor's 'labyrinth'. All the animals that have a huckle -bone have it in the
hinde r le gs. The y have also the bone place d straight up in the joint; the uppe r
part, outside ; the lowe r part, inside ; the side s calle d C oa turne d towards one
anothe r, the side s calle d C hia outside , and the ke raiae or 'horns' on the top.
This, the n, is the position of the huckle bone in the case of all animals provide d
with the part. S ome animals are , at one and the same time , furnishe d with a mane
and furnishe d also with a pair of horns be nt in towards one anothe r, as is the
bison (or aurochs), which is found in Pae onia and Mae dica. But all animals that are
horne d are quadrupe dal, e xce pt in case s whe re a cre ature is said me taphorically, or
by a figure of spe e ch, to have horns; just as the Egyptians de scribe the se rpe nts
found in the ne ighbourhood of The be s, while in point of fact the cre ature s have
me re ly protube rance s on the he ad sufficie ntly large to sugge st such an e pithe t.
Of horne d animals the de e r alone has a horn, or antle r, hard and solid throughout.
The horns of othe r animals are hollow for a ce rtain distance , and solid towards the
e xtre mity. The hollow part is de rive d from the skin, but the core round which this
is wrappe d-the hard part-is de rive d from the bone s; as is the case with the horns
of oxe n. The de e r is the only animal that she ds its horns, and it doe s so annually,
afte r re aching the age of two ye ars, and again re ne ws the m. All othe r animals
re tain the ir horns pe rmane ntly, unle ss the horns be damage d by accide nt. Again,
with re gard to the bre asts and the ge ne rative organs, animals diffe r wide ly from
one anothe r and from man. For instance , the bre asts of some animals are situate d in
front, e ithe r in the che st or ne ar to it, and the re are in such case s two bre asts
and two te ats, as is the case with man and the e le phant, as pre viously state d. For
the e le phant has two bre asts in the re gion of the axillae ; and the fe male e le phant
has two bre asts insignificant in size and in no way proportionate to the bulk of
the e ntire frame , in fact, so insignificant as to be invisible in a side ways vie w;
the male s also have bre asts, like the fe male s, e xce e dingly small. The she -be ar has
four bre asts. S ome animals have two bre asts, but situate d ne ar the thighs, and
te ats, like wise two in numbe r, as the she e p; othe rs have four te ats, as the cow.
S ome have bre asts ne ithe r in the che st nor at the thighs, but in the be lly, as the
dog and pig; and the y have a conside rable numbe r of bre asts or dugs, but not all of
e qual size . Thus the she pard has four dugs in the be lly, the lione ss two, and
othe rs more . The she -came l, also, has two dugs and four te ats, like the cow. Of
solid-hoove d animals the male s have no dugs, e xce pting in the case of male s that
take afte r the mothe r, which phe nome non is obse rvable in horse s. Of male animals
the ge nitals of some are e xte rnal, as is the case with man, the horse , and most
othe r cre ature s; some are inte rnal, as with the dolphin. With those that have the
organ e xte rnally place d, the organ in some case s is situate d in front, as in the
case s alre ady me ntione d, and of the se some have the organ de tache d, both pe nis and
te sticle s, as man; othe rs have pe nis and te sticle s close ly attache d to the be lly,
some more close ly, some le ss; for this organ is not de tache d in the wild boar nor
in the horse . The pe nis of the e le phant re se mble s that of the horse ; compare d
with the size of the animal it is disproportionate ly small; the te sticle s are not
visible , but are conce ale d inside in the vicinity of the kidne ys; and for this
re ason the male spe e dily give s ove r in the act of inte rcourse . The ge nitals of the
fe male are situate d whe re
the udde r is in she e p; whe n she is in he at, she draws the organ back and e xpose s
it e xte rnally, to facilitate the act of inte rcourse for the male ; and the organ
ope ns out to a conside rable e xte nt. With most animals the ge nitals have the
position above assigne d; but some animals discharge the ir urine backwards, as the
lynx, the lion, the came l, and the hare . Male animals diffe r from one anothe r, as
has be e n said, in this particular, but all fe male animals are re trominge nt: e ve n
the fe male e le phant like othe r animals, though she has the privy part be low the
thighs. In the male organ itse lf the re is a gre at dive rsity. For in some case s
the organ is compose d of fle sh and gristle , as in man; in such case s, the fle shy
part doe s not be come inflate d, but the gristly part is subje ct to e nlarge me nt. In
othe r case s, the organ is compose d of fibrous tissue , as with the came l and the
de e r; in othe r case s it is bony, as with the fox, the wolf, the marte n, and the
we ase l; for this organ in the we ase l has a bone . Whe n man has arrive d at
maturity, his uppe r part is smalle r than the lowe r one , but with all othe r bloode d
animals the re ve rse holds good. By the 'uppe r' part we me an all e xte nding from the
he ad down to the parts use d for e xcre tion of re siduum, and by the 'lowe r' part
e lse . With animals that have fe e t the hind le gs are to be rate d as the lowe r part
in our comparison of magnitude s, and with animals de void of fe e t, the tail, and the
like . Whe n animals arrive at maturity, the ir prope rtie s are as above state d; but
the y diffe r gre atly from one anothe r in the ir growth towards maturity. For
instance , man, whe n young, has his uppe r part large r than the lowe r, but in course
of growth he come s to re ve rse this condition; and it is owing to this circumstance
that-an e xce ptional instance , by the way-he doe s not progre ss in e arly life as he
doe s at maturity, but in infancy cre e ps on all fours; but some animals, in growth,
re tain the re lative proportion of the parts, as the dog. S ome animals at first have
the uppe r part smalle r and the lowe r part large r, and in course of growth the uppe r
part ge ts to be the large r, as is the case with the bushy-taile d animals such as
the horse ; for in the ir case the re is ne ve r, subse que ntly to birth, any incre ase in
the part e xte nding from the hoof to the haunch. Again, in re spe ct to the te e th,
animals diffe r gre atly both from one anothe r and from man. All animals that are
quadrupe dal, bloode d and viviparous, are furnishe d with te e th; but, to be gin with,
some are double -toothe d (or fully furnishe d with te e th in both jaws), and some are
not. For instance , horne d quadrupe ds are not double -toothe d; for the y have not got
the front te e th in the uppe r jaw; and some hornle ss animals, also, are not double
toothe d, as the came l. S ome animals have tusks, like the boar, and some have not.
Furthe r, some animals are saw-toothe d, such as the lion, the pard, and the dog; and
some have te e th that do not inte rlock but have flat opposing crowns, as the horse
and the ox; and by 'saw-toothe d' we me an such animals as inte rlock the sharp-
pointe d te e th in one jaw be twe e n the sharp-pointe d one s in the othe r. No animal is
the re that posse sse s both tusks and horns, nor ye t do e ithe r of the se structure s
e xist in any animal posse sse d of 'saw-te e th'. The front te e th are usually sharp,
and the back one s blunt. The se al is saw-toothe d throughout, inasmuch as he is a
sort of link with the class of fishe s; for fishe s are almost all saw-toothe d. No
animal of the se ge ne ra is provide d with double rows of te e th. The re is, howe ve r, an
animal of the sort, if we are to be lie ve C te sias. He assure s us that the Indian
wild be ast calle d the 'martichoras' has a triple row of te e th in both uppe r and
lowe r jaw; that it is as big as a lion and e qually hairy, and that its fe e t
re se mble those of the lion; that it re se mble s man in its face and e ars; that its
e ye s are blue , and its colour ve rmilion; that its tail is like that of the land-
scorpion; that it has a sting in the tail, and has the faculty of shooting off
arrow-wise the spine s that are attache d to the tail; that the sound of its voice is
a some thing be twe e n the sound of a pan-pipe and that of a trumpe t; that it can run
as swiftly as de e r, and that it is savage and a man-e ate r. Man she ds his te e th,
and so do othe r animals, as the horse , the mule , and the ass. And man she ds his
front te e th; but the re is no instance of an animal that she ds its molars. The pig
she ds none of its te e th at all. 2 With re gard
to dogs some doubts are e nte rtaine d, as some conte nd that the y she d no te e th
whate ve r, and othe rs that the y she d the canine s, but those alone ; the fact be ing,
that the y do she d the ir te e th like man, but that the circumstance e scape s
obse rvation, owing to the fact that the y ne ve r she d the m until e quivale nt te e th
have grown within the gums to take the place of the she d one s. We shall be
justifie d in supposing that the case is similar with wild be asts in ge ne ral; for
the y are said to she d the ir canine s only. Dogs can be distinguishe d from one
anothe r, the young from the old, by the ir te e th; for the te e th in young dogs are
white and sharp-pointe d; in old dogs, black and blunt.
3 In this particular, the horse diffe rs e ntire ly from animals in ge ne ral: for,
ge ne rally spe aking, as animals grow olde r the ir te e th ge t blacke r, but the horse 's
te e th grow white r with age . The so-calle d 'canine s' come in be twe e n the sharp
te e th and the broad or blunt one s, partaking of the form of both kinds; for the y
are broad at the base and sharp at the tip. Male s have more te e th than fe male s
in the case of me n, she e p, goats, and swine ; in the case of othe r animals
obse rvations have not ye t be e n made : but the more te e th the y have the more long-
live d are the y, as a rule , while those are short-live d in proportion that have
te e th fe we r in numbe r and thinly se t. 4 The
last te e th to come in man are molars calle d 'wisdom-te e th', which come at the age
of twe nty ye ars, in the case of both se xe s. C ase s have be e n known in wome n upwards.
of e ighty ye ars old whe re at the ve ry close of life the wisdom-te e th have come up,
causing gre at pain in the ir coming; and case s have be e n known of the like
phe nome non in me n too. This happe ns, whe n it doe s happe n, in the case of pe ople
whe re the wisdom-te e th have not come up in e arly ye ars.
5 The e le phant has four te e th on e ithe r side , by which it munche s its food,
grinding it like so much barle y-me al, and, quite apart from the se , it has its gre at
te e th, or tusks, two in numbe r. In the male the se tusks are comparative ly large and
curve d upwards; in the fe male , the y are comparative ly small and point in the
opposite dire ction; that is, the y look downwards towards the ground. The e le phant
is furnishe d with te e th at birth, but the tusks are not the n visible .
6 The tongue of the e le phant is e xce e dingly small, and situate d far back in the
mouth, so that it is difficult to ge t a sight of it.
7 Furthe rmore , animals diffe r from one anothe r in the re lative size of the ir
mouths. In some animals the mouth ope ns wide , as is the case with the dog, the
lion, and with all the saw-toothe d animals; othe r animals have small mouths, as
man; and othe rs have mouths of me dium capacity, as the pig and his conge ne rs.
(The Egyptian hippopotamus has a mane like a horse , is clove n-foote d like an ox,
and is snub-nose d. It has a huckle -bone like clove n-foote d animals, and tusks just
visible ; it has the tail of a pig, the ne igh of a horse , and the dime nsions of an
ass. The hide is so thick that spe ars are made out of it. In its inte rnal organs it
re se mble s the horse and the ass.) 8 S ome
animals share the prope rtie s of man and the quadrupe ds, as the ape , the monke y, and
the baboon. The monke y is a taile d ape . The baboon re se mble s the ape in form, only
that it is bigge r and stronge r, more like a dog in face , and is more savage in its
habits, and its te e th are more dog-like and more powe rful. Ape s are hairy on the
back in ke e ping with the ir quadrupe dal nature , and hairy on the be lly in ke e ping
with the ir human form-for, as was said above , this characte ristic is re ve rse d in
man and the quadrupe d-only that the hair is coarse , so that the ape is thickly
coate d both on the be lly and on the back. Its face re se mble s that of man in many
re spe cts; in othe r words, it has similar nostrils and e ars, and te e th like those of
man, both front te e th and molars. Furthe r, whe re as quadrupe ds in ge ne ral are not
furnishe d with lashe s on one of the two e ye lids, this cre ature has the m on both,
only ve ry thinly se t, e spe cially the unde r one s; in fact the y are ve ry
insignificant inde e d. And we must be ar in mind that all othe r quadrupe ds have no
unde r e ye lash at all. The ape has also in its che st two te ats upon poorly
de ve lope d bre asts. It has also arms like man, only cove re d with hair, and it be nds
the se le gs like man, with the conve xitie s of both limbs facing one anothe r. In
addition, it has hands and finge rs and nails like man, only that all the se parts
are some what more be ast-like in appe arance . Its fe e t are e xce ptional in kind. That
is, the y are like large hands, and the toe s are like finge rs, with the middle one
the longe st of all, and the unde r part of the foot is like a hand e xce pt for its
le ngth, and stre tche s out towards the e xtre mitie s like the palm of the hand; and
this palm at the afte r e nd is unusually hard, and in a clumsy obscure kind of way
re se mble s a he e l. The cre ature use s its fe e t e ithe r as hands or fe e t, and double s
the m up as one double s a fist. Its uppe r-arm and thigh are short in proportion
to the fore arm and the shin. It has no proje cting nave l, but only a hardne ss in
the ordinary locality of the nave l. Its uppe r part is much large r than its lowe r
part, as is the case with quadrupe ds; in fact, the proportion of the forme r to the
latte r is about as five to thre e . Owing to this circumstance and to the fact that
its fe e t re se mble hands and are compose d in a manne r of hand and of foot: of foot
in the he e l e xtre mity, of the hand in all e lse -for e ve n the toe s have what is
calle d a 'palm':-for the se re asons the animal is ofte ne r to be found on all fours
than upright. It has ne ithe r hips, inasmuch as it is a quadrupe d, nor ye t a tail,
inasmuch as it is a bipe d, e xce pt nor ye t a tal by the way that it has a tail as
small as small can be , just a sort of indication of a tail. The ge nitals of the
fe male re se mble those of the fe male in the human spe cie s; those of the male are
more like those of a dog than are those of a man.
9 The monke y, as has be e n obse rve d, is furnishe d with a tail. In all such
cre ature s the inte rnal organs are found unde r disse ction to corre spond to those of
man. S o much the n for the prope rtie s of the organs of such animals as bring
forth the ir young into the world alive . 1 0
Oviparous and bloode d quadrupe ds-and, by the way, no te rre strial bloode d animal is
oviparous unle ss it is quadrupe dal or is de void of fe e t altoge the r-are furnishe d
with a he ad, a ne ck, a back, uppe r and unde r parts, the front le gs and hind le gs,
and the part analogous to the che st, all as in the case of viviparous quadrupe ds,
and with a tail, usually large , in e xce ptional case s small. And all the se cre ature s
are many-toe d, and the se ve ral toe s are clove n apart. Furthe rmore , the y all have
the ordinary organs of se nsation, including a tongue , with the e xce ption of the
Egyptian crocodile . This latte r animal, by the way, re se mble s ce rtain fishe s.
For, as a ge ne ral rule , fishe s have a prickly tongue , not fre e in its move me nts;
though the re are some fishe s that pre se nt a smooth undiffe re ntiate d surface whe re
the tongue should be , until you ope n the ir mouths wide and make a close inspe ction.
Again, oviparous bloode d quadrupe ds are unprovide d with e ars, but posse ss only the
passage for he aring; ne ithe r have the y bre asts, nor a copulatory organ, nor
e xte rnal te sticle s, but inte rnal one s only; ne ithe r are the y hair coate d, but are
in all case s cove re d with scaly plate s. More ove r, the y are without e xce ption saw-
toothe d. Rive r crocodile s have pigs' e ye s, large te e th and tusks, and strong
nails, and an impe ne trable skin compose d of scaly plate s. The y se e but poorly unde r
wate r, but above the surface of it with re markable acute ne ss. As a rule , the y pass
the day-time on land and the nighttime in the wate r; for the te mpe rature of the
wate r is at night-time more ge nial than that of the ope n air.
1 1 The chame le on re se mble s the lizard in the ge ne ral configuration of its body,
but the ribs stre tch downwards and me e t toge the r unde r the be lly as is the case
with fishe s, and the spine sticks up as with the fish. Its face re se mble s that of
the baboon. Its tail is e xce e dingly long, te rminate s in a sharp point, and is for
the most part coile d up, like a strap of le athe r. It stands highe r off the ground
than the lizard, but the fle xure of the le gs is the same in both cre ature s. Each of
its fe e t is divide d into two parts, which be ar the same re lation to one anothe r
that the thumb and the re st of the hand be ar to one anothe r in man. Each of the se
parts is for a short distance divide d afte r a fashion into toe s; on the front fe e t
the inside part is divide d into thre e and the outside into two, on the hind fe e t
the inside part into two and the outside into thre e ; it has claws also on the se
parts re se mbling those of birds of pre y. Its body is rough all ove r, like that of
the crocodile . Its e ye s are situate d in a hollow re ce ss, and are ve ry large and
round, and are e nve lope d in a skin re se mbling that which cove rs the e ntire body;
and in the middle a slight ape rture is le ft for vision, through which the animal
se e s, for it ne ve r cove rs up this ape rture with the cutane ous e nve lope . It ke e ps
twisting its e ye s round and shifting its line of vision in e ve ry dire ction, and
thus contrive s to ge t a sight of any obje ct that it wants to se e . The change in its
colour take s place whe n it is inflate d with air; it is the n black, not unlike the
crocodile , or gre e n like the lizard but black-spotte d like the pard. This change of
colour take s place ove r the whole body alike , for the e ye s and the tail come alike
unde r its influe nce . In its move me nts it is ve ry sluggish, like the tortoise . It
assume s a gre e nish hue in dying, and re tains this hue afte r de ath. It re se mble s the
lizard in the position of the oe sophagus and the windpipe . It has no fle sh anywhe re
e xce pt a fe w scraps of fle sh on the he ad and on the jaws and ne ar to the root of
the tail. It has blood only round about the he art, the e ye s, the re gion above the
he art, and in all the ve ins e xte nding from the se parts; and in all the se the re is
but little blood afte r all. The brain is situate d a little above the e ye s, but
conne cte d with the m. Whe n the oute r skin is drawn aside from off the e ye , a
some thing is found surrounding the e ye , that gle ams through like a thin ring of
coppe r. Me mbrane s e xte nd we ll nigh ove r its e ntire frame , nume rous and strong, and
surpassing in re spe ct of numbe r and re lative stre ngth those found in any othe r
animal. Afte r be ing cut ope n along its e ntire le ngth it continue s to bre athe for a
conside rable time ; a ve ry slight motion goe s on in the re gion of the he art, and,
while contraction is e spe cially manife ste d in the ne ighbourhood of the ribs, a
similar motion is more or le ss disce rnible ove r the whole body. It has no sple e n
visible . It hibe rnate s, like the lizard. 1 2
Birds also in some parts re se mble the above me ntione d animals; that is to say, the y
have in all case s a he ad, a ne ck, a back, a be lly, and what is analogous to the
che st. The bird is re markable among animals as having two fe e t, like man; only, by
the way, it be nds the m backwards as quadrupe ds be nd the ir hind le gs, as was notice d
pre viously. It has ne ithe r hands nor front fe e t, but wings-an e xce ptional structure
as compare d with othe r animals. Its haunch-bone is long, like a thigh, and is
attache d to the body as far as the middle of the be lly; so like to a thigh is it
that whe n vie we d se parate ly it looks like a re al one , while the re al thigh is a
se parate structure be twixt it and the shin. Of all birds those that have crooke d
talons have the bigge st thighs and the stronge st bre asts. All birds are furnishe d
with many claws, and all have the toe s se parate d more or le ss asunde r; that is to
say, in the gre ate r part the toe s are cle arly distinct from one anothe r, for e ve n
the swimming birds, although the y are we b-foote d, have still the ir claws fully
articulate d and distinctly diffe re ntiate d from one anothe r. Birds that fly high in
air are in all case s four-toe d: that is, the gre ate r part have thre e toe s in front
and one be hind in place of a he e l; some fe w have two in front and two be hind, as
the wryne ck. This latte r bird is some what bigge r than the chaffinch, and is
mottle d in appe arance . It is pe culiar in the arrange me nt of its toe s, and re se mble s
the snake in the structure of its tongue ; for the cre ature can protrude its tongue
to the e xte nt of four finge r-bre adths, and the n draw it back again. More ove r, it
can twist its he ad backwards while ke e ping all the re st of its body still, like the
se rpe nt. It has big claws, some what re se mbling those of the woodpe cke r. Its note is
a shrill chirp. Birds are furnishe d with a mouth, but with an e xce ptional one ,
for the y have ne ithe r lips nor te e th, but a be ak. Ne ithe r have the y e ars nor a
nose , but only passage s for the se nsations conne cte d with the se organs: that for
the nostrils in the be ak, and that for he aring in the he ad. Like all othe r animals
the y all have two e ye s, and the se are de void of lashe s. The he avy-bodie d (or
gallinace ous) birds close the e ye by me ans of the lowe r lid, and all birds blink by
me ans of a skin e xte nding ove r the e ye from the inne r corne r; the owl and its
conge ne rs also close the e ye by me ans of the uppe r lid. The same phe nome non is
obse rvable in the animals that are prote cte d by horny scute s, as in the lizard and
its conge ne rs; for the y all without e xce ption close the e ye with the lowe r lid, but
the y do not blink like birds. Furthe r, birds have ne ithe r scute s nor hair, but
fe athe rs; and the fe athe rs are invariably furnishe d with quills. The y have no tail,
but a rump with tail-fe athe rs, short in such as are long-le gge d and we b-foote d,
large in othe rs. The se latte r kinds of birds fly with the ir fe e t tucke d up close to
the be lly; but the small rumpe d or short-taile d birds fly with the ir le gs stre tche d
out at full le ngth. All are furnishe d with a tongue , but the organ is variable ,
be ing long in some birds and broad in othe rs. C e rtain spe cie s of birds above all
othe r animals, and ne xt afte r man, posse ss the faculty of utte ring articulate
sounds; and this faculty is chie fly de ve lope d in broad-tongue d birds. No oviparous
cre ature has an e piglottis ove r the windpipe , but the se animals so manage the
ope ning and shutting of the windpipe as not to allow any solid substance to ge t
down into the lung. S ome spe cie s of birds are furnishe d additionally with spurs,
but no bird with crooke d talons is found so provide d. The birds with talons are
among those that fly we ll, but those that have spurs are among the he avy-bodie d.
Again, some birds have a cre st. As a ge ne ral rule the cre st sticks up, and is
compose d of fe athe rs only; but the cre st of the barn-door cock is e xce ptional in
kind,
for, whe re as it is not just e xactly fle sh, at the same time it is not e asy to say
what e lse it is. 1 3 Of wate r animals the ge nus
of fishe s constitute s a single group apart from the re st, and including many
dive rse forms. In the first place , the fish has a he ad, a back, a be lly, in the
ne ighbourhood of which last are place d the stomach and visce ra; and be hind it has a
tail of continuous, undivide d shape , but not, by the way, in all case s alike . No
fish has a ne ck, or any limb, or te sticle s at all, within or without, or bre asts.
But, by the way this abse nce of bre asts may pre dicate d of all non-viviparous
animals; and in point of fact viviparous animals are not in all case s provide d with
the organ, e xce pting such as are dire ctly viviparous without be ing first oviparous.
Thus the dolphin is dire ctly viviparous, and accordingly we find it furnishe d with
two bre asts, not situate d high up, but in the ne ighbourhood of the ge nitals. And
this cre ature is not provide d, like quadrupe ds, with visible te ats, but has two
ve nts, one on e ach flank, from which the milk flows; and its young have to follow
afte r it to ge t suckle d, and this phe nome non has be e n actually witne sse d.
Fishe s, the n, as has be e n obse rve d, have no bre asts and no passage for the ge nitals
visible e xte rnally. But the y have an e xce ptional organ in the gills, whe re by, afte r
taking the wate r in the mouth, the y discharge it again; and in the fins, of which
the gre ate r part have four, and the lanky one s two, as, for instance , the e e l, and
the se two situate d ne ar to the gills. In like manne r the gre y mulle t-as, for
instance , the mulle t found in the lake at S iphae -have only two fins; and the same
is the case with the fish calle d Ribbon-fish. S ome of the lanky fishe s have no fins
at all, such as the murae na, nor gills articulate d like those of othe r fish. And
of those fish that are provide d with gills, some have cove rings for this organ,
whe re as all the se lachians have the organ unprote cte d by a cove r. And those fishe s
that have cove rings or ope rcula for the gills have in all case s the ir gills place d
side ways; whe re as, among se lachians, the broad one s have the gills down be low on
the be lly, as the torpe do and the ray, while the lanky one s have the organ place d
side ways, as is the case in all the dog-fish. The fishing-frog has gills place d
side ways, and cove re d not with a spiny ope rculum, as in all but the se lachian
fishe s, but with one of skin. More ve r, with fishe s furnishe d with gills, the
gills in some case s are simple in othe rs duplicate ; and the last gill in the
dire ction of the body is always simple . And, again, some fishe s have fe w gills, and
othe rs have a gre at numbe r; but all alike have the same numbe r on both side s. Those
that have the le ast numbe r have one gill on e ithe r side , and this one duplicate ,
like the boar-fish; othe rs have two on e ithe r side , one simple and the othe r
duplicate , like the conge r and the scarus; othe rs have four on e ithe r side , simple ,
as the e lops, the synagris, the murae na, and the e e l; othe rs have four, all, with
the e xce ption of the hindmost one , in double rows, as the wrasse , the pe rch, the
she at-fish, and the carp. The dog-fish have all the ir gills double , five on a side ;
and the sword-fish has e ight double gills. S o much for the numbe r of gills as found
in fishe s. Again, fishe s diffe r from othe r animals in more ways than as re gards
the gills. For the y are not cove re d with hairs as are viviparous land animals, nor,
as is the case with ce rtain oviparous quadrupe ds, with te sse llate d scute s, nor,
like birds, with fe athe rs; but for the most part the y are cove re d with scale s. S ome
fe w are rough-skinne d, while the smooth-skinne d are ve ry fe w inde e d. Of the
S e lachia some are rough-skinne d and some smooth-skinne d; and among the smooth-
skinne d fishe s are include d the conge r, the e e l, and the tunny. All fishe s are
saw-toothe d e xce pting the scarus; and the te e th in all case s are sharp and se t in
many rows, and in some case s are place d on the tongue . The tongue is hard and
spiny, and so firmly attache d that fishe s in many instance s se e m to be de void of
the organ altoge the r. The mouth in some case s is wide -stre tche d, as it is with some
viviparous quadrupe ds.... With re gard to organs of se nse , all save e ye s, fishe s
posse ss none of the m, ne ithe r the organs nor the ir passage s, ne ithe r e ars nor
nostrils; but all fishe s are furnishe d with e ye s, and the e ye s de void of lids,
though the e ye s are not hard; with re gard to the organs conne cte d with the othe r
se nse s, he aring and sme ll, the y are de void alike of the organs the mse lve s and of
passage s indicative of the m. Fishe s without e xce ption are supplie d with blood.
S ome of the m are oviparous, and some viviparous; scaly fish are invariably
oviparous, but cartilaginous fishe s are all viviparous, with the single e xce ption
of the fishing-frog. 1 4 Of bloode d animals
the re now re mains the se rpe nt ge nus. This ge nus is common to both e le me nts, for,
while most spe cie s compre he nde d the re in are land animals, a small minority, to wit
the aquatic spe cie s, pass the ir live s in fre sh wate r. The re are also se a-se rpe nts,
in shape to a gre at e xte nt re se mbling the ir conge ne rs of the land, with this
e xce ption that the he ad in the ir case is some what like the he ad of the conge r; and
the re are se ve ral kinds of se a-se rpe nt, and the diffe re nt kinds diffe r in colour;
the se animals are not found in ve ry de e p wate r. S e rpe nts, like fish, are de void of
fe e t. The re are also se a-scolope ndras, re se mbling in shape the ir land conge ne rs,
but some what le ss in re gard to magnitude . The se cre ature s are found in the
ne ighbourhood of rocks; as compare d with the ir land conge ne rs the y are re dde r in
colour, are furnishe d with fe e t in gre ate r numbe rs and with le gs of more de licate
structure . And the same re mark applie s to the m as to the se a-se rpe nts, that the y
are not found in ve ry de e p wate r. Of fishe s whose habitat is in the vicinity of
rocks the re is a tiny one , which some call the Eche ne is, or 'ship-holde r', and
which is by some pe ople use d as a charm to bring luck in affairs of law and love .
The cre ature is unfit for e ating. S ome pe ople asse rt that it has fe e t, but this is
not the case : it appe ars, howe ve r, to be furnishe d with fe e t from the fact that its
fins re se mble those organs. S o much, the n, for the e xte rnal parts of bloode d
animals, as re gards the ir numbe rs, the ir prope rtie s, and the ir re lative
dive rsitie s. 1 5 As for the prope rtie s of the
inte rnal organs, the se we must first discuss in the case of the animals that are
supplie d with blood. For the principal ge ne ra diffe r from the re st of animals, in
that the forme r are supplie d with blood and the latte r are not; and the forme r
include man, viviparous and oviparous quadrupe ds, birds, fishe s, ce tace ans, and all
the othe rs that come unde r no ge ne ral de signation by re ason of the ir not forming
ge ne ra, but groups of which simply the spe cific name is pre dicable , as whe n we say
'the se rpe nt,' the 'crocodile '. All viviparous quadrupe ds, the n, are furnishe d
with an oe sophagus and a windpipe , situate d as in man; the same state me nt is
applicable to oviparous quadrupe ds and to birds, only that the latte r pre se nt
dive rsitie s in the shape s of the se organs. As a ge ne ral rule , all animals that take
up air and bre athe it in and out are furnishe d with a lung, a windpipe , and an
oe sophagus, with the windpipe and oe sophagus not admitting of dive rsity in
situation but admitting of dive rsity in prope rtie s, and with the lung admitting of
dive rsity in both the se re spe cts. Furthe r, all bloode d animals have a he art and a
diaphragm or midriff; but in small animals the e xiste nce of the latte r organ is not
so obvious owing to its de licacy and minute size . In re gard to the he art the re
is an e xce ptional phe nome non obse rvable in oxe n. In othe r words, the re is one
spe cie s of ox whe re , though not in all case s, a bone is found inside the he art.
And, by the way, the horse 's he art also has a bone inside it. The ge ne ra
re fe rre d to above are not in all case s furnishe d with a lung: for instance , the
fish is de void of the organ, as is also e ve ry animal furnishe d with gills. All
bloode d animals are furnishe d with a live r. As a ge ne ral rule bloode d animals are
furnishe d with a sple e n; but with the gre at majority of non-viviparous but
oviparous animals the sple e n is so small as all but to e scape obse rvation; and this
is the case with almost all birds, as with the pige on, the kite , the falcon, the
owl: in point of fact, the ae goce phalus is de void of the organ altoge the r. With
oviparous quadrupe ds the case is much the same as with the viviparous; that is to
say, the y also have the sple e n e xce e dingly minute , as the tortoise , the fre shwate r
tortoise , the toad, the lizard, the crocodile , and the frog. S ome animals have a
gall-bladde r close to the live r, and othe rs have not. Of viviparous quadrupe ds the
de e r is without the organ, as also the roe , the horse , the mule , the ass, the se al,
and some kinds of pigs. Of de e r those that are calle d Achainae appe ar to have gall
in the ir tail, but what is so calle d doe s re se mble gall in colour, though it is not
so comple te ly fluid, and the organ inte rnally re se mble s a sple e n. Howe ve r,
without any e xce ption, stags are found to have maggots living inside the he ad, and
the habitat of the se cre ature s is in the hollow unde rne ath the root of the tongue
and in the ne ighbourhood of the ve rte bra to which the he ad is attache d. The se
cre ature s are as large as the large st grubs; the y grow all toge the r in a cluste r,
and the y are usually about twe nty in numbe r. De e r the n, as has be e n obse rve d,
are without a gall-bladde r; the ir gut, howe ve r, is so bitte r that e ve n hounds
re fuse to e at it unle ss the animal is
e xce ptionally fat. With the e le phant also the live r is unfurnishe d with a gall-
bladde r, but whe n the animal is cut in the re gion whe re the organ is found in
animals furnishe d with it, the re ooze s out a fluid re se mbling gall, in gre ate r or
le ss quantitie s. Of animals that take in se a-wate r and are furnishe d with a lung,
the dolphin is unprovide d with a gall-bladde r. Birds and fishe s all have the organ,
as also oviparous quadrupe ds, all to a gre ate r or a le sse r e xte nt. But of fishe s
some have the organ close to the live r, as the dogfishe s, the she at-fish, the rhine
or ange l-fish, the smooth skate , the torpe do, and, of the lanky fishe s, the e e l,
the pipe -fish, and the hamme r-he ade d shark. The callionymus, also, has the gall-
bladde r close to the live r, and in no othe r fish doe s the organ attain so gre at a
re lative size . Othe r fishe s have the organ close to the gut, attache d to the live r
by ce rtain e xtre me ly fine ducts. The bonito has the gall-bladde r stre tche d
alongside the gut and e qualling it in le ngth, and ofte n a double fold of it. othe rs
have the organ in the re gion of the gut; in some case s far off, in othe rs ne ar; as
the fishing-frog, the e lops, the synagris, the murae na, and the sword-fish. Ofte n
animals of the same spe cie s show this dive rsity of position; as, for instance , some
conge rs are found with the organ attache d close to the live r, and othe rs with it
de tache d from and be low it. The case is much the same with birds: that is, some
have the gall-bladde r close to the stomach, and othe rs close to the gut, as the
pige on, the rave n, the quail, the swallow, and the sparrow; some have it ne ar at
once to the live r and to the stomach as the ae goce phalus; othe rs have it ne ar at
once to the live r and the gut, as the falcon and the kite .
1 6 Again, all viviparous quadrupe ds are furnishe d with kidne ys and a bladde r. Of
the ovipara that are not quadrupe dal the re is no instance known of an animal,
whe the r fish or bird, provide d with the se organs. Of the ovipara that are
quadrupe dal, the turtle alone is provide d with the se organs of a magnitude to
corre spond with the othe r organs of the animal. In the turtle the kidne y re se mble s
the same organ in the ox; that is to say, it looks one single organ compose d of a
numbe r of small one s. (The bison also re se mble s the ox in all its inte rnal parts).
1 7 With all animals that are furnishe d with the se parts, the parts are similarly
situate d, and with the e xce ption of man, the he art is in the middle ; in man,
howe ve r, as has be e n obse rve d, the he art is place d a little to the le ft-hand side .
In all animals the pointe d e nd of the he art turns frontwards; only in fish it would
at first sight se e m othe rwise , for the pointe d e nd is turne d not towards the
bre ast, but towards the he ad and the mouth. And (in fish) the ape x is attache d to a
tube just whe re the right and le ft gills me e t toge the r. The re are othe r ducts
e xte nding from the he art to e ach of the gills, gre ate r in the gre ate r fish, le sse r
in the le sse r; but in the large fishe s the duct at the pointe d e nd of the he art is
a tube , white -coloure d and e xce e dingly thick. Fishe s in some fe w case s have an
oe sophagus, as the conge r and the e e l; and in the se the organ is small. In
fishe s that are furnishe d with an undivide d live r, the organ lie s e ntire ly on the
right side ; whe re the live r is clove n from the root, the large r half of the organ
is on the right side : for in some fishe s the two parts are de tache d from one
anothe r, without any coale sce nce at the root, as is the case with the dogfish. And
the re is also a spe cie s of hare in what is name d the Fig district, ne ar Lake Bolbe ,
and e lse whe re , which animal might be take n to have two live rs owing to the le ngth
of the conne cting ducts, similar to the structure in the lung of birds. The
sple e n in all case s, whe n normally place d, is on the le ft-hand side , and the
kidne ys also lie in the same position in all cre ature s that posse ss the m. The re
have be e n known instance s of quadrupe ds unde r disse ction, whe re the sple e n was on
the right hand and the live r on the le ft; but all such case s are re garde d as
supe rnatural. In all animals the wind-pipe e xte nds to the lung, and the manne r
how, we shall discuss he re afte r; and the oe sophagus, in all that have the organ,
e xte nds through the midriff into the stomach. For, by the way, as has be e n
obse rve d, most fishe s have no oe sophagus, but the stomach is unite d dire ctly with
the mouth, so that in some case s whe n big fish are pursuing little one s, the
stomach tumble s forward into the mouth. All the afore -me ntione d animals have a
stomach, and one similarly situate d, that is to say, situate d dire ctly unde r the
midriff; and the y have a gut conne cte d the re with and closing at the outle t of the
re siduum and at what is te rme d the 're ctum'. Howe ve r, animals pre se nt dive rsitie s
in the structure of the ir stomachs. In the first place , of the viviparous
quadrupe ds, such of the horne d animals as are not e qually furnishe d with te e th in
both jaws are furnishe d with four such chambe rs. The se animals, by the way, are
those that are said to che w the cud. In the se animals the oe sophagus e xte nds from
the mouth downwards along the lung, from the midriff to the big stomach (or
paunch); and this stomach is rough inside and se mi-partitione d. And conne cte d with
it ne ar to the e ntry of the oe sophagus is what from its appe arance is te rme d the
're ticulum' (or hone ycomb bag); for outside it is like the stomach, but inside it
re se mble s a ne tte d cap; and the re ticulum is a gre at de al smalle r than the stomach.
C onne cte d with this is the 'e chinus' (or many-plie s), rough inside and laminate d,
and of about the same size as the re ticulum. Ne xt afte r this come s what is calle d
the 'e nystrum' (or abomasum), large r an longe r than the e chinus, furnishe d inside
with nume rous folds or ridge s, large and smooth. Afte r all this come s the gut.
S uch is the stomach of those quadrupe ds that are horne d and have an unsymme trical
de ntition; and the se animals diffe r one from anothe r in the shape and size of the
parts, and in the fact of the oe sophagus re aching the stomach ce ntralwise in some
case s and side ways in othe rs. Animals that are furnishe d e qually with te e th in both
jaws have one stomach; as man, the pig, the dog, the be ar, the lion, the wolf. (The
Thos, by the by, has all its inte rnal organs similar to the wolf's.) All the se ,
the n have a single stomach, and afte r that the gut; but the stomach in some is
comparative ly large , as in the pig and be ar, and the stomach of the pig has a fe w
smooth folds or ridge s; othe rs have a much smalle r stomach, not much bigge r than
the gut, as the lion, the dog, and man. In the othe r animals the shape of the
stomach varie s in the dire ction of one or othe r of those alre ady me ntione d; that
is, the stomach in some animals re se mble s that of the pig; in othe rs that of the
dog, alike with the large r animals and the smalle r one s. In all the se animals
dive rsitie s occur in re gard to the size , the shape , the thickne ss or the thinne ss
of the stomach, and also in re gard to the place whe re the oe sophagus ope ns into it.
The re is also a diffe re nce in structure in the gut of the two groups of animals
above me ntione d (those with unsymme trical and those with symme trical de ntition) in
size , in thickne ss, and in foldings. The inte stine s in those animals whose jaws
are une qually furnishe d with te e th are in all case s the large r, for the animals
the mse lve s are large r than those in the othe r cate gory; for ve ry fe w of the m are
small, and no single one of the horne d animals is ve ry small. And some posse ss
appe ndage s (or cae ca) to the gut, but no animal that has not incisors in both jaws
has a straight gut. The e le phant has a gut constricte d into chambe rs, so
constructe d that the animal appe ars to have four stomachs; in it the food is found,
but the re is no distinct and se parate re ce ptacle . Its visce ra re se mble those of the
pig, only that the live r is four time s the size of that of the ox, and the othe r
visce ra in like proportion, while the sple e n is comparative ly small. Much the
same may be pre dicate d of the prope rtie s of the stomach and the gut in oviparous
quadrupe ds, as in the land tortoise , the turtle , the lizard, both crocodile s, and,
in fact, in all animals of the like kind; that is to say, the ir stomach is one and
simple , re se mbling in some case s that of the pig, and in othe r case s that of the
dog. The se rpe nt ge nus is similar and in almost all re spe cts furnishe d similarly
to the saurians among land animals, if one could only imagine the se saurians to be
incre ase d in le ngth and to be de void of le gs. That is to say, the se rpe nt is coate d
with te sse llate d scute s, and re se mble s the saurian in its back and be lly; only, by
the way, it has no te sticle s, but, like fishe s, has two ducts conve rging into one ,
and an ovary long and bifurcate . The re st of its inte rnal organs are ide ntical with
those of the saurians, e xce pt that, owing to the narrowne ss and le ngth of the
animal, the visce ra are corre spondingly narrow and e longate d, so that the y are apt
to e scape re cognition from the similaritie s in shape . Thus, the windpipe of the
cre ature is e xce ptionally long, and the oe sophagus is longe r still, and the
windpipe comme nce s so close to the mouth that the tongue appe ars to be unde rne ath
it; and the windpipe se e ms to proje ct ove r the tongue , owing to the fact that the
tongue draws back into a she ath and doe s not re main in its place as in othe r
animals. The tongue , more ove r, is thin and long and black, and can be protrude d to
a gre at distance . And both se rpe nts and saurians have this altoge the r e xce ptional
prope rty in the tongue , that it is forke d at the oute r e xtre mity, and this prope rty
is the more marke d in the se rpe nt, for the tips of his tongue are as thin as hairs.
The
se al, also, by the way, has a split tongue . The stomach of the se rpe nt is like
a more spacious gut, re se mbling the stomach of the dog; the n come s the gut, long,
narrow, and single to the e nd. The he art is situate d close to the pharynx, small
and kidne y-shape d; and for this re ason the organ might in some case s appe ar not to
have the pointe d e nd turne d towards the bre ast. The n come s the lung, single , and
articulate d with a me mbranous passage , ve ry long, and quite de tache d from the
he art. The live r is long and simple ; the sple e n is short and round: as is the case
in both re spe cts with the saurians. Its gall re se mble s that of the fish; the wate r-
snake s have it be side the live r, and the othe r snake s have it usually be side the
gut. The se cre ature s are all saw-toothe d. The ir ribs are as nume rous as the days of
the month; in othe r words, the y are thirty in numbe r. S ome affirm that the same
phe nome non is obse rvable with se rpe nts as with swallow chicks; in othe r words, the y
say that if you prick out a se rpe nt's e ye s the y will grow again. And furthe r, the
tails of saurians and of se rpe nts, if the y be cut off, will grow again. With
fishe s the prope rtie s of the gut and stomach are similar; that is, the y have a
stomach single and simple , but variable in shape according to spe cie s. For in some
case s the stomach is gut-shape d, as with the scarus, or parrot-fish; which fish, by
the way, appe ars to be the only fish that che ws the cud. And the whole le ngth of
the gut is simple , and if it have a re duplication or kink it loose ns out again into
a simple form. An e xce ptional prope rty in fishe s and in birds for the most part
is the be ing furnishe d with gut-appe ndage s or cae ca. Birds have the m low down and
fe w in numbe r. Fishe s have the m high up about the stomach, and some time s nume rous,
as in the goby, the gale os, the pe rch, the scorpae na, the citharus, the re d mulle t,
and the sparus; the ce stre us or gre y mulle t has se ve ral of the m on one side of the
be lly, and on the othe r side only one . S ome fish posse ss the se appe ndage s but only
in small numbe rs, as the he patus and the glaucus; and, by the way, the y are fe w
also in the dorado. The se fishe s diffe r also from one anothe r within the same
spe cie s, for in the dorado one individual has many and anothe r fe w. S ome fishe s are
e ntire ly without the part, as the majority of the se lachians. As for all the re st,
some of the m have a fe w and some a gre at many. And in all case s whe re the gut-
appe ndage s are found in fish, the y are found close up to the stomach. In re gard
to the ir inte rnal parts birds diffe r from othe r animals and from one anothe r. S ome
birds, for instance , have a crop in front of the stomach, as the barn-door cock,
the cushat, the pige on, and the partridge ; and the crop consists of a large hollow
skin, into which the food first e nte rs and whe re it lie s inge ste d. Just whe re the
crop le ave s the oe sophagus it is some what narrow; by and by it broade ns out, but
whe re it communicate s with the stomach it narrows down again. The stomach (or
gizzard) in most birds is fle shy and hard, and inside is a strong skin which come s
away from the fle shy part. Othe r birds have no crop, but inste ad of it an
oe sophagus wide and roomy, e ithe r all the way or in the part le ading to the
stomach, as with the daw, the rave n, and the carrion-crow. The quail also has the
oe sophagus wide ne d out at the lowe r e xtre mity, and in the ae goce phalus and the owl
the organ is slightly broade r at the bottom than at the top. The duck, the goose ,
the gull, the catarrhacte s, and the gre at bustard have the oe sophagus wide and
roomy from one e nd to the othe r, and the same applie s to a gre at many othe r birds.
In some birds the re is a portion of the stomach that re se mble s a crop, as in the
ke stre l. In the case of small birds like the swallow and the sparrow ne ithe r the
oe sophagus nor the crop is wide , but the stomach is long. S ome fe w have ne ithe r a
crop nor a dilate d oe sophagus, but the latte r is e xce e dingly long, as in long
ne cke d birds, such as the porphyrio, and, by the way, in the case of all the se
birds the e xcre me nt is unusually moist. The quail is e xce ptional in re gard to the se
organs, as compare d with othe r birds; in othe r words, it has a crop, and at the
same time its oe sophagus is wide and spacious in front of the stomach, and the crop
is at some distance , re lative ly to its size , from the oe sophagus at that part.
Furthe r, in most birds, the gut is thin, and simple whe n loose ne d out. The gut-
appe ndage s or cae ca in birds, as has be e n obse rve d, are fe w in numbe r, and are not
situate d high up, as in fishe s, but low down towards the e xtre mity of the gut.
Birds, the n, have cae ca-not all, but the gre ate r part of the m, such as the barn-
door cock, the partridge , the duck, the night-rave n, (the localus,) the ascalaphus,
the goose , the swan, the gre at bustard, and the owl. S ome of the little birds also
have the se appe ndage s; but the cae ca in the ir case are e xce e dingly minute , as in
the sparrow. Book III
1 Now that we have state d the magnitude s, the prope rtie s, and the re lative
diffe re nce s of the othe r inte rnal organs, it re mains for us to tre at of the organs
that contribute to ge ne ration. The se organs in the fe male are in all case s
inte rnal; in the male the y pre se nt nume rous dive rsitie s. In the bloode d animals
some male s are altoge the r de void of te sticle s, and some have the organ but situate d
inte rnally; and of those male s that have the organ inte rnally situate d, some have
it close to the loin in the ne ighbourhood of the kidne y and othe rs close to the
be lly. Othe r male s have the organ situate d e xte rnally. In the case of the se last,
the pe nis is in some case s attache d to the be lly, whilst in othe rs it is loose ly
suspe nde d, as is the case also with the te sticle s; and, in the case s whe re the
pe nis is attache d to the be lly, the attachme nt varie s accordingly as the animal is
e mprosthure tic or opisthure tic. No fish is furnishe d with te sticle s, nor any
othe r cre ature that has gills, nor any se rpe nt whate ve r: nor, in short, any animal
de void of fe e t, save such only as are viviparous within the mse lve s. Birds are
furnishe d with te sticle s, but the se are inte rnally situate d, close to the loin. The
case is similar with oviparous quadrupe ds, such as the lizard, the tortoise and the
crocodile ; and among the viviparous animals this pe culiarity is found in the
he dge hog. Othe rs among those cre ature s that have the organ inte rnally situate d have
it close to the be lly, as is the case with the dolphin amongst animals de void of
fe e t, and with the e le phant among viviparous quadrupe ds. In othe r case s the se
organs are e xte rnally conspicuous. We have alre ady allude d to the dive rsitie s
obse rve d in the attachme nt of the se organs to the be lly and the adjace nt re gion; in
othe r words, we have state d that in some case s the te sticle s are tightly faste ne d
back, as in the pig and its allie s, and that in othe rs the y are fre e ly suspe nde d,
as in man. Fishe s, the n, are de void of te sticle s, as has be e n state d, and
se rpe nts also. The y are furnishe d, howe ve r, with two ducts conne cte d with the
midriff and running on to e ithe r side of the backbone , coale scing into a single
duct above the outle t of the re siduum, and by 'above ' the outle t I me an the re gion
ne ar to the spine . The se ducts in the rutting se ason ge t fille d with the ge nital
fluid, and, if the ducts be sque e ze d, the spe rm ooze s out white in colour. As to
the diffe re nce s obse rve d in male fishe s of dive rse spe cie s, the re ade r should
consult my tre atise on Anatomy, and the subje ct will be he re afte r more fully
discusse d whe n we de scribe the spe cific characte r in e ach case . The male s of
oviparous animals, whe the r bipe d or quadrupe d, are in all case s furnishe d with
te sticle s close to the loin unde rne ath the midriff. With some animals the organ is
whitish, in othe rs some what of a sallow hue ; in all case s it is e ntire ly e nve lope d
with minute and de licate ve ins. From e ach of the two te sticle s e xte nds a duct, and,
as in the case of fishe s, the two ducts coale sce into one above the outle t of the
re siduum. This constitute s the pe nis, which organ in the case of small ovipara is
inconspicuous; but in the case of the large r ovipara, as in the goose and the like ,
the organ be come s quite visible just afte r copulation. The ducts in the case of
fishe s and in bipe d and quadrupe d ovipara are attache d to the loin unde r the
stomach and the gut, in be twixt the m and the gre at ve in, from which ducts or blood-
ve sse ls e xte nd, one to e ach of the two te sticle s. And just as with fishe s the male
spe rm is found in the se minal ducts, and the ducts be come plainly visible at the
rutting se ason and in some instance s be come invisible afte r the se ason is passe d,
so also is it with the te sticle s of birds; be fore the bre e ding se ason the organ is
small in some birds and quite invisible in othe rs, but during the se ason the organ
in all case s is gre atly e nlarge d. This phe nome non is re markably illustrate d in the
ring-dove and the partridge , so much so that some pe ople are actually of opinion
that the se birds are de void of the organ in the winte r-time . Of male animals
that have the ir te sticle s place d frontwards, some have the m inside , close to the
be lly, as the dolphin; some have the m outside , e xpose d to vie w, close to the lowe r
e xtre mity of the be lly. The se animals re se mble one anothe r thus far in re spe ct to
this organ; but the y diffe r from one anothe r in this fact, that some of the m have
the ir te sticle s situate d se parate ly by the mse lve s, while othe rs, which have the
organ situate d e xte rnally, have the m e nve lope d in what is te rme d the scrotum.
Again, in all viviparous animals furnishe d with fe e t the following prope rtie s are
obse rve d in the te sticle s the mse lve s. From the aorta the re e xte nd ve in-like ducts
to the he ad of
e ach of the te sticle s, and anothe r two from the kidne ys; the se two from the
kidne ys are supplie d with blood, while the two from the aorta are de void of it.
From the he ad of the te sticle alongside of the te sticle itse lf is a duct, thicke r
and more sine wy than the othe r just allude d to-a duct that be nds back again at the
e nd of the te sticle to its he ad; and from the he ad of e ach of the two te sticle s the
two ducts e xte nd until the y coale sce in front at the pe nis. The duct that be nds
back again and that which is in contact with the te sticle are e nve lope d in one and
the same me mbrane , so that, until you draw aside the me mbrane , the y pre se nt all the
appe arance of be ing a single undiffe re ntiate d duct. Furthe r, the duct in contact
with the te sticle has its moist conte nt qualifie d by blood, but to a comparative ly
le ss e xte nt than in the case of the ducts highe r up which are conne cte d with the
aorta; in the ducts that be nd back towards the tube of the pe nis, the liquid is
white -coloure d. The re also runs a duct from the bladde r, ope ning into the uppe r
part of the canal, around which lie s, she athwise , what is calle d the 'pe nis'.
All the se de scriptive particulars may be re garde d by the light of the accompanying
diagram; whe re in the le tte r A marks the starting-point of the ducts that e xte nd
from the aorta; the le tte rs KK mark the he ads of the te sticle s and the ducts
de sce nding the re unto; the ducts e xte nding from the se along the te sticle s are marke d
MM; the ducts turning back, in which is the white fluid, are marke d BB; the pe nis
D; the bladde r E; and the te sticle s XX. (By the way, whe n the te sticle s are cut
off or re move d, the ducts draw upwards by contraction. More ove r, whe n male animals
are young, the ir owne r some time s de stroys the organ in the m by attrition; some time s
the y castrate the m at a late r pe riod. And I may he re add, that a bull has be e n
known to se rve a cow imme diate ly afte r castration, and actually to impre gnate he r.)
S o much the n for the prope rtie s of te sticle s in male animals. In fe male animals
furnishe d with a womb, the womb is not in all case s the same in form or e ndowe d
with the same prope rtie s, but both in the vivipara and the ovipara gre at
dive rsitie s pre se nt the mse lve s. In all cre ature s that have the womb close to the
ge nitals, the womb is two-horne d, and one horn lie s to the right-hand side and the
othe r to the le ft; its comme nce me nt, howe ve r, is single , and so is the orifice ,
re se mbling in the case of the most nume rous and large st animals a tube compose d of
much fle sh and gristle . Of the se parts one is te rme d the hyste ra or de lphys, whe nce
is de rive d the word ade lphos, and the othe r part, the tube or orifice , is te rme d
me tra. In all bipe d or quadrupe d vivipara the womb is in all case s be low the
midriff, as in man, the dog, the pig, the horse , and the ox; the same is the case
also in all horne d animals. At the e xtre mity of the so-calle d ce ratia, or horns,
the wombs of most animals have a twist or convolution. In the case of those
ovipara that lay e ggs e xte rnally, the wombs are not in all case s similarly
situate d. Thus the wombs of birds are close to the midriff, and the wombs of fishe s
down be low, just like the wombs of bipe d and quadrupe d vivipara, only that, in the
case of the fish, the wombs are de licate ly forme d, me mbranous, and e longate d; so
much so that in e xtre me ly small fish, e ach of the two bifurcate d parts looks like a
single e gg, and those fishe s whose e gg is de scribe d as crumbling would appe ar to
have inside the m a pair of e ggs, whe re as in re ality e ach of the two side s consists
not of one but of many e ggs, and this accounts for the ir bre aking up into so many
particle s. The womb of birds has the lowe r and tubular portion fle shy and firm,
and the part close to the midriff me mbranous and e xce e dingly thin and fine : so thin
and fine that the e ggs might se e m to be outside the womb altoge the r. In the large r
birds the me mbrane is more distinctly visible , and, if inflate d through the tube ,
lifts and swe lls out; in the smalle r birds all the se parts are more indistinct.
The prope rtie s of the womb are similar in oviparous quadrupe ds, as the tortoise ,
the lizard, the frog and the like ; for the tube be low is single and fle shy, and the
cle ft portion with the e ggs is at the top close to the midriff. With animals de void
of fe e t that are inte rnally oviparous and viviparous e xte rnally, as is the case
with the dogfish and the othe r so-calle d S e lachians (and by this title we de signate
such cre ature s de stitute of fe e t and furnishe d with gills as are viviparous), with
the se animals the womb is bifurcate , and be ginning down be low it e xte nds as far as
the midriff, as in the case of birds. The re is also a narrow part be twe e n the two
horns running up as far as the midriff, and the e ggs are e nge nde re d he re and above
at the origin of the midriff; afte rwards the y pass into the wide r space and turn
from e ggs into young animals. Howe ve r, the diffe re nce s in re spe ct to the wombs of
the se fishe s as compare d with othe rs of the ir own spe cie s or with fishe s in
ge ne ral, would be more satisfactorily studie d in the ir various forms in spe cime ns
unde r disse ction. The me mbe rs of the se rpe nt ge nus also pre se nt dive rge ncie s
e ithe r whe n compare d with the above -me ntione d cre ature s or with one anothe r.
S e rpe nts as a rule are oviparous, the vipe r be ing the only viviparous me mbe r of the
ge nus. The vipe r is, pre viously to e xte rnal parturition, oviparous inte rnally; and
owing to this pe rculiarity the prope rtie s of the womb in the vipe r are similar to
those of the womb in the se lachians. The womb of the se rpe nt is long, in ke e ping
with the body, and starting be low from a single duct e xte nds continuously on both
side s of the spine , so as to give the impre ssion of thus be ing a se parate duct on
e ach side of the spine , until it re ache s the midriff, whe re the e ggs are e nge nde re d
in a row; and the se e ggs are laid not one by one , but all strung toge the r. (And all
animals that are viviparous both inte rnally and e xte rnally have the womb situate d
above the stomach, and all the ovipara unde rne ath, ne ar to the loin. Animals that
are viviparous e xte rnally and inte rnally oviparous pre se nt an inte rme diate
arrange me nt; for the unde rne ath portion of the womb, in which the e ggs are , is
place d ne ar to the loin, but the part about the orifice is above the gut.)
Furthe r, the re is the following dive rsity obse rvable in wombs as compare d with one
anothe r: name ly that the fe male s of horne d nonambide ntal animals are furnishe d with
cotyle dons in the womb whe n the y are pre gnant, and such is the case , among
ambide ntals, with the hare , the mouse , and the bat; whe re as all othe r animals that
are ambide ntal, viviparous, and furnishe d with fe e t, have the womb quite smooth,
and in the ir case the attachme nt of the e mbryo is to the womb itse lf and not to any
cotyle don inside it. The parts, the n, in animals that are not homoge ne ous with
the mse lve s and uniform in the ir te xture , both parts e xte rnal and parts inte rnal,
have the prope rtie s above assigne d to the m. 2
In sanguine ous animals the homoge ne ous or uniform part most unive rsally found is
the blood, and its habitat the ve in; ne xt in de gre e of unive rsality, the ir
analogue s, lymph and fibre , and, that which chie fly constitute s the frame of
animals, fle sh and whatsoe ve r in the se ve ral parts is analogous to fle sh; the n
bone , and parts that are analogous to bone , as fish-bone and gristle ; and the n,
again, skin, me mbrane , sine w, hair, nails, and whate ve r corre sponds to the se ; and,
furthe rmore , fat, sue t, and the e xcre tions: and the e xcre tions are dung, phle gm,
ye llow bile , and black bile . Now, as the nature of blood and the nature of the
ve ins have all the appe arance of be ing primitive , we must discuss the ir prope rtie s
first of all, and all the more as some pre vious write rs have tre ate d the m ve ry
unsatisfactorily. And the cause of the ignorance thus manife ste d is the e xtre me
difficulty e xpe rie nce d in the way of obse rvation. For in the de ad bodie s of animals
the nature of the chie f ve ins is undiscove rable , owing to the fact that the y
collapse at once whe n the blood le ave s the m; for the blood pours out of the m in a
stre am, like liquid out of a ve sse l, since the re is no blood se parate ly situate d by
itse lf, e xce pt a little in the he art, but it is all lodge d in the ve ins. In living
animals it is impossible to inspe ct the se parts, for of the ir ve ry nature the y are
situate d inside the body and out of sight. For this re ason anatomists who have
carrie d on the ir inve stigations on de ad bodie s in the disse cting room have faile d
to discove r the chie f roots of the ve ins, while those who have narrowly inspe cte d
bodie s of living me n re duce d to e xtre me atte nuation have arrive d at conclusions
re garding the origin of the ve ins from the manife stations visible e xte rnally. Of
the se inve stigators, S ye nne sis, the physician of C yprus, write s as follows:-
'The big ve ins run thus:-from the nave l across the loins, along the back, past the
lung, in unde r the bre asts; one from right to le ft, and the othe r from le ft to
right; that from the le ft, through the live r to the kidne y and the te sticle , that
from the right, to the sple e n and kidne y and te sticle , and from the nce to the
pe nis.' Dioge ne s of Apollonia write s thus:- 'The ve ins in man are as follows:-
The re are two ve ins pre -e mine nt in magnitude . The se e xte nd through the be lly along
the backbone , one to right, one to le ft; e ithe r one to the le g on its own side , and
upwards to the he ad, past the collar bone s, through the throat. From the se , ve ins
e xte nd all ove r the body, from that on the right hand to the right side and from
that on the le ft hand to the le ft side ; the most important one s, two in numbe r, to
the he art in the re gion of the backbone ; othe r two a little highe r up through the
che st in unde rne ath the
armpit, e ach to the hand on its side : of the se two, one be ing te rme d the ve in
sple nitis, and the othe r the ve in he patitis. Each of the pair splits at its
e xtre mity; the one branche s in the dire ction of the thumb and the othe r in the
dire ction of the palm; and from the se run off a numbe r of minute ve ins branching
off to the finge rs and to all parts of the hand. Othe r ve ins, more minute , e xte nd
from the main ve ins; from that on the right towards the live r, from that on the
le ft towards the sple e n and the kidne ys. The ve ins that run to the le gs split at
the juncture of the le gs with the trunk and e xte nd right down the thigh. The
large st of the se goe s down the thigh at the back of it, and can be disce rne d and
trace d as a big one ; the se cond one runs inside the thigh, not quite as big as the
one just me ntione d. Afte r this the y pass on along the kne e to the shin and the foot
(as the uppe r ve ins we re de scribe d as passing towards the hands), and arrive at the
sole of the foot, and from the nce continue to the toe s. More ove r, many de licate
ve ins se parate off from the gre at ve ins towards the stomach and towards the ribs.
'The ve ins that run through the throat to the he ad can be disce rne d and trace d in
the ne ck as large one s; and from e ach one of the two, whe re it te rminate s, the re
branch off a numbe r of ve ins to the he ad; some from the right side towards the
le ft, and some from the le ft side towards the right; and the two ve ins te rminate
ne ar to e ach of the two e ars. The re is anothe r pair of ve ins in the ne ck running
along the big ve in on e ithe r side , slightly le ss in size than the pair just spoke n
of, and with the se the gre ate r part of the ve ins in the he ad are conne cte d. This
othe r pair runs through the throat inside ; and from e ithe r one of the two the re
e xte nd ve ins in unde rne ath the shoulde r blade and towards the hands; and the se
appe ar alongside the ve ins sple nitis and he patitis as anothe r pair of ve ins smalle r
in size . Whe n the re is a pain ne ar the surface of the body, the physician lance s
the se two latte r ve ins; but whe n the pain is within and in the re gion of the
stomach he lance s the ve ins sple nitis and he patitis. And from the se , othe r ve ins
de part to run be low the bre asts. 'The re is also anothe r pair running on e ach
side through the spinal marrow to the te sticle s, thin and de licate . The re is,
furthe r, a pair running a little unde rne ath the cuticle through the fle sh to the
kidne ys, and the se with me n te rminate at the te sticle , and with wome n at the womb.
The se ve ins are te rme d the spe rmatic ve ins. The ve ins that le ave the stomach are
comparative ly broad just as the y le ave ; but the y be come gradually thinne r, until
the y change ove r from right to le ft and from le ft to right. 'Blood is thicke st
whe n it is imbibe d by the fle shy parts; whe n it is transmitte d to the organs above -
me ntione d, it be come s thin, warm, and frothy.' 3
S uch are the accounts give n by S ye nne sis and Dioge ne s. Polybus write s to the
following e ffe ct:- 'The re are four pairs of ve ins. The first e xte nds from the
back of the he ad, through the ne ck on the outside , past the backbone on e ithe r
side , until it re ache s the loins and passe s on to the le gs, afte r which it goe s on
through the shins to the oute r side of the ankle s and on to the fe e t. And it is on
this account that surge ons, for pains in the back and loin, ble e d in the ham and in
the oute r side of the ankle . Anothe r pair of ve ins runs from the he ad, past e ars,
through the ne ck; which ve ins are te rme d the jugular ve ins. This pair goe s on
inside along the backbone , past the muscle s of the loins, on to the te sticle s, and
onwards to the thighs, and through the inside of the hams and through the shins
down to the inside of the ankle s and to the fe e t; and for this re ason, surge ons,
for pains in the muscle s of the loins and in the te sticle s, ble e d on the hams and
the inne r side of the ankle s. The third pair e xte nds from the te mple s, through the
ne ck, in unde rne ath the shoulde r-blade s, into the lung; those from right to le ft
going in unde rne ath the bre ast and on to the sple e n and the kidne y; those from le ft
to right running from the lung in unde rne ath the bre ast and into the live r and the
kidne y; and both te rminate in the fundame nt. The fourth pair e xte nd from the front
part of the he ad and the e ye s in unde rne ath the ne ck and the collar-bone s; from
the nce the y stre tch on through the uppe r part of the uppe r arms to the e lbows and
the n through the fore -arms on to the wrists and the jointings of the finge rs, and
also through the lowe r part of the uppe r-arms to the armpits, and so on, ke e ping
above the ribs, until one of the pair re ache s the sple e n and the othe r re ache s the
live r; and afte r this the y both pass ove r the stomach and te rminate at the pe nis.'
The above quotations sum up pre tty we ll the state me nts of all pre vious write rs.
Furthe rmore , the re are some write rs on Natural History who have not ve nture d to lay
down the law in such pre cise te rms as re gards the ve ins, but who all alike agre e in
assigning the he ad and the brain as the starting-point of the ve ins. And in this
opinion the y are mistake n. The inve stigation of such a subje ct, as has be e n
re marke d, is one fraught with difficultie s; but, if any one be ke e nly inte re ste d in
the matte r, his be st plan will be to allow his animals to starve to e maciation,
the n to strangle the m on a sudde n, and the re upon to prose cute his inve stigations.
We now proce e d to give particulars re garding the prope rtie s and functions of the
ve ins. The re are two blood-ve sse ls in the thorax by the backbone , and lying to its
inne r side ; and of the se two the large r one is situate d to the front, and the
le sse r one is to the re ar of it; and the large r is situate d rathe r to the right
hand side of the body, and the le sse r one to the le ft; and by some this ve in is
te rme d the 'aorta', from the fact that e ve n in de ad bodie s part of it is obse rve d
to be full of air. The se blood-ve sse ls have the ir origins in the he art, for the y
trave rse the othe r visce ra, in whate ve r dire ction the y happe n to run, without in
any way losing the ir distinctive characte ristic as blood-ve sse ls, whe re as the he art
is as it we re a part of the m (and that too more in re spe ct to the frontward and
large r one of the two), owing to the fact that the se two ve ins are above and be low,
with the he art lying midway. The he art in all animals has cavitie s inside it. In
the case of the smalle r animals e ve n the large st of the chambe rs is scarce ly
disce rnible ; the se cond large r is scarce ly disce rnible in animals of me dium size ;
but in the large st animals all thre e chambe rs are distinctly se e n. In the he art
the n (with its pointe d e nd dire cte d frontwards, as has be e n obse rve d) the large st
of the thre e chambe rs is on the right-hand side and highe st up; the le ast one is on
the le ft-hand side ; and the me dium-size d one lie s in be twixt the othe r two; and the
large st one of the thre e chambe rs is a gre at de al large r than e ithe r of the two
othe rs. All thre e , howe ve r, are conne cte d with passage s le ading in the dire ction of
the lung, but all the se communications are indistinctly disce rnible by re ason of
the ir minute ne ss, e xce pt one . The gre at blood-ve sse l, the n, is attache d to the
bigge st of the thre e chambe rs, the one that lie s uppe rmost and on the right-hand
side ; it the n e xte nds right through the chambe r, coming out as blood-ve sse l again;
just as though the cavity of the he art we re a part of the ve sse l, in which the
blood broade ns its channe l as a rive r that wide ns out in a lake . The aorta is
attache d to the middle chambe r; only, by the way, it is conne cte d with it by much
narrowe r pipe . The gre at blood-ve sse l the n passe s through the he art (and runs
from the he art into the aorta). The gre at ve sse l looks as though made of me mbrane
or skin, while the aorta is narrowe r than it, and is ve ry sine wy; and as it
stre tche s away to the he ad and to the lowe r parts it be come s e xce e dingly narrow and
sine wy. First of all, the n, upwards from the he art the re stre tche s a part of the
gre at blood-ve sse l towards the lung and the attachme nt of the aorta, a part
consisting of a large undivide d ve sse l. But the re split off from it two parts; one
towards the lung and the othe r towards the backbone and the last ve rte bra of the
ne ck. The ve sse l, the n, that e xte nds to the lung, as the lung itse lf is
duplicate , divide s at first into two; and the n e xte nds along by e ve ry pipe and
e ve ry pe rforation, gre ate r along the gre ate r one s, le sse r along the le ss, so
continuously that it is impossible to disce rn a single part whe re in the re is not
pe rforation and ve in; for the e xtre mitie s are indistinguishable from the ir
minute ne ss, and in point of fact the whole lung appe ars to be fille d with blood.
The branche s of the blood-ve sse ls lie above the tube s that e xte nd from the
windpipe . And that ve sse l which e xte nds to the ve rte bra of the ne ck and the
backbone , stre tche s back again along the backbone ; as Home r re pre se nts in the
line s:- (Antilochus, as Thoon turne d him round), Transpie rc'd his
back with a dishone st wound; The hollow ve in that to the ne ck e xte nds,
Along the chine , the e age r jave lin re nds. From this ve sse l the re e xte nd small
blood-ve sse ls at e ach rib and e ach ve rte bra; and at the ve rte bra above the kidne ys
the ve sse l bifurcate s. And in the above way the parts branch off from the gre at
blood-ve sse l. But up above all the se , from that part which is conne cte d with the
he art, the e ntire ve in branche s off in two dire ctions. For its branche s e xte nd to
the side s and to the collarbone s, and the n pass on, in me n through the armpits to
the arms, in quadrupe ds to the fore le gs, in birds to the wings, and in fishe s to
the uppe r or pe ctoral fins. (S e e diagram.) The trunks of the se ve ins, whe re the y
first branch off, are calle d the
'jugular' ve ins; and, whe re the y branch off to the ne ck the gre at ve in run
alongside the windpipe ; and, occasionally, if the se ve ins are pre sse d e xte rnally,
me n, though not actually choke d, be come inse nsible , shut the ir e ye s, and fall flat
on the ground. Exte nding in the way de scribe d and ke e ping the windpipe in be twixt
the m, the y pass on until the y re ach the e ars at the junction of the lowe r jaw with
the skull. He nce again the y branch off into four ve ins, of which one be nds back and
de sce nds through the ne ck and the shoulde r, and me e ts the pre vious branching off of
the ve in at the be nd of the arm, while the re st of it te rminate s at the hand and
finge rs. (S e e diagram.) Each ve in of the othe r pair stre tche s from the re gion of
the e ar to the brain, and branche s off in a numbe r of fine and de licate ve ins into
the so-calle d me ninx, or me mbrane , which surrounds the brain. The brain itse lf in
all animals is de stitute of blood, and no ve in, gre at or small, holds its course
the re in. But of the re maining ve ins that branch off from the last me ntione d ve in
some e nve lop the he ad, othe rs close the ir course s in the organs of se nse and at the
roots of the te e th in ve ins e xce e dingly fine and minute .
4 And in like manne r the parts of the le sse r one of the two chie f blood-ve sse ls,
de signate d the aorta, branch off, accompanying the branche s from the big ve in; only
that, in re gard to the aorta, the passage s are le ss in size , and the branche s ve ry
conside rably le ss than are those of the gre at ve in. S o much for the ve ins as
obse rve d in the re gions above the he art. The part of the gre at ve in that lie s
unde rne ath the he art e xte nds, fre e ly suspe nde d, right through the midriff, and is
unite d both to the aorta and the backbone by slack me mbranous communications. From
it one ve in, short and wide , e xte nds through the live r, and from it a numbe r of
minute ve ins branch off into the live r and disappe ar. From the ve in that passe s
through the live r two branche s se parate off, of which one te rminate s in the
diaphragm or so-calle d midriff, and the othe r runs up again through the armpit into
the right arm and unite s with the othe r ve ins at the inside of the be nd of the arm;
and it is in conse que nce of this local conne xion that, whe n the surge on ope ns this
ve in in the fore arm, the patie nt is re lie ve d of ce rtain pains in the live r; and
from the le ft-hand side of it the re e xte nds a short but thick ve in to the sple e n
and the little ve ins branching off it disappe ar in that organ. Anothe r part
branche s off from the le ft-hand side of the gre at ve in, and asce nds, by a course
similar to the course re ce ntly de scribe d, into the le ft arm; only that the
asce nding ve in in the one case is the ve in that trave rse s the live r, while in this
case it is distinct from the ve in that runs into the sple e n. Again, othe r ve ins
branch off from the big ve in; one to the ome ntum, and anothe r to the pancre as, from
which ve in run a numbe r of ve ins through the me se nte ry. All the se ve ins coale sce in
a single large ve in, along the e ntire gut and stomach to the oe sophagus; about
the se parts the re is a gre at ramification of branch ve ins. As far as the
kidne ys, e ach of the two re maining undivide d, the aorta and the big ve in e xte nd;
and he re the y ge t more close ly attache d to the backbone , and branch off, e ach of
the two, into a A shape , and the big ve in ge ts to the re ar of the aorta. But the
chie f attachme nt of the aorta to the backbone take s place in the re gion of the
he art; and the attachme nt is e ffe cte d by me ans of minute and sine wy ve sse ls. The
aorta, just as it draws off from the he art, is a tube of conside rable volume , but,
as it advance s in its course , it ge ts narrowe r and more sine wy. And from the aorta
the re e xte nd ve ins to the me se nte ry just like the ve ins that e xte nd thithe r from
the big ve in, only that the branche s in the case of the aorta are conside rably le ss
in magnitude ; the y are , inde e d, narrow and fibrillar, and the y e nd in de licate
hollow fibre -like ve inle ts. The re is no ve sse l that runs from the aorta into the
live r or the sple e n. From e ach of the two gre at blood-ve sse ls the re e xte nd
branche s to e ach of the two flanks, and both branche s faste n on to the bone .
Ve sse ls also e xte nd to the kidne ys from the big ve in and the aorta; only that the y
do not ope n into the cavity of the organ, but the ir ramifications pe ne trate into
its substance . From the aorta run two othe r ducts to the bladde r, firm and
continuous; and the re are othe r ducts from the hollow of the kidne ys, in no way
communicating with the big ve in. From the ce ntre of e ach of the two kidne ys springs
a hollow sine wy ve in, running along the backbone right through the loins; by and by
e ach of the two ve ins first disappe ars in its own flank, and soon afte rwards
re appe ars stre tching in the dire ction of the flank. The e xtre mitie s of the se attach
to the bladde r, and also in the male to the pe nis and in the fe male to the womb.
From the big ve in no ve in e xte nds to the womb, but the organ is conne cte d with the
aorta by ve ins nume rous and close ly packe d. Furthe rmore , from the aorta and the
gre at ve in at the points of divarication the re branch off othe r ve ins. S ome of
the se run to the groins-large hollow ve ins-and the n pass on down through the le gs
and te rminate in the fe e t and toe s. And, again, anothe r se t run through the groins
and the thighs cross-garte r fashion, from right to le ft and from le ft to right, and
unite in the hams with the othe r ve ins. In the above de scription we have thrown
light upon the course of the ve ins and the ir points of de parture . In all
sanguine ous animals the case stands as he re se t forth in re gard to the points of
de parture and the course s of the chie f ve ins. But the de scription doe s not hold
e qually good for the e ntire ve in-syste m in all the se animals. For, in point of
fact, the organs are not ide ntically situate d in the m all; and, what is more , some
animals are furnishe d with organs of which othe r animals are de stitute . At the same
time , while the de scription so far holds good, the proof of its accuracy is not
e qually e asy in all case s, but is e asie st in the case of animals of conside rable
magnitude and supplie d abundantly with blood. For in little animals and those
scantily supplie d with blood, e ithe r from natural and inhe re nt cause s or from a
pre vale nce of fat in the body, thorough accuracy in inve stigation is not e qually
attainable ; for in the latte r of the se cre ature s the passage s ge t clogge d, like
wate r-channe ls choke d with slush; and the othe rs have a fe w minute fibre s to se rve
inste ad of ve ins. But in all case s the big ve in is plainly disce rnible , e ve n in
cre ature s of insignificant size . 5 The sine ws
of animals have the following prope rtie s. For the se also the point of origin is the
he art; for the he art has sine ws within itse lf in the large st of its thre e chambe rs,
and the aorta is a sine w-like ve in; in fact, at its e xtre mity it is actually a
sine w, for it is the re no longe r hollow, and is stre tche d like the sine ws whe re
the y te rminate at the jointings of the bone s. Be it re me mbe re d, howe ve r, that the
sine ws do not proce e d in unbroke n se que nce from one point of origin, as do the
blood-ve sse ls. For the ve ins have the shape of the e ntire body, like a ske tch of
a mannikin; in such a way that the whole frame se e ms to be fille d up with little
ve ins in atte nuate d subje cts-for the space occupie d by fle sh in fat individuals is
fille d with little ve ins in thin one s-whe re as the sine ws are distribute d about the
joints and the fle xure s of the bone s. Now, if the sine ws we re de rive d in unbroke n
se que nce from a common point of de parture , this continuity would be disce rnible in
atte nuate d spe cime ns. In the ham, or the part of the frame brought into full
play in the e ffort of le aping, is an important syste m of sine ws; and anothe r sine w,
a double one , is that calle d 'the te ndon', and othe rs are those brought into play
whe n a gre at e ffort of physical stre ngth is re quire d; that is to say, the e pitonos
or back-stay and the shoulde r-sine ws. Othe r sine ws, de void of spe cific de signation,
are situate d in the re gion of the fle xure s of the bone s; for all the bone s that are
attache d to one anothe r are bound toge the r by sine ws, and a gre at quantity of
sine ws are place d in the ne ighbourhood of all the bone s. Only, by the way, in the
he ad the re is no sine w; but the he ad is he ld toge the r by the suture s of the bone s.
S ine w is fissile le ngthwise , but crosswise it is not e asily broke n, but admits of a
conside rable amount of hard te nsion. In conne xion with sine ws a liquid mucus is
de ve lope d, white and glutinous, and the organ, in fact, is sustaine d by it and
appe ars to be substantially compose d of it. Now, ve in may be submitte d to the
actual caute ry, but sine w, whe n submitte d to such action, shrive ls up altoge the r;
and, if sine ws be cut asunde r, the se ve re d parts will not again cohe re . A fe e ling
of numbne ss is incide ntal only to parts of the frame whe re sine w is situate d.
The re is a ve ry e xte nsive syste m of sine ws conne cte d se ve rally with the fe e t, the
hands, the ribs, the shoulde r-blade s, the ne ck, and the arms. All animals
supplie d with blood are furnishe d with sine ws; but in the case of animals that have
no fle xure s to the ir limbs, but are , in fact, de stitute of e ithe r fe e t or hands,
the sine ws are fine and inconspicuous; and so, as might have be e n anticipate d, the
sine ws in the fish are chie fly disce rnible in conne xion with the fin.
6 The ine s (or fibrous conne ctive tissue ) are a some thing inte rme diate be twe e n
sine w and ve in. S ome of the m are supplie d with fluid, the lymph; and the y pass from
sine w to ve in and from ve in to sine w. The re is anothe r kind of ine s or fibre that
is found in blood, but not in the blood of all animals alike . If
this fibre be le ft in the blood, the blood will coagulate ; if it be re move d or
e xtracte d, the blood is found to be incapable of coagulation. While , howe ve r, this
fibrous matte r is found in the blood of the gre at majority of animals, it is not
found in all. For instance , we fail to find it in the blood of the de e r, the roe ,
the ante lope , and some othe r animals; and, owing to this de ficie ncy of the fibrous
tissue , the blood of the se animals doe s not coagulate to the e xte nt obse rve d in the
blood of othe r animals. The blood of the de e r coagulate s to about the same e xte nt
as that of the hare : that is to the blood in e ithe r case coagulate s, but not into a
stiff or je lly-like substance , like the blood of ordinary animals, but only into a
flaccid consiste ncy like that of milk which is not subje cte d to the action of
re nne t. The blood of the ante lope admits of a firme r consiste ncy in coagulation;
for in this re spe ct it re se mble s, or only come s a little short of, the blood of
she e p. S uch are the prope rtie s of ve in, sine w, and fibrous tissue .
7 The bone s in animals are all conne cte d with one single bone , and are
inte rconne cte d, like the ve ins, in one unbroke n se que nce ; and the re is no instance
of a bone standing apart by itse lf. In all animals furnishe d with bone s, the spine
or backbone is the point of origin for the e ntire osse ous syste m. The spine is
compose d of ve rte brae , and it e xte nds from the he ad down to the loins. The
ve rte brae are all pe rforate d, and, above , the bony portion of the he ad is conne cte d
with the topmost ve rte brae , and is de signate d the 'skull'. And the se rrate d line s
on the skull are te rme d 'suture s'. The skull is not forme d alike in all animals.
In some animals the skull consists of one single undivide d bone , as in the case of
the dog; in othe rs it is composite in structure , as in man; and in the human
spe cie s the suture is circular in the fe male , while in the male it is made up of
thre e se parate suture s, uniting above in thre e -corne r fashion; and instance s have
be e n known of a man's skull be ing de void of suture altoge the r. The skull is
compose d not of four bone s, but of six; two of the se are in the re gion of the e ars,
small in comparison with the othe r four. From the skull e xte nd the jaws,
constitute d of bone . (Animals in ge ne ral move the lowe r jaw; the rive r crocodile is
the only animal that move s the uppe r one .) In the jaws is the tooth-syste m; and the
te e th are constitute d of bone , and are half-way pe rforate d; and the bone in
que stion is the only kind of bone which it is found impossible to grave with a
graving tool. On the uppe r part of the course of the backbone are the collar-
bone s and the ribs. The che st re sts on ribs; and the se ribs me e t toge the r, whe re as
the othe rs do not; for no animal has bone in the re gion of the stomach. The n come
the shoulde r-bone s, or blade -bone s, and the arm-bone s conne cte d with the se , and the
bone s in the hands conne cte d with the bone s of the arms. With animals that have
fore le gs, the osse ous syste m of the fore le g re se mble s that of the arm in man.
Be low the le ve l of the backbone , afte r the haunch-bone , come s the hip-socke t; the n
the le g-bone s, those in the thighs and those in the shins, which are te rme d cole ne s
or limb-bone s, a part of which is the ankle , while a part of the same is the so-
calle d 'ple ctrum' in those cre ature s that have an ankle ; and conne cte d with the se
bone s are the bone s in the fe e t. Now, with all animals that are supplie d with
blood and furnishe d with fe e t, and are at the same time viviparous, the bone s do
not diffe r gre atly one from anothe r, but only in the way of re lative hardne ss,
softne ss, or magnitude . A furthe r diffe re nce , by the way, is that in one and the
same animal ce rtain bone s are supplie d with marrow, while othe rs are de stitute of
it. S ome animals might on casual obse rvation appe ar to have no marrow whatsoe ve r in
the ir bone s: as is the case with the lion, owing to his having marrow only in small
amount, poor and thin, and in ve ry fe w bone s; for marrow is found in his thigh and
armbone s. The bone s of the lion are e xce ptionally hard; so hard, in fact, that if
the y are rubbe d hard against one anothe r the y e mit sparks like flint-stone s. The
dolphin has bone s, and not fish-spine . Of the othe r animals supplie d with blood,
some diffe r but little , as is the case with birds; othe rs have syste ms analogous,
as fishe s; for viviparous fishe s, such as the cartilaginous spe cie s, are gristle -
spine d, while the ovipara have a spine which corre sponds to the backbone in
quadrupe ds. This e xce ptional prope rty has be e n obse rve d in fishe s, that in some of
the m the re are found de licate spine s scatte re d he re and the re throughout the fle shy
parts. The se rpe nt is similarly constructe d to the fish; in othe r words, his
backbone is spinous. With oviparous quadrupe ds, the ske le ton of the large r one s is
more or le ss osse ous; of the smalle r one s, more or le ss spinous. But all
sanguine ous animals have a backbone of e ithe r one kind or othe r: that is, compose d
e ithe r of bone or of spine . The othe r portions of the ske le ton are found in some
animals and not found in othe rs, but the pre se nce or the abse nce of this and that
part carrie s with it, as a matte r of course , the pre se nce or the abse nce of the
bone s or the spine s corre sponding to this or that part. For animals that are
de stitute of arms and le gs cannot be furnishe d with limb-bone s: and in like manne r
with animals that have the same parts, but ye t have the m unlike in form; for in
the se animals the corre sponding bone s diffe r from one anothe r in the way of
re lative e xce ss or re lative de fe ct, or in the way of analogy taking the place of
ide ntity. S o much for the osse ous or spinous syste ms in animals.
8 Gristle is of the same nature as bone , but diffe rs from it in the way of
re lative e xce ss or re lative de fe ct. And just like bone , cartilage also, if cut,
doe s not grow again. In te rre strial viviparous sanguine a the gristle formations are
unpe rforate d, and the re is no marrow in the m as the re is in bone s; in the se lachia,
howe ve r--for, be it obse rve d, the y are gristle -spine d--the re is found in the case
of the flat space in the re gion of the backbone , a gristle -like substance analogous
to bone , and in this gristle -like substance the re is a liquid re se mbling marrow. In
viviparous animals furnishe d with fe e t, gristle formations are found in the re gion
of the e ars, in the nostrils, and around ce rtain e xtre mitie s of the bone s.
9 Furthe rmore , the re are parts of othe r kinds, ne ithe r ide ntical with, nor
altoge the r dive rse from, the parts above e nume rate d: such as nails, hoove s, claws,
and horns; and also, by the way, be aks, such as birds are furnishe d with-all in the
se ve ral animals that are furnishe d the re withal. All the se parts are fle xible and
fissile ; but bone is ne ithe r fle xible nor fissile , but frangible . And the
colours of horns and nails and claw and hoof follow the colour of the skin and the
hair. For according as the skin of an animal is black, or white , or of me dium hue ,
so are the horns, the claws, or the hoove s, as the case may be , of hue to match.
And it is the same with nails. The te e th, howe ve r, follow afte r the bone s. Thus in
black me n, such as the Ae thiopians and the like , the te e th and bone s are white , but
the nails are black, like the whole of the skin. Horns in ge ne ral are hollow at
the ir point of attachme nt to the bone which juts out from the he ad inside the horn,
but the y have a solid portion at the tip, and the y are simple and undivide d in
structure . In the case of the stag alone of all animals the horns are solid
throughout, and ramify into branche s (or antle rs). And, whe re as no othe r animal is
known to she d its horns, the de e r she ds its horns annually, unle ss it has be e n
castrate d; and with re gard to the e ffe cts of castration in animals we shall have
much to say he re afte r. Horns attach rathe r to the skin than to the bone ; which will
account for the fact that the re are found in Phrygia and e lse whe re cattle that can
move the ir horns as fre e ly as the ir e ars. Of animals furnishe d with nails-and,
by the way, all animals have nails that have toe s, and toe s that have fe e t, e xce pt
the e le phant; and the e le phant has toe s undivide d and slightly articulate d, but has
no nails whatsoe ve r--of animals furnishe d with nails, some are straight-naile d,
like man; othe rs are crooke d naile d, as the lion among animals that walk, and the
e agle among animals that fly. 1 0 The following
are the prope rtie s of hair and of parts analogous to hair, and of skin or hide . All
viviparous animals furnishe d with fe e t have hair; all oviparous animals furnishe d
with fe e t have horn-like te sse llate s; fishe s, and fishe s only, have scale s-that is,
such oviparous fishe s as have the crumbling e gg or roe . For of the lanky fishe s,
the conge r has no such e gg, nor the murae na, and the e e l has no e gg at all. The
hair diffe rs in the way of thickne ss and fine ne ss, and of le ngth, according to the
locality of the part in which it is found, and according to the quality of skin or
hide on which it grows. For, as a ge ne ral rule , the thicke r the hide , the harde r
and the thicke r is the hair; and the hair is incline d to grow in abundance and to a
gre at le ngth in localitie s of the bodie s hollow and moist, if the localitie s be
fitte d for the growth of hair at all. The facts are similar in the case of animals
whe the r coate d with scale s or with te sse llate s. With soft-haire d animals the hair
ge ts harde r with good fe e ding, and with hard-haire d or bristly animals it ge ts
softe r and scantie r from the same cause . Hair diffe rs in quality also according to
the re lative he at or warmth of the locality: just as the hair in man is hard in
warm place s and soft in cold one s.
Again, straight hair is incline d to be soft, and curly hair to be bristly.
1 1 Hair is naturally fissile , and in this re spe ct it diffe rs in de gre e in
dive rse animals. In some animals the hair goe s on gradually harde ning into bristle
until it no longe r re se mble s hair but spine , as in the case of the he dge hog. And in
like manne r with the nails; for in some animals the nail diffe rs as re gards
solidity in no way from bone . Of all animals man has the most de licate skin:
that is, if we take into conside ration his re lative size . In the skin or hide of
all animals the re is a mucous liquid, scanty in some animals and ple ntiful in
othe rs, as, for instance , in the hide of the ox; for me n manufacture glue out of
it. (And, by the way, in some case s glue is manufacture d from fishe s also.) The
skin, whe n cut, is in itse lf de void of se nsation; and this is e spe cially the case
with the skin on the he ad, owing to the re be ing no fle sh be twe e n it and the skull.
And whe re ve r the skin is quite by itse lf, if it be cut asunde r, it doe s not grow
toge the r again, as is se e n in the thin part of the jaw, in the pre puce , and the
e ye lid. In all animals the skin is one of the parts that e xte nds continuous and
unbroke n, and it come s to a stop only whe re the natural ducts pour out the ir
conte nts, and at the mouth and nails. All sanguine ous animals, the n, have skin;
but not all such animals have hair, save only unde r the circumstance s de scribe d
above . The hair change s its colour as animals grow old, and in man it turns white
or gre y. With animals, in ge ne ral, the change take s place , but not ve ry obviously,
or not so obviously as in the case of the horse . Hair turns gre y from the point
backwards to the roots. But, in the majority of case s, gre y hairs are white from
the be ginning; and this is a proof that gre yne ss of hair doe s not, as some be lie ve
to be the case , imply withe ring or de cre pitude , for no part is brought into
e xiste nce in a withe re d or de cre pit condition. In the e ruptive malady calle d the
white -sickne ss all the hairs ge t gre y; and instance s have be e n known whe re the hair
be came gre y while the patie nts we re ill of the malady, whe re as the gre y hairs she d
off and black one s re place d the m on the ir re cove ry. (Hair is more apt to turn gre y
whe n it is ke pt cove re d than whe n e xpose d to the action of the oute r air.) In me n,
the hair ove r the te mple s is the first to turn gre y, and the hair in the front
grows gre y soone r than the hair at the back; and the hair on the pube s is the last
to change colour. S ome hairs are conge nital, othe rs grow afte r the maturity of
the animal; but this occurs in man only. The conge nital hairs are on the he ad, the
e ye lids, and the e ye brows; of the late r growths the hairs on the pube s are the
first to come , the n those unde r the armpits, and, thirdly, those on the chin; for,
singularly e nough, the re gions whe re conge nital growths and the subse que nt growths
are found are e qual in numbe r. The hair on the he ad grows scanty and she ds out to a
gre ate r e xte nt and soone r than all the re st. But this re mark applie s only to hair
in front; for no man e ve r ge ts bald at the back of his he ad. S moothne ss on the top
of the he ad is te rme d 'baldne ss', but smoothne ss on the e ye brows is de note d by a
spe cial te rm which me ans 'fore he ad-baldne ss'; and ne ithe r of the se conditions of
baldne ss supe rve ne s in a man until he shall have come unde r the influe nce of se xual
passion. For no boy e ve r ge ts bald, no woman, and no castrate d man. In fact, if a
man be castrate d be fore re aching pube rty, the late r growths of hair ne ve r come at
all; and, if the ope ration take place subse que ntly, the afte rgrowths, and the se
only, she d off; or, rathe r, two of the growths she d off, but not that on the pube s.
Wome n do not grow hairs on the chin; e xce pt that a scanty be ard grows on some wome n
afte r the monthly course s have stoppe d; and similar phe nome non is obse rve d at time s
in prie ste sse s in C aria, but the se case s are looke d upon as porte ntous with re gard
to coming e ve nts. The othe r afte r-growths are found in wome n, but more scanty and
sparse . Me n and wome n are at time s born constitutionally and conge nitally incapable
of the afte r-growths; and individuals that are de stitute e ve n of the growth upon
the pube s are constitutionally impote nt. Hair as a rule grows more or le ss in
le ngth as the we are r grows in age ; chie fly the hair on the he ad, the n that in the
be ard, and fine hair grows longe st of all. With some pe ople as the y grow old the
e ye brows grow thicke r, to such an e xte nt that the y have to be cut off; and this
growth is owing to the fact that the e ye brows are situate d at a conjuncture of
bone s, and the se bone s, as age come s on, draw apart and e xude a gradual incre ase of
moisture or rhe um. The e ye lashe s do not grow in size , but the y she d whe n the we are r
come s first unde r the influe nce of se xual fe e lings, and she d all the quicke r as
this influe nce is the more powe rful; and the se are the last hairs to grow gre y.
Hairs if plucke d out be fore maturity grow again; but the y do not grow again if
plucke d out afte rwards. Eve ry hair is supplie d with a mucous moisture at its root,
and imme diate ly afte r be ing plucke d out it can lift light article s if it touch the m
with this mucus. Animals that admit of dive rsity of colour in the hair admit of
a similar dive rsity to start with in the skin and in the cuticle of the tongue .
In some case s among me n the uppe r lip and the chin is thickly cove re d with hair,
and in othe r case s the se parts are smooth and the che e ks are hairy; and, by the
way, smooth-chinne d me n are le ss incline d than be arde d me n to baldne ss. The hair
is incline d to grow in ce rtain dise ase s, e spe cially in consumption, and in old age ,
and afte r de ath; and unde r the se circumstance s the hair harde ns concomitantly with
its growth, and the same duplicate phe nome non is obse rvable in re spe ct of the
nails. In the case of me n of strong se xual passions the conge nital hairs she d
the soone r, while the hairs of the afte r-growths are the quicke r to come . Whe n me n
are afflicte d with varicose ve ins the y are le ss incline d to take on baldne ss; and
if the y be bald whe n the y be come thus afflicte d, the y have a te nde ncy to ge t the ir
hair again. If a hair be cut, it doe s not grow at the point of se ction; but it
ge ts longe r by growing upward from be low. In fishe s the scale s grow harde r and
thicke r with age , and whe n the amimal ge ts e maciate d or is growing old the scale s
grow harde r. In quadrupe ds as the y grow old the hair in some and the wool in othe rs
ge ts de e pe r but scantie r in amount: and the hoove s or claws ge t large r in size ; and
the same is the case with the be aks of birds. The claws also incre ase in size , as
do also the nails. 1 2 With re gard to winge d
animals, such as birds, no cre ature is liable to change of colour by re ason of age ,
e xce pting the crane . The wings of this bird are ash-coloure d at first, but as it
grows old the wings ge t black. Again, owing to spe cial climatic influe nce s, as whe n
unusual frost pre vails, a change is some time s obse rve d to take place in birds whose
plumage is of one uniform colour; thus, birds that have dusky or downright black
plumage turn white or gre y, as the rave n, the sparrow, and the swallow; but no case
has e ve r ye t be e n known of a change of colour from white to black. (Furthe r, most
birds change the colour of the ir plumage at diffe re nt se asons of the ye ar, so much
so that a man ignorant of the ir habits might be mistake n as to the ir ide ntity.)
S ome animals change the colour of the ir hair with a change in the ir drinking-wate r,
for in some countrie s the same spe cie s of animal is found white in one district and
black in anothe r. And in re gard to the comme rce of the se xe s, wate r in many place s
is of such pe culiar quality that rams, if the y have inte rcourse with the fe male
afte r drinking it, be ge t black lambs, as is the case with the wate r of the Psychrus
(so-calle d from its coldne ss), a rive r in the district of Assyritis in the
C halcidic Pe ninsula, on the coast of Thrace ; and in Antandria the re are two rive rs
of which one make s the lambs white and the othe r black. The rive r S camande r also
has the re putation of making lambs ye llow, and that is the re ason, the y say, why
Home r de signate s it the 'Ye llow Rive r.' Animals as a ge ne ral rule have no hair on
the ir inte rnal surface s, and, in re gard to the ir e xtre mitie s, the y have hair on the
uppe r, but not on the lowe r side . The hare , or dasypod, is the only animal known
to have hair inside its mouth and unde rne ath its fe e t. Furthe r, the so-calle d
mouse whale inste ad of te e th has hairs in its mouth re se mbling pigs' bristle s.
Hairs afte r be ing cut grow at the bottom but not at the top; if fe athe rs be cut
off, the y grow ne ithe r at top nor bottom, but she d and fall out. Furthe r, the be e 's
wing will not grow again afte r be ing plucke d off, nor will the wing of any cre ature
that has undivide d wings. Ne ithe r will the sting grow again if the be e lose it, but
the cre ature will die of the loss. 1 3 In all
sanguine ous animals me mbrane s are found. And me mbrane re se mble s a thin close -
te xture d skin, but its qualitie s are diffe re nt, as it admits ne ithe r of cle avage
nor of e xte nsion. Me mbrane e nve lops e ach one of the bone s and e ach one of the
visce ra, both in the large r and the smalle r animals; though in the smalle r animals
the me mbrane s are indisce rnible from the ir e xtre me te nuity and minute ne ss. The
large st of all the me mbrane s are the two that surround the brain, and of the se two
the one that line s the bony skull is stronge r and thicke r than the one that
e nve lops the brain; ne xt in orde r of magnitude come s the me mbrane that e nclose s the
he art. If me mbrane be bare d and cut asunde r it will not grow toge the r again, and
the bone thus strippe d of its
me mbrane mortifie s. 1 4 The ome ntum or caul, by
the way, is me mbrane . All sanguine ous animals are furnishe d with this organ; but in
some animals the organ is supplie d with fat, and in othe rs it is de void of it. The
ome ntum has both its starting-point and its attachme nt, with ambide ntal vivipara,
in the ce ntre of the stomach, whe re the stomach has a kind of suture ; in non-
ambide ntal vivipara it has its starting-point and attachme nt in the chie f of the
ruminating stomachs. 1 5 The bladde r also is of
the nature of me mbrane , but of me mbrane pe culiar in kind, for it is e xte nsile . The
organ is not common to all animals, but, while it is found in all the vivipara, the
tortoise is the only oviparous animal that is furnishe d the re withal. The bladde r,
like ordinary me mbrane , if cut asunde r will not grow toge the r again, unle ss the
se ction be just at the comme nce me nt of the ure thra: e xce pt inde e d in ve ry rare
case s, for instance s of he aling have be e n known to occur. Afte r de ath, the organ
passe s no liquid e xcre tion; but in life , in addition to the normal liquid
e xcre tion, it passe s at time s dry e xcre tion also, which turns into stone s in the
case of suffe re rs from that malady. Inde e d, instance s have be e n known of
concre tions in the bladde r so shape d as close ly to re se mble cockle she lls. S uch
are the prope rtie s, the n, of ve in, sine w and skin, of fibre and me mbrane , of hair,
nail, claw and hoof, of horns, of te e th, of be ak, of gristle , of bone s, and of
parts that are analogous to any of the parts he re e nume rate d.
1 6 Fle sh, and that which is by nature akin to it in sanguine ous animals, is in
all case s situate d in be twe e n the skin and the bone , or the substance analogous to
bone ; for just as spine is a counte rpart of bone , so is the fle sh-like substance of
animals that are constructe d a spinous syste m the counte rpart of the fle sh of
animals constructe d on an osse ous one . Fle sh can be divide d asunde r in any
dire ction, not le ngthwise only as is the case with sine w and ve in. Whe n animals are
subje cte d to e maciation the fle sh disappe ars, and the cre ature s be come a mass of
ve ins and fibre s; whe n the y are ove r fe d, fat take s the place of fle sh. Whe re the
fle sh is abundant in an animal, its ve ins are some what small and the blood
abnormally re d; the visce ra also and the stomach are diminutive ; whe re as with
animals whose ve ins are large the blood is some what black, the visce ra and the
stomach are large , and the fle sh is some what scanty. And animals with small
stomachs are dispose d to take on fle sh. 1 7
Again, fat and sue t diffe r from one anothe r. S ue t is frangible in all dire ctions
and conge als if subje cte d to e xtre me cold, whe re as fat can me lt but cannot fre e ze
or conge al; and soups made of the fle sh of animals supplie d with fat do not conge al
or coagulate , as is found with horse -fle sh and pork; but soups made from the fle sh
of animals supplie d with sue t do coagulate , as is se e n with mutton and goat's
fle sh. Furthe r, fat and sue t diffe r as to the ir localitie s: for fat is found
be twe e n the skin and fle sh, but sue t is found only at the limit of the fle shy
parts. Also, in animals supplie d with fat the ome ntum or caul is supplie d with fat,
and it is supplie d with sue t in animals supplie d with sue t. More ove r, ambide ntal
animals are supplie d with fat, and non-ambide ntals with sue t. Of the visce ra the
live r in some animals be come s fatty, as, among fishe s, is the case with the
se lachia, by the me lting of whose live rs an oil is manufacture d. The se
cartilaginous fish the mse lve s have no fre e fat at all in conne xion with the fle sh
or with the stomach. The sue t in fish is fatty, and doe s not solidify or conge al.
All animals are furnishe d with fat, e ithe r inte rmingle d with the ir fle sh, or apart.
S uch as have no fre e or se parate fat are le ss fat than othe rs in stomach and
ome ntum, as the e e l; for it has only a scanty supply of sue t about the ome ntum.
Most animals take on fat in the be lly, e spe cially such animals as are little in
motion. The brains of animals supplie d with fat are oily, as in the pig; of
animals supplie d with sue t, parche d and dry. But it is about the kidne ys more than
any othe r visce ra that animals are incline d to take on fat; and the right kidne y is
always le ss supplie d with fat than the le ft kidne y, and, be the two kidne ys e ve r so
fat, the re is always a space de void of fat in be twe e n the two. Animals supplie d
with sue t are spe cially apt to have it about the kidne ys, and e spe cially the she e p;
for this animal is apt to die from its kidne ys be ing e ntire ly e nve lope d. Fat or
sue t about the kidne y is supe rinduce d by ove rfe e ding, as is found at Le ontini in
S icily; and conse que ntly in this district the y de fe r driving out she e p to pasture
until the day is we ll on, with the vie w of limiting the ir food by curtailme nt of
the hours of pasture . 1 8 The part around the
pupil of the e ye is fatty in all animals, and this part re se mble s sue t in all
animals that posse ss such a part and that are not furnishe d with hard e ye s. Fat
animals, whe the r male or fe male , are more or le ss unfitte d for bre e ding purpose s.
Animals are dispose d to take on fat more whe n old than whe n young, and e spe cially
whe n the y have attaine d the ir full bre adth and the ir full le ngth and are be ginning
to grow de pthways. 1 9 And now to proce e d to the
conside ration of the blood. In sanguine ous animals blood is the most unive rsal and
the most indispe nsable part; and it is not an acquire d or adve ntitious part, but it
is a consubstantial part of all animals that are not corrupt or moribund. All blood
is containe d in a vascular syste m, to wit, the ve ins, and is found nowhe re e lse ,
e xce pting in the he art. Blood is not se nsitive to touch in any animal, any more
than the e xcre tions of the stomach; and the case is similar with the brain and the
marrow. Whe n fle sh is lace rate d, blood e xude s, if the animal be alive and unle ss
the fle sh be gangre ne d. Blood in a he althy condition is naturally swe e t to the
taste , and re d in colour, blood that de te riorate s from natural de cay or from
dise ase more or le ss black. Blood at its be st, be fore it unde rgoe s de te rioration
from e ithe r natural de cay or from dise ase , is ne ithe r ve ry thick nor ve ry thin. In
the living animal it is always liquid and warm, but, on issuing from the body, it
coagulate s in all case s e xce pt in the case of the de e r, the roe , and the like
animals; for, as a ge ne ral rule , blood coagulate s unle ss the fibre s be e xtracte d.
Bull's blood is the quicke st to coagulate . Animals that are inte rnally and
e xte rnally viviparous are more abundantly supplie d with blood than the sanguine ous
ovipara. Animals that are in good condition, e ithe r from natural cause s or from
the ir he alth having be e n atte nde d to, have the blood ne ithe r too abundant-as
cre ature s just afte r drinking have the liquid inside the m in abundance -nor again
ve ry scanty, as is the case with animals whe n e xce e dingly fat. For animals in this
condition have pure blood, but ve ry little of it, and the fatte r an animal ge ts the
le ss be come s its supply of blood; for whatsoe ve r is fat is de stitute of blood. A
fat substance is incorruptible , but blood and all things containing it corrupt
rapidly, and this prope rty characte rize s e spe cially all parts conne cte d with the
bone s. Blood is fine st and pure st in man; and thicke st and blacke st in the bull and
the ass, of all vivipara. In the lowe r and the highe r parts of the body blood is
thicke r and blacke r than in the ce ntral parts. Blood be ats or palpitate s in the
ve ins of all animals alike all ove r the ir bodie s, and blood is the only liquid that
pe rme ate s the e ntire frame s of living animals, without e xce ption and at all time s,
as long as life lasts. Blood is de ve lope d first of all in the he art of animals
be fore the body is diffe re ntiate d as a whole . If blood be re move d or if it e scape
in any conside rable quantity, animals fall into a faint or swoon; if it be re move d
or if it e scape in an e xce e dingly large quantity the y die . If the blood ge t
e xce e dingly liquid, animals fall sick; for the blood the n turns into some thing like
ichor, or a liquid so thin that it at time s has be e n known to e xude through the
pore s like swe at. In some case s blood, whe n issuing from the ve ins, doe s not
coagulate at all, or only he re and the re . Whilst animals are sle e ping the blood is
le ss abundantly supplie d ne ar the e xte rior surface s, so that, if the sle e ping
cre ature be pricke d with a pin, the blood doe s not issue as copiously as it would
if the cre ature we re awake . Blood is de ve lope d out of ichor by coction, and fat in
like manne r out of blood. If the blood ge t dise ase d, hae morrhoids may e nsue in the
nostril or at the anus, or the ve ins may be come varicose . Blood, if it corrupt in
the body, has a te nde ncy to turn into pus, and pus may turn into a solid
concre tion. Blood in the fe male diffe rs from that in the male , for, supposing
the male and fe male to be on a par as re gards age and ge ne ral he alth, the blood in
the fe male is thicke r and blacke r than in the male ; and with the fe male the re is a
comparative supe rabundance of it in the inte rior. Of all fe male animals the fe male
in man is the most richly supplie d with blood, and of all fe male animals the
me nstruous discharge s are the most copious in woman. The blood of the se discharge s
unde r dise ase turns into flux. Apart from the me nstrual discharge s, the fe male in
the human spe cie s is le ss subje ct to dise ase s of the blood than the male . Wome n
are se ldom afflicte d with varicose ve ins, with hae morrhoids, or with ble e ding at
the nose , and, if any of the se maladie s supe rve ne , the me nse s are impe rfe ctly
discharge d. Blood diffe rs in quantity and appe arance
according to age ; in ve ry young animals it re se mble s ichor and is abundant, in the
old it is thick and black and scarce , and in middle -age d animals its qualitie s are
inte rme diate . In old animals the blood coagulate s rapidly, e ve n blood at the
surface of the body; but this is not the case with young animals. Ichor is, in
fact, nothing e lse but unconcocte d blood: e ithe r blood that has not ye t be e n
concocte d, or that has be come fluid again. 2 0
We now proce e d to discuss the prope rtie s of marrow; for this is one of the liquids
found in ce rtain sanguine ous animals. All the natural liquids of the body are
containe d in ve sse ls: as blood in ve ins, marrow in bone s othe r moisture s in
me mbranous structure s of the skin In young animals the marrow is e xce e dingly
sanguine ous, but, as animals grow old, it be come s fatty in animals supplie d with
fat, and sue t-like in animals with sue t. All bone s, howe ve r, are not supplie d with
marrow, but only the hollow one s, and not all of the se . For of the bone s in the
lion some contain no marrow at all, and some are only scantily supplie d the re with;
and that accounts, as was pre viously obse rve d, for the state me nt made by ce rtain
write rs that the lion is marrowle ss. In the bone s of pigs it is found in small
quantitie s; and in the bone s of ce rtain animals of this spe cie s it is not found at
all. The se liquids, the n, are ne arly always conge nital in animals, but milk and
spe rm come at a late r time . Of the se latte r, that which, whe nsoe ve r it is pre se nt,
is se cre te d in all case s re ady-made , is the milk; spe rm, on the othe r hand, is not
se cre te d out in all case s, but in some only, as in the case of what are de signate d
thori in fishe s. Whate ve r animals have milk, have it in the ir bre asts. All
animals have bre asts that are inte rnally and e xte rnally viviparous, as for instance
all animals that have hair, as man and the horse ; and the ce tace ans, as the
dolphin, the porpoise , and the whale -for the se animals have bre asts and are
supplie d with milk. Animals that are oviparous or only e xte rnally viviparous have
ne ithe r bre asts nor milk, as the fish and the bird. All milk is compose d of a
wate ry se rum calle d 'whe y', and a consiste nt substance calle d curd (or che e se ); and
the thicke r the milk, the more abundant the curd. The milk, the n, of non-
ambide ntals coagulate s, and that is why che e se is made of the milk of such animals
unde r dome stication; but the milk of ambide ntals doe s not coagulate , nor the ir fat
e ithe r, and the milk is thin and swe e t. Now the came l's milk is the thinne st, and
that of the human spe cie s ne xt afte r it, and that of the ass ne xt again, but cow's
milk is the thicke st. Milk doe s not coagulate unde r the influe nce of cold, but
rathe r runs to whe y; but unde r the influe nce of he at it coagulate s and thicke ns. As
a ge ne ral rule milk only come s to animals in pre gnancy. Whe n the animal is pre gnant
milk is found, but for a while it is unfit for use , and the n afte r an inte rval of
use fulne ss it be come s unfit for use again. In the case of fe male animals not
pre gnant a small quantity of milk has be e n procure d by the e mployme nt of spe cial
food, and case s have be e n actually known whe re wome n advance d in ye ars on be ing
submitte d to the proce ss of milking have produce d milk, and in some case s have
produce d it in sufficie nt quantitie s to e nable the m to suckle an infant. The
pe ople that live on and about Mount Oe ta take such she -goats as de cline the male
and rub the ir udde rs hard with ne ttle s to cause an irritation amounting to pain;
he re upon the y milk the animals, procuring at first a liquid re se mbling blood, the n
a liquid mixe d with purule nt matte r, and e ve ntually milk, as fre e ly as from fe male s
submitting to the male . As a ge ne ral rule , milk is not found in the male of man
or of any othe r animal, though from time to time it has be e n found in a male ; for
instance , once in Le mnos a he -goat was milke d by its dugs (for it has, by the way,
two dugs close to the pe nis), and was milke d to such e ffe ct that che e se was made of
the produce , and the same phe nome non was re pe ate d in a male of its own be ge tting.
S uch occurre nce s, howe ve r, are re garde d as supe rnatural and fraught with ome n as to
futurity, and in point of fact whe n the Le mnian owne r of the animal inquire d of the
oracle , the god informe d him that the porte nt fore shadowe d the acquisition of a
fortune . With some me n, afte r pube rty, milk can be produce d by sque e zing the
bre asts; case s have be e n known whe re on the ir be ing subje cte d to a prolonge d
milking proce ss a conside rable quantity of milk has be e n e duce d. In milk the re
is a fatty e le me nt, which in clotte d milk ge ts to re se mble oil. Goat's milk is
mixe d with she e p's milk in S icily, and whe re ve r she e p's milk is abundant. The be st
milk for clotting is not only that whe re the che e se is most abundant, but that also
whe re the che e se is drie st. Now some animals produce not only e nough milk to
re ar the ir young, but a supe rfluous amount for ge ne ral use , for che e se -making and
for storage . This is e spe cially the case with the she e p and the goat, and ne xt in
de gre e with the cow. Mare 's milk, by the way, and milk of the she -ass are mixe d in
with Phrygian che e se . And the re is more che e se in cow's milk than in goat's milk;
for grazie rs te ll us that from nine gallons of goat's milk the y can ge t nine te e n
che e se s at an obol apie ce , and from the same amount of cow's milk, thirty. Othe r
animals give only e nough of milk to re ar the ir young withal, and no supe rfluous
amount and none fitte d for che e se -making, as is the case with all animals that have
more than two bre asts or dugs; for with none of such animals is milk produce d in
supe rabundance or use d for the manufacture of che e se . The juice of the fig and
re nne t are e mploye d to curdle milk. The fig-juice is first sque e ze d out into wool;
the wool is the n washe d and rinse d, and the rinsing put into a little milk, and if
this be mixe d with othe r milk it curdle s Re nne t is a kind of milk, for it is found
in the stomach of the animal while it is ye t suckling.
2 1 Re nne t the n consists of milk with an admixture of fire , which come s from the
natural he at of the animal, as the milk is concocte d. All ruminating animals
produce re nne t, and, of ambide ntals, the hare . Re nne t improve s in quality the
longe r it is ke pt; and cow's re nne t, afte r be ing ke pt a good while , and also hare 's
re nne t, is good for diarrhoe a, and the be st of all re nne t is that of the young
de e r. In milk-producing animals the comparative amount of the yie ld varie s with
the size of the animal and the dive rsitie s of pasturage . For instance , the re are in
Phasis small cattle that in all case s give a copious supply of milk, and the large
cows in Epirus yie ld e ach one daily some nine gallons of milk, and half of this
from e ach pair of te ats, and the milke r has to stand e re ct, stooping forward a
little , as othe rwise , if he we re se ate d, he would be unable to re ach up to the
te ats. But, with the e xce ption of the ass, all the quadrupe ds in Epirus are of
large size , and re lative ly, the cattle and the dogs are the large st. Now large
animals re quire abundant pasture , and this country supplie s just such pasturage ,
and also supplie s dive rse pasture grounds to suit the dive rse se asons of the ye ar.
The cattle are particularly large , and like wise the she e p of the so-calle d Pyrrhic
bre e d, the name be ing give n in honour of King Pyrrhus. S ome pasture que nche s
milk, as Me dian grass or luce rne , and that e spe cially in ruminants; othe r fe e ding
re nde rs it copious, as cytisus and ve tch; only, by the way, cytisus in flowe r is
not re comme nde d, as it has burning prope rtie s, and ve tch is not good for pre gnant
kine , as it cause s incre ase d difficulty in parturition. Howe ve r, be asts that have
acce ss to good fe e ding, as the y are be ne fite d the re by in re gard to pre gnancy, so
also be ing we ll nourishe d produce milk in ple nty. S ome of the le guminous plants
bring milk in abundance , as for instance , a large fe e d of be ans with the e we , the
common she -goat, the cow, and the small she -goat; for this fe e ding make s the m drop
the ir udde rs. And, by the way, the pointing of the udde r to the ground be fore
parturition is a sign of the re be ing ple nty of milk coming. Milk re mains for a
long time in the fe male , if she be ke pt from the male and be prope rly fe d, and, of
quadrupe ds, this is e spe cially true of the e we ; for the e we can be milke d for e ight
months. As a ge ne ral rule , ruminating animals give milk in abundance , and milk
fitte d for che e se manufacture . In the ne ighbourhood of Torone cows run dry for a
fe w days be fore calving, and have milk all the re st of the time . In wome n, milk of
a livid colour is be tte r than white for nursing purpose s; and swarthy wome n give
he althie r milk than fair one s. Milk that is riche st in che e se is the most
nutritious, but milk with a scanty supply of che e se is the more whole some for
childre n. 2 2 All sanguine ous animals e je ct
spe rm. As to what, and how, it contribute s to ge ne ration, the se que stions will be
discusse d in anothe r tre atise . Taking the size of his body into account, man e mits
more spe rm than any othe r animal. In hairy-coate d animals the spe rm is sticky, but
in othe r animals it is not so. It is white in all case s, and He rodotus is unde r a
misappre he nsion whe n he state s that the Ae thiopians e je ct black spe rm. S pe rm
issue s from the body white and consiste nt, if it be he althy, and afte r quitting the
body be come s thin and black. In frosty we athe r it doe s not coagulate , but ge ts
e xce e dingly thin and wate ry both in colour and consiste ncy; but it coagulate s and
thicke ns unde r the influe nce of he at. If it be long in the womb be fore issuing out,
it come s more than usually thick; and some time s it come s out dry and compact. S pe rm
capable of impre gnating or of fructification
sinks in wate r; spe rm incapable Of producing that re sult dissolve s away. But the re
is no truth in what C te sias has writte n about the spe rm of the e le phant.
Book IV 1 We have now tre ate d, in re gard to
bloode d animals of the parts the y have in common and of the parts pe culiar to this
ge nus or that, and of the parts both composite and simple , whe the r without or
within. We now proce e d to tre at of animals de void of blood. The se animals are
divide d into se ve ral ge ne ra. One ge nus consists of so-calle d 'molluscs'; and by
the te rm 'mollusc' we me an an animal that, be ing de void of blood, has its fle sh-
like substance outside , and any hard structure it may happe n to have , inside -in
this re spe ct re se mbling the re d-bloode d animals, such as the ge nus of the cuttle -
fish. Anothe r ge nus is that of the malacostraca. The se are animals that have
the ir hard structure outside , and the ir soft or fle shlike substance inside , and the
hard substance be longing to the m has to be crushe d rathe r than shatte re d; and to
this ge nus be longs the crawfish and the crab. A third ge nus is that of the
ostracode rms or 'te stace ans'. The se are animals that have the ir hard substance
outside and the ir fle sh-like substance within, and the ir hard substance can be
shatte re d but not crushe d; and to this ge nus be long the snail and the oyste r.
The fourth ge nus is that of inse cts; and this ge nus compre he nds nume rous and
dissimilar spe cie s. Inse cts are cre ature s that, as the name implie s, have nicks
e ithe r on the be lly or on the back, or on both be lly and back, and have no one part
distinctly osse ous and no one part distinctly fle shy, but are throughout a
some thing inte rme diate be twe e n bone and fle sh; that is to say, the ir body is hard
all through, inside and outside . S ome inse cts are wingle ss, such as the iulus and
the ce ntipe de ; some are winge d, as the be e , the cockchafe r, and the wasp; and the
same kind is in some case s both winge d and wingle ss, as the ant and the glow-worm.
In molluscs the e xte rnal parts are as follows: in the first place , the so-calle d
fe e t; se condly, and attache d to the se , the he ad; thirdly, the mantle -sac,
containing the inte rnal parts, and incorre ctly de signate d by some write rs the he ad;
and, fourthly, fins round about the sac. (S e e diagram.) In all molluscs the he ad is
found to be be twe e n the fe e t and the be lly. All molluscs are furnishe d with e ight
fe e t, and in all case s the se fe e t are se ve rally furnishe d with a double row of
sucke rs, with the e xce ption of one single spe cie s of poulpe or octopus. The se pia,
the small calamary and the large calamary have an e xce ptional organ in a pair of
long arms or te ntacle s, having at the ir e xtre mitie s a portion re nde re d rough by the
pre se nce of two rows of sucke rs; and with the se arms or te ntacle s the y appre he nd
the ir food and draw it into the ir mouths, and in stormy we athe r the y cling by the m
to a rock and sway about in the rough wate r like ships lying at anchor. The y swim
by the aid of the fins that the y have about the sac. In all case s the ir fe e t are
furnishe d with sucke rs. The octopus, by the way, use s his fe e le rs e ithe r as fe e t
or hands; with the two which stand ove r his mouth he draws in food, and the last of
his fe e le rs he e mploys in the act of copulation; and this last one , by the way, is
e xtre me ly sharp, is e xce ptional as be ing of a whitish colour, and at its e xtre mity
is bifurcate ; that is to say, it has an additional some thing on the rachis, and by
rachis is me ant the smooth surface or e dge of the arm on the far side from the
sucke rs. (S e e diagram.) In front of the sac and ove r the fe e le rs the y have a
hollow tube , by me ans of which the y discharge any se a-wate r that the y may have
take n into the sac of the body in the act of re ce iving food by the mouth. The y can
shift the tube from side to side , and by me ans of it the y discharge the black
liquid pe culiar to the animal. S tre tching out its fe e t, it swims oblique ly in
the dire ction of the so-calle d he ad, and by this mode of swimming it can se e in
front, for its e ye s are at the top, and in this attitude it has its mouth at the
re ar. The 'he ad', while the cre ature is alive , is hard, and looks as though it we re
inflate d. It appre he nds and re tains obje cts by me ans of the unde r-surface of its
arms, and the me mbrane in be twe e n its fe e t is ke pt at full te nsion; if the animal
ge t on to the sand it can no longe r re tain its hold. The re is a diffe re nce
be twe e n the octopus and the othe r molluscs above me ntione d: the body of the octopus
is small, and his fe e t are long, whe re as in the othe rs the body is large and the
fe e t short; so short, in fact, that the y cannot walk on the m. C ompare d with one
anothe r, the te uthis, or calamary, is long-shape d, and the se pia flat-shape d; and
of the calamarie s the so-calle d te uthus is much bigge r than the te uthis; for te uthi
have be e n found as much as five e lls long. S ome se piae attain a le ngth of two e lls,
and the fe e le rs of the octopus are some time s as long, or e ve n longe r. The spe cie s
te uthus is not a nume rous one ; the te uthus diffe rs from the te uthis in shape ; that
is, the sharp e xtre mity of the te uthus is broade r than that of the othe r, and,
furthe r, the e ncircling fin goe s all round the trunk, whe re as it is in part lacking
in the te uthis; both animals are pe lagic. In all case s the he ad come s afte r the
fe e t, in the middle of the fe e t that are calle d arms or fe e le rs. The re is he re
situate d a mouth, and two te e th in the mouth; and above the se two large e ye s, and
be twixt the e ye s a small cartilage e nclosing a small brain; and within the mouth it
has a minute organ of a fle shy nature , and this it use s as a tongue , for no othe r
tongue doe s it posse ss. Ne xt afte r this, on the outside , is what looks like a sac;
the fle sh of which it is made is divisible , not in long straight strips, but in
annular flake s; and all molluscs have a cuticle around this fle sh. Ne xt afte r or at
the back of the mouth come s a long and narrow oe sophagus, and close afte r that a
crop or craw, large and sphe rical, like that of a bird; the n come s the stomach,
like the fourth stomach in ruminants; and the shape of it re se mble s the spiral
convolution in the trumpe t-she ll; from the stomach the re goe s back again, in the
dire ction of the mouth, thin gut, and the gut is thicke r than the oe sophagus. (S e e
diagram.) Molluscs have no visce ra, but the y have what is calle d a mytis, and on
it a ve sse l containing a thick black juice ; in the se pia or cuttle -fish this ve sse l
is the large st, and this juice is most abundant. All molluscs, whe n frighte ne d,
discharge such a juice , but the discharge is most copious in the cuttle -fish. The
mytis, the n, is situate d unde r the mouth, and the oe sophagus runs through it; and
down be low at the point to which the gut e xte nds is the ve sicle of the black juice ,
and the animal has the ve sicle and the gut e nve lope d in one and the same me mbrane ,
and by the same me mbrane , same orifice discharge s both the black juice and the
re siduum. The animals have also ce rtain hair-like or furry growths in the ir bodie s.
In the se pia, the te uthis, and the te uthus the hard parts are within, towards the
back of the body; those parts are calle d in one the se pium, and in the othe r the
'sword'. The y diffe r from one anothe r, for the se pium in the cuttle -fish and
te uthus is hard and flat, be ing a substance inte rme diate be twe e n bone and fishbone ,
with (in part) a crumbling, spongy te xture , but in the te uthis the part is thin and
some what gristly. The se parts diffe r from one anothe r in shape , as do also the
bodie s of the animals. The octopus has nothing hard of this kind in its inte rior,
but it has a gristly substance round the he ad, which, if the animal grows old,
be come s hard. The fe male s diffe r from the male s. The male s have a duct in unde r
the oe sophagus, e xte nding from the mantle -cavity to the lowe r portion of the sac,
and the re is an organ to which it attache s, re se mbling a bre ast; (se e diagram) in
the fe male the re are two of the se organs, situate d highe r up; (se e diagram) with
both se xe s the re are unde rne ath the se organs ce rtain re d formations. The e gg of the
octopus is single , une ve n on its surface , and of large size ; the fluid substance
within is all uniform in colour, smooth, and in colour white ; the size of the e gg
is so gre at as to fill a ve sse l large r than the cre ature 's he ad. The se pia has two
sacs, and inside the m a numbe r of e ggs, like in appe arance to white hailstone s. For
the disposition of the se parts I must re fe r to my anatomical diagrams. The male s
of all the se animals diffe r from the fe male s, and the diffe re nce be twe e n the se xe s
is most marke d in the se pia; for the back of the trunk, which is blacke r than the
be lly, is roughe r in the male than in the fe male , and in the male the back is
stripe d, and the rump is more sharply pointe d. The re are se ve ral spe cie s of the
octopus. One ke e ps close to the surface , and is the large st of the m all, and ne ar
the shore the size is large r than in de e p wate r; and the re are othe rs, small,
varie gate d in colour, which are not article s of food. The re are two othe rs, one
calle d the he le done , which diffe rs from its conge ne rs in the le ngth of its le gs and
in having one row of sucke rs-all the re st of the molluscs having two,-the othe r
nickname d variously the bolitaina or the 'onion,' and the ozolis or the 'stinkard'.
The re are two othe rs found in she lls re se mbling those of the te stace ans. One of
the m is nickname d by some pe rsons the nautilus or the pontilus, or by othe rs the
'polypus' e gg'; and the she ll of this cre ature is some thing like a se parate valve
of a de e p scallop-she ll. This polypus live s ve ry ofte n ne ar to the shore , and is
apt to be thrown up high and dry on the be ach; unde r the se circumstance s it is
found with its she ll de tache d, and die s by and by on dry
land. The se polypods are small, and are shape d, as re gards the form of the ir
bodie s, like the bolbidia. The re is anothe r polypus that is place d within a she ll
like a snail; it ne ve r come s out of the she ll, but live s inside the she ll like the
snail, and from time to time protrude s its fe e le rs. S o much for molluscs.
2 With re gard to the Malacostraca or crustace ans, one spe cie s is that of the
crawfish, and a se cond, re se mbling the first, is that of the lobste r; the lobste r
diffe ring from the crawfish in having claws, and in a fe w othe r re spe cts as we ll.
Anothe r spe cie s is that of the carid, and anothe r is that of the crab, and the re
are many kinds both of carid and of crab. Of carids the re are the so-calle d
cyphae , or 'hunch-backs', the crangons, or squillae , and the little kind, or
shrimps, and the little kind do not de ve lop into a large r kind. Of the crab, the
varie tie s are inde finite and incalculable . The large st of all crabs is one
nickname d Maia, a se cond varie ty is the pagarus and the crab of He racle otis, and a
third varie ty is the fre sh-wate r crab; the othe r varie tie s are smalle r in size and
de stitute of spe cial de signations. In the ne ighbourhood of Phoe nice the re are found
on the be ach ce rtain crabs that are nickname d the 'horse me n', from the ir running
with such spe e d that it is difficult to ove rtake the m; the se crabs, whe n ope ne d,
are usually found e mpty, and this e mptine ss may be put down to insufficie ncy of
nutrime nt. (The re is anothe r varie ty, small like the crab, but re se mbling in shape
the lobste r.) All the se animals, as has be e n state d, have the ir hard and she lly
part outside , whe re the skin is in othe r animals, and the fle shy part inside ; and
the be lly is more or le ss provide d with lame llae , or little flaps, and the fe male
he re de posits he r spawn. The crawfishe s have five fe e t on e ithe r side , including
the claws at the e nd; and in like manne r the crabs have te n fe e t in all, including
the claws. Of the carids, the hunch-backe d, or prawns, have five fe e t on e ithe r
side , which are sharp-pointe d-those towards the he ad; and five othe rs on e ithe r
side in the re gion of the be lly, with the ir e xtre mitie s flat; the y are de void of
flaps on the unde r side such as the crawfish has, but on the back the y re se mble the
crawfish. (S e e diagram.)It is ve ry diffe re nt with the crangon, or squilla; it has
four front le gs on e ithe r side , the n thre e thin one s close be hind on e ithe r side ,
and the re st of the body is for the most part de void of fe e t. (S e e diagram.) Of all
the se animals the fe e t be nd out oblique ly, as is the case with inse cts; and the
claws, whe re claws are found, turn inwards. The crawfish has a tail, and five fins
on it; and the round-backe d carid has a tail and four fins; the squilla also has
fins at the tail on e ithe r side . In the case of both the hump-backe d carid and the
squilla the middle art of the tail is spinous: only that in the squilla the part is
flatte ne d and in the carid it is sharp-pointe d. Of all animals of this ge nus the
crab is the only one de void of a rump; and, while the body of the carid and the
crawfish is e longate d, that of the crab is rotund. In the crawfish the male
diffe rs from the fe male : in the fe male the first foot is bifurcate , in the male it
is undivide d; the be lly-fins in the fe male are large and ove rlapping on the ne ck,
while in the male the y are smalle r and do not ove rlap; and, furthe r, on the last
fe e t of the male the re are spur-like proje ctions, large and sharp, which
proje ctions in the fe male are small and smooth. Both male and fe male have two
ante nnae in front of the e ye s, large and rough, and othe r ante nnae unde rne ath,
small and smooth. The e ye s of all the se cre ature s are hard and be ady, and can move
e ithe r to the inne r or to the oute r side . The e ye s of most crabs have a similar
facility of move me nt, or rathe r, in the crab this facility is de ve lope d in a highe r
de gre e . (S e e diagram.) The lobste r is all ove r gre y-coloure d, with a mottling of
black. Its unde r or hinde r fe e t, up to the big fe e t or claws, are e ight in numbe r;
the n come the big fe e t, far large r and flatte r at the tips than the same organs in
the crawfish; and the se big fe e t or claws are e xce ptional in the ir structure , for
the right claw has the e xtre me flat surface long and thin, while the le ft claw has
the corre sponding surface thick and round. Each of the two claws, divide d at the
e nd like a pair of jaws, has both be low and above a se t of te e th: only that in the
right claw the y are all small and saw-shape d, while in the le ft claw those at the
ape x are saw-shape d and those within are molar-shape d, the se latte r be ing, in the
unde r part of the cle ft claw, four te e th close toge the r, and in the uppe r part
thre e te e th, not close toge the r. Both right and le ft claws have the uppe r part
mobile , and bring it to be ar against the lowe r one , and both are curve d like bandy-
le gs, be ing the re by adapte d for appre he nsion and constriction. Above the two large
claws come two othe rs, cove re d with hair, a little unde rne ath the mouth; and
unde rne ath the se the gill-like formations in the re gion of the mouth, hairy and
nume rous. The se organs the animal ke e ps in pe rpe tual motion; and the two hairy fe e t
it be nds and draws in towards its mouth. The fe e t ne ar the mouth are furnishe d also
with de licate outgrowing appe ndage s. Like the crawfish, the lobste r has two te e th,
or mandible s, and above the se te e th are its ante nnae , long, but shorte r and fine r
by far than those of the crawfish, and the n four othe r ante nnae similar in shape ,
but shorte r and fine r than the othe rs. Ove r the se ante nnae come the e ye s, small and
short, not large like the e ye s of the crawfish. Ove r the e ye s is a pe aky rough
proje ction like a fore he ad, large r than the same part in the crawfish; in fact, the
frontal part is more pointe d and the thorax is much broade r in the lobste r than in
the crawfish, and the body in ge ne ral is smoothe r and more full of fle sh. Of the
e ight fe e t, four are bifurcate at the e xtre mitie s, and four are undivide d. The
re gion of the so-calle d ne ck is outwardly divide d into five divisions, and sixthly
come s the flatte ne d portion at the e nd, and this portion has five flaps, or tail-
fins; and the inne r or unde r parts, into which the fe male drops he r spawn, are four
in numbe r and hairy, and on e ach of the afore said parts is a spine turne d outwards,
short and straight. The body in ge ne ral and the re gion of the thorax in particular
are smooth, not rough as in the crawfish; but on the large claws the oute r portion
has large r spine s. The re is no appare nt diffe re nce be twe e n the male and fe male , for
the y both have one claw, whiche ve r it may be , large r than the othe r, and ne ithe r
male nor fe male is e ve r found with both claws of the same size . All crustace ans
take in wate r close by the mouth. The crab discharge s it, closing up, as it doe s
so, a small portion of the same , and the crawfish discharge s it by way of the
gills; and, by the way, the gill-shape d organs in the crawfish are ve ry nume rous.
The following prope rtie s are common to all crustace ans: the y have in all case s two
te e th, or mandible s (for the front te e th in the crawfish are two in numbe r), and in
all case s the re is in the mouth a small fle shy structure se rving for a tongue ; and
the stomach is close to the mouth, only that the crawfish has a little oe sophagus
in front of the stomach, and the re is a straight gut attache d to it. This gut, in
the crawfish and its conge ne rs, and in the carids, e xte nds in a straight line to
the tail, and te rminate s whe re the animal discharge s the re siduum, and whe re the
fe male de posits he r spawn; in the crab it te rminate s whe re the flap is situate d,
and in the ce ntre of the flap. (And by the way, in all the se animals the spawn is
de posite d outside .) Furthe r, the fe male has the place for the spawn running along
the gut. And, again, all the se animals have , more or le ss, an organ te rme d the
'mytis', or 'poppyjuice '. We must now proce e d to re vie w the ir se ve ral
diffe re ntiae . The crawfish the n, as has be e n said, has two te e th, large and
hollow, in which is containe d a juice re se mbling the mytis, and in be twe e n the
te e th is a fle shy substance , shape d like a tongue . Afte r the mouth come s a short
oe sophagus, and the n a me mbranous stomach attache d to the oe sophagus, and at the
orifice Of the stomach are thre e te e th, two facing one anothe r and a third standing
by itse lf unde rne ath. C oming off at a be nd from the stomach is a gut, simple and of
e qual thickne ss throughout the e ntire le ngth of the body until it re ache s the anal
ve nt. The se are all common prope rtie s of the crawfish, the carid, and the crab;
for the crab, be it re me mbe re d, has two te e th. Again, the crawfish has a duct
attache d all the way from the che st to the anal ve nt; and this duct is conne cte d
with the ovary in the fe male , and with the se minal ducts in the male . This passage
is attache d to the concave surface of the fle sh in such a way that the fle sh is in
be twixt the duct and the gut; for the gut is re late d to the conve xity and this duct
to the concavity, pre tty much as is obse rve d in quadrupe ds. And the duct is
ide ntical in both the se xe s; that is to say, the duct in both is thin and white ,
and charge d with a sallow-coloure d moisture , and is attache d to the che st. (The
following are the prope rtie s of the e gg and of the convolute s in the carid.) The
male , by the way, diffe rs from the fe male in re gard to its fle sh, in having in
conne xion with the che st two se parate and distinct white substance s, re se mbling in
colour and conformation the te ntacle s of the cuttle -fish, and the y are convolute d
like the 'poppy' or quasi-live r of the trumpe t-she ll. The se organs have the ir
starting-point in 'cotyle dons' or papillae , which are situate d unde r the hindmost
fe e t; and he re abouts the fle sh is re d and blood-coloure d,
but is slippe ry to the touch and in so far unlike fle sh. Off from the convolute
organ at the che st branche s off anothe r coil about as thick as ordinary twine ; and
unde rne ath the re are two granular se minal bodie s in juxta-position with the gut.
The se are the organs of the male . The fe male has re d-coloure d e ggs, which are
adjace nt to the stomach and to e ach side of the gut all along to the fle shy parts,
be ing e nve lope d in a thin me mbrane . S uch are the parts, inte rnal and e xte rnal,
of the carid. 3 The inne r organs of
sanguine ous animals happe n to have spe cific de signations; for the se animals have in
all case s the inne r visce ra, but this is not the case with the bloodle ss animals,
but what the y have in common with re d-bloode d animals is the stomach, the
oe sophagus, and the gut. With re gard to the crab, it has alre ady be e n state d
that it has claws and fe e t, and the ir position has be e n se t forth; furthe rmore , for
the most part the y have the right claw bigge r and stronge r than the le ft. It has
also be e n state d' that in ge ne ral the e ye s of the crab look side ways. Furthe r, the
trunk of the crab's body is single and undivide d, including its he ad and any othe r
part it may posse ss. S ome crabs have e ye s place d side ways on the uppe r part,
imme diate ly unde r the back, and standing a long way apart, and some have the ir e ye s
in the ce ntre and close toge the r, like the crabs of He racle otis and the so-calle d
'grannie s'. The mouth lie s unde rne ath the e ye s, and inside it the re are two te e th,
as is the case with the crawfish, only that in the crab the te e th are not rounde d
but long; and ove r the te e th are two lids, and in be twixt the m are structure s such
as the crawfish has be side s its te e th. The crab take s in wate r ne ar by the mouth,
using the lids as a che ck to the inflow, and discharge s the wate r by two passage s
above the mouth, closing by me ans of the lids the way by which it e nte re d; and the
two passage -ways are unde rne ath the e ye s. Whe n it has take n in wate r it close s its
mouth by me ans of both lids, and e je cts the wate r in the way above de scribe d. Ne xt
afte r the te e th come s the oe sophagus, ve ry short, so short in fact that the stomach
se e ms to come straightway afte r the mouth. Ne xt afte r the oe sophagus come s the
stomach, two-horne d, to the ce ntre of which is attache d a simple and de licate gut;
and the gut te rminate s outwards, at the ope rculum, as has be e n pre viously state d.
(The crab has the parts in be twe e n the lids in the ne ighbourhood of the te e th
similar to the same parts in the crawfish.) Inside the trunk is a sallow juice and
some fe w little bodie s, long and white , and othe rs spotte d re d. The male diffe rs
from the fe male in size and bre adth, and in re spe ct of the ve ntral flap; for this
is large r in the fe male than in the male , and stands out furthe r from the trunk,
and is more hairy (as is the case also with the fe male in the crawfish). S o
much, the n, for the organs of the malacostraca or crustace a.
4 With the ostracode rma, or te stace ans, such as the land-snails and the se a-
snails, and all the 'oyste rs' so-calle d, and also with the se a-urchin ge nus, the
fle shy part, in such as have fle sh, is similarly situate d to the fle shy part in the
crustace ans; in othe r words, it is inside the animal, and the she ll is outside , and
the re is no hard substance in the inte rior. As compare d with one anothe r the
te stace ans pre se nt many dive rsitie s both in re gard to the ir she lls and to the fle sh
within. S ome of the m have no fle sh at all, as the se a-urchin; othe rs have fle sh,
but it is inside and wholly hidde n, e xce pt the he ad, as in the land-snails, and the
so-calle d cocalia, and, among pe lagic animals, in the purple mure x, the ce ryx or
trumpe t-she ll, the se a-snail, and the spiral-shape d te stace ans in ge ne ral. Of the
re st, some are bivalve d and some univalve d; and by 'bivalve s' I me an such as are
e nclose d within two she lls, and by 'univalve d' such as are e nclose d within a single
she ll, and in the se last the fle shy part is e xpose d, as in the case of the limpe t.
Of the bivalve s, some can ope n out, like the scallop and the musse l; for all such
she lls are grown toge the r on one side and are se parate on the othe r, so as to ope n
and shut. Othe r bivalve s are close d on both side s alike , like the sole n or razor-
fish. S ome te stace ans the re are , that are e ntire ly e nve lope d in she ll and e xpose no
portion of the ir fle sh outside , as the te thya or ascidians. Again, in re gard to
the she lls the mse lve s, the te stace ans pre se nt diffe re nce s whe n compare d with one
anothe r. S ome are smooth-she lle d, like the sole n, the musse l, and some clams, viz.
those that are nickname d 'milkshe lls', while othe rs are rough-she lle d, such as the
pool-oyste r or e dible oyste r, the pinna, and ce rtain spe cie s of cockle s, and the
trumpe t she lls; and of the se some are ribbe d, such as the scallop and a ce rtain
kind of clam or cockle , and some are de void of ribs, as the pinna and anothe r
spe cie s of clam. Te stace ans also diffe r from one anothe r in re gard to the thickne ss
or thinne ss of the ir she ll, both as re gards the she ll in its e ntire ty and as
re gards spe cific parts of the she ll, for instance , the lips; for some have thin-
lippe d she lls, like the musse l, and othe rs have thick-lippe d she lls, like the
oyste r. A prope rty common to the above me ntione d, and, in fact, to all te stace ans,
is the smoothne ss of the ir she lls inside . S ome also are capable of motion, like the
scallop, and inde e d some ave r that scallops can actually fly, owing to the
circumstance that the y ofte n jump right out of the apparatus by me ans of which the y
are caught; othe rs are incapable of motion and are attache d fast to some e xte rnal
obje ct, as is the case with the pinna. All the spiral-shape d te stace ans can move
and cre e p, and e ve n the limpe t re laxe s its hold to go in que st of food. In the case
of the univalve s and the bivalve s, the fle shy substance adhe re s to the she ll so
te naciously that it can only be re move d by an e ffort; in the case of the
stromboids, it is more loose ly attache d. And a pe culiarity of all the stromboids is
the spiral twist of the she ll in the part farthe st away from the he ad; the y are
also furnishe d from birth with an ope rculum. And, furthe r, all stromboid te stace ans
have the ir she lls on the right hand side , and move not in the dire ction of the
spire , but the opposite way. S uch are the dive rsitie s obse rve d in the e xte rnal
parts of the se animals. The inte rnal structure is almost the same in all the se
cre ature s, and in the stromboids e spe cially; for it is in size that the se latte r
diffe r from one anothe r, and in accide nts of the nature of e xce ss or de fe ct. And
the re is not much diffe re nce be twe e n most of the univalve s and bivalve s; but, while
those that ope n and shut diffe r from one anothe r but slightly, the y diffe r
conside rably from such as are incapable of motion. And this will be illustrate d
more satisfactorily he re afte r. The spiral-shape d te stace ans are all similarly
constructe d, but diffe r from one anothe r, as has be e n said, in the way of e xce ss or
de fe ct (for the large r spe cie s have large r and more conspicuous organs, and the
smalle r have smalle r and le ss conspicuous), and, furthe rmore , in re lative hardne ss
or softne ss, and in othe r such accide nts or prope rtie s. All the stromboids, for
instance , have the fle sh that e xtrude s from the mouth of the she ll, hard and stiff;
some more , and some le ss. From the middle of this protrude s the he ad and two horns,
and the se horns are large in the large spe cie s, but e xce e dingly minute in the
smalle r one s. The he ad protrude s from the m all in the same way; and, if the animal
be alarme d, the he ad draws in again. S ome of the se cre ature s have a mouth and
te e th, as the snail; te e th sharp, and small, and de licate . The y have also a
proboscis just like that of the fly; and the proboscis is tongue -shape d. The ce ryx
and the purple mure x have this organ firm and solid; and just as the myops, or
horse -fly, and the oe strus, or gadfly, can pie rce the skin of a quadrupe d, so is
that proboscis proportionate ly stronge r in the se te stace ans; for the y bore right
through the she lls of othe r she ll-fish on which the y pre y. The stomach follows
close upon the mouth, and, by the way, this organ in the snail re se mble s a bird's
crop. Unde rne ath come two white firm formations, mastoid or papillary in form; and
similar formations are found in the cuttle -fish also, only that the y are of a
firme r consiste ncy in the cuttle -fish. Afte r the stomach come s an oe sophagus,
simple and long, e xte nding to the poppy or quasi-live r, which is in the inne rmost
re ce ss of the she ll. All the se state me nts may be ve rifie d in the case of the purple
mure x and the ce ryx by obse rvation within the whorl of the she ll. What come s ne xt
to the oe sophagus is the gut; in fact, the gut is continuous with the oe sophagus,
and runs its whole le ngth uncomplicate d to the outle t of the re siduum. The gut has
its point of origin in the re gion of the coil of the me con, or so-calle d 'poppy',
and is wide r he re abouts (for re me mbe r, the me con is for the most part a sort of
e xcre tion in all te stace ans); it the n take s a be nd and runs up again towards the
fle shy part, and te rminate s by the side of the he ad, whe re the animal discharge s
its re siduum; and this holds good in the case of all stromboid te stace ans, whe the r
te rre strial or marine . From the stomach the re is drawn in a paralle l dire ction with
the oe sophagus, in the large r snails, a long white duct e nve lope d in a me mbrane ,
re se mbling in colour the mastoid formations highe r up; and in it are nicks or
inte rruptions, as in the e gg-mass of the crawfish, only, by the way, the duct of
which we are tre ating is white and the e gg-mass of the crawfish is re d. This
formation has no outle t nor duct, but is e nve lope d in a thin me mbrane with a narrow
cavity in its inte rior. And from the gut
downward e xte nd black and rough formations, in close conne xion, some thing like the
formations in the tortoise , only not so black. Marine snails, also, have the se
formations, and the white one s, only that the formations are smalle r in the smalle r
spe cie s. The non-spiral univalve s and bivalve s are in some re spe ct similar in
construction, and in some re spe cts dissimilar, to the spiral te stace ans. The y all
have a he ad and horns, and a mouth, and the organ re se mbling a tongue ; but the se
organs, in the smalle r spe cie s, are indisce rnible owing to the minute ne ss of the se
animals, and some are indisce rnible e ve n in the large r spe cie s whe n de ad, or whe n
at re st and motionle ss. The y all have the me con, or poppy, but not all in the same
place , nor of e qual size , nor similarly ope n to obse rvation; thus, the limpe ts have
this organ de e p down in the bottom of the she ll, and the bivalve s at the hinge
conne cting the two valve s. The y also have in all case s the hairy growths or be ards,
in a circular form, as in the scallops. And, with re gard to the so-calle d 'e gg', in
those that have it, whe n the y have it, it is situate d in one of the se mi-circle s of
the pe riphe ry, as is the case with the white formation in the snail; for this white
formation in the snail corre sponds to the so-calle d e gg of which we are spe aking.
But all the se organs, as has be e n state d, are distinctly trace able in the large r
spe cie s, while in the small one s the y are in some case s almost, and in othe rs
altoge the r, indisce rnible . He nce the y are most plainly visible in the large
scallops; and the se are the bivalve s that have one valve flat-shape d, like the lid
of a pot. The outle t of the e xcre tion is in all the se animals (save for the
e xce ption to be afte rwards re late d) on one side ; for the re is a passage whe re by the
e xcre tion passe s out. (And, re me mbe r, the me con or poppy, as has be e n state d, is an
e xcre tion in all the se animals-an e xcre tion e nve lope d in a me mbrane .) The so-calle d
e gg has no outle t in any of the se cre ature s, but is me re ly an e xcre sce nce in the
fle shy mass; and it is not situate d in the same re gion with the gut, but the 'e gg'
is situate d on the right-hand side and the gut on the le ft. S uch are the re lations
of the anal ve nt in most of the se animals; but in the case of the wild limpe t
(calle d by some the 'se a-e ar'), the re siduum issue s be ne ath the she ll, for the
she ll is pe rforate d to give an outle t. In this particular limpe t the stomach is
se e n coming afte r the mouth, and the e gg-shape d formations are disce rnible . But for
the re lative positions of the se parts you are re fe rre d to my Tre atise on Anatomy.
The so-calle d carcinium or he rmit crab is in a way inte rme diate be twe e n the
crustace ans and the te stace ans. In its nature it re se mble s the crawfish kind, and
it is born simple of itse lf, but by its habit of introducing itse lf into a she ll
and living the re it re se mble s the te stace ans, and so appe ars to partake of the
characte rs of both kinds. In shape , to give a simple illustration, it re se mble s a
spide r, only that the part be low the he ad and thorax is large r in this cre ature
than in the spide r. It has two thin re d horns, and unde rne ath the se horns two long
e ye s, not re tre ating inwards, nor turning side ways like the e ye s of the crab, but
protruding straight out; and unde rne ath the se e ye s the mouth, and round about the
mouth se ve ral hair-like growths, and ne xt afte r the se two bifurcate le gs or claws,
whe re by it draws in obje cts towards itse lf, and two othe r le gs on e ithe r side , and
a third small one . All be low the thorax is soft, and whe n ope ne d in disse ction is
found to be sallow-coloure d within. From the mouth the re runs a single passage
right on to the stomach, but the passage for the e xcre tions is not disce rnible . The
le gs and the thorax are hard, but not so hard as the le gs and the thorax of the
crab. It doe s not adhe re to its she ll like the purple mure x and the ce ryx, but can
e asily slip out of it. It is longe r whe n found in the she ll of the stromboids than
whe n found in the she ll of the ne ritae . And, by the way, the animal found in the
she ll of the ne ritae is a se parate spe cie s, like to the othe r in most re spe cts; but
of its bifurcate fe e t or claws, the right-hand one is small and the le ft-hand one
is large , and it progre sse s chie fly by the aid of this latte r and large r one . (In
the she lls of the se animals, and in ce rtain othe rs, the re is found a parasite whose
mode of attachme nt is similar. The particular one which we have just de scribe d is
name d the cyllarus.) The ne rite s has a smooth large round she ll, and re se mble s
the ce ryx in shape , only the poppy-juice is, in its case , not black but re d. It
clings with gre at force ne ar the middle . In calm we athe r, the n, the y go fre e
afie ld, but whe n the wind blows the carcinia take she lte r against the rocks: the
ne ritae the mse lve s cling fast like limpe ts; and the same is the case with the
hae morrhoid or aporrhaid and all othe rs of the like kind. And, by the way, the y
cling to the rock, whe n the y turn back the ir ope rculum, for this ope rculum se e ms
like a lid; in fact this structure re pre se nts the one part, in the stromboids, of
that which in the bivalve s is a duplicate she ll. The inte rior of the animal is
fle shy, and the mouth is inside . And it is the same with the hae morrhoid, the
purple mure x, and all suchlike animals. S uch of the little crabs as have the
le ft foot or claw the bigge r of the two are found in the ne ritae , but not in the
stromboids. are some snail-she lls which have inside the m cre ature s re se mbling those
little crayfish that are also found in fre sh wate r. The se cre ature s, howe ve r,
diffe r in having the part inside the she lls But as to the characte rs, you are
re fe rre d to my Tre atise on Anatomy. 5 The
urchins are de void of fle sh, and this is a characte r pe culiar to the m; and while
the y are in all case s e mpty and de void of any fle sh within, the y are in all case s
furnishe d with the black formations. The re are se ve ral spe cie s of the urchin, and
one of the se is that which is made use of for food; this is the kind in which are
found the so-calle d e ggs, large and e dible , in the large r and smalle r spe cime ns
alike ; for e ve n whe n as ye t ve ry small the y are provide d with the m. The re are two
othe r spe cie s, the spatangus, and the so-calle d bryssus, the se animals are pe lagic
and scarce . Furthe r, the re are the e chinome trae , or 'mothe r-urchins', the large st
in size of all the spe cie s. In addition to the se the re is anothe r spe cie s, small in
size , but furnishe d with large hard spine s; it live s in the se a at a de pth of
se ve ral fathoms; and is use d by some pe ople as a spe cific for case s of strangury.
In the ne ighbourhood of Torone the re are se a-urchins of a white colour, she lls,
spine s, e ggs and all, and that are longe r than the ordinary se a-urchin. The spine
in this spe cie s is not large nor strong, but rathe r limp; and the black formations
in conne xion with the mouth are more than usually nume rous, and communicate with
the e xte rnal duct, but not with one anothe r; in point of fact, the animal is in a
manne r divide d up by the m. The e dible urchin move s with gre ate st fre e dom and most
ofte n; and this is indicate d by the fact that the se urchins have always some thing
or othe r on the ir spine s. All urchins are supplie d with e ggs, but in some of the
spe cie s the e ggs are e xce e dingly small and unfit for food. S ingularly e nough, the
urchin has what we may call its he ad and mouth down be low, and a place for the
issue of the re siduum up above ; (and this same prope rty is common to all stromboids
and to limpe ts). For the food on which the cre ature live s lie s down be low;
conse que ntly the mouth has a position we ll adapte d for ge tting at the food, and the
e xcre tion is above , ne ar to the back of the she ll. The urchin has, also, five
hollow te e th inside , and in the middle of the se te e th a fle shy substance se rving
the office of a tongue . Ne xt to this come s the oe sophagus, and the n the stomach,
divide d into five parts, and fille d with e xcre tion, all the five parts uniting at
the anal ve nt, whe re the she ll is pe rforate d for an outle t. Unde rne ath the stomach,
in anothe r me mbrane , are the so-calle d e ggs, ide ntical in numbe r in all case s, and
that numbe r is always an odd numbe r, to wit five . Up above , the black formations
are attache d to the starting-point of the te e th, and the y are bitte r to the taste ,
and unfit for food. A similar or at le ast an analogous formation is found in many
animals; as, for instance , in the tortoise , the toad, the frog, the stromboids,
and, ge ne rally, in the molluscs; but the formation varie s he re and the re in colour,
and in all case s is altoge the r une atable , or more or le ss unpalatable . In re ality
the mouth-apparatus of the urchin is continuous from one e nd to the othe r, but to
outward appe arance it is not so, but looks like a horn lante rn with the pane s of
horn le ft out. The urchin use s its spine s as fe e t; for it re sts its we ight on
the se , and the n moving shifts from place to place .
6 The so-calle d te thyum or ascidian has of all the se animals the most re markable
characte ristics. It is the only mollusc that has its e ntire body conce ale d within
its she ll, and the she ll is a substance inte rme diate be twe e n hide and she ll, so
that it cuts like a pie ce of hard le athe r. It is attache d to rocks by its she ll,
and is provide d with two passage s place d at a distance from one anothe r, ve ry
minute and hard to se e , whe re by it admits and discharge s the se a-wate r; for it has
no visible e xcre tion (whe re as of she ll fish in ge ne ral some re se mble the urchin in
this matte r of e xcre tion, and othe rs are provide d with the so-calle d me con, or
poppy-juice ). If the animal be ope ne d, it is found to have , in the first place , a
te ndinous me mbrane running round inside the she ll-like substance , and within this
me mbrane is the fle sh-like
substance of the ascidian, not re se mbling that in othe r molluscs; but this fle sh,
to which I now allude , is the same in all ascidia. And this substance is attache d
in two place s to the me mbrane and the skin, oblique ly; and at the point of
attachme nt the space is narrowe d from side to side , whe re the fle shy substance
stre tche s towards the passage s that le ad outwards through the she ll; and he re it
discharge s and admits food and liquid matte r, just as it would if one of the
passage s we re a mouth and the othe r an anal ve nt; and one of the passage s is
some what wide r than the othe r Inside it has a pair of cavitie s, one on e ithe r side ,
a small partition se parating the m; and one of the se two cavitie s contains the
liquid. The cre ature has no othe r organ whe the r motor or se nsory, nor, as was said
in the case of the othe rs, is it furnishe d with any organ conne cte d with e xcre tion,
as othe r she ll-fish are . The colour of the ascidian is in some case s sallow, and in
othe r case s re d. The re is, furthe rmore , the ge nus of the se a-ne ttle s, pe culiar
in its way. The se a-ne ttle , or se a-ane mone , clings to rocks like ce rtain of the
te stace ans, but at time s re laxe s its hold. It has no she ll, but its e ntire body is
fle shy. It is se nsitive to touch, and, if you put your hand to it, it will se ize
and cling to it, as the cuttle fish would do with its fe e le rs, and in such a way as
to make the fle sh of your hand swe ll up. Its mouth is in the ce ntre of its body,
and it live s adhe ring to the rock as an oyste r to its she ll. If any little fish
come up against it it it clings to it; in fact, just as I de scribe d it above as
doing to your hand, so it doe s to anything e dible that come s in its way; and it
fe e ds upon se a-urchins and scallops. Anothe r spe cie s of the se a-ne ttle roams fre e ly
abroad. The se a-ne ttle appe ars to be de void altoge the r of e xcre tion, and in this
re spe ct it re se mble s a plant. Of se a-ne ttle s the re are two spe cie s, the le sse r
and more e dible , and the large hard one s, such as are found in the ne ighbourhood of
C halcis. In winte r time the ir fle sh is firm, and accordingly the y are sought afte r
as article s of food, but in summe r we athe r the y are worthle ss, for the y be come thin
and wate ry, and if you catch at the m the y bre ak at once into bits, and cannot be
take n off the rocks e ntire ; and be ing oppre sse d by the he at the y te nd to slip back
into the cre vice s of the rocks. S o much for the e xte rnal and the inte rnal organs
of molluscs, crustace ans, and te stace ans. 7 We
now proce e d to tre at of inse cts in like manne r. This ge nus comprise s many spe cie s,
and, though se ve ral kinds are cle arly re late d to one anothe r, the se are not
classifie d unde r one common de signation, as in the case of the be e , the drone , the
wasp, and all such inse cts, and again as in the case of those that have the ir wings
in a she ath or shard, like the cockchafe r, the carabus or stag-be e tle , the
cantharis or bliste r-be e tle , and the like . Inse cts have thre e parts common to
the m all; the he ad, the trunk containing the stomach, and a third part in be twixt
the se two, corre sponding to what in othe r cre ature s e mbrace s che st and back. In the
majority of inse cts this inte rme diate part is single ; but in the long and
multipe dal inse cts it has practically the same numbe r of se gme nts as of nicks.
All inse cts whe n cut in two continue to live , e xce pting such as are naturally cold
by nature , or such as from the ir minute size chill rapidly; though, by the way,
wasps notwithstanding the ir small size continue living afte r se ve rance . In
conjunction with the middle portion e ithe r the he ad or the stomach can live , but
the he ad cannot live by itse lf. Inse cts that are long in shape and many-foote d can
live for a long while afte r be ing cut in twain, and the se ve re d portions can move
in e ithe r dire ction, backwards or forwards; thus, the hinde r portion, if cut off,
can crawl e ithe r in the dire ction of the se ction or in the dire ction of the tail,
as is obse rve d in the scolope ndra. All inse cts have e ye s, but no othe r organ of
se nse disce rnible , e xce pt that some inse cts have a kind of a tongue corre sponding
to a similar organ common to all te stace ans; and by this organ such inse cts taste
and imbibe the ir food. In some inse cts this organ is soft; in othe r inse cts it is
firm; as it is, by the way, in the purple -fish, among te stace ans. In the horse fly
and the gadfly this organ is hard, and inde e d it is hard in most inse cts. In point
of fact, such inse cts as have no sting in the re ar use this organ as a we apon,
(and, by the way, such inse cts as are provide d with this organ are unprovide d with
te e th, with the e xce ption of a fe w inse cts); the fly by a touch can draw blood with
this organ, and the gnat can prick or sting with it. C e rtain inse cts are
furnishe d with pricke rs or stings. S ome inse cts have the sting inside , as the be e
and the wasp, othe rs outside , as the scorpion; and, by the way, this is the only
inse ct furnishe d with a long tail. And, furthe r, the scorpion is furnishe d with
claws, as is also the cre ature re se mbling a scorpion found within the page s of
books. In addition to the ir othe r organs, flying inse cts are furnishe d with
wings. S ome inse cts are dipte rous or double -winge d, as the fly; othe rs are
te trapte rous or furnishe d with four wings, as the be e ; and, by the way, no inse ct
with only two wings has a sting in the re ar. Again, some winge d inse cts have a
she ath or shard for the ir wings, as the cockchafe r; whe re as in othe rs the wings are
unshe athe d, as in the be e . But in the case of all alike , flight is in no way
modifie d by tail-ste e rage , and the wing is de void of quill-structure or division of
any kind. Again, some inse cts have ante nnae in front of the ir e ye s, as the
butte rfly and the horne d be e tle . S uch of the m as have the powe r of jumping have the
hinde r le gs the longe r; and the se long hind-le gs whe re by the y jump be nd backwards
like the hind-le gs of quadrupe ds. All inse cts have the be lly diffe re nt from the
back; as, in fact, is the case with all animals. The fle sh of an inse ct's body is
ne ithe r she ll-like nor is it like the inte rnal substance of she ll-cove re d animals,
nor is it like fle sh in the ordinary se nse of the te rm; but it is a some thing
inte rme diate in quality. Whe re fore the y have nor spine , nor bone , nor se pia-bone ,
nor e nve loping she ll; but the ir body by its hardne ss is its own prote ction and
re quire s no e xtrane ous support. Howe ve r, inse cts have a skin; but the skin is
e xce e dingly thin. The se and such-like are the e xte rnal organs of inse cts.
Inte rnally, ne xt afte r the mouth, come s a gut, in the majority of case s straight
and simple down to the outle t of the re siduum: but in a fe w case s the gut is
coile d. No inse ct is provide d with any visce ra, or is supplie d with fat; and the se
state me nts apply to all animals de void of blood. S ome have a stomach also, and
attache d to this the re st of the gut, e ithe r simple or convolute d as in the case of
the acris or grasshoppe r. The te ttix or cicada, alone of such cre ature s (and, in
fact, alone of all cre ature s), is unprovide d with a mouth, but it is provide d with
the tongue -like formation found in inse cts furnishe d with frontward stings; and
this formation in the cicada is long, continuous, and de void of any split; and by
the aid of this the cre ature fe e ds on de w, and on de w only, and in its stomach no
e xcre tion is e ve r found. Of the cicada the re are se ve ral kinds, and the y diffe r
from one anothe r in re lative magnitude , and in this re spe ct that the ache te s or
chirpe r is provide d with a cle ft or ape rture unde r the hypozoma and has in it a
me mbrane quite disce rnible , whilst the me mbrane is indisce rnible in the te ttigonia.
Furthe rmore , the re are some strange cre ature s to be found in the se a, which from
the ir rarity we are unable to classify. Expe rie nce d fishe rme n affirm, some that
the y have at time s se e n in the se a animals like sticks, black, rounde d, and of the
same thickne ss throughout; othe rs that the y have se e n cre ature s re se mbling shie lds,
re d in colour, and furnishe d with fins packe d close toge the r; and othe rs that the y
have se e n cre ature s re se mbling the male organ in shape and size , with a pair of
fins in the place of the te sticle s, and the y ave r that on one occasion a cre ature
of this de scription was brought up on the e nd of a nightline . S o much the n for
the parts, e xte rnal and inte rnal, e xce ptional and common, of all animals.
8 We now proce e d to tre at of the se nse s; for the re are dive rsitie s in animals
with re gard to the se nse s, se e ing that some animals have the use of all the se nse s,
and othe rs the use of a limite d numbe r of the m. The total numbe r of the se nse s (for
we have no e xpe rie nce of any spe cial se nse not he re include d), is five : sight,
he aring, sme ll, taste , and touch. Man, the n, and all vivipara that have fe e t,
and, furthe r, all re d-bloode d ovipara, appe ar to have the use of all the five
se nse s, e xce pt whe re some isolate d spe cie s has be e n subje cte d to mutilation, as in
the case of the mole . For this animal is de prive d of sight; it has no e ye s visible ,
but if the skin-a thick one , by the way-be strippe d off the he ad, about the place
in the e xte rior whe re e ye s usually are , the e ye s are found inside in a stunte d
condition, furnishe d with all the parts found in ordinary e ye s; that is to say, we
find the re the black rim, and the fatty part surrounding it; but all the se parts
are smalle r than the same parts in ordinary visible e ye s. The re is no e xte rnal sign
of the e xiste nce of the se organs in the mole , owing to the thickne ss of the skin
drawn ove r the m, so that it would se e m that the natural course of de ve lopme nt we re
conge nitally arre ste d; (for e xte nding from the brain at its junction with the
marrow are two strong sine wy ducts running past the socke ts of the e ye s, and
te rminating at the
uppe r e ye -te e th). All the othe r animals of the kinds above me ntione d have a
pe rce ption of colour and of sound, and the se nse s of sme ll and taste ; the fifth
se nse , that, name ly, of touch, is common to all animals whatsoe ve r. In some
animals the organs of se nse are plainly disce rnible ; and this is e spe cially the
case with the e ye s. For animals have a spe cial locality for the e ye s, and also a
spe cial locality for he aring: that is to say, some animals have e ars, while othe rs
have the passage for sound disce rnible . It is the same with the se nse of sme ll;
that is to say, some animals have nostrils, and othe rs have only the passage s for
sme ll, such as birds. It is the same also with the organ of taste , the tongue . Of
aquatic re d-bloode d animals, fishe s posse ss the organ of taste , name ly the tongue ,
but it is in an impe rfe ct and amorphous form, in othe r words it is osse ous and
unde tache d. In some fish the palate is fle shy, as in the fre sh-wate r carp, so that
by an inatte ntive obse rve r it might be mistake n for a tongue . The re is no doubt
but that fishe s have the se nse of taste , for a gre at numbe r of the m de light in
spe cial flavours; and fishe s fre e ly take the hook if it be baite d with a pie ce of
fle sh from a tunny or from any fat fish, obviously e njoying the taste and the
e ating of food of this kind. Fishe s have no visible organs for he aring or for
sme ll; for what might appe ar to indicate an organ for sme ll in the re gion of the
nostril has no communication with the brain. The se indications, in fact, in some
case s le ad nowhe re , like blind alle ys, and in othe r case s le ad only to the gills;
but for all this fishe s undoubte dly he ar and sme ll. For the y are obse rve d to run
away from any loud noise , such as would be made by the rowing of a galle y, so as to
be come e asy of capture in the ir hole s; for, by the way, though a sound be ve ry
slight in the ope n air, it has a loud and alarming re sonance to cre ature s that he ar
unde r wate r. And this is shown in the capture of the dolphin; for whe n the hunte rs
have e nclose d a shoal of the se fishe s with a ring of the ir canoe s, the y se t up from
inside the canoe s a loud splashing in the wate r, and by so doing induce the
cre ature s to run in a shoal high and dry up on the be ach, and so capture the m while
stupe fie d with the noise . And ye t, for all this, the dolphin has no organ of
he aring disce rnible . Furthe rmore , whe n e ngage d in the ir craft, fishe rme n are
particularly care ful to make no noise with oar or ne t; and afte r the y have spie d a
shoal, the y le t down the ir ne ts at a spot so far off that the y count upon no noise
be ing like ly to re ach the shoal, occasione d e ithe r by oar or by the surging of
the ir boats through the wate r; and the cre ws are strictly e njoine d to pre se rve
sile nce until the shoal has be e n surrounde d. And, at time s, whe n the y want the fish
to crowd toge the r, the y adopt the stratage m of the dolphin-hunte r; in othe r words
the y clatte r stone s toge the r, that the fish may, in the ir fright, gathe r close into
one spot, and so the y e nve lop the m within the ir ne ts. (Be fore surrounding the m,
the n, the y pre se rve sile nce , as was said; but, afte r he mming the shoal in, the y
call on e ve ry man to shout out aloud and make any kind of noise ; for on he aring the
noise and hubbub the fish are sure to tumble into the ne ts from she e r fright.)
Furthe r, whe n fishe rme n se e a shoal of fish fe e ding at a distance , disporting
the mse lve s in calm bright we athe r on the surface of the wate r, if the y are anxious
to de scry the size of the fish and to le arn what kind of a fish it is, the y may
succe e d in coming upon the shoal whilst ye t basking at the surface if the y sail up
without the slighte st noise , but if any man make a noise pre viously, the shoal will
be se e n to scurry away in alarm. Again, the re is a small rive r-fish calle d the
cottus or bullhe ad; this cre ature burrows unde r a rock, and fishe rs catch it by
clatte ring stone s against the rock, and the fish, be wilde re d at the noise , darts
out of its hiding-place . From the se facts it is quite obvious that fishe s can he ar;
and inde e d some pe ople , from living ne ar the se a and fre que ntly witne ssing such
phe nome na, affirm that of all living cre ature s the fish is the quicke st of he aring.
And, by the way, of all fishe s the quicke st of he aring are the ce stre us or mulle t,
the chre mps, the labrax or basse , the salpe or saupe , the chromis or sciae na, and
such like . Othe r fishe s are le ss quick of he aring, and, as might be e xpe cte d, are
more apt to be found living at the bottom of the se a. The case is similar in
re gard to the se nse of sme ll. Thus, as a rule , fishe s will not touch a bait that is
not fre sh, ne ithe r are the y all caught by one and the same bait, but the y are
se ve rally caught by baits suite d to the ir se ve ral likings, and the se baits the y
distinguish by the ir se nse of sme ll; and, by the way, some fishe s are attracte d by
malodorous baits, as the saupe , for instance , is attracte d by e xcre me nt. Again, a
numbe r of fishe s live in cave s; and accordingly fishe rme n, whe n the y want to e ntice
the m out, sme ar the mouth of a cave with strong-sme lling pickle s, and the fish are
S oon attracte d to the sme ll. And the e e l is caught in a similar way; for the
fishe rman lays down an e arthe n pot that has he ld pickle s, afte r inse rting a 'we e l'
in the ne ck the re of. As a ge ne ral rule , fishe s are e spe cially attracte d by savoury
sme lls. For this re ason, fishe rme n roast the fle shy parts of the cuttle -fish and
use it as bait on account of its sme ll, for fish are pe culiarly attracte d by it;
the y also bake the octopus and bait the ir fish-baske ts or we e ls with it, e ntire ly,
as the y say, on account of its sme ll. Furthe rmore , gre garious fishe s, if fish
washings or bilge -wate r be thrown ove rboard, are obse rve d to scud off to a
distance , from appare nt dislike of the sme ll. And it is asse rte d that the y can at
once de te ct by sme ll the pre se nce of the ir own blood; and this faculty is
manife ste d by the ir hurrying off to a gre at distance whe ne ve r fish-blood is spilt
in the se a. And, as a ge ne ral rule , if you bait your we e l with a stinking bait, the
fish re fuse to e nte r the we e l or e ve n to draw ne ar; but if you bait the we e l with a
fre sh and savoury bait, the y come at once from long distance s and swim into it. And
all this is particularly manife st in the dolphin; for, as was state d, it has no
visible organ of he aring, and ye t it is capture d whe n stupe fie d with noise ; and so,
while it has no visible organ for sme ll, it has the se nse of sme ll re markably ke e n.
It is manife st, the n, that the animals above me ntione d are in posse ssion of all the
five se nse s. All othe r animals may, with ve ry fe w e xce ptions, be compre he nde d
within four ge ne ra: to wit, molluscs, crustace ans, te stace ans, and inse cts. Of
the se four ge ne ra, the mollusc, the crustace an, and the inse ct have all the se nse s:
at all e ve nts, the y have sight, sme ll, and taste . As for inse cts, both winge d and
wingle ss, the y can de te ct the pre se nce of sce nte d obje cts afar off, as for instance
be e s and snipe s de te ct the pre se nce of hone y at a distance ; and do so re cognizing
it by sme ll. Many inse cts are kille d by the sme ll of brimstone ; ants, if the
ape rture s to the ir dwe llings be sme are d with powde re d origanum and brimstone , quit
the ir ne sts; and most inse cts may be banishe d with burnt hart's horn, or be tte r
still by the burning of the gum styrax. The cuttle -fish, the octopus, and the
crawfish may be caught by bait. The octopus, in fact, clings so tightly to the
rocks that it cannot be pulle d off, but re mains attache d e ve n whe n the knife is
e mploye d to se ve r it; and ye t, if you apply fle abane to the cre ature , it drops off
at the ve ry sme ll of it. The facts are similar in re gard to taste . For the food
that inse cts go in que st of is of dive rse kinds, and the y do not all de light in the
same flavours: for instance , the be e ne ve r se ttle s on a withe re d or wilte d flowe r,
but on fre sh and swe e t one s; and the conops or gnat se ttle s only on acrid
substance s and not on swe e t. The se nse of touch, by the way, as has be e n re marke d,
is common to all animals. Te stace ans have the se nse s of sme ll and taste . With
re gard to the ir posse ssion of the se nse of sme ll, that is prove d by the use of
baits, e .g. in the case of the purple -fish; for this cre ature is e ntice d by baits
of rancid me at, which it pe rce ive s and is attracte d to from a gre at distance . The
proof that it posse sse s a se nse of taste hangs by the proof of its se nse of sme ll;
for whe ne ve r an animal is attracte d to a thing by pe rce iving its sme ll, it is sure
to like the taste of it. Furthe r, all animals furnishe d with a mouth de rive
ple asure or pain from the touch of sapid juice s. With re gard to sight and
he aring, we cannot make state me nts with thorough confide nce or on irre futable
e vide nce . Howe ve r, the sole n or razor-fish, if you make a noise , appe ars to burrow
in the sand, and to hide himse lf de e pe r whe n he he ars the approach of the iron rod
(for the animal, be it obse rve d, juts a little out of its hole , while the gre ate r
part of the body re mains within),-and scallops, if you pre se nt your finge r ne ar
the ir ope n valve s, close the m tight again as though the y could se e what you we re
doing. Furthe rmore , whe n fishe rme n are laying bait for ne ritae , the y always ge t to
le e ward of the m, and ne ve r spe ak a word while so e ngage d, unde r the firm impre ssion
that the animal can sme ll and he ar; and the y assure us that, if any one spe aks
aloud, the cre ature make s e fforts to e scape . With re gard to te stace ans, of the
walking or cre e ping spe cie s the urchin appe ars to have the le ast de ve lope d se nse of
sme ll; and, of the stationary spe cie s, the ascidian and the barnacle . S o much
for the organs of se nse in the ge ne ral run of animals. We now proce e d to tre at of
voice . 9 Voice and sound are diffe re nt from
one anothe r; and language diffe rs from voice and sound. The fact is that
no animal can give utte rance to voice e xce pt by the action of the pharynx, and
conse que ntly such animals as are de void of lung have no voice ; and language is the
articulation of vocal sounds by the instrume ntality of the tongue . Thus, the voice
and larynx can e mit vocal or vowe l sounds; non-vocal or consonantal sounds are made
by the tongue and the lips; and out of the se vocal and non-vocal sounds language is
compose d. C onse que ntly, animals that have no tongue at all or that have a tongue
not fre e ly de tache d, have ne ithe r voice nor language ; although, by the way, the y
may be e nable d to make noise s or sounds by othe r organs than the tongue .
Inse cts, for instance , have no voice and no language , but the y can e mit sound by
inte rnal air or wind, though not by the e mission of air or wind; for no inse cts are
capable of re spiration. But some of the m make a humming noise , like the be e and the
othe r winge d inse cts; and othe rs are said to sing, as the cicada. And all the se
latte r inse cts make the ir spe cial noise s by me ans of the me mbrane that is
unde rne ath the 'hypozoma'-those inse cts, that is to say, whose body is thus
divide d; as for instance , one spe cie s of cicada, which make s the sound by me ans of
the friction of the air. Flie s and be e s, and the like , produce the ir spe cial noise
by ope ning and shutting the ir wings in the act of flying; for the noise made is by
the friction of air be twe e n the wings whe n in motion. The noise made by
grasshoppe rs is produce d by rubbing or re ve rbe rating with the ir long hind-le gs.
No mollusc or crustace an can produce any natural voice or sound. Fishe s can produce
no voice , for the y have no lungs, nor windpipe and pharynx; but the y e mit ce rtain
inarticulate sounds and sque aks, which is what is calle d the ir 'voice ', as the lyra
or gurnard, and the sciae na (for the se fishe s make a grunting kind of noise ) and
the caprus or boar-fish in the rive r Ache lous, and the chalcis and the cuckoo-fish;
for the chalcis make s a sort piping sound, and the cuckoo-fish make s a sound
gre atly like the cry of the cuckoo, and is nickname d from the circumstance . The
appare nt voice in all the se fishe s is a sound cause d in some case s by a rubbing
motion of the ir gills, which by the way are prickly, or in othe r case s by inte rnal
parts about the ir be llie s; for the y all have air or wind inside the m, by rubbing
and moving which the y produce the sounds. S ome cartilaginous fish se e m to sque ak.
But in the se case s the te rm 'voice ' is inappropriate ; the more corre ct e xpre ssion
would be 'sound'. For the scallop, whe n it goe s along supporting itse lf on the
wate r, which is te chnically calle d 'flying', make s a whizzing sound; and so doe s
the se a-swallow or flying-fish: for this fish flie s in the air, cle an out of the
wate r, be ing furnishe d with fins broad and long. Just the n as in the flight of
birds the sound made by the ir wings is obviously not voice , so is it in the case of
all the se othe r cre ature s. The dolphin, whe n take n out of the wate r, give s a
sque ak and moans in the air, but the se noise s do not re se mble those above
me ntione d. For this cre ature has a voice (and can the re fore utte r vocal or vowe l
sounds), for it is furnishe d with a lung and a windpipe ; but its tongue is not
loose , nor has it lips, so as to give utte rance to an articulate sound (or a sound
of vowe l and consonant in combination.) Of animals which are furnishe d with
tongue and lung, the oviparous quadrupe ds produce a voice , but a fe e ble one ; in
some case s, a shrill piping sound, like the se rpe nt; in othe rs, a thin faint cry;
in othe rs, a low hiss, like the tortoise . The formation of the tongue in the frog
is e xce ptional. The front part of the tongue , which in othe r animals is de tache d,
is tightly fixe d in the frog as it is in all fishe s; but the part towards the
pharynx is fre e ly de tache d, and may, so to spe ak, be spat outwards, and it is with
this that it make s its pe culiar croak. The croaking that goe s on in the marsh is
the call of the male s to the fe male s at rutting time ; and, by the way, all animals
have a spe cial cry for the like e nd at the like se ason, as is obse rve d in the case
of goats, swine , and she e p. (The bull-frog make s its croaking noise by putting its
unde r jaw on a le ve l with the surface of the wate r and e xte nding its uppe r jaw to
its utmost capacity. The te nsion is so gre at that the uppe r jaw be come s
transpare nt, and the animal's e ye s shine through the jaw like lamps; for, by the
way, the comme rce of the se xe s take s place usually in the night time .) Birds can
utte r vocal sounds; and such of the m can articulate be st as have the tongue
mode rate ly flat, and also such as have thin de licate tongue s. In some case s, the
male and the fe male utte r the same note ; in othe r case s, diffe re nt note s. The
smalle r birds are more vocal and give n to chirping than the large r one s; but in the
pairing se ason e ve ry spe cie s of bird be come s particularly vocal. S ome of the m call
whe n fighting, as the quail, othe rs cry or crow whe n challe nging to combat, as the
partridge , or whe n victorious, as the barn-door cock. In some case s cock-birds and
he ns sing alike , as is obse rve d in the nightingale , only that the he n stops singing
whe n brooding or re aring he r young; in othe r birds, the cocks sing more than the
he ns; in fact, with barn-door fowls and quails, the cock sings and the he n doe s
not. Viviparous quadrupe ds utte r vocal sounds of diffe re nt kinds, but the y have
no powe r of conve rse . In fact, this powe r, or language , is pe culiar to man. For
while the capability of talking implie s the capability of utte ring vocal sounds,
the conve rse doe s not hold good. Me n that are born de af are in all case s also dumb;
that is, the y can make vocal sounds, but the y cannot spe ak. C hildre n, just as the y
have no control ove r othe r parts, so have no control, at first, ove r the tongue ;
but it is so far impe rfe ct, and only fre e s and de tache s itse lf by de gre e s, so that
in the inte rval childre n for the most part lisp and stutte r. Vocal sounds and
mode s of language diffe r according to locality. Vocal sounds are characte rize d
chie fly by the ir pitch, whe the r high or low, and the kinds of sound capable of
be ing produce d are ide ntical within the limits of one and the same spe cie s; but
articulate sound, that one might re asonably de signate 'language ', diffe rs both in
various animals, and also in the same spe cie s according to dive rsity of locality;
as for instance , some partridge s cackle , and some make a shrill twitte ring noise .
Of little birds, some sing a diffe re nt note from the pare nt birds, if the y have
be e n re move d from the ne st and have he ard othe r birds singing; and a mothe r-
nightingale has be e n obse rve d to give le ssons in singing to a young bird, from
which spe ctacle we might obviously infe r that the song of the bird was not e qually
conge nital with me re voice , but was some thing capable of modification and of
improve me nt. Me n have the same voice or vocal sounds, but the y diffe r from one
anothe r in spe e ch or language . The e le phant make s a vocal sound of a windlike
sort by the mouth alone , unaide d by the trunk, just like the sound of a man panting
or sighing; but, if it e mploy the trunk as we ll, the sound produce d is like that of
a hoarse trumpe t. 1 0 With re gard to the
sle e ping and waking of animals, all cre ature s that are re d-bloode d and provide d
with le gs give se nsible proof that the y go to sle e p and that the y wake n up from
sle e p; for, as a matte r of fact, all animals that are furnishe d with e ye lids shut
the m up whe n the y go to sle e p. Furthe rmore , it would appe ar that not only do me n
dre am, but horse s also, and dogs, and oxe n; aye , and she e p, and goats, and all
viviparous quadrupe ds; and dogs show the ir dre aming by barking in the ir sle e p. With
re gard to oviparous animals we cannot be sure that the y dre am, but most undoubte dly
the y sle e p. And the same may be said of wate r animals, such as fishe s, molluscs,
crustace ans, to wit crawfish and the like . The se animals sle e p without doubt,
although the ir sle e p is of ve ry short duration. The proof of the ir sle e ping cannot
be got from the condition of the ir e ye s-for none of the se cre ature s are furnishe d
with e ye lids-but can be obtaine d only from the ir motionle ss re pose . Apart from
the irritation cause d by lice and what are nickname d fle as, fish are me t with in a
state so motionle ss that one might e asily catch the m by hand; and, as a matte r of
fact, the se little cre ature s, if the fish re main long in one position, will attack
the m in myriads and de vour the m. For the se parasite s are found in the de pths of the
se a, and are so nume rous that the y de vour any bait made of fish's fle sh if it be
le ft long on the ground at the bottom; and fishe rme n ofte n draw up a cluste r of
the m, all clinging on to the bait. But it is from the following facts that we
may more re asonably infe r that fishe s sle e p. Ve ry ofte n it is possible to take a
fish off its guard so far as to catch hold of it or to give it a blow unaware s; and
all the while that you are pre paring to catch or strike it, the fish is quite still
but for a slight motion of the tail. And it is quite obvious that the animal is
sle e ping, from its move me nts if any disturbance be made during its re pose ; for it
move s just as you would e xpe ct in a cre ature sudde nly awake ne d. Furthe r, owing to
the ir be ing asle e p, fish may be capture d by torchlight. The watchme n in the tunny-
fishe ry ofte n take advantage of the fish be ing asle e p to e nve lop the m in a circle
of ne ts; and it is quite obvious that the y we re thus sle e ping by the ir lying still
and allowing the gliste ning unde r-parts of the ir bodie s to be come visible , while
the capture is taking Place . The y sle e p in the night-time more than during the day;
and so soundly at night that you may cast the ne t without making the m stir. Fish,
as a ge ne ral rule , sle e p close to the ground, or to the sand
or to a stone at the bottom, or afte r conce aling the mse lve s unde r a rock or the
ground. Flat fish go to sle e p in the sand; and the y can be distinguishe d by the
outline s of the ir shape s in the sand, and are caught in this position by be ing
spe are d with pronge d instrume nts. The basse , the chrysophrys or gilt-he ad, the
mulle t, and fish of the like sort are ofte n caught in the daytime by the prong
owing to the ir having be e n surprise d whe n sle e ping; for it is scarce ly probable
that fish could be pronge d while awake . C artilaginous fish sle e p at time s so
soundly that the y may be caught by hand. The dolphin and the whale , and all such as
are furnishe d with a blow-hole , sle e p with the blow-hole ove r the surface of the
wate r, and bre athe through the blow-hole while the y ke e p up a quie t flapping of
the ir fins; inde e d, some marine rs assure us that the y have actually he ard the
dolphin snoring. Molluscs sle e p like fishe s, and crustace ans also. It is plain
also that inse cts sle e p; for the re can be no mistaking the ir condition of
motionle ss re pose . In the be e the fact of its be ing asle e p is ve ry obvious; for at
night-time be e s are at re st and ce ase to hum. But the fact that inse cts sle e p may
be ve ry we ll se e n in the case of common e ve ry-day cre ature s; for not only do the y
re st at night-time from dimne ss of vision (and, by the way, all hard-e ye d cre ature s
se e but indistinctly), but e ve n if a lighte d candle be pre se nte d the y continue
sle e ping quite as soundly. Of all animals man is most give n to dre aming.
C hildre n and infants do not dre am, but in most case s dre aming come s on at the age
of four or five ye ars. Instance s have be e n known of full-grown me n and wome n that
have ne ve r dre ame d at all; in e xce ptional case s of this kind, it has be e n obse rve d
that whe n a dre am occurs in advance d life it prognosticate s e ithe r actual
dissolution or a ge ne ral bre ak-up of the syste m. S o much the n for se nsation and
for the phe nome na of sle e ping and of awake ning. 1 1
With re gard to se x, some animals are divide d into male and fe male , but othe rs are
not so divide d but can only be said in a comparative way to bring forth young and
to be pre gnant. In animals that live confine d to one spot the re is no duality of
se x; nor is the re such, in fact, in any te stace ans. In molluscs and in crustace ans
we find male and fe male : and, inde e d, in all animals furnishe d with fe e t, bipe d or
quadrupe d; in short, in all such as by copulation e nge nde r e ithe r live young or e gg
or grub. In the se ve ral ge ne ra, with howe ve r ce rtain e xce ptions, the re e ithe r
absolute ly is or absolute ly is not a duality of se x. Thus, in quadrupe ds the
duality is unive rsal, while the abse nce of such duality is unive rsal in te stace ans,
and of the se cre ature s, as with plants, some individuals are fruitful and some are
not the ir lying still But among inse cts and fishe s, some case s are found wholly
de void of this duality of se x. For instance , the e e l is ne ithe r male nor fe male ,
and can e nge nde r nothing. In fact, those who asse rt that e e ls are at time s found
with hair-like or worm-like proge ny attache d, make only random asse rtions from not
having care fully notice d the locality of such attachme nts. For no e e l nor animal of
this kind is e ve r viviparous unle ss pre viously oviparous; and no e e l was e ve r ye t
se e n with an e gg. And animals that are viviparous have the ir young in the womb and
close ly attache d, and not in the be lly; for, if the e mbryo we re ke pt in the be lly,
it would be subje cte d to the proce ss of dige stion like ordinary food. Whe n pe ople
re st duality of se x in the e e l on the asse rtion that the he ad of the male is bigge r
and longe r, and the he ad of the fe male smalle r and more snubbe d, the y are taking
dive rsity of spe cie s for dive rsity of se x. The re are ce rtain fish that are
nickname d the e pitragiae , or capon-fish, and, by the way, fish of this de scription
are found in fre sh wate r, as the carp and the balagrus. This sort of fish ne ve r has
e ithe r roe or milt; but the y are hard and fat all ove r, and are furnishe d with a
small gut; and the se fish are re garde d as of supe r-e xce lle nt quality. Again,
just as in te stace ans and in plants the re is what be ars and e nge nde rs, but not what
impre gnate s, so is it, among fishe s, with the pse tta, the e rythrinus, and the
channe ; for the se fish are in all case s found furnishe d with e ggs. As a ge ne ral
rule , in re d-bloode d animals furnishe d with fe e t and not oviparous, the male is
large r and longe r-live d than the fe male (e xce pt with the mule , whe re the fe male is
longe r-live d and bigge r than the male ); whe re as in oviparous and ve rmiparous
cre ature s, as in fishe s and in inse cts, the fe male is large r than the male ; as, for
instance , with the se rpe nt, the phalangium or ve nom-spide r, the ge cko, and the
frog. The same diffe re nce in size of the se xe s is found in fishe s, as, for
instance , in the smalle r cartilaginous fishe s, in the gre ate r part of the
gre garious spe cie s, and in all that live in and about rocks. The fact that the
fe male is longe r-live d than the male is infe rre d from the fact that fe male fishe s
are caught olde r than male s. Furthe rmore , in all animals the uppe r and front parts
are be tte r, stronge r, and more thoroughly e quippe d in the male than in the fe male ,
whe re as in the fe male those parts are the be tte r that may be te rme d hinde r-parts or
unde rparts. And this state me nt is applicable to man and to all vivipara that have
fe e t. Again, the fe male is le ss muscular and le ss compactly jointe d, and more thin
and de licate in the hair-that is, whe re hair is found; and, whe re the re is no hair,
le ss strongly furnishe d in some analogous substance . And the fe male is more flaccid
in te xture of fle sh, and more knock-kne e d, and the shin-bone s are thinne r; and the
fe e t are more arche d and hollow in such animals as are furnishe d with fe e t. And
with re gard to voice , the fe male in all animals that are vocal has a thinne r and
sharpe r voice than the male ; e xce pt, by the way, with kine , for the lowing and
be llowing of the cow has a de e pe r note than that of the bull. With re gard to organs
of de fe nce and offe nce , such as te e th, tusks, horns, spurs, and the like , the se in
some spe cie s the male posse sse s and the fe male doe s not; as, for instance , the hind
has no horns, and whe re the cock-bird has a spur the he n is e ntire ly de stitute of
the organ; and in like manne r the sow is de void of tusks. In othe r spe cie s such
organs are found in both se xe s, but are more pe rfe ctly de ve lope d in the male ; as,
for instance , the horn of the bull is more powe rful than the horn of the cow.
Book V 1 As to the parts inte rnal and e xte rnal
that all animals are furnishe d withal, and furthe r as to the se nse s, to voice , and
sle e p, and the duality se x, all the se topics have now be e n touche d upon. It now
re mains for us to discuss, duly and in orde r, the ir se ve ral mode s of propagation.
The se mode s are many and dive rse , and in some re spe cts are like , and in othe r
re spe cts are unlike to one anothe r. As we carrie d on our pre vious discussion ge nus
by ge nus, so we must atte mpt to follow the same divisions in our pre se nt argume nt;
only that whe re as in the forme r case we starte d with a conside ration of the parts
of man, in the pre se nt case it be hove s us to tre at of man last of all be cause he
involve s most discussion. We shall comme nce , the n, with te stace ans, and the n
proce e d to crustace ans, and the n to the othe r ge ne ra in due orde r; and the se othe r
ge ne ra are , se ve rally, molluscs, and inse cts, the n fishe s viviparous and fishe s
oviparous, and ne xt birds; and afte rwards we shall tre at of animals provide d with
fe e t, both such as are oviparous and such as are viviparous, and we may obse rve
that some quadrupe ds are viviparous, but that the only viviparous bipe d is man.
Now the re is one prope rty that animals are found to have in common with plants. For
some plants are ge ne rate d from the se e d of plants, whilst othe r plants are se lf-
ge ne rate d through the formation of some e le me ntal principle similar to a se e d; and
of the se latte r plants some de rive the ir nutrime nt from the ground, whilst othe rs
grow inside othe r plants, as is me ntione d, by the way, in my tre atise on Botany. S o
with animals, some spring from pare nt animals according to the ir kind, whilst
othe rs grow spontane ously and not from kindre d stock; and of the se instance s of
spontane ous ge ne ration some come from putre fying e arth or ve ge table matte r, as is
the case with a numbe r of inse cts, while othe rs are spontane ously ge ne rate d in the
inside of animals out of the se cre tions of the ir se ve ral organs. In animals
whe re ge ne ration goe s by he re dity, whe re ve r the re is duality of se x ge ne ration is
due to copulation. In the group of fishe s, howe ve r, the re are some that are ne ithe r
male nor fe male , and the se , while the y are ide ntical ge ne rically with othe r fish,
diffe r from the m spe cifically; but the re are othe rs that stand altoge the r isolate d
and apart by the mse lve s. Othe r fishe s the re are that are always fe male and ne ve r
male , and from the m are conce ive d what corre spond to the wind-e ggs in birds. S uch
e ggs, by the way, in birds are all unfruitful; but it is the ir nature to be
inde pe nde ntly capable of ge ne ration up to the e gg-stage , unle ss inde e d the re be
some othe r mode than the one familiar to us of inte rcourse with the male ; but
conce rning the se topics we shall tre at more pre cise ly late r on. In the case of
ce rtain fishe s, howe ve r, afte r the y have spontane ously ge ne rate d e ggs, the se e ggs
de ve lop into living animals; only that in ce rtain of the se case s de ve lopme nt is
spontane ous, and in othe rs is not inde pe nde nt of the male ; and the me thod of
proce e ding in re gard to the se matte rs will se t forth by and by, for the me thod is
some what like to the me thod followe d in the case of birds. But whe nsoe ve r cre ature s
are spontane ously
ge ne rate d, e ithe r in othe r animals, in the soil, or on plants, or in the parts of
the se , and whe n such are ge ne rate d male and fe male , the n from the copulation of
such spontane ously ge ne rate d male s and fe male s the re is ge ne rate d a some thing-a
some thing ne ve r ide ntical in shape with the pare nts, but a some thing impe rfe ct. For
instance , the issue of copulation in lice is nits; in flie s, grubs; in fle as, grubs
e gg-like in shape ; and from the se issue s the pare nt-spe cie s is ne ve r re produce d,
nor is any animal produce d at all, but the like nonde scripts only. First, the n,
we must proce e d to tre at of 'cove ring' in re gard to such animals as cove r and are
cove re d; and the n afte r this to tre at in due orde r of othe r matte rs, both the
e xce ptional and those of ge ne ral occurre nce . 2
Those animals, the n, cove r and are cove re d in which the re is a duality of se x, and
the mode s of cove ring in such animals are not in all case s similar nor analogous.
For the re d-bloode d animals that are viviparous and furnishe d with fe e t have in all
case s organs adapte d for procre ation, but the se xe s do not in all case s come
toge the r in like manne r. Thus, opisthure tic animals copulate with a re arward
pre se ntme nt, as is the case with the lion, the hare , and the lynx; though, by the
way, in the case of the hare , the fe male is ofte n obse rve d to cove r the male .
The case is similar in most othe r such animals; that is to say, the majority of
quadrupe ds copulate as be st the y can, the male mounting the fe male ; and this is the
only me thod of copulating adopte d by birds, though the re are ce rtain dive rsitie s of
me thod obse rve d e ve n in birds. For in some case s the fe male squats on the ground
and the male mounts on top of he r, as is the case with the cock and he n bustard,
and the barn-door cock and he n; in othe r case s, the male mounts without the fe male
squatting, as with the male and fe male crane ; for, with the se birds, the male
mounts on to the back of the fe male and cove rs he r, and like the cock-sparrow
consume s but ve ry little time in the ope ration. Of quadrupe ds, be ars pe rform the
ope ration lying prone on one anothe r, in the same way as othe r quadrupe ds do while
standing up; that is to say, with the be lly of the male pre sse d to the back of the
fe male . He dge hogs copulate e re ct, be lly to be lly. With re gard to large -size d
vivipara, the hind only ve ry rare ly sustains the mounting of the stag to the full
conclusion of the ope ration, and the same is the case with the cow as re gards the
bull, owing to the rigidity of the pe nis of the bull. In point of fact, the fe male s
of the se animals e licit the spe rm of the male in the act of withdrawing from
unde rne ath him; and, by the way, this phe nome non has be e n obse rve d in the case of
the stag and hind, dome sticate d, of course . C ove ring with the wolf is the same as
with the dog. C ats do not copulate with a re arward pre se ntme nt on the part of the
fe male , but the male stands e re ct and the fe male puts he rse lf unde rne ath him; and,
by the way, the fe male cat is pe culiarly le che rous, and whe e dle s the male on to
se xual comme rce , and cate rwauls during the ope ration. C ame ls copulate with the
fe male in a sitting posture , and the male straddle s ove r and cove rs he r, not with
the hinde r pre se ntme nt on the fe male 's part but like the othe r quadrupe ds me ntione d
above , and the y pass the whole day long in the ope ration; whe n thus e ngage d the y
re tire to lone ly spots, and none but the ir ke e pe r dare approach the m. And, be it
obse rve d, the pe nis of the came l is so sine wy that bow-strings are manufacture d out
of it. Ele phants, also, copulate in lone ly place s, and e spe cially by rive r-side s in
the ir usual haunts; the fe male squats down, and straddle s with he r le gs, and the
male mounts and cove rs he r. The se al cove rs like all opisthure tic animals, and in
this spe cie s the copulation e xte nds ove r a le ngthe ne d time , as is the case with the
dog and bitch; and the pe nis in the male se al is e xce ptionally large .
3 Oviparous quadrupe ds cove r one anothe r in the same way. That is to say, in
some case s the male mounts the fe male pre cise ly as in the viviparous animals, as is
obse rve d in both the land and the se a tortoise ....And the se cre ature s have an organ
in which the ducts conve rge , and with which the y pe rform the act of copulation, as
is also obse rve d in the toad, the frog, and all othe r animals of the same group.
4 Long animals de void of fe e t, like se rpe nts and murae nae , inte rtwine in
coition, be lly to be lly. And, in fact, se rpe nts coil round one anothe r so tightly
as to pre se nt the appe arance of a single se rpe nt with a pair of he ads. The same
mode is followe d by the saurians; that is to say, the y coil round one anothe r in
the act of coition. 5 All fishe s, with the
e xce ption of the flat se lachians, lie down side by side , and copulate be lly to
be lly. Fishe s, howe ve r, that are flat and furnishe d with tails-as the ray, the
trygon, and the like -copulate not only in this way, but also, whe re the tail from
its thinne ss is no impe dime nt, by mounting of the male upon the fe male , be lly to
back. But the rhina or ange l-fish, and othe r like fishe s whe re the tail is large ,
copulate only by rubbing against one anothe r side ways, be lly to be lly. S ome me n
assure us that the y have se e n some of the se lachia copulating hindways, dog and
bitch. In the cartilaginous spe cie s the fe male is large r than the male ; and the
same is the case with othe r fishe s for the most part. And among cartilaginous
fishe s are include d, be side s those alre ady name d, the bos, the lamia, the ae tos,
the narce or torpe do, the fishing-frog, and all the gale ode s or sharks and dogfish.
C artilaginous fishe s, the n, of all kinds, have in many instance s be e n obse rve d
copulating in the way above me ntione d; for, by the way, in viviparous animals the
proce ss of copulation is of longe r duration than in the ovipara. It is the same
with the dolphin and with all ce tace ans; that is to say, the y come side by side ,
male and fe male , and copulate , and the act e xte nds ove r a time which is ne ithe r
short nor ve ry long. Again, in cartilaginous fishe s the male , in some spe cie s,
diffe rs from the fe male in the fact that he is furnishe d with two appe ndage s
hanging down from about the e xit of the re siduum, and that the fe male is not so
furnishe d; and this distinction be twe e n the se xe s is obse rve d in all the spe cie s of
the sharks and dog-fish. Now ne ithe r fishe s nor any animals de void of fe e t are
furnishe d with te sticle s, but male se rpe nts and male fishe s have a pair of ducts
which fill with milt or spe rm at the rutting se ason, and discharge , in all case s, a
milk-like juice . The se ducts unite , as in birds; for birds, by the way, have the ir
te sticle s in the ir inte rior, and so have all ovipara that are furnishe d with fe e t.
And this union of the ducts is so far continue d and of such e xte nsion as to e nte r
the re ce ptive organ in the fe male . In viviparous animals furnishe d with fe e t
the re is outwardly one and the same duct for the spe rm and the liquid re siduum; but
the re are se parate ducts inte rnally, as has be e n obse rve d in the diffe re ntiation of
the organs. And with such animals as are not viviparous the same passage se rve s for
the discharge also of the solid re siduum; although, inte rnally, the re are two
passage s, se parate but ne ar to one anothe r. And the se re marks apply to both male
and fe male ; for the se animals are unprovide d with a bladde r e xce pt in the case of
the tortoise ; and the she -tortoise , though furnishe d with a bladde r, has only one
passage ; and tortoise s, by the way, be long to the ovipara. In the case of
oviparous fishe s the proce ss of coition is le ss ope n to obse rvation. In point of
fact, some are le d by the want of actual obse rvation to surmise that the fe male
be come s impre gnate d by swallowing the se minal fluid of the male . And the re can be
no doubt that this proce e ding on the part of the fe male is ofte n witne sse d; for at
the rutting se ason the fe male s follow the male s and pe rform this ope ration, and
strike the male s with the ir mouths unde r the be lly, and the male s are the re by
induce d to part with the spe rm soone r and more ple ntifully. And, furthe r, at the
spawning se ason the male s go in pursuit of the fe male s, and, as the fe male spawns,
the male s swallow the e ggs; and the spe cie s is continue d in e xiste nce by the spawn
that survive s this proce ss. On the coast of Phoe nicia the y take advantage of the se
instinctive prope nsitie s of the two se xe s to catch both one and the othe r: that is
to say, by using the male of the gre y mulle t as a de coy the y colle ct and ne t the
fe male , and by using the fe male , the male . The re pe ate d obse rvation of this
phe nome non has le d to the notion that the proce ss was e quivale nt to coition, but
the fact is that a similar phe nome non is obse rvable in quadrupe ds. For at the
rutting se asons both the male s and the fe male s take to running at the ir ge nitals,
and the two se xe s take to sme lling e ach othe r at those parts. (With partridge s, by
the way, if the fe male ge ts to le e ward of the male , she be come s the re by
impre gnate d. And ofte n whe n the y happe n to be in he at she is affe cte d in this wise
by the voice of the male , or by his bre athing down on he r as he flie s ove rhe ad;
and, by the way, both the male and the fe male partridge ke e p the mouth wide ope n
and protrude the tongue in the proce ss of coition.) The actual proce ss of
copulation on the part of oviparous fishe s is se ldom accurate ly obse rve d, owing to
the fact that the y ve ry soon fall aside and slip asunde r. But, for all that, the
proce ss has be e n obse rve d to take place in the manne r above de scribe d.
6 Molluscs, such as the octopus, the se pia, and the calamary, have se xual
inte rcourse all in the same way; that
is to say, the y unite at the mouth, by an inte rlacing of the ir te ntacle s. Whe n,
the n, the octopus re sts its so-calle d he ad against the ground and spre ads abroad
its te ntacle s, the othe r se x fits into the outspre ading of the se te ntacle s, and the
two se xe s the n bring the ir sucke rs into mutual conne xion. S ome asse rt that the
male has a kind of pe nis in one of his te ntacle s, the one in which are the large st
sucke rs; and the y furthe r asse rt that the organ is te ndinous in characte r, growing
attache d right up to the middle of the te ntacle , and that the latte r e nable s it to
e nte r the nostril or funne l of the fe male . Now cuttle -fish and calamarie s swim
about close ly inte rtwine d, with mouths and te ntacle s facing one anothe r and fitting
close ly toge the r, and swim thus in opposite dire ctions; and the y fit the ir so-
calle d nostrils into one anothe r, and the one se x swims backwards and the othe r
frontwards during the ope ration. And the fe male lays its spawn by the so-calle d
'blow-hole '; and, by the way, some de clare that it is at this organ that the
coition re ally take s place . 7 C rustace ans
copulate , as the crawfish, the lobste r, the carid and the like , just like the
opisthure tic quadrupe ds, whe n the one animal turns up its tail and the othe r puts
his tail on the othe r's tail. C opulation take s place in the e arly spring, ne ar to
the shore ; and, in fact, the proce ss has ofte n be e n obse rve d in the case of all
the se animals. S ome time s it take s place about the time whe n the figs be gin to
ripe n. Lobste rs and carids copulate in like manne r. C rabs copulate at the front
parts of one anothe r, be lly to be lly, throwing the ir ove rlapping ope rcula to me e t
one anothe r: first the smalle r crab mounts the large r at the re ar; afte r he has
mounte d, the large r one turns on one side . Now, the fe male diffe rs in no re spe ct
from the male e xce pt in the circumstance that its ope rculum is large r, more
e le vate d, and more hairy, and into this ope rculum it spawns its e ggs and in the
same ne ighbourhood is the outle t of the re siduum. In the copulative proce ss of
the se animals the re is no protrusion of a me mbe r from one animal into the othe r.
8 Inse cts copulate at the hinde r e nd, and the smalle r individuals mount the
large r; and the smalle r individual is I I is the male . The fe male pushe s from
unde rne ath he r se xual organ into the body of the male above , this be ing the re ve rse
of the ope ration obse rve d in othe r cre ature s; and this organ in the case of some
inse cts appe ars to be disproportionate ly large whe n compare d to the size of the
body, and that too in ve ry minute cre ature s; in some inse cts the disproportion is
not so striking. This phe nome non may be witne sse d if any one will pull asunde r
flie s that are copulating; and, by the way, the se cre ature s are , unde r the
circumstance s, ave rse to se paration; for the inte rcourse of the se xe s in the ir case
is of long duration, as may be obse rve d with common e ve ryday inse cts, such as the
fly and the cantharis. The y all copulate in the manne r above de scribe d, the fly,
the cantharis, the sphondyle , (the phalangium spide r) any othe rs of the kind that
copulate at all. The phalangia-that is to say, such of the spe cie s as spin we bs-
pe rform the ope ration in the following way: the fe male take s hold of the suspe nde d
we b at the middle and give s a pull, and the male give s a counte r pull; this
ope ration the y re pe at until the y are drawn in toge the r and inte rlace d at the hinde r
e nds; for, by the way, this mode of copulation suits the m in conse que nce of the
rotundity of the ir stomachs. S o much for the mode s of se xual inte rcourse in all
animals; but, with re gard to the same phe nome non, the re are de finite laws followe d
as re gards the se ason of the ye ar and the age of the animal. Animals in ge ne ral
se e m naturally dispose d to this inte rcourse at about the same pe riod of the ye ar,
and that is whe n winte r is changing into summe r. And this is the se ason of spring,
in which almost all things that fly or walk or swim take to pairing. S ome animals
pair and bre e d in autumn also and in winte r, as is the case with ce rtain aquatic
animals and ce rtain birds. Man pairs and bre e ds at all se asons, as is the case also
with dome sticate d animals, owing to the she lte r and good fe e ding the y e njoy: that
is to say, with those whose pe riod of ge station is also comparative ly brie f, as the
sow and the bitch, and with those birds that bre e d fre que ntly. Many animals time
the se ason of inte rcourse with a vie w to the right nurture subse que ntly of the ir
young. In the human spe cie s, the male is more unde r se xual e xcite me nt in winte r,
and the fe male in summe r. With birds the far gre ate r part, as has be e n said,
pair and bre e d during the spring and e arly summe r, with the e xce ption of the
halcyon. The halcyon bre e ds at the se ason of the winte r solstice . Accordingly,
whe n this se ason is marke d with calm we athe r, the name of 'halcyon days' is give n
to the se ve n days pre ce ding, and to as many following, the solstice ; as S imonide s
the poe t says: God lulls for fourte e n days the winds to sle e p In
winte r; and this te mpe rate inte rlude Me n call the Holy S e ason, whe n the
de e p C radle s the mothe r Halcyon and he r brood. And the se days are calm,
whe n southe rly winds pre vail at the solstice , northe rly one s having be e n the
accompanime nt of the Ple iads. The halcyon is said to take se ve n days for building
he r ne st, and the othe r se ve n for laying and hatching he r e ggs. In our country
the re are not always halcyon days about the time of the winte r solstice , but in the
S icilian se as this se ason of calm is almost pe riodical. The bird lays about five
e ggs. 9 (The aithyia, or dive r, and the larus,
or gull, lay the ir e ggs on rocks borde ring on the se a, two or thre e at a time ; but
the gull lays in the summe r, and the dive r at the be ginning of spring, just afte r
the winte r solstice , and it broods ove r its e ggs as birds do in ge ne ral. And
ne ithe r of the se birds re sorts to a hiding-place .) The halcyon is the most
rare ly se e n of all birds. It is se e n only about the time of the se tting of the
Ple iads and the winte r solstice . Whe n ships are lying at anchor in the roads, it
will hove r about a ve sse l and the n disappe ar in a mome nt, and S te sichorus in one of
his poe ms allude s to this pe culiarity. The nightingale also bre e ds at the be ginning
of summe r, and lays five or six e ggs; from autumn until spring it re tire s to a
hiding-place . Inse cts copulate and bre e d in winte r also, that is whe n the
we athe r is fine and south winds pre vail; such, I me an, as do not hibe rnate , as the
fly and the ant. The gre ate r part of wild animals bring forth once and once only in
the ye ar, e xce pt in the case of animals like the hare , whe re the fe male can be come
supe rfoe tally impre gnate d. In like manne r the gre at majority of fishe s bre e d
only once a ye ar, like the shoal-fishe s (or, in othe r words, such as are caught in
ne ts), the tunny, the pe lamys, the gre y mulle t, the chalcis, the macke re l, the
sciae na, the pse tta and the like , with the e xce ption of the labrax or basse ; for
this fish (alone amongst those me ntione d) bre e ds twice a ye ar, and the se cond brood
is the we ake r of the two. The trichias and the rock-fishe s bre e d twice a ye ar; the
re d mulle t bre e ds thrice a ye ar, and is e xce ptional in this re spe ct. This
conclusion in re gard to the re d mulle t is infe rre d from the spawn; for the spawn of
the fish may be se e n in ce rtain place s at thre e diffe re nt time s of the ye ar. The
scorpae na bre e ds twice a ye ar. The sargue bre e ds twice , in the spring and in the
autumn. The saupe bre e ds once a ye ar only, in the autumn. The fe male tunny bre e ds
only once a ye ar, but owing to the fact that the fish in some case s spawn e arly and
in othe rs late , it looks as though the fish bre d twice ove r. The first spawning
take s place in De ce mbe r be fore the solstice , and the latte r spawning in the spring.
The male tunny diffe rs from the fe male in be ing unprovide d with the fin be ne ath the
be lly which is calle d aphare us. 1 0 Of
cartilaginous fishe s, the rhina or ange lfish is the only one that bre e ds twice ; for
it bre e ds at the be ginning of autumn, and at the se tting of the Ple iads: and, of
the two se asons, it is in be tte r condition in the autumn. It e nge nde rs at a birth
se ve n or e ight young. C e rtain of the dog-fishe s, for e xample the spotte d dog, se e m
to bre e d twice a month, and this re sults from the circumstance that the e ggs do not
all re ach maturity at the same time . S ome fishe s bre e d at all se asons, as the
murae na. This animal lays a gre at numbe r of e ggs at a time ; and the young whe n
hatche d are ve ry small but grow with gre at rapidity, like the young of the
hippurus, for the se fishe s from be ing diminutive at the outse t grow with
e xce ptional rapidity to an e xce ptional size . (Be it obse rve d that the murae na
bre e ds at all se asons, but the hippurus only in the spring. The smyrus diffe rs from
the smyrae na; for the murae na is mottle d and we akly, whe re as the smyrus is strong
and of one uniform colour, and the colour re se mble s that of the pine -tre e , and the
animal has te e th inside and out. The y say that in this case , as in othe r similar
one s, the one is the male , and the othe r the fe male , of a single spe cie s. The y come
out on to the land, and are fre que ntly caught.) Fishe s, the n, as a ge ne ral rule ,
attain the ir full growth with gre at rapidity, but this is e spe cially the case ,
among small fishe s, with the coracine or crow-fish: it spawns, by the way, ne ar the
shore , in we e dy and tangle d spots. The orphus also, or se a-pe rch, is small at
first, and rapidly attains a gre at size . The pe lamys and the tunny bre e d in the
Euxine , and nowhe re e lse . The ce stre us or mulle t, the chrysophrys or gilt-he ad, and
the labrax
or basse , bre e d be st whe re rive rs run into the se a. The orcys or large -size d
tunny, the scorpis, and many othe r spe cie s spawn in the ope n se a.
1 1 Fish for the most part bre e d some time or othe r during the thre e months
be twe e n the middle of March and the middle of June . S ome fe w bre e d in autumn: as,
for instance , the saupe and the sargus, and such othe rs of this sort as bre e d
shortly be fore the autumn e quinox; like wise the e le ctric ray and the ange l-fish.
Othe r fishe s bre e d both in winte r and in summe r, as was pre viously obse rve d: as,
for instance , in winte r-time the basse , the gre y mulle t, and the be lone or pipe -
fish; and in summe r-time , from the middle of June to the middle of July, the fe male
tunny, about the time of the summe r solstice ; and the tunny lays a sac-like
e nclosure in which are containe d a numbe r of small e ggs. The ryade s or shoal-fishe s
bre e d in summe r. Of the gre y mulle ts, the che lon be gins to be in roe be twe e n the
middle of Nove mbe r and the middle of De ce mbe r; as also the sargue , and the smyxon
or myxon, and the ce phalus; and the ir pe riod of ge station is thirty days. And, by
the way, some of the gre y mulle t spe cie s are not produce d from copulation, but grow
spontane ously from mud and sand. As a ge ne ral rule , the n, fishe s are in roe in
the spring-time ; while some , as has be e n said, are so in summe r, in autumn, or in
winte r. But whe re as the impre gnation in the spring-time follows a ge ne ral law,
impre gnation in the othe r se asons doe s not follow the same rule e ithe r throughout
or within the limits of one ge nus; and, furthe r, conce ption in the se variant
se asons is not so prolific. And, inde e d, we must be ar this in mind, that just as
with plants and quadrupe ds dive rsity of locality has much to do not only with
ge ne ral physical he alth but also with the comparative fre que ncy of se xual
inte rcourse and ge ne ration, so also with re gard to fishe s locality of itse lf has
much to do not only in re gard to the size and vigour of the cre ature , but also in
re gard to its parturition and its copulations, causing the same spe cie s to bre e d
ofte ne r in one place and se ldome r in anothe r. 1 2
The molluscs also bre e d in spring. Of the marine molluscs one of the first to bre e d
is the se pia. It spawns at all time s of the day and its pe riod of ge station is
fifte e n days. Afte r the fe male has laid he r e ggs, the male come s and discharge s the
milt ove r the e ggs, and the e ggs the re upon harde n. And the two se xe s of this animal
go about in pairs, side by side ; and the male is more mottle d and more black on the
back than the fe male . The octopus pairs in winte r and bre e ds in spring, lying
hidde n for about two months. Its spawn is shape d like a vine -te ndril, and re se mble s
the fruit of the white poplar; the cre ature is e xtraordinarily prolific, for the
numbe r of individuals that come from the spawn is some thing incalculable . The male
diffe rs from the fe male in the fact that its he ad is longe r, and that the organ
calle d by the fishe rme n its pe nis, in the te ntacle , is white . The fe male , afte r
laying he r e ggs, broods ove r the m, and in conse que nce ge ts out of condition, by
re ason of not going in que st of food during the hatching pe riod. The purple
mure x bre e ds about springtime , and the ce ryx at the close of the winte r. And, as a
ge ne ral rule , the te stace ans are found to be furnishe d with the ir so-calle d e ggs in
spring-time and in autumn, with the e xce ption of the e dible urchin; for this animal
has the so-calle d e ggs in most abundance in the se se asons, but at no se ason is
unfurnishe d with the m; and it is furnishe d with the m in e spe cial abundance in warm
we athe r or whe n a full moon is in the sky. Only, by the way, the se re marks do not
apply to the se a-urchin found in the Pyrrhae an S traits, for this urchin is at its
be st for table purpose s in the winte r; and the se urchins are small but full of
e ggs. S nails are found by obse rvations to be come in all case s impre gnate d about
the same se ason. 1 3 (Of birds the wild spe cie s,
as has be e n state d, as a ge ne ral rule pair and bre e d only once a ye ar. The swallow,
howe ve r, and the blackbird bre e d twice . With re gard to the blackbird, howe ve r, its
first brood is kille d by incle me ncy of we athe r (for it is the e arlie st of all birds
to bre e d), but the se cond brood it usually succe e ds in re aring. Birds that are
dome sticate d or that are capable of dome stication bre e d fre que ntly, just as the
common pige on bre e ds all through the summe r, and as is se e n in the barn-door he n;
for the barn-door cock and he n have inte rcourse , and the he n bre e ds, at all se asons
alike : e xce pting by the way, during the days about the winte r solstice . Of the
pige on family the re are many dive rsitie s; for the pe riste ra or common pige on is not
ide ntical with the pe le ias or rock-pige on. In othe r words, the rock-pige on is
smalle r than the common pige on, and is le ss e asily dome sticate d; it is also black,
and small, re d-foote d and rough-foote d; and in conse que nce of the se pe culiaritie s
it is ne gle cte d by the pige on-fancie r. The large st of all the pige on spe cie s is the
phatta or ring-dove ; and the ne xt in size is the oe nas or stock-dove ; and the
stock-dove is a little large r than the common pige on. The smalle st of all the
spe cie s is the turtle -dove . Pige ons bre e d and hatch at all se asons, if the y are
furnishe d with a sunny place and all re quisite s; unle ss the y are so furnishe d, the y
bre e d only in the summe r. The spring brood is the be st, or the autumn brood. At all
e ve nts, without doubt, the produce of the hot se ason, the summe r brood, is the
poore st of the thre e .) 1 4 Furthe r, animals
diffe r from one anothe r in re gard to the time of life that is be st adapte d for
se xual inte rcourse . To be gin with, in most animals the se cre tion of the se minal
fluid and its ge ne rative capacity are not phe nome na simultane ously manife ste d, but
manife ste d succe ssive ly. Thus, in all animals, the e arlie st se cre tion of spe rm is
unfruitful, or if it be fruitful the issue is comparative ly poor and small. And
this phe nome non is e spe cially obse rvable in man, in viviparous quadrupe ds, and in
birds; for in the case of man and the quadrupe d the offspring is smalle r, and in
the case of the bird, the e gg. For animals that copulate , of one and the same
spe cie s, the age for maturity is in most spe cie s tole rably uniform, unle ss it
occurs pre mature ly by re ason of abnormality, or is postpone d by physical injury.
In man, the n, maturity is indicate d by a change of the tone of voice , by an
incre ase in size and an alte ration in appe arance of the se xual organs, as also in
an incre ase of size and alte ration in appe arance of the bre asts; and above all, in
the hair-growth at the pube s. Man be gins to posse ss se minal fluid about the age of
fourte e n, and be come s ge ne rative ly capable at about the age of twe nty-one ye ars.
In othe r animals the re is no hair-growth at the pube s (for some animals have no
hair at all, and othe rs have none on the be lly, or le ss on the be lly than on the
back), but still, in some animals the change of voice is quite obvious; and in some
animals othe r organs give indication of the comme ncing se cre tion of the spe rm and
the onse t of ge ne rative capacity. As a ge ne ral rule the fe male is sharpe r-tone d in
voice than the male , and the young animal than the e lde r; for, by the way, the stag
has a much de e pe r-tone d bay than the hind. More ove r, the male crie s chie fly at
rutting time , and the fe male unde r te rror and alarm; and the cry of the fe male is
short, and that of the male prolonge d. With dogs also, as the y grow old, the tone
of the bark ge ts de e pe r. The re is a diffe re nce obse rvable also in the ne ighings
of horse s. That is to say, the fe male foal has a thin small ne igh, and the male
foal a small ne igh, ye t bigge r and de e pe r-tone d than that of the fe male , and a
loude r one as time goe s on. And whe n the young male and fe male are two ye ars old
and take to bre e ding, the ne ighing of the stallion be come s loud and de e p, and that
of the mare loude r and shrille r than he re tofore ; and this change goe s on until the y
re ach the age of about twe nty ye ars; and afte r this time the ne ighing in both se xe s
be come s we ake r and we ake r. As a rule , the n, as was state d, the voice of the male
diffe rs from the voice of the fe male , in animals whe re the voice admits of a
continuous and prolonge d sound, in the fact that the note in the male voice is more
de e p and bass; not, howe ve r, in all animals, for the contrary holds good in the
case of some , as for instance in kine : for he re the cow has a de e pe r note than the
bull, and the calve s a de e pe r note than the cattle . And we can thus unde rstand the
change of voice in animals that unde rgo ge lding; for male animals that unde rgo this
proce ss assume the characte rs of the fe male . The following are the age s at which
various animals be come capacitate d for se xual comme rce . The e we and the she -goat
are se xually mature whe n one ye ar old, and this state me nt is made more confide ntly
in re spe ct to the she -goat than to the e we ; the ram and the he -goat are se xually
mature at the same age . The proge ny of ve ry young individuals among the se animals
diffe rs from that of othe r male s: for the male s improve in the course of the se cond
ye ar, whe n the y be come fully mature . The boar and the sow are capable of
inte rcourse whe n e ight months old, and the fe male brings forth whe n one ye ar old,
the diffe re nce corre sponding to he r pe riod of ge station. The boar is capable of
ge ne ration whe n e ight months old, but, with a sire unde r a ye ar in age , the litte r
is apt to be a poor one . The age s, howe ve r, are not invariable ; now and the n the
boar and the sow are capable of inte rcourse whe n four months old, and are capable
of producing a litte r which can be re are d whe n six months
old; but at time s the boar be gins to be capable of inte rcourse whe n te n months. He
continue s se xually mature until he is thre e ye ars old. The dog and the bitch are ,
as a rule , se xually capable and se xually re ce ptive whe n a ye ar old, and some time s
whe n e ight months old; but the priority in date is more common with the dog than
with the bitch. The pe riod of ge station with the bitch is sixty days, or sixty-one ,
or sixty-two, or sixty-thre e at the utmost; the pe riod is ne ve r unde r sixty days,
or, if it is, the litte r come s to no good. The bitch, afte r de live ring a litte r,
submits to the male in six months, but not be fore . The horse and the mare are , at
the e arlie st, se xually capable and se xually mature whe n two ye ars old; the issue ,
howe ve r, of pare nts of this age is small and poor. As a ge ne ral rule the se animals
are se xually capable whe n thre e ye ars old, and the y grow be tte r for bre e ding
purpose s until the y re ach twe nty ye ars. The stallion is se xually capable up to the
age of thirty-thre e ye ars, and the mare up to forty, so that, in point of fact, the
animals are se xually capable all the ir live s long; for the stallion, as a rule ,
live s for about thirty-five ye ars, and the mare for a little ove r forty; although,
by the way, a horse has known to live to the age of se ve nty-five . The ass and the
she -ass are se xually capable whe n thirty months old; but, as a rule , the y are not
ge ne rative ly mature until the y are thre e ye ars old, or thre e ye ars and a half. An
instance has be e n known of a she -ass be aring and bringing forth a foal whe n only a
ye ar old. A cow has be e n known to calve whe n only a ye ar old, and the calf gre w as
big as might be e xpe cte d, but no more . S o much for the date s in time at which the se
animals attain to ge ne rative capacity. In the human spe cie s, the male is
ge ne rative , at the longe st, up to se ve nty ye ars, and the fe male up to fifty; but
such e xte nde d pe riods are rare . As a rule , the male is ge ne rative up to the age of
sixty-five , and to the age of forty-five the fe male is capable of conce ption.
The e we be ars up to e ight ye ars, and, if she be care fully te nde d, up to e le ve n
ye ars; in fact, the ram and the e we are se xually capable pre tty we ll all the ir
live s long. He -goats, if the y be fat, are more or le ss unse rvice able for bre e ding;
and this, by the way, is the re ason why country folk say of a vine whe n it stops
be aring that it is 'running the goat'. Howe ve r, if an ove r-fat he -goat be thinne d
down, he be come s se xually capable and ge ne rative . Rams single out the olde st
e we s for copulation, and show no re gard for the young one s. And, as has be e n
state d, the issue of the younge r e we s is poore r than that of the olde r one s. The
boar is good for bre e ding purpose s until he is thre e ye ars of age ; but afte r that
age his issue de te riorate s, for afte r that age his vigour is on the de cline . The
boar is most capable afte r a good fe e d, and with the first sow it mounts; if poorly
fe d or put to many fe male s, the copulation is abbre viate d, and the litte r is
comparative ly poor. The first litte r of the sow is the fe we st in numbe r; at the
se cond litte r she is at he r prime . The animal, as it grows old, continue s to bre e d,
but the se xual de sire abate s. Whe n the y re ach fifte e n ye ars, the y be come
unproductive , and are ge tting old. If a sow be highly fe d, it is all the more e age r
for se xual comme rce , whe the r old or young; but, if it be ove r-fatte ne d in
pre gnancy, it give s the le ss milk afte r parturition. With re gard to the age of the
pare nts, the litte r is the be st whe n the y are in the ir prime ; but with re gard to
the se asons of the ye ar, the litte r is the be st that come s at the be ginning of
winte r; and the summe r litte r the poore st, consisting as it usually doe s of animals
small and thin and flaccid. The boar, if it be we ll fe d, is se xually capable at all
hours, night and day; but othe rwise is pe culiarly salacious e arly in the morning.
As it grows old the se xual passion die s away, as we have alre ady re marke d. Ve ry
ofte n a boar, whe n more or le ss impote nt from age or de bility, finding itse lf
unable to accomplish the se xual comme rce with due spe e d, and growing fatigue d with
the standing posture , will roll the sow ove r on the ground, and the pair will
conclude the ope ration side by side of one anothe r. The sow is sure of conce ption
if it drops its lugs in rutting time ; if the e ars do not thus drop, it may have to
rut a se cond time be fore impre gnation take s place . Bitche s do not submit to the
male throughout the ir live s, but only until the y re ach a ce rtain maturity of ye ars.
As a ge ne ral rule , the y are se xually re ce ptive and conce ptive until the y are twe lve
ye ars old; although, by the way, case s have be e n known whe re dogs and bitche s have
be e n re spe ctive ly procre ative and conce ptive to the age s of e ighte e n and e ve n of
twe nty ye ars. But, as a rule , age diminishe s the capability of ge ne ration and of
conce ption with the se animals as with all othe rs. The fe male of the came l is
opisthure tic, and submits to the male in the way above de scribe d; and the se ason
for copulation in Arabia is about the month of Octobe r. Its pe riod of ge station is
twe lve months; and it is ne ve r de live re d of more than one foal at a time . The
fe male be come s se xually re ce ptive and the male se xually capable at the age of thre e
ye ars. Afte r parturition, an inte rval of a ye ar e lapse s be fore the fe male is again
re ce ptive to the male . The fe male e le phant be come s se xually re ce ptive whe n te n
ye ars old at the younge st, and whe n fifte e n at the olde st; and the male is se xually
capable whe n five ye ars old, or six. The se ason for inte rcourse is spring. The male
allows an inte rval of thre e ye ars to e lapse afte r comme rce with a fe male : and,
afte r it has once impre gnate d a fe male , it has no inte rcourse with he r again. The
pe riod of ge station with the fe male is two ye ars; and only one young animal is
produce d at a time , in othe r words it is uniparous. And the e mbryo is the size of a
calf two or thre e months old. 1 5 S o much for
the copulations of such animals as copulate . We now proce e d to tre at of
ge ne ration both with re spe ct to copulating and non-copulating animals, and we shall
comme nce with discussing the subje ct of ge ne ration in the case of the te stace ans.
The te stace an is almost the only ge nus that throughout all its spe cie s is non-
copulative . The porphyrae , or purple murice s, gathe r toge the r to some one place
in the spring-time , and de posit the so-calle d 'hone ycomb'. This substance re se mble s
the comb, only that it is not so ne at and de licate ; and looks as though a numbe r of
husks of white chick-pe as we re all stuck toge the r. But none of the se structure s has
any ope n passage , and the porphyra doe s not grow out of the m, but the se and all
othe r te stace ans grow out of mud and de caying matte r. The substance , is, in fact,
an e xcre tion of the porphyra and the ce ryx; for it is de posite d by the ce ryx as
we ll. S uch, the n, of the te stace ans as de posit the hone ycomb are ge ne rate d
spontane ously like all othe r te stace ans, but the y ce rtainly come in gre ate r
abundance in place s whe re the ir conge ne rs have be e n living pre viously. At the
comme nce me nt of the proce ss of de positing the hone ycomb, the y throw off a slippe ry
mucus, and of this the husklike formations are compose d. The se formations, the n,
all me lt and de posit the ir conte nts on the ground, and at this spot the re are found
on the ground a numbe r of minute porphyrae , and porphyrae are caught at time s with
the se animalculae upon the m, some of which are too small to be diffe re ntiate d in
form. If the porphyrae are caught be fore producing this hone y-comb, the y some time s
go through the proce ss in fishing-cre e ls, not he re and the re in the baske ts, but
gathe ring to some one spot all toge the r, just as the y do in the se a; and owing to
the narrowne ss of the ir ne w quarte rs the y cluste r toge the r like a bunch of grape s.
The re are many spe cie s of the purple mure x; and some are large , as those found off
S ige um and Le ctum; othe rs are small, as those found in the Euripus, and on the
coast of C aria. And those that are found in bays are large and rough; in most of
the m the pe culiar bloom from which the ir name is de rive d is dark to blackne ss, in
othe rs it is re ddish and small in size ; some of the large one s we igh upwards of a
mina apie ce . But the spe cime ns that are found along the coast and on the rocks are
small-size d, and the bloom in the ir case is of a re ddish hue . Furthe r, as a ge ne ral
rule , in northe rn wate rs the bloom is blackish, and in southe rn wate rs of a re ddish
hue . The mure x is caught in the spring-time whe n e ngage d in the construction of the
hone ycomb; but it is not caught at any time about the rising of the dog-star, for
at that pe riod it doe s not fe e d, but conce als itse lf and burrows. The bloom of the
animal is situate d be twe e n the me con (or quasi-live r) and the ne ck, and the co-
attachme nt of the se is an intimate one . In colour it looks like a white me mbrane ,
and this is what pe ople e xtract; and if it be re move d and sque e ze d it stains your
hand with the colour of the bloom. The re is a kind of ve in that runs through it,
and this quasi-ve in would appe ar to be in itse lf the bloom. And the qualitie s, by
the way, of this organ are astringe nt. It is afte r the mure x has constructe d the
hone ycomb that the bloom is at its worst. S mall spe cime ns the y bre ak in pie ce s,
she lls and all, for it is no e asy matte r to e xtract the organ; but in de aling with
the large r one s the y first strip off the she ll and the n abstract the bloom. For
this purpose the ne ck and me con are se parate d, for the bloom lie s in be twe e n the m,
above the so-calle d stomach; he nce the ne ce ssity of se parating the m in abstracting
the bloom. Fishe rme n are anxious always to bre ak the animal in pie ce s while it is
ye t alive , for, if it die be fore the proce ss is comple te d, it vomits out the bloom;
and for
this re ason the fishe rme n ke e p the animals in cre e ls, until the y have colle cte d a
sufficie nt numbe r and can atte nd to the m at the ir le isure . Fishe rme n in past time s
use d not to lowe r cre e ls or attach the m to the bait, so that ve ry ofte n the animal
got droppe d off in the pulling up; at pre se nt, howe ve r, the y always attach a
baske t, so that if the animal fall off it is not lost. The animal is more incline d
to slip off the bait if it be full inside ; if it be e mpty it is difficult to shake
it off. S uch are the phe nome na conne cte d with the porphyra or mure x. The same
phe nome na are manife ste d by the ce ryx or trumpe t-she ll; and the se asons are the
same in which the phe nome na are obse rvable . Both animals, also, the mure x and the
ce ryx, have the ir ope rcula similarly situate d-and, in fact, all the stromboids, and
this is conge nital with the m all; and the y fe e d by protruding the so-calle d tongue
unde rne ath the ope rculum. The tongue of the mure x is bigge r than one 's finge r, and
by me ans of it, it fe e ds, and pe rforate s conchylia and the she lls of its own kind.
Both the mure x and the ce ryx are long live d. The mure x live s for about six ye ars;
and the ye arly incre ase is indicate d by a distinct inte rval in the spiral
convolution of the she ll. The musse l also constructs a hone ycomb. With re gard
to the limnostre ae , or lagoon oyste rs, whe re ve r you have slimy mud the re you are
sure to find the m be ginning to grow. C ockle s and clams and razor-fishe s and
scallops row spontane ously in sandy place s. The pinna grows straight up from its
tuft of anchoring fibre s in sandy and slimy place s; the se cre ature s have inside
the m a parasite nickname d the pinna-guard, in some case s a small carid and in othe r
case s a little crab; if the pinna be de prive d of this pinna-guard it soon die s.
As a ge ne ral rule , the n, all te stace ans grow by spontane ous ge ne ration in mud,
diffe ring from one anothe r according to the diffe re nce s of the mate rial; oyste rs
growing in slime , and cockle s and the othe r te stace ans above me ntione d on sandy
bottoms; and in the hollows of the rocks the ascidian and the barnacle , and common
sorts, such as the limpe t and the ne rite s. All the se animals grow with gre at
rapidity, e spe cially the mure x and the scallop; for the mure x and the scallop
attain the ir full growth in a ye ar. In some of the te stace ans white crabs are
found, ve ry diminutive in size ; the y are most nume rous in the trough shape d musse l.
In the pinna also is found the so-calle d pinna-guard. The y are found also in the
scallop and in the oyste r; the se parasite s ne ve r appe ar to grow in size . Fishe rme n
de clare that the parasite is conge nital with the large r animal. (S callops burrow
for a time in the sand, like the mure x.) (S he ll-fish, the n, grow in the way
above me ntione d; and some of the m grow in shallow wate r, some on the se a-shore ,
some in rocky place s, some on hard and stony ground, and some in sandy place s.)
S ome shift about from place to place , othe rs re main pe rmane nt on one spot. Of those
that ke e p to one spot the pinnae are roote d to the ground; the razor-fish and the
clam ke e p to the same locality, but are not so roote d; but still, if forcibly
re move d the y die . (The star-fish is naturally so warm that whate ve r it lays hold
of is found, whe n sudde nly take n away from the animal, to have unde rgone a proce ss
like boiling. Fishe rme n say that the star-fish is a gre at pe st in the S trait of
Pyrrha. In shape it re se mble s a star as se e n in an ordinary drawing. The so-calle d
'lungs' are ge ne rate d spontane ously. The she lls that painte rs use are a good de al
thicke r, and the bloom is outside the she ll on the surface . The se cre ature s are
mostly found on the coast of C aria.) The he rmit-crab grows spontane ously out of
soil and slime , and finds its way into unte nante d she lls. As it grows it shifts to
a large r she ll, as for instance into the she ll of the ne rite s, or of the strombus
or the like , and ve ry ofte n into the she ll of the small ce ryx. Afte r e nte ring ne w
she ll, it carrie s it about, and be gins again to fe e d, and, by and by, as it grows,
it shifts again into anothe r large r one . 1 6
More ove r, the animals that are unfurnishe d with she lls grow spontane ously, like the
te stace ans, as, for instance , the se a-ne ttle s and the sponge s in rocky cave s. Of
the se a-ne ttle , or se a-ane mone , the re are two spe cie s; and of the se one spe cie s
live s in hollows and ne ve r loose ns its hold upon the rocks, and the othe r live s on
smooth flat re e fs, fre e and de tache d, and shifts its position from time to time .
(Limpe ts also de tach the mse lve s, and shift from place to place .) In the
chambe re d cavitie s of sponge s pinna-guards or parasite s are found. And ove r the
chambe rs the re is a kind of spide r's we b, by the ope ning and closing of which the y
catch mute fishe s; that is to say, the y ope n the we b to le t the fish ge t in, and
close it again to e ntrap the m. Of sponge s the re are thre e spe cie s; the first is
of loose porous te xture , the se cond is close te xture d, the third, which is
nickname d 'the sponge of Achille s', is e xce ptionally fine and close -te xture d and
strong. This sponge is use d as a lining to he lme ts and gre ave s, for the purpose of
de ade ning the sound of the blow; and this is a ve ry scarce spe cie s. Of the close
te xture d sponge s such as are particularly hard and rough are nickname d 'goats'.
S ponge s grow spontane ously e ithe r attache d to a rock or on se a-be ache s, and the y
ge t the ir nutrime nt in slime : a proof of this state me nt is the fact that whe n the y
are first se cure d the y are found to be full of slime . This is characte ristic of all
living cre ature s that ge t the ir nutrime nt by close local attachme nt. And, by the
way, the close -te xture d sponge s are we ake r than the more ope nly porous one s be cause
the ir attachme nt e xte nds ove r a smalle r are a. It is said that the sponge is
se nsitive ; and as a proof of this state me nt the y say that if the sponge is made
aware of an atte mpt be ing made to pluck it from its place of attachme nt it draws
itse lf toge the r, and it be come s a difficult task to de tach it. It make s a similar
contractile move me nt in windy and boiste rous we athe r, obviously with the obje ct of
tighte ning its hold. S ome pe rsons e xpre ss doubts as to the truth of this asse rtion;
as, for instance , the pe ople of Torone . The sponge bre e ds parasite s, worms, and
othe r cre ature s, on which, if the y be de tache d, the rock-fishe s pre y, as the y pre y
also on the re maining stumps of the sponge ; but, if the sponge be broke n off, it
grows again from the re maining stump and the place is soon as we ll cove re d as
be fore . The large st of all sponge s are the loose -te xture d one s, and the se are
pe culiarly abundant on the coast of Lycia. The softe st are the close -te xture d
sponge s; for, by the way, the so-calle d sponge s of Achille s are harde r than the se .
As a ge ne ral rule , sponge s that are found in de e p calm wate rs are the softe st; for
usually windy and stormy we athe r has a te nde ncy to harde n the m (as it has to harde n
all similar growing things), and to arre st the ir growth. And this accounts for the
fact that the sponge s found in the He lle spont are rough and close -te xture d; and, as
a ge ne ral rule , sponge s found be yond or inside C ape Male a are , re spe ctive ly,
comparative ly soft or comparative ly hard. But, by the way, the habitat of the
sponge should not be too she lte re d and warm, for it has a te nde ncy to de cay, like
all similar ve ge table -like growths. And this accounts for the fact that the sponge
is at its be st whe n found in de e p wate r close to shore ; for owing to the de pth of
the wate r the y e njoy she lte r alike from stormy winds and from e xce ssive he at.
Whilst the y are still alive and be fore the y are washe d and cle ane d, the y are
blackish in colour. The ir attachme nt is not made at one particular spot, nor is it
made all ove r the ir bodie s; for vacant pore -space s inte rve ne . The re is a kind of
me mbrane stre tche d ove r the unde r parts; and in the unde r parts the points of
attachme nt are the more nume rous. On the top most of the pore s are close d, but four
or five are ope n and visible ; and we are told by some that it is through the se
pore s that the animal take s its food. The re is a particular spe cie s that is
name d the 'aplysia' or the 'unwashable ', from the circumstance that it cannot be
cle ane d. This spe cie s has the large ope n and visible pore s, but all the re st of the
body is close -te xture d; and, if it be disse cte d, it is found to be close r and more
glutinous than the ordinary sponge , and, in a word, some thing lung like in
consiste ncy. And, on all hands, it is allowe d that this spe cie s is se nsitive and
long-live d. The y are distinguishe d in the se a from ordinary sponge s from the
circumstance that the ordinary sponge s are white while the slime is in the m, but
that the se sponge s are unde r any circumstance s black. And so much with re gard to
sponge s and to ge ne ration in the te stace ans. 1 7
Of crustace ans, the fe male crawfish afte r copulation conce ive s and re tains its e ggs
for about thre e months, from about the middle of May to about the middle of August;
the y the n lay the e ggs into the folds unde rne ath the be lly, and the ir e ggs grow
like grubs. This same phe nome non is obse rvable in molluscs also, and in such fishe s
as are oviparous; for in all the se case s the e gg continue s to grow. The spawn of
the crawfish is of a loose or granular consiste ncy, and is divide d into e ight
parts; for corre sponding to e ach of the flaps on the side the re is a gristly
formation to which the spawn is attache d, and the e ntire structure re se mble s a
cluste r of grape s; for e ach gristly formation is split into se ve ral parts. This is
obvious e nough if you draw the parts asunde r; but at first sight the whole appe ars
to be one and indivisible . And the large st are not those ne are st to the outle t but
those in the middle ,
and the farthe st off are the smalle st. The size of the small e ggs is that of a
small se e d in a fig; and the y are not quite close to the outle t, but place d
middle ways; for at both e nds, tailwards and trunkwards, the re are two inte rvals
de void of e ggs; for it is thus that the flaps also grow. The side flaps, the n,
cannot close , but by placing the e nd flap on the m the animal can close up all, and
this e nd-flap se rve s the m for a lid. And in the act of laying its e ggs it se e ms to
bring the m towards the gristly formations by curving the flap of its tail, and
the n, sque e zing the e ggs towards the said gristly formations and maintaining a be nt
posture , it pe rforms the act of laying. The gristly formations at the se se asons
incre ase in size and be come re ce ptive of the e ggs; for the animal lays its e ggs
into the se formations, just as the se pia lays its e ggs among twigs and driftwood.
It lays its e ggs, the n, in this manne r, and afte r hatching the m for about twe nty
days it rids itse lf of the m all in one solid lump, as is quite plain from outside .
And out of the se e ggs crawfish form in about fifte e n days, and the se crawfish are
caught at time s le ss the n a finge r's bre adth, or se ve n-te nths of an inch, in
le ngth. The animal, the n, lays its e ggs be fore the middle of S e pte mbe r, and afte r
the middle of that month throws off its e ggs in a lump. With the humpe d carids or
prawns the time for ge station is four months or the re abouts. C rawfish are found
in rough and rocky place s, lobste rs in smooth place s, and ne ithe r crawfish nor
lobste rs are found in muddy one s; and this accounts for the fact that lobste rs are
found in the He lle spont and on the coast of Thasos, and crawfish in the
ne ighbourhood of S ige um and Mount Athos. Fishe rme n, accordingly, whe n the y want to
catch the se various cre ature s out at se a, take be arings on the be ach and e lse whe re
that te ll the m whe re the ground at the bottom is stony and whe re soft with slime .
In winte r and spring the se animals ke e p in ne ar to land, in summe r the y ke e p in
de e p wate r; thus at various time s se e king re spe ctive ly for warmth or coolne ss.
The so-calle d arctus or be ar-crab lays its e ggs at about the same time as the
crawfish; and conse que ntly in winte r and in the spring-time , be fore laying the ir
e ggs, the y are at the ir be st, and afte r laying at the ir worst. The y cast the ir
she ll in the spring-time (just as se rpe nts she d the ir so-calle d 'old-age ' or
slough), both dire ctly afte r birth and in late r life ; this is true both of crabs
and crawfish. And, by the way, all crawfish are long live d.
1 8 Molluscs, afte r pairing and copulation, lay a white spawn; and this spawn, as
in the case of the te stace an, ge ts granular in time . The octopus discharge s into
its hole , or into a potshe rd or into any similar cavity, a structure re se mbling the
te ndrils of a young vine or the fruit of the white poplar, as has be e n pre viously
obse rve d. The e ggs, whe n the fe male has laid the m, are cluste re d round the side s of
the hole . The y are so nume rous that, if the y be re move d the y suffice to fill a
ve sse l much large r than the animal's body in which the y we re containe d. S ome fifty
days late r, the e ggs burst and the little polypuse s cre e p out, like little spide rs,
in gre at numbe rs; the characte ristic form of the ir limbs is not ye t to be disce rne d
in de tail, but the ir ge ne ral outline is cle ar e nough. And, by the way, the y are so
small and he lple ss that the gre ate r numbe r pe rish; it is a fact that the y have be e n
se e n so e xtre me ly minute as to be absolute ly without organization, but ne ve rthe le ss
whe n touche d the y move d. The e ggs of the se pia look like big black myrtle -be rrie s,
and the y are linke d all toge the r like a bunch of grape s, cluste re d round a ce ntre ,
and are not e asily sunde re d from one anothe r: for the male e xude s ove r the m some
moist glairy stuff, which constitute s the sticky gum. The se e ggs incre ase in size ;
and the y are white at the outse t, but black and large r afte r the sprinkling of the
male se minal fluid. Whe n it has come into be ing the young se pia is first
distinctly forme d inside out of the white substance , and whe n the e gg bursts it
come s out. The inne r part is forme d as soon as the fe male lays the e gg, some thing
like a hail-stone ; and out of this substance the young se pia grows by a he ad-
attachme nt, just as young birds grow by a be lly-attachme nt. What is the e xact
nature of the nave l-attachme nt has not ye t be e n obse rve d, e xce pt that as the young
se pia grows the white substance grows le ss and le ss in size , and at le ngth, as
happe ns with the yolk in the case of birds, the white substance in the case of the
young se pia disappe ars. In the case of the young se pia, as in the case of the young
of most animals, the e ye s at first se e m ve ry large . To illustrate this by way of a
figure , le t A re pre se nt the ovum, B and C the e ye s, and D the se pidium, or body of
the little se pia. (S e e diagram.) The fe male se pia goe s pre gnant in the spring-
time , and lays its e ggs afte r fifte e n days of ge station; afte r the e ggs are laid
the re come s in anothe r fifte e n days some thing like a bunch of grape s, and at the
bursting of the se the young se piae issue forth. But if, whe n the young one s are
fully forme d, you se ve r the oute r cove ring a mome nt too soon, the young cre ature s
e je ct e xcre me nt, and the ir colour change s from white to re d in the ir alarm.
C rustace ans, the n, hatch the ir e ggs by brooding ove r the m as the y carry the m about
be ne ath the ir bodie s; but the octopus, the se pia, and the like hatch the ir e ggs
without stirring from the spot whe re the y may have laid the m, and this state me nt is
particularly applicable to the se pia; in fact, the ne st of the fe male se pia is
ofte n se e n e xpose d to vie w close in to shore . The fe male octopus at time s sits
brooding ove r he r e ggs, and at othe r time s squats in front of he r hole , stre tching
out he r te ntacle s on guard. The se pia lays he r spawn ne ar to land in the
ne ighbourhood of se a-we e d or re e ds or any off-swe e pings such as brushwood, twigs,
or stone s; and fishe rme n place he aps of faggots he re and the re on purpose , and on
to such he aps the fe male de posits a long continuous roe in shape like a vine
te ndril. It lays or spirts out the spawn with an e ffort, as though the re we re
difficulty in the proce ss. The fe male calamary spawns at se a; and it e mits the
spawn, as doe s the se pia, in the mass. The calamary and the cuttle -fish are
short-live d, as, with fe w e xce ptions, the y ne ve r se e the ye ar out; and the same
state me nt is applicable to the octopus. From one single e gg come s one single
se pia; and this is like wise true of the young calamary. The male calamary
diffe rs from the fe male ; for if its gill-re gion be dilate d and e xamine d the re are
found two re d formations re se mbling bre asts, with which the male is unprovide d. In
the se pia, apart from this distinction in the se xe s, the male , as has be e n state d,
is more mottle d than the fe male . 1 9 With re gard
to inse cts, that the male is le ss than the fe male and that he mounts upon he r back,
and how he pe rforms the act of copulation and the circumstance that he give s ove r
re luctantly, all this has alre ady be e n se t forth, most case s of inse ct copulation
this proce ss is spe e dily followe d up by parturition. All inse cts e nge nde r grubs,
with the e xce ption of a spe cie s of butte rfly; and the fe male of this spe cie s lays a
hard e gg, re se mbling the se e d of the cne cus, with a juice inside it. But from the
grub, the young animal doe s not grow out of a me re portion of it, as a young animal
grows from a portion only of an e gg, but the grub e ntire grows and the animal
be come s diffe re ntiate d out of it. And of inse cts some are de rive d from inse ct
conge ne rs, as the ve nom-spide r and the common-spide r from the ve nom-spide r and the
common-spide r, and so with the atte labus or locust, the acris or grasshoppe r, and
the te ttix or cicada. Othe r inse cts are not de rive d from living pare ntage , but are
ge ne rate d spontane ously: some out of de w falling on le ave s, ordinarily in spring-
time , but not se ldom in winte r whe n the re has be e n a stre tch of fair we athe r and
southe rly winds; othe rs grow in de caying mud or dung; othe rs in timbe r, gre e n or
dry; some in the hair of animals; some in the fle sh of animals; some in e xcre me nts:
and some from e xcre me nt afte r it has be e n voide d, and some from e xcre me nt ye t
within the living animal, like the he lminthe s or inte stinal worms. And of the se
inte stinal worms the re are thre e spe cie s: one name d the flat-worm, anothe r the
round worm, and the third the ascarid. The se inte stinal worms do not in any case
propagate the ir kind. The flat-worm, howe ve r, in an e xce ptional way, clings fast to
the gut, and lays a thing like a me lon-se e d, by obse rving which indication the
physician conclude s that his patie nt is trouble d with the worm. The so-calle d
psyche or butte rfly is ge ne rate d from cate rpillars which grow on gre e n le ave s,
chie fly le ave s of the raphanus, which some call crambe or cabbage . At first it is
le ss than a grain of mille t; it the n grows into a small grub; and in thre e days it
is a tiny cate rpillar. Afte r this it grows on and on, and be come s quie sce nt and
change s its shape , and is now calle d a chrysalis. The oute r she ll is hard, and the
chrysalis move s if you touch it. It attache s itse lf by cobwe b-like filame nts, and
is unfurnishe d with mouth or any othe r appare nt organ. Afte r a little while the
oute r cove ring bursts asunde r, and out flie s the winge d cre ature that we call the
psyche or butte rfly. At first, whe n it is a cate rpillar, it fe e ds and e je cts
e xcre me nt; but whe n it turns into the chrysalis it ne ithe r fe e ds nor e je cts
e xcre me nt. The same re marks are applicable to all such inse cts as are de ve lope d
out of the grub, both such grubs as are de rive d from the copulation of living
animals and such as are ge ne rate d
without copulation on the part of pare nts. For the grub of the be e , the anthre na,
and the wasp, whilst it is young, take s food and voids e xcre me nt; but whe n it has
passe d from the grub shape to its de fine d form and be come what is te rme d a
'nympha', it ce ase s to take food and to void e xcre me nt, and re mains tightly wrappe d
up and motionle ss until it has re ache d its full size , whe n it bre aks the formation
with which the ce ll is close d, and issue s forth. The inse cts name d the hype ra and
the pe nia are de rive d from similar cate rpillars, which move in an undulatory way,
progre ssing with one part and the n pulling up the hinde r parts by a be nd of the
body. The de ve lope d inse ct in e ach case take s its pe culiar colour from the pare nt
cate rpillar. From one particular large grub, which has as it we re horns, and in
othe r re spe cts diffe rs from grubs in ge ne ral, the re come s, by a me tamorphosis of
the grub, first a cate rpillar, the n the cocoon, the n the ne cydalus; and the
cre ature passe s through all the se transformations within six months. A class of
wome n unwind and re e l off the cocoons of the se cre ature s, and afte rwards we ave a
fabric with the thre ads thus unwound; a C oan woman of the name of Pamphila,
daughte r of Plate us, be ing cre dite d with the first inve ntion of the fabric. Afte r
the same fashion the carabus or stag-be e tle come s from grubs that live in dry wood:
at first the grub is motionle ss, but afte r a while the she ll bursts and the stag-
be e tle issue s forth. From the cabbage is e nge nde re d the cabbage worm, and from
the le e k the prasocuris or le e kbane ; this cre ature is also winge d. From the flat
animalcule that skims ove r the surface of rive rs come s the oe strus or gadfly; and
this accounts for the fact that gadflie s most abound in the ne ighbourhood of wate rs
on whose surface the se animalcule s are obse rve d. From a ce rtain small, black and
hairy cate rpillar come s first a wingle ss glow-worm; and this cre ature again suffe rs
a me tamorphosis, and transforms into a winge d inse ct name d the bostrychus (or hair-
curl). Gnats grow from ascarids; and ascarids are e nge nde re d in the slime of
we lls, or in place s whe re the re is a de posit le ft by the draining off of wate r.
This slime de cays, and first turns white , the n black, and finally blood-re d; and at
this stage the re originate in it, as it we re , little tiny bits of re d we e d, which
at first wriggle about all clinging toge the r, and finally bre ak loose and swim in
the wate r, and are he re upon known as ascarids. Afte r a fe w days the y stand straight
up on the wate r motionle ss and hard, and by and by the husk bre aks off and the
gnats are se e n sitting upon it, until the sun's he at or a puff of wind se ts the m in
motion, whe n the y fly away. With all grubs and all animals that bre ak out from
the grub state , ge ne ration is due primarily to the he at of the sun or to wind.
Ascarids are more like ly to be found, and grow with unusual rapidity, in place s
whe re the re is a de posit of a mixe d and he te roge ne ous kind, as in kitche ns and in
ploughe d fie lds, for the conte nts of such place s are dispose d to rapid
putre faction. In autumn, also, owing to the drying up of moisture , the y grow in
unusual numbe rs. The tick is ge ne rate d from couch-grass. The cockchafe r come s
from a grub that is ge ne rate d in the dung of the cow or the ass. The cantharus or
scarabe us rolls a pie ce of dung into a ball, lie s hidde n within it during the
winte r, and give s birth the re in to small grubs, from which grubs come ne w canthari.
C e rtain winge d inse cts also come from the grubs that are found in pulse , in the
same fashion as in the case s de scribe d. Flie s grow from grubs in the dung that
farme rs have gathe re d up into he aps: for those who are e ngage d in this work
assiduously gathe r up the compost, and this the y te chnically te rm 'working-up' the
manure . The grub is e xce e dingly minute to be gin with; first e ve n at this stage -it
assume s a re ddish colour, and the n from a quie sce nt state it take s on the powe r of
motion, as though born to it; it the n be come s a small motionle ss grub; it the n
move s again, and again re lapse s into immobility; it the n come s out a pe rfe ct fly,
and move s away unde r the influe nce of the sun's he at or of a puff of air. The myops
or horse -fly is e nge nde re d in timbe r. The orsodacna or budbane is a transforme d
grub; and this grub is e nge nde re d in cabbage -stalks. The cantharis come s from the
cate rpillars that are found on fig-tre e s or pe ar-tre e s or fir-tre e s--for on all
the se grubs are e nge nde re d-and also from cate rpillars found on the dog-rose ; and
the cantharis take s e age rly to ill-sce nte d substance s, from the fact of its having
be e n e nge nde re d in ill-sce nte d woods. The conops come s from a grub that is
e nge nde re d in the slime of vine gar. And, by the way, living animals are found in
substance s that are usually suppose d to be incapable of putre faction; for instance ,
worms are found in long-lying snow; and snow of this de scription ge ts re ddish in
colour, and the grub that is e nge nde re d in it is re d, as might have be e n e xpe cte d,
and it is also hairy. The grubs found in the snows of Me dia are large and white ;
and all such grubs are little dispose d to motion. In C yprus, in place s whe re
coppe r-ore is sme lte d, with he aps of the ore pile d on day afte r day, an animal is
e nge nde re d in the fire , some what large r than a blue bottle fly, furnishe d with
wings, which can hop or crawl through the fire . And the grubs and the se latte r
animals pe rish whe n you ke e p the one away from the fire and the othe r from the
snow. Now the salamande r is a cle ar case in point, to show us that animals do
actually e xist that fire cannot de stroy; for this cre ature , so the story goe s, not
only walks through the fire but puts it out in doing so. On the rive r Hypanis in
the C imme rian Bosphorus, about the time of the summe r solstice , the re are brought
down towards the se a by the stre am what look like little sacks rathe r bigge r than
grape s, out of which at the ir bursting issue s a winge d quadrupe d. The inse ct live s
and flie s about until the e ve ning, but as the sun goe s down it pine s away, and die s
at sunse t having live d just one day, from which circumstance it is calle d the
e phe me ron. As a rule , inse cts that come from cate rpillars and grubs are he ld at
first by filame nts re se mbling the thre ads of a spide r's we b. S uch is the mode of
ge ne ration of the inse cts above e nume rate d. but if the latte r impre gnation take s
place during the change of the ye llow 2 0 The
wasps that are nickname d 'the ichne umons' (or hunte rs), le ss in size , by the way,
than the ordinary wasp, kill spide rs and carry off the de ad bodie s to a wall or
some such place with a hole in it; this hole the y sme ar ove r with mud and lay the ir
grubs inside it, and from the grubs come the hunte r-wasps. S ome of the cole opte ra
and of the small and name le ss inse cts make small hole s or ce lls of mud on a wall or
on a grave -stone , and the re de posit the ir grubs. With inse cts, as a ge ne ral
rule , the time of ge ne ration from its comme nce me nt to its comple tion comprise s
thre e or four we e ks. With grubs and grub-like cre ature s the time is usually thre e
we e ks, and in the oviparous inse cts as a rule four. But, in the case of oviparous
inse cts, the e gg-formation come s at the close of se ve n days from copulation, and
during the re maining thre e we e ks the pare nt broods ove r and hatche s its young; i.e .
whe re this is the re sult of copulation, as in the case of the spide r and its
conge ne rs. As a rule , the transformations take place in inte rvals of thre e or four
days, corre sponding to the le ngths of inte rval at which the crise s re cur in
inte rmitte nt fe ve rs. S o much for the ge ne ration of inse cts. The ir de ath is due
to the shrive lling of the ir organs, just as the large r animals die of old age .
Winge d inse cts die in autumn from the shrinking of the ir wings. The myops die s from
dropsy in the e ye s. 2 1 With re gard to the
ge ne ration of be e s diffe re nt hypothe se s are in vogue . S ome affirm that be e s ne ithe r
copulate nor give birth to young, but that the y fe tch the ir young. And some say
that the y fe tch the ir young from the flowe r of the callyntrum; othe rs asse rt that
the y bring the m from the flowe r of the re e d, othe rs, from the flowe r of the olive .
And in re spe ct to the olive the ory, it is state d as a proof that, whe n the olive
harve st is most abundant, the swarms are most nume rous. Othe rs de clare that the y
fe tch the brood of the drone s from such things as above me ntione d, but that the
working be e s are e nge nde re d by the rule rs of the hive . Now of the se rule rs the re
are two kinds: the be tte r kind is re d in colour, the infe rior kind is black and
varie gate d; the rule r is double the size of the working be e . The se rule rs have the
abdome n or part be low the waist half as large again, and the y are calle d by some
the 'mothe rs', from an ide a that the y be ar or ge ne rate the be e s; and, as a proof of
this the ory of the ir mothe rhood, the y de clare that the brood of the drone s appe ars
e ve n whe n the re is no rule r-be e in the hive , but that the be e s do not appe ar in his
abse nce . Othe rs, again, asse rt that the se inse cts copulate , and that the drone s are
male and the be e s fe male . The ordinary be e is ge ne rate d in the ce lls of the
comb, but the rule r-be e s in ce lls down be low attache d to the comb, suspe nde d from
it, apart from the re st, six or se ve n in numbe r, and growing in a way quite
diffe re nt from the mode of growth of the ordinary brood. Be e s are provide d with
a sting, but the drone s are not so provide d. The rule rs are provide d with stings,
but the y ne ve r use the m; and this latte r circumstance will account for the be lie f
of some pe ople that the y have no stings at all. 2 2
Of be e s the re are various spe cie s. The be st kind is a little round mottle d inse ct;
anothe r is long,
and re se mble s the anthre na; a third is a black and flat-be llie d, and is nick-name d
the 'robbe r'; a fourth kind is the drone , the large st of all, but stingle ss and
inactive . And this proportionate size of the drone e xplains why some be e -maste rs
place a ne t-work in front of the hive s; for the ne twork is put to ke e p the big
drone s out while it le ts the little be e s go in. Of the king be e s the re are , as
has be e n state d, two kinds. In e ve ry hive the re are more kings than one ; and a hive
goe s to ruin if the re be too fe w kings, not be cause of anarchy the re by e nsuing,
but, as we are told, be cause the se cre ature s contribute in some way to the
ge ne ration of the common be e s. A hive will go also to ruin if the re be too large a
numbe r of kings in it; for the me mbe rs of the hive s are the re by subdivide d into too
many se parate factions. Whe ne ve r the spring-time is late a-coming, and whe n
the re is drought and milde w, the n the proge ny of the hive is small in numbe r. But
whe n the we athe r is dry the y atte nd to the hone y, and in rainy we athe r the ir
atte ntion is conce ntrate d on the brood; and this will account for the coincide nce
of rich olive -harve sts and abundant swarms. The be e s first work at the
hone ycomb, and the n put the pupae in it: by the mouth, say those who hold the
the ory of the ir bringing the m from e lse whe re . Afte r putting in the pupae the y put
in the hone y for subsiste nce , and this the y do in the summe r and autumn; and, by
the way, the autumn hone y is the be tte r of the two. The hone ycomb is made from
flowe rs, and the mate rials for the wax the y gathe r from the re sinous gum of tre e s,
while hone y is distille d from de w, and is de posite d chie fly at the risings of the
conste llations or whe n a rainbow is in the sky: and as a ge ne ral rule the re is no
hone y be fore the rising of the Ple iads. (The be e , the n, make s the wax from flowe rs.
The hone y, howe ve r, it doe s not make , but me re ly gathe rs what is de posite d out of
the atmosphe re ; and as a proof of this state me nt we have the known fact that
occasionally be e -ke e pe rs find the hive s fille d with hone y within the space of two
or thre e days. Furthe rmore , in autumn flowe rs are found, but hone y, if it be
withdrawn, is not re place d; now, afte r the withdrawal of the original hone y, whe n
no food or ve ry little is in the hive s, the re would be a fre sh stock of hone y, if
the be e s made it from flowe rs.) Hone y, if allowe d to ripe n and mature , gathe rs
consiste ncy; for at first it is like wate r and re mains liquid for se ve ral days. If
it be drawn off during the se days it has no consiste ncy; but it attains consiste ncy
in about twe nty days. The taste of thyme -hone y is disce rnible at once , from its
pe culiar swe e tne ss and consiste ncy. The be e gathe rs from e ve ry flowe r that is
furnishe d with a calyx or cup, and from all othe r flowe rs that are swe e t-taste d,
without doing injury to any fruit; and the juice s of the flowe rs it take s up with
the organ that re se mble s a tongue and carrie s off to the hive . S warms are robbe d
of the ir hone y on the appe arance of the wild fig. The y produce the be st larvae at
the time the hone y is a-making. The be e carrie s wax and be e s' bre ad round its le gs,
but vomits the hone y into the ce ll. Afte r de positing its young, it broods ove r it
like a bird. The grub whe n it is small lie s slantwise in the comb, but by and by
rise s up straight by an e ffort of its own and take s food, and holds on so tightly
to the hone ycomb as actually to cling to it. The young of be e s and of drone s is
white , and from the young come the grubs; and the grubs grow into be e s and drone s.
The e gg of the king be e is re ddish in colour, and its substance is about as
consiste nt as thick hone y; and from the first it is about as big as the be e that is
produce d from it. From the young of the king be e the re is no inte rme diate stage , it
is said, of the grub, but the be e come s at once . Whe ne ve r the be e lays an e gg in
the comb the re is always a drop of hone y se t against it. The larva of the be e ge ts
fe e t and wings as soon as the ce ll has be e n stoppe d up with wax, and whe n it
arrive s at its comple te d form it bre aks its me mbrane and flie s away. It e je cts
e xcre me nt in the grub state , but not afte rwards; that is, not until it has got out
of the e ncasing me mbrane , as we have alre ady de scribe d. If you re move the he ads
from off the larvae be fore the coming of the wings, the be e s will e at the m up; and
if you nip off the wings from a drone and le t it go, the be e s will spontane ously
bite off the wings from off all the re maining drone s. The be e live s for six
ye ars as a rule , as an e xce ption for se ve n ye ars. If a swarm lasts for nine ye ars,
or te n, gre at cre dit is conside re d due to its manage me nt. In Pontus are found
be e s e xce e dingly white in colour, and the se be e s produce the ir hone y twice a month.
(The be e s in The miscyra, on the banks of the rive r The rmodon, build hone ycombs in
the ground and in hive s, and the se hone ycombs are furnishe d with ve ry little wax
but with hone y of gre at consiste ncy; and the hone ycomb, by the way, is smooth and
le ve l.) But this is not always the case with the se be e s, but only in the winte r
se ason; for in Pontus the ivy is abundant, and it flowe rs at this time of the ye ar,
and it is from the ivy-flowe r that the y de rive the ir hone y. A white and ve ry
consiste nt hone y is brought down from the uppe r country to Amisus, which is
de posite d by be e s on tre e s without the e mployme nt of hone ycombs: and this kind of
hone y is produce d in othe r districts in Pontus. The re are be e s also that
construct triple hone ycombs in the ground; and the se hone ycombs supply hone y but
ne ve r contain grubs. But the hone ycombs in the se place s are not all of this sort,
nor do all the be e s construct the m. 2 3
Anthre nae and wasps construct combs for the ir young. Whe n the y have no king, but
are wande ring about in se arch of one , the anthre ne constructs its comb on some high
place , and the wasp inside a hole . Whe n the anthre ne and the wasp have a king, the y
construct the ir combs unde rground. The ir combs are in all case s he xagonal like the
comb of the be e . The y are compose d, howe ve r, not of wax, but of a bark-like
filame nte d fibre , and the comb of the anthre ne is much ne ate r than the comb of the
wasp. Like the be e , the y put the ir young just like a drop of liquid on to the side
of the ce ll, and the e gg clings to the wall of the ce ll. But the e ggs are not
de posite d in the ce lls simultane ously; on the contrary, in some ce lls are cre ature s
big e nough to fly, in othe rs are nymphae , and in othe rs are me re grubs. As in the
case of be e s, e xcre me nt is obse rve d only in the ce lls whe re the grubs are found. As
long as the cre ature s are in the nymph condition the y are motionle ss, and the ce ll
is ce me nte d ove r. In the comb of the anthre ne the re is found in the ce ll of the
young a drop of hone y in front of it. The larvae of the anthre ne and the wasp make
the ir appe arance not in the spring but in the autumn; and the ir growth is
e spe cially disce rnible in time s of full moon. And, by the way, the e ggs and the
grubs ne ve r re st at the bottom of the ce lls, but always cling on to the side wall.
2 4 The re is a kind of humble -be e that builds a cone -shape d ne st of clay against
a stone or in some similar situation, be sme aring the clay with some thing like
spittle . And this ne st or hive is e xce e dingly thick and hard; in point of fact, one
can hardly bre ak it ope n with a spike . He re the inse cts lay the ir e ggs, and white
grubs are produce d wrappe d in a black me mbrane . Apart from the me mbrane the re is
found some wax in the hone ycomb; and this a wax is much sallowe r in hue than the
wax in the hone ycomb of the be e . 2 5 Ants
copulate and e nge nde r grubs; and the se grubs attach the mse lve s to nothing in
particular, but grow on and on from small and rounde d shape s until the y be come
e longate d and de fine d in shape : and the y are e nge nde re d in spring-time .
2 6 The land-scorpion also lays a numbe r of e gg shape d grubs, and broods ove r
the m. Whe n the hatching is comple te d, the pare nt animal, as happe ns with the pare nt
spide r, is e je cte d and put to de ath by the young one s; for ve ry ofte n the young
one s are about e le ve n in numbe r. 2 7 S pide rs in
all case s copulate in the way above me ntione d, and ge ne rate at first small grubs.
And the se grubs me tamorphose in the ir e ntire ty, and not partially, into spide rs;
for, by the way, the grubs are round-shape d at the outse t. And the spide r, whe n it
lays its e ggs, broods ove r the m, and in thre e days the e ggs or grubs take de finite
shape . All spide rs lay the ir e ggs in a we b; but some spide rs lay in a small and
fine we b, and othe rs in a thick one ; and some , as a rule , lay in a round-shape d
case or capsule , and some are only partially e nve lope d in the we b. The young grubs
are not all de ve lope d at one and the same time into young spide rs; but the mome nt
the de ve lopme nt take s place , the young spide r make s a le ap and be gins to spin his
we b. The juice of the grub, if you sque e ze it, is the same as the juice found in
the spide r whe n young; that is to say, it is thick and white . The me adow spide r
lays its e ggs into a we b, one half of which is attache d to itse lf and the othe r
half is fre e ; and on this the pare nt broods until the e ggs are hatche d. The
phalangia lay the ir e ggs in a sort of strong baske t which the y have wove n, and
brood ove r it until the e ggs are hatche d. The smooth spide r is much le ss prolific
than the phalangium or hairy spide r. The se phalangia, whe n the y grow to full size ,
ve ry ofte n e nve lop the mothe r phalangium and e je ct and kill he r; and not se ldom
the y kill the fathe r-phalangium as we ll, if the y catch him: for, by the way, he has
the habit of co-ope rating with the mothe r in the hatching. The brood
of a single phalangium is some time s thre e hundre d in numbe r. The spide r attains
its full growth in about four we e ks. 2 8
Grasshoppe rs (or locusts) copulate in the same way as othe r inse cts; that is to
say, with the le sse r cove ring the large r, for the male is smalle r than the fe male .
The fe male s first inse rt the hollow tube , which the y have at the ir tails, in the
ground, and the n lay the ir e ggs: and the male , by the way, is not furnishe d with
this tube . The fe male s lay the ir e ggs all in a lump toge the r, and in one spot, so
that the e ntire lump of e ggs re se mble s a hone ycomb. Afte r the y have laid the ir
e ggs, the e ggs assume the shape of oval grubs that are e nve lope d by a sort of thin
clay, like a me mbrane ; in this me mbrane -like formation the y grow on to maturity.
The larva is so soft that it collapse s at a touch. The larva is not place d on the
surface of the ground, but a little be ne ath the surface ; and, whe n it re ache s
maturity, it come s out of its claye y inve stiture in the shape of a little black
grasshoppe r; by and by, the skin inte gume nt strips off, and it grows large r and
large r. The grasshoppe r lays its e ggs at the close of summe r, and die s afte r
laying the m. The fact is that, at the time of laying the e ggs, grubs are e nge nde re d
in the re gion of the mothe r grasshoppe r's ne ck; and the male grasshoppe rs die about
the same time . In spring-time the y come out of the ground; and, by the way, no
grasshoppe rs are found in mountainous land or in poor land, but only in flat and
loamy land, for the fact is the y lay the ir e ggs in cracks of the soil. During the
winte r the ir e ggs re main in the ground; and with the coming of summe r the last
ye ar's larva de ve lops into the pe rfe ct grasshoppe r.
2 9 The atte labi or locusts lay the ir e ggs and die in like manne r afte r laying
the m. The ir e ggs are subje ct to de struction by the autumn rains, whe n the rains are
unusually he avy; but in se asons of drought the locusts are e xce e dingly nume rous,
from the abse nce of any de structive cause , since the ir de struction se e ms the n to be
a matte r of accide nt and to de pe nd on luck. 30
Of the cicada the re are two kinds; one , small in size , the first to come and the
last to disappe ar; the othe r, large , the singing one that come s last and first
disappe ars. Both in the small and the large spe cie s some are divide d at the waist,
to wit, the singing one s, and some are undivide d; and the se latte r have no song.
The large and singing cicada is by some de signate d the 'chirpe r', and the small
cicada the 'te ttigonium' or cicade lle . And, by the way, such of the te ttigonia as
are divide d at the waist can sing just a little . The cicada is not found whe re
the re are no tre e s; and this accounts for the fact that in the district surrounding
the city of C yre ne it is not found at all in the plain country, but is found in
gre at numbe rs in the ne ighbourhood of the city, and e spe cially whe re olive -tre e s
are growing: for an olive grove is not thickly shade d. And the cicada is not found
in cold place s, and conse que ntly is not found in any grove that ke e ps out the
sunlight. The large and the small cicada copulate alike , be lly to be lly. The
male discharge s spe rm into the fe male , as is the case with inse cts in ge ne ral, and
the fe male cicada has a cle ft ge ne rative organ; and it is the fe male into which the
male discharge s the spe rm. The y lay the ir e ggs in fallow lands, boring a hole
with the pointe d organ the y carry in the re ar, as do the locusts like wise ; for the
locust lays its e ggs in untille d lands, and this fact may account for the ir numbe rs
in the te rritory adjace nt to the city of C yre ne . The cicadae also lay the ir e ggs in
the cane s on which husbandme n prop vine s, pe rforating the cane s; and also in the
stalks of the squill. This brood runs into the ground. And the y are most nume rous
in rainy we athe r. The grub, on attaining full size in the ground, be come s a
te ttigome tra (or nymph), and the cre ature is swe e te st to the taste at this stage
be fore the husk is broke n. Whe n the summe r solstice come s, the cre ature issue s from
the husk at night-time , and in a mome nt, as the husk bre aks, the larva be come s the
pe rfe ct cicada. cre ature , also, at once turns black in colour and harde r and
large r, and take s to singing. In both spe cie s, the large r and the smalle r, it is
the male that sings, and the fe male that is unvocal. At first, the male s are the
swe e te r e ating; but, afte r copulation, the fe male s, as the y are full the n of white
e ggs. If you make a sudde n noise as the y are flying ove rhe ad the y le t drop
some thing like wate r. C ountry pe ople , in re gard to this, say that the y are voiding
urine , ie . that the y have an e xcre me nt, and that the y fe e d upon de w. If you
pre se nt your finge r to a cicada and be nd back the tip of it and the n e xte nd it
again, it will e ndure the pre se ntation more quie tly than if you we re to ke e p your
finge r outstre tche d altoge the r; and it will se t to climbing your finge r: for the
cre ature is so we ak-sighte d that it will take to climbing your finge r as though
that we re a moving le af. 31 Of inse cts that are
not carnivorous but that live on the juice s of living fle sh, such as lice and fle as
and bugs, all, without e xce ption, ge ne rate what are calle d 'nits', and the se nits
ge ne rate nothing. Of the se inse cts the fle a is ge ne rate d out of the slighte st
amount of putre fying matte r; for whe re ve r the re is any dry e xcre me nt, a fle a is
sure to be found. Bugs are ge ne rate d from the moisture of living animals, as it
drie s up outside the ir bodie s. Lice are ge ne rate d out of the fle sh of animals.
Whe n lice are coming the re is a kind of small e ruption visible , unaccompanie d by
any discharge of purule nt matte r; and, if you prick an animal whe n in this
condition at the spot of e ruption, the lice jump out. In some me n the appe arance of
lice is a dise ase , in case s whe re the body is surcharge d with moisture ; and,
inde e d, me n have be e n known to succumb to this louse -dise ase , as Alcman the poe t
and the S yrian Phe re cyde s are said to have done . More ove r, in ce rtain dise ase s lice
appe ar in gre at abundance . The re is also a spe cie s of louse calle d the 'wild
louse ', and this is harde r than the ordinary louse , and the re is e xce ptional
difficulty in ge tting the skin rid of it. Boys' he ads are apt to be lousy, but
me n's in le ss de gre e ; and wome n are more subje ct to lice than me n. But, whe ne ve r
pe ople are trouble d with lousy he ads, the y are le ss than ordinarily trouble d with
he adache . And lice are ge ne rate d in othe r animals than man. For birds are infe ste d
with the m; and phe asants, unle ss the y cle an the mse lve s in the dust, are actually
de stroye d by the m. All othe r winge d animals that are furnishe d with fe athe rs are
similarly infe ste d, and all hair-coate d cre ature s also, with the single e xce ption
of the ass, which is infe ste d ne ithe r with lice nor with ticks. C attle suffe r
both from lice and from ticks. S he e p and goats bre e d ticks, but do not bre e d lice .
Pigs bre e d lice large and hard. In dogs are found the fle a pe culiar to the animal,
the C ynoroe ste s. In all animals that are subje ct to lice , the latte r originate from
the animals the mse lve s. More ove r, in animals that bathe at all, lice are more than
usually abundant whe n the y change the wate r in which the y bathe . In the se a,
lice are found on fishe s, but the y are ge ne rate d not out of the fish but out of
slime ; and the y re se mble multipe dal wood-lice , only that the ir tail is flat. S e a-
lice are uniform in shape and unive rsal in locality, and are particularly nume rous
on the body of the re d mulle t. And all the se inse cts are multipe dal and de void of
blood. The parasite that fe e ds on the tunny is found in the re gion of the fins;
it re se mble s a scorpion, and is about the size of a spide r. In the se as be twe e n
C yre ne and Egypt the re is a fish that atte nds on the dolphin, which is calle d the
'dolphin's louse '. This fish ge ts e xce e dingly fat from e njoying an abundance of
food while the dolphin is out in pursuit of its pre y.
32 Othe r animalcule s be side s the se are ge ne rate d, as we have alre ady re marke d,
some in wool or in article s made of wool, as the se s or clothe s-moth. And the se
animalcule s come in gre ate r numbe rs if the woolle n substance s are dusty; and the y
come in e spe cially large numbe rs if a spide r be shut up in the cloth or wool, for
the cre ature drinks up any moisture that may be the re , and drie s up the woolle n
substance . This grub is found also in me n's clothe s. A cre ature is also found in
wax long laid by, just as in wood, and it is the smalle st of animalcule s and is
white in colour, and is de signate d the acari or mite . In books also othe r
animalcule s are found, some re se mbling the grubs found in garme nts, and some
re se mbling taille ss scorpions, but ve ry small. As a ge ne ral rule we may state that
such animalcule s are found in practically anything, both in dry things that are
be coming moist and in moist things that are drying, provide d the y contain the
conditions of life . The re is a grub e ntitle d the 'faggot-be are r', as strange a
cre ature as is known. Its he ad proje cts outside its she ll, mottle d in colour, and
its fe e t are ne ar the e nd or ape x, as is the case with grubs in ge ne ral; but the
re st of its body is case d in a tunic as it we re of spide r's we b, and the re are
little dry twigs about it, that look as though the y had stuck by accide nt to the
cre ature as it we nt walking about. But the se twig-like formations are naturally
conne cte d with the tunic, for just as the she ll is with the body of the snail so is
the whole supe rstructure with our grub; and the y do not drop off, but can only be
torn off, as though the y we re all of a pie ce with him, and the re moval of the tunic
is as fatal to this grub
as the re moval of the she ll would be to the snail. In course of time this grub
be come s a chrysalis, as is the case with the silkworm, and live s in a motionle ss
condition. But as ye t it is not known into what winge d condition it is transforme d.
The fruit of the wild fig contains the pse n, or fig-wasp. This cre ature is a grub
at first; but in due time the husk pe e ls off and the pse n le ave s the husk be hind it
and flie s away, and e nte rs into the fruit of the fig-tre e through its orifice , and
cause s the fruit not to drop off; and with a vie w to this phe nome non, country folk
are in the habit of tying wild figs on to fig-tre e s, and of planting wild fig-tre e s
ne ar dome sticate d one s. 33 In the case of
animals that are quadrupe ds and re d-bloode d and oviparous, ge ne ration take s place
in the spring, but copulation doe s not take place in an uniform se ason. In some
case s it take s place in the spring, in othe rs in summe r time , and in othe rs in the
autumn, according as the subse que nt se ason may be favourable for the young. The
tortoise lays e ggs with a hard she ll and of two colours within, like birds' e ggs,
and afte r laying the m burie s the m in the ground and tre ads the ground hard ove r
the m; it the n broods ove r the e ggs on the surface of the ground, and hatche s the
e ggs the ne xt ye ar. The he mys, or fre sh-wate r tortoise , le ave s the wate r and lays
its e ggs. It digs a hole of a casklike shape , and de posits the re in the e ggs; afte r
rathe r le ss than thirty days it digs the e ggs up again and hatche s the m with gre at
rapidity, and le ads its young at once off to the wate r. The se a-turtle lays on the
ground e ggs just like the e ggs of dome sticate d birds, burie s the e ggs in the
ground, and broods ove r the m in the night-time . It lays a ve ry gre at numbe r of
e ggs, amounting at time s to one hundre d. Lizards and crocodile s, te rre strial and
fluvial, lay e ggs on land. The e ggs of lizards hatch spontane ously on land, for the
lizard doe s not live on into the ne xt ye ar; in fact, the life of the animal is said
not to e xce e d six months. The rive r-crocodile lays a numbe r of e ggs, sixty at the
most, white in colour, and broods ove r the m for sixty days: for, by the way, the
cre ature is ve ry long-live d. And the disproportion is more marke d in this animal
than in any othe r be twe e n the smallne ss of the original e gg and the huge size of
the full-grown animal. For the e gg is not large r than that of the goose , and the
young crocodile is small, answe ring to the e gg in size , but the full-grown animal
attains the le ngth of twe nty-six fe e t; in fact, it is actually state d that the
animal goe s on growing to the e nd of its days. 34
With re gard to se rpe nts or snake s, the vipe r is e xte rnally viviparous, having be e n
pre viously oviparous inte rnally. The e gg, as with the e gg of fishe s, is uniform in
colour and soft-skinne d. The young se rpe nt grows on the surface of the e gg, and,
like the young of fishe s, has no she ll-like e nve lopme nt. The young of the vipe r is
born inside a me mbrane that bursts from off the young cre ature in thre e days; and
at time s the young vipe r e ats its way out from the inside of the e gg. The mothe r
vipe r brings forth all its young in one day, twe nty in numbe r, and one at a time .
The othe r se rpe nts are e xte rnally oviparous, and the ir e ggs are strung on to one
anothe r like a lady's ne cklace ; afte r the dam has laid he r e ggs in the ground she
broods ove r the m, and hatche s the e ggs in the following ye ar.
Book VI 1 S o much for the ge ne rative proce sse s
in snake s and inse cts, and also in oviparous quadrupe ds. Birds without e xce ption
lay e ggs, but the pairing se ason and the time s of parturition are not alike for
all. S ome birds couple and lay at almost any time in the ye ar, as for instance the
barn-door he n and the pige on: the forme r of the se coupling and laying during the
e ntire ye ar, with the e xce ption of the month be fore and the month afte r the winte r
solstice . S ome he ns, e ve n in the high bre e ds, lay a large quantity of e ggs be fore
brooding, amounting to as many as sixty; and, by the way, the highe r bre e ds are
le ss prolific than the infe rior one s. The Adrian he ns are small-size d, but the y lay
e ve ry day; the y are cross-te mpe re d, and ofte n kill the ir chicke ns; the y are of all
colours. S ome dome sticate d he ns lay twice a day; inde e d, instance s have be e n known
whe re he ns, afte r e xhibiting e xtre me fe cundity, have die d sudde nly. He ns, the n, lay
e ggs, as has be e n state d, at all time s indiscriminate ly; the pige on, the ring-dove ,
the turtle -dove , and the stock-dove lay twice a ye ar, and the pige on actually lays
te n time s a ye ar. The gre at majority of birds lay during the spring-time . S ome
birds are prolific, and prolific in e ithe r of two ways-e ithe r by laying ofte n, as
the pige on, or by laying many e ggs at a sitting, as the barn-door he n. All birds of
pre y, or birds with crooke d talons, are unprolific, e xce pt the ke stre l: this bird
is the most prolific of birds of pre y; as many as four e ggs have be e n obse rve d in
the ne st, and occasionally it lays e ve n more . Birds in ge ne ral lay the ir e ggs in
ne sts, but such as are disqualifie d for flight, as the partridge and the quail, do
not lay the m in ne sts but on the ground, and cove r the m ove r with loose mate rial.
The same is the case with the lark and the te trix. The se birds hatch in she lte re d
place s; but the bird calle d me rops in Boe otia, alone of all birds, burrows into
hole s in the ground and hatche s the re . Thrushe s, like swallows, build ne sts of
clay, on high tre e s, and build the m in rows all close toge the r, so that from the ir
continuity the structure re se mble s a ne cklace of ne sts. Of all birds that hatch for
the mse lve s the hoopoe is the only one that builds no ne st whate ve r; it ge ts into
the hollow of the trunk of a tre e , and lays its e ggs the re without making any sort
of ne st. The circus builds e ithe r unde r a dwe lling-roof or on cliffs. The te trix,
calle d ourax in Athe ns, builds ne ithe r on the ground nor on tre e s, but on low-lying
shrubs. 2 The e gg in the case of all birds
alike is hard-she lle d, if it be the produce of copulation and be laid by a he althy
he n-for some he ns lay soft e ggs. The inte rior of the e gg is of two colours, and the
white part is outside and the ye llow part within. The e ggs of birds that
fre que nt rive rs and marshe s diffe r from those of birds that live on dry land; that
is to say, the e ggs of wate rbirds have comparative ly more of the ye llow or yolk and
le ss of the white . Eggs vary in colour according to the ir kind. S ome e ggs are
white , as those of the pige on and of the partridge ; othe rs are ye llowish, as the
e ggs of marsh birds; in some case s the e ggs are mottle d, as the e ggs of the guine a-
fowl and the phe asant; while the e ggs of the ke stre l are re d, like ve rmilion.
Eggs are not symme trically shape d at both e nds: in othe r words, one e nd is
comparative ly sharp, and the othe r e nd is comparative ly blunt; and it is the latte r
e nd that protrude s first at the time of laying. Long and pointe d e ggs are fe male ;
those that are round, or more rounde d at the narrow e nd, are male . Eggs are hatche d
by the incubation of the mothe r-bird. In some case s, as in Egypt, the y are hatche d
spontane ously in the ground, by be ing burie d in dung he aps. A story is told of a
tope r in S yracuse , how he use d to put e ggs into the ground unde r his rush-mat and
to ke e p on drinking until he hatche d the m. Instance s have occurre d of e ggs be ing
de posite d in warm ve sse ls and ge tting hatche d spontane ously. The spe rm of birds,
as of animals in ge ne ral, is white . Afte r the fe male has submitte d to the male , she
draws up the spe rm to unde rne ath he r midriff. At first it is little in size and
white in colour; by and by it is re d, the colour of blood; as it grows, it be come s
pale and ye llow all ove r. Whe n at le ngth it is ge tting ripe for hatching, it is
subje ct to diffe re ntiation of substance , and the yolk gathe rs toge the r within and
the white se ttle s round it on the outside . Whe n the full time is come , the e gg
de tache s itse lf and protrude s, changing from soft to hard with such te mporal
e xactitude that, whe re as it is not hard during the proce ss of protrusion, it
harde ns imme diate ly afte r the proce ss is comple te d: that is if the re be no
concomitant pathological circumstance s. C ase s have occurre d whe re substance s
re se mbling the e gg at a critical point of its growth-that is, whe n it is ye llow all
ove r, as the yolk is subse que ntly-have be e n found in the cock whe n cut ope n,
unde rne ath his midriff, just whe re the he n has he r e ggs; and the se are e ntire ly
ye llow in appe arance and of the same size as ordinary e ggs. S uch phe nome na are
re garde d as unnatural and porte ntous. S uch as affirm that wind-e ggs are the
re sidua of e ggs pre viously be gotte n from copulation are mistake n in this asse rtion,
for we have case s we ll authe nticate d whe re chicke ns of the common he n and goose
have laid wind-e ggs without e ve r having be e n subje cte d to copulation. Wind-e ggs are
smalle r, le ss palatable , and more liquid than true e ggs, and are produce d in
gre ate r numbe rs. Whe n the y are put unde r the mothe r bird, the liquid conte nts ne ve r
coagulate , but both the ye llow and the white re main as the y we re . Wind-e ggs are
laid by a numbe r of birds: as for instance by the common he n, the he n partridge ,
the he n pige on, the pe ahe n, the goose , and the vulpanse r. Eggs are hatche d unde r
brooding he ns more rapidly in summe r than in winte r; that is to say, he ns hatch in
e ighte e n days in summe r, but occasionally in winte r take as many as twe nty-five .
And by the way for brooding purpose s some birds make be tte r mothe rs than othe rs. If
it thunde rs while a he n-bird is brooding, the e ggs ge t addle d. Wind-e ggs that are
calle d by some cynosura and uria are produce d chie fly
in summe r. Wind-e ggs are calle d by some ze phyr-e ggs, be cause at spring-time he n-
birds are obse rve d to inhale the bre e ze s; the y do the same if the y be stroke d in a
pe culiar way by hand. Wind-e ggs can turn into fe rtile e ggs, and e ggs due to
pre vious copulation can change bre e d, if be fore the change of the ye llow to the
white the he n that contains wind-e ggs, or e ggs be gotte n of copulation be trodde n by
anothe r cock-bird. Unde r the se circumstance s the wind-e ggs turn into fe rtile e ggs,
and the pre viously impre gnate d e ggs follow the bre e d of the impre gnator; but if the
latte r impre gnation take s place during the change of the ye llow to the white , the n
no change in the e gg take s place : the wind-e gg doe s not be come a true e gg, and the
true e gg doe s not take on the bre e d of the latte r impre gnator. If whe n the e gg-
substance is small copulation be inte rmitte d, the pre viously e xisting e gg-substance
e xhibits no incre ase ; but if the he n be again submitte d to the male the incre ase in
size proce e ds with rapidity. The yolk and the white are dive rse not only in
colour but also in prope rtie s. Thus, the yolk conge als unde r the influe nce of cold,
whe re as the white inste ad of conge aling is incline d rathe r to lique fy. Again, the
white stiffe ns unde r the influe nce of fire , whe re as the yolk doe s not stiffe n; but,
unle ss it be burnt through and through, it re mains soft, and in point of fact is
incline d to se t or to harde n more from the boiling than from the roasting of the
e gg. The yolk and the white are se parate d by a me mbrane from one anothe r. The so-
calle d 'hail-stone s', or tre adle s, that are found at the e xtre mity of the ye llow in
no way contribute towards ge ne ration, as some e rrone ously suppose : the y are two in
numbe r, one be low and the othe r above . If you take out of the she lls a numbe r of
yolks and a numbe r of white s and pour the m into a sauce pan and boil the m slowly
ove r a low fire , the yolks will gathe r into the ce ntre and the white s will se t all
around the m. Young he ns are the first to lay, and the y do so at the be ginning of
spring and lay more e ggs than the olde r he ns, but the e ggs of the younge r he ns are
comparative ly small. As a ge ne ral rule , if he ns ge t no brooding the y pine and
sicke n. Afte r copulation he ns shive r and shake the mse lve s, and ofte n kick rubbish
about all round the m-and this, by the way, the y do some time s afte r laying-whe re as
pige ons trail the ir rumps on the ground, and ge e se dive unde r the wate r. C once ption
of the true e gg and conformation of the wind-e gg take place rapidly with most
birds; as for instance with the he n-partridge whe n in he at. The fact is that, whe n
she stands to windward and within sce nt of the male , she conce ive s, and be come s
use le ss for de coy purpose s: for, by the way, the partridge appe ars to have a ve ry
acute se nse of sme ll. The ge ne ration of the e gg afte r copulation and the
ge ne ration of the chick from the subse que nt hatching of the e gg are not brought
about within e qual pe riods for all birds, but diffe r as to time according to the
size of the pare nt-birds. The e gg of the common he n afte r copulation se ts and
mature s in te n days a ge ne ral rule ; the e gg of the pige on in a some what le sse r
pe riod. Pige ons have the faculty of holding back the e gg at the ve ry mome nt of
parturition; if a he n pige on be put about by any one , for instance if it be
disturbe d on its ne st, or have a fe athe r plucke d out, or sustain any othe r
annoyance or disturbance , the n e ve n though she had made up he r mind to lay she can
ke e p the e gg back in abe yance . A singular phe nome non is obse rve d in pige ons with
re gard to pairing: that is, the y kiss one anothe r just whe n the male is on the
point of mounting the fe male , and without this pre liminary the male would de cline
to pe rform his function. With the olde r male s the pre liminary kiss is only give n to
be gin with, and subse que ntly se que ntly he mounts without pre viously kissing; with
younge r male s the pre liminary is ne ve r omitte d. Anothe r singularity in the se birds
is that the he ns tre ad one anothe r whe n a cock is not forthcoming, afte r kissing
one anothe r just as take s place in the normal pairing. Though the y do not
impre gnate one anothe r the y lay more e ggs unde r the se than unde r ordinary
circumstance s; no chicks, howe ve r, re sult the re from, but all such e ggs are wind-
e ggs. 3 Ge ne ration from the e gg proce e ds in an
ide ntical manne r with all birds, but the full pe riods from conce ption to birth
diffe r, as has be e n said. With the common he n afte r thre e days and thre e nights
the re is the first indication of the e mbryo; with large r birds the inte rval be ing
longe r, with smalle r birds shorte r. Me anwhile the yolk come s into be ing, rising
towards the sharp e nd, whe re the primal e le me nt of the e gg is situate d, and whe re
the e gg ge ts hatche d; and the he art appe ars, like a spe ck of blood, in the white of
the e gg. This point be ats and move s as though e ndowe d with life , and from it two
ve in-ducts with blood in the m tre nd in a convolute d course (as the e gg substance
goe s on growing, towards e ach of the two circumjace nt inte gume nts); and a me mbrane
carrying bloody fibre s now e nve lops the yolk, le ading off from the ve in-ducts. A
little afte rwards the body is diffe re ntiate d, at first ve ry small and white . The
he ad is cle arly distinguishe d, and in it the e ye s, swolle n out to a gre at e xte nt.
This condition of the e ye s lat on for a good while , as it is only by de gre e s that
the y diminish in size and collapse . At the outse t the unde r portion of the body
appe ars insignificant in comparison with the uppe r portion. Of the two ducts that
le ad from the he art, the one proce e ds towards the circumjace nt inte gume nt, and the
othe r, like a nave l-string, towards the yolk. The life -e le me nt of the chick is in
the white of the e gg, and the nutrime nt come s through the nave l-string out of the
yolk. Whe n the e gg is now te n days old the chick and all its parts are
distinctly visible . The he ad is still large r than the re st of its body, and the
e ye s large r than the he ad, but still de void of vision. The e ye s, if re move d about
this time , are found to be large r than be ans, and black; if the cuticle be pe e le d
off the m the re is a white and cold liquid inside , quite glitte ring in the sunlight,
but the re is no hard substance whatsoe ve r. S uch is the condition of the he ad and
e ye s. At this time also the large r inte rnal organs are visible , as also the stomach
and the arrange me nt of the visce ra; and ve ins that se e m to proce e d from the he art
are now close to the nave l. From the nave l the re stre tch a pair of ve ins; one
towards the me mbrane that e nve lops the yolk (and, by the way, the yolk is now
liquid, or more so than is normal), and the othe r towards that me mbrane which
e nve lops colle ctive ly the me mbrane whe re in the chick lie s, the me mbrane of the
yolk, and the inte rve ning liquid. (For, as the chick grows, little by little one
part of the yolk goe s upward, and anothe r part downward, and the white liquid is
be twe e n the m; and the white of the e gg is unde rne ath the lowe r part of the yolk, as
it was at the outse t.) On the te nth day the white is at the e xtre me oute r surface ,
re duce d in amount, glutinous, firm in substance , and sallow in colour. The
disposition of the se ve ral constitue nt parts is as follows. First and oute rmost
come s the me mbrane of the e gg, not that of the she ll, but unde rne ath it. Inside
this me mbrane is a white liquid; the n come s the chick, and a me mbrane round about
it, se parating it off so as to ke e p the chick fre e from the liquid; ne xt afte r the
chick come s the yolk, into which one of the two ve ins was de scribe d as le ading, the
othe r one le ading into the e nve loping white substance . (A me mbrane with a liquid
re se mbling se rum e nve lops the e ntire structure . The n come s anothe r me mbrane right
round the e mbryo, as has be e n de scribe d, se parating it off against the liquid.
Unde rne ath this come s the yolk, e nve lope d in anothe r me mbrane (into which yolk
proce e ds the nave l-string that le ads from the he art and the big ve in), so as to
ke e p the e mbryo fre e of both liquids.) About the twe ntie th day, if you ope n the
e gg and touch the chick, it move s inside and chirps; and it is alre ady coming to be
cove re d with down, whe n, afte r the twe ntie th day is ast, the chick be gins to bre ak
the she ll. The he ad is situate d ove r the right le g close to the flank, and the wing
is place d ove r the he ad; and about this time is plain to be se e n the me mbrane
re se mbling an afte r-birth that come s ne xt afte r the oute rmost me mbrane of the
she ll, into which me mbrane the one of the nave l-strings was de scribe d as le ading
(and, by the way, the chick in its e ntire ty is now within it), and so also is the
othe r me mbrane re se mbling an afte r-birth, name ly that surrounding the yolk, into
which the se cond nave l-string was de scribe d as le ading; and both of the m we re
de scribe d as be ing conne cte d with the he art and the big ve in. At this conjuncture
the nave l-string that le ads to the oute r afte rbirth collapse s and be come s de tache d
from the chick, and the me mbrane that le ads into the yolk is faste ne d on to the
thin gut of the cre ature , and by this time a conside rable amount of the yolk is
inside the chick and a ye llow se dime nt is in its stomach. About this time it
discharge s re siduum in the dire ction of the oute r afte r-birth, and has re siduum
inside its stomach; and the oute r re siduum is white (and the re come s a white
substance inside ). By and by the yolk, diminishing gradually in size , at le ngth
be come s e ntire ly use d up and compre he nde d within the chick (so that, te n days afte r
hatching, if you cut ope n the chick, a small re mnant of the yolk is still le ft in
conne xion with the gut), but it is de tache d from the nave l, and the re is nothing in
the inte rval be twe e n, but it has be e n use d up e ntire ly. During the pe riod above
re fe rre d to the chick sle e ps, wake s up, make s a move and looks up and C hirps; and
the
he art and the nave l toge the r palpitate as though the cre ature we re re spiring. S o
much as to ge ne ration from the e gg in the case of birds. Birds lay some e ggs
that are unfruitful, e ve n e ggs that are the re sult of copulation, and no life come s
from such e ggs by incubation; and this phe nome non is obse rve d e spe cially with
pige ons. Twin e ggs have two yolks. In some twin e ggs a thin partition of white
inte rve ne s to pre ve nt the yolks mixing with e ach othe r, but some twin e ggs are
unprovide d with such partition, and the yoke s run into one anothe r. The re are some
he ns that lay nothing but twin e ggs, and in the ir case the phe nome non re garding the
yolks has be e n obse rve d. For instance , a he n has be e n known to lay e ighte e n e ggs,
and to hatch twins out of the m all, e xce pt those that we re wind-e ggs; the re st we re
fe rtile (though, by the way, one of the twins is always bigge r than the othe r), but
the e ighte e nth was abnormal or monstrous. 4
Birds of the pige on kind, such as the ringdove and the turtle -dove , lay two e ggs at
a time ; that is to say, the y do so as a ge ne ral rule , and the y ne ve r lay more than
thre e . The pige on, as has be e n said, lays at all se asons; the ring-dove and the
turtle -dove lay in the springtime , and the y ne ve r lay more than twice in the same
se ason. The he n-bird lays the se cond pair of e ggs whe n the first pair happe ns to
have be e n de stroye d, for many of the he n-pige ons de stroy the first brood. The he n-
pige on, as has be e n said, occasionally lays thre e e ggs, but it ne ve r re ars more
than two chicks, and some time s re ars only one ; and the odd one is always a wind-
e gg. Ve ry fe w birds propagate within the ir first ye ar. All birds, afte r once
the y have be gun laying, ke e p on having e ggs, though in the case of some birds it is
difficult to de te ct the fact from the minute size of the cre ature . The pige on,
as a rule , lays a male and a fe male e gg, and ge ne rally lays the male e gg first;
afte r laying it allows a day's inte rval to e nsue and the n lays the se cond e gg. The
male take s its turn of sitting during the daytime ; the fe male sits during the
night. The first-laid e gg is hatche d and brought to birth within twe nty days; and
the mothe r bird pe cks a hole in the e gg the day be fore she hatche s it out. The two
pare nt birds brood for some time ove r the chicks in the way in which the y broode d
pre viously ove r the e ggs. In all conne cte d with the re aring of the young the fe male
pare nt is more cross-te mpe re d than the male , as is the case with most animals afte r
parturition. The he ns lay as many as te n time s in the ye ar; occasional instance s
have be e n known of the ir laying e le ve n time s, and in Egypt the y actually lay twe lve
time s. The pige on, male and fe male , couple s within the ye ar; in fact, it couple s
whe n only six months old. S ome asse rt that ringdove s and turtle -dove s pair and
procre ate whe n only thre e months old, and instance the ir supe rabundant numbe rs by
way of proof of the asse rtion. The he n-pige on carrie s he r e ggs fourte e n days; for
as many more days the pare nt birds hatch the e ggs; by the e nd of anothe r fourte e n
days the chicks are so far capable of flight as to be ove rtake n with difficulty.
(The ring-dove , according to all accounts, live s up to forty ye ars. The partridge
live s ove r sixte e n.) (Afte r one brood the pige on is re ady for anothe r within thirty
days.) 5 The vulture builds its ne st on
inacce ssible cliffs; for which re ason its ne st and young are rare ly se e n. And
the re fore He rodorus, fathe r of Bryson the S ophist, de clare s that vulture s be long to
some fore ign country unknown to us, stating as a proof of the asse rtion that no one
has e ve r se e n a vulture 's ne st, and also that vulture s in gre at numbe rs make a
sudde n appe arance in the re ar of armie s. Howe ve r, difficult as it is to ge t a sight
of it, a vulture 's ne st has be e n se e n. The vulture lays two e ggs. (C arnivorous
birds in ge ne ral are obse rve d to lay but once a ye ar. The swallow is the only
carnivorous bird that builds a ne st twice . If you prick out the e ye s of swallow
chicks while the y are ye t young, the birds will ge t we ll again and will se e by and
by.) 6 The e agle lays thre e e ggs and hatche s
two of the m, as it is said in the ve rse s ascribe d to Musae us: That lays
thre e , hatche s two, and care s for one . This is the case in most instance s,
though occasionally a brood of thre e has be e n obse rve d. As the young one s grow, the
mothe r be come s we arie d with fe e ding the m and e xtrude s one of the pair from the
ne st. At the same time the bird is said to abstain from food, to avoid harrying the
young of wild animals. That is to say, its wings blanch, and for some days its
talons ge t turne d awry. It is in conse que nce about this time cross-te mpe re d to its
own young. The phe ne is said to re ar the young one that has be e n e xpe lle d the ne st.
The e agle broods for about thirty days. The hatching pe riod is about the same
for the large r birds, such as the goose and the gre at bustard; for the middle -size d
birds it e xte nds ove r about twe nty days, as in the case of the kite and the hawk.
The kite in ge ne ral lays two e ggs, but occasionally re ars thre e young one s. The so-
calle d ae golius at time s re ars four. It is not true that, as some ave r, the rave n
lays only two e ggs; it lays a large r numbe r. It broods for about twe nty days and
the n e xtrude s its young. Othe r birds pe rform the same ope ration; at all e ve nts
mothe r birds that lay se ve ral e ggs ofte n e xtrude one of the ir young. Birds of
the e agle spe cie s are not alike in the tre atme nt of the ir young. The white -taile d
e agle is cross, the black e agle is affe ctionate in the fe e ding of the young;
though, by the way, all birds of pre y, whe n the ir brood is rathe r forward in be ing
able to fly, be at and e xtrude the m from the ne st. The majority of birds othe r than
birds of pre y, as has be e n said, also act in this manne r, and afte r fe e ding the ir
young take no furthe r care of the m; but the crow is an e xce ption. This bird for a
conside rable time take s charge of he r young; for, e ve n whe n he r young can fly, she
flie s alongside of the m and supplie s the m with food.
7 The cuckoo is said by some to be a hawk transforme d, be cause at the time of
the cuckoo's coming, the hawk, which it re se mble s, is ne ve r se e n; and inde e d it is
only for a fe w days that you will se e hawks about whe n the cuckoo's note sounds
e arly in the se ason. The cuckoo appe ars only for a short time in summe r, and in
winte r disappe ars. The hawk has crooke d talons, which the cuckoo has not; ne ithe r
with re gard to the he ad doe s the cuckoo re se mble the hawk. In point of fact, both
as re gards the he ad and the claws it more re se mble s the pige on. Howe ve r, in colour
and in colour alone it doe s re se mble the hawk, only that the markings of the hawk
are stripe d, and of the cuckoo mottle d. And, by the way, in size and flight it
re se mble s the smalle st of the hawk tribe , which bird disappe ars as a rule about the
time of the appe arance of the cuckoo, though the two have be e n se e n simultane ously.
The cuckoo has be e n se e n to be pre ye d on by the hawk; and this ne ve r happe ns
be twe e n birds of the same spe cie s. The y say no one has e ve r se e n the young of the
cuckoo. The bird e ggs, but doe s not build a ne st. S ome time s it lays its e ggs in the
ne st of a smalle r bird afte r first de vouring the e ggs of this bird; it lays by
pre fe re nce in the ne st of the ringdove , afte r first de vouring the e ggs of the
pige on. (It occasionally lays two, but usually one .) It lays also in the ne st of
the hypolais, and the hypolais hatche s and re ars the brood. It is about this time
that the bird be come s fat and palatable . (The young of hawks also ge t palatable and
fat. One spe cie s builds a ne st in the wilde rne ss and on she e r and inacce ssible
cliffs.) 8 With most birds, as has be e n said
of the pige on, the hatching is carrie d on by the male and the fe male in turns: with
some birds, howe ve r, the male only sits long e nough to allow the fe male to provide
he rse lf with food. In the goose tribe the fe male alone incubate s, and afte r once
sitting on the e ggs she continue s brooding until the y are hatche d. The ne sts of
all marsh-birds are built in districts fe nny and we ll supplie d with grass;
conse que ntly, the mothe r-bird while sitting quie t on he r e ggs can provide he rse lf
with food without having to submit to absolute fasting. With the crow also the
fe male alone broods, and broods throughout the whole pe riod; the male bird supports
the fe male , bringing he r food and fe e ding he r. The fe male of the ring-dove be gins
to brood in the afte rnoon and broods through the e ntire night until bre akfast-time
of the following day; the male broods during the re st of the time . Partridge s build
a ne st in two compartme nts; the male broods on the one and the fe male on the othe r.
Afte r hatching, e ach of the pare nt birds re ars its brood. But the male , whe n he
first take s his young out of the ne st, tre ads the m.
9 Pe afowl live for about twe nty-five ye ars, bre e d about the third ye ar, and at
the same time take on the ir spangle d plumage . The y hatch the ir e ggs within thirty
days or rathe r more . The pe ahe n lays but once a ye ar, and lays twe lve e ggs, or may
be a slightly le sse r numbe r: she doe s not lay all the e ggs the re and the n one afte r
the othe r, but at inte rvals of two or thre e days. S uch as lay for the first time
lay about e ight e ggs. The pe ahe n lays wind-e ggs. The y pair in the spring; and
laying be gins imme diate ly afte r pairing. The bird moults whe n the e arlie st tre e s
are she dding the ir le ave s, and re cove rs its plumage whe n the same tre e s are
re cove ring the ir foliage . Pe ople that re ar pe afowl put the e ggs unde r the barn-door
he n, owing to the fact that whe n the pe ahe n is brooding
ove r the m the pe acock attacks he r and trie s to trample on the m; owing to this
circumstance some birds of wild varie tie s run away from the male s and lay the ir
e ggs and brood in solitude . Only two e ggs are put unde r a barn-door he n, for she
could not brood ove r and hatch a large numbe r. The y take e ve ry pre caution, by
supplying he r with food, to pre ve nt he r going off the e ggs and discontinuing the
brooding. With male birds about pairing time the te sticle s are obviously large r
than at othe r time s, and this is conspicuously the case with the more salacious
birds, such as the barn-door cock and the cock partridge ; the pe culiarity is le ss
conspicuous in such birds as are inte rmitte nt in re gard to pairing.
1 0 S o much for the conce ption and ge ne ration of birds. It has be e n pre viously
state d that fishe s are not all oviparous. Fishe s of the cartilaginous ge nus are
viviparous; the re st are oviparous. And cartilaginous fishe s are first oviparous
inte rnally and subse que ntly viviparous; the y re ar the e mbryos inte rnally, the
batrachus or fishing-frog be ing an e xce ption. Fishe s also, as was above state d,
are provide d with wombs, and wombs of dive rse kinds. The oviparous ge ne ra have
wombs bifurcate in shape and low down in position; the cartilaginous ge nus have
wombs shape d like those of O birds. The womb, howe ve r, in the cartilaginous fishe s
diffe rs in this re spe ct from the womb of birds, that with some cartilaginous fishe s
the e ggs do not se ttle close to the diaphragm but middle -ways along the backbone ,
and as the y grow the y shift the ir position. The e gg with all fishe s is not of
two colours within but is of e ve n hue ; and the colour is ne are r to white than to
ye llow, and that both whe n the young is inside it and pre viously as we ll.
De ve lopme nt from the e gg in fishe s diffe rs from that in birds in this re spe ct, that
it doe s not e xhibit that one of the two nave l-strings that le ads off to the
me mbrane that lie s close unde r the she ll, while it doe s e xhibit that one of the two
that in the case of birds le ads off to the yolk. In a ge ne ral way the re st of the
de ve lopme nt from the e gg onwards is ide ntical in birds and fishe s. That is to say,
de ve lopme nt take s place at the uppe r part of the e gg, and the ve ins e xte nd in like
manne r, at first from the he art; and at first the he ad, the e ye s, and the uppe r
parts are large st; and as the cre ature grows the e gg-substance de cre ase s and
e ve ntually disappe ars, and be come s absorbe d within the e mbryo, just as take s place
with the yolk in birds. The nave l-string is attache d a little way be low the
ape rture of the be lly. Whe n the cre ature s are young the nave l-string is long, but
as the y grow it diminishe s in size ; at le ngth it ge ts small and be come s
incorporate d, as was de scribe d in the case of birds. The e mbryo and the e gg are
e nve lope d by a common me mbrane , and just unde r this is anothe r me mbrane that
e nve lops the e mbryo by itse lf; and in be twe e n the two me mbrane s is a liquid. The
food inside the stomach of the little fishe s re se mble s that inside the stomach of
young chicks, and is partly white and partly ye llow. As re gards the shape of the
womb, the re ade r is re fe rre d to my tre atise on Anatomy. The womb, howe ve r, is
dive rse in dive rse fishe s, as for instance in the sharks as compare d one with
anothe r or as compare d with the skate . That is to say, in some sharks the e ggs
adhe re in the middle of the womb round about the backbone , as has be e n state d, and
this is the case with the dog-fish; as the e ggs grow the y shift the ir place ; and
since the womb is bifurcate and adhe re s to the midriff, as in the re st of similar
cre ature s, the e ggs pass into one or othe r of the two compartme nts. This womb and
the womb of the othe r sharks e xhibit, as you go a little way off from the midriff,
some thing re se mbling white bre asts, which ne ve r make the ir appe arance unle ss the re
be conce ption. Dog-fish and skate have a kind of e gg-she ll, in the which is
found an e gg-like liquid. The shape of the e gg-she ll re se mble s the tongue of a
bagpipe , and hair-like ducts are attache d to the she ll. With the dog-fish which is
calle d by some the 'dapple d shark', the young are born whe n the she ll-formation
bre aks in pie ce s and falls out; with the ray, afte r it has laid the e gg the she ll-
formation bre aks up and the young move out. The spiny dog-fish has its close to the
midriff above the bre ast like formations; whe n the e gg de sce nds, as soon as it ge ts
de tache d the young is born. The mode of ge ne ration is the same in the case of the
fox-shark. The so-calle d smooth shark has its e ggs in be twixt the wombs like the
dog-fish; the se e ggs shift into e ach of the two horns of the womb and de sce nd, and
the young de ve lop with the nave l-string attache d to the womb, so that, as the e gg-
substance ge ts use d up, the e mbryo is sustaine d to all appe arance just as in the
case of quadrupe ds. The nave l-string is long and adhe re s to the unde r part of the
womb (e ach nave l-string be ing attache d as it we re by a sucke r), and also to the
ce ntre of the e mbryo in the place whe re the live r is situate d. If the e mbryo be cut
ope n, e ve n though it has the e gg-substance no longe r, the food inside is e gg-like
in appe arance . Each e mbryo, as in the case of quadrupe ds, is provide d with a
chorion and se parate me mbrane s. Whe n young the e mbryo has its he ad upwards, but
downwards whe n it ge ts strong and is comple te d in form. Male s are ge ne rate d on the
le ft-hand side of the womb, and fe male s on the right-hand side , and male s and
fe male s on the same side toge the r. If the e mbryo be cut ope n, the n, as with
quadrupe ds, such inte rnal organs as it is furnishe d with, as for instance the
live r, are found to be large and supplie d with blood. All cartilaginous fishe s
have at one and the same time e ggs above close to the midriff (some large r, some
smalle r), in conside rable numbe rs, and also e mbryos lowe r down. And this
circumstance le ads many to suppose that fishe s of this spe cie s pair and be ar young
e ve ry month, inasmuch as the y do not produce all the ir young at once , but now and
again and ove r a le ngthe ne d pe riod. But such e ggs as have come down be low within
the womb are simultane ously ripe ne d and comple te d in growth. Dog-fish in ge ne ral
can e xtrude and take in again the ir young, as can also the ange l-fish and the
e le ctric ray-and, by the way, a large e le ctric ray has be e n se e n with about e ighty
e mbryos inside it-but the spiny dogfish is an e xce ption to the rule , be ing
pre ve nte d by the spine of the young fish from so doing. Of the flat cartilaginous
fish, the trygon and the ray cannot e xtrude and take in again in conse que nce of the
roughne ss of the tails of the young. The batrachus or fishing-frog also is unable
to take in its young owing to the size of the he ad and the prickle s; and, by the
way, as was pre viously re marke d, it is the only one of the se fishe s that is not
viviparous. S o much for the varie tie s of the cartilaginous spe cie s and for the ir
mode s of ge ne ration from the e gg. 1 1 At the
bre e ding se ason the spe rm-ducts of the male are fille d with spe rm, so much so that
if the y be sque e ze d the spe rm flows out spontane ously as a white fluid; the ducts
are bifurcate , and start from the midriff and the gre at ve in. About this pe riod the
spe rm-ducts of the male are quite distinct (from the womb of the fe male ) but at any
othe r than the actual bre e ding time the ir distinctne ss is not obvious to a non-
e xpe rt. The fact is that in ce rtain fishe s at ce rtain time s the se organs are
impe rce ptible , as was state d re garding the te sticle s of birds. Among othe r
distinctions obse rve d be twe e n the thoric ducts and the womb-ducts is the
circumstance that the thoric ducts are attache d to the loins, while the womb-ducts
move about fre e ly and are attache d by a thin me mbrane . The particulars re garding
the thoric ducts may be studie d by a re fe re nce to the diagrams in my tre atise on
Anatomy. C artilaginous fishe s are capable of supe rfoe tation, and the ir pe riod of
ge station is six months at the longe st. The so-calle d starry dogfish be ars young
the most fre que ntly; in othe r words it be ars twice a month. The bre e ding se ason is
in the month of Mae macte rion. The dog-fish as a ge ne ral rule be ar twice in the
ye ar, with the e xce ption of the little dog-fish, which be ars only once a ye ar. S ome
of the m bring forth in the springtime . The rhine , or ange l-fish, be ars its first
brood in the springtime , and its se cond in the autumn, about the winte r se tting of
the Ple iads; the se cond brood is the stronge r of the two. The e le ctric ray brings
forth in the late autumn. C artilaginous fishe s come out from the main se as and
de e p wate rs towards the shore and the re bring forth the ir young, and the y do so for
the sake of warmth and by way of prote ction for the ir young. Obse rvations would
le ad to the ge ne ral rule that no one varie ty of fish pairs with anothe r varie ty.
The ange l-fish, howe ve r, and the batus or skate appe ar to pair with one anothe r;
for the re is a fish calle d the rhinobatus, with the he ad and front parts of the
skate and the afte r parts of the rhine or ange l-fish, just as though it we re made
up of both fishe s toge the r. S harks the n and the ir conge ne rs, as the fox-shark
and the dog-fish, and the flat fishe s, such as the e le ctric ray, the ray, the
smooth skate , and the trygon, are first oviparous and the n viviparous in the way
above me ntione d, (as are also the saw-fish and the ox-ray.)
1 2 The dolphin, the whale , and all the re st of the C e tace a, all, that is to say,
that are provide d with a blow-hole inste ad of gills, are viviparous. That is to
say, no one of all the se fishe s is e ve r se e n to be supplie d with e ggs, but dire ctly
with an e mbryo from whose diffe re ntiation come s the fish, just as in the case of
mankind and the viviparous
quadrupe ds. The dolphin be ars one at a time ge ne rally, but occasionally two.
The whale be ars one or at the most two, ge ne rally two. The porpoise in this re spe ct
re se mble s the dolphin, and, by the way, it is in form like a little dolphin, and is
found in the Euxine ; it diffe rs, howe ve r, from the dolphin as be ing le ss in size
and broade r in the back; its colour is le ade n-black. Many pe ople are of opinion
that the porpoise is a varie ty of the dolphin. All cre ature s that have a blow-
hole re spire and inspire , for the y are provide d with lungs. The dolphin has be e n
se e n asle e p with his nose above wate r, and whe n asle e p he snore s. The dolphin
and the porpoise are provide d with milk, and suckle the ir young. The y also take
the ir young, whe n small, inside the m. The young of the dolphin grow rapidly, be ing
full grown at te n ye ars of age . Its pe riod of ge station is te n months. It brings
forth its young summe r, and ne ve r at any othe r se ason; (and, singularly e nough,
unde r the Dogstar it disappe ars for about thirty days). Its young accompany it for
a conside rable pe riod; and, in fact, the cre ature is re markable for the stre ngth of
its pare ntal affe ction. It live s for many ye ars; some are known to have live d for
more than twe nty-five , and some for thirty ye ars; the fact is fishe rme n nick the ir
tails some time s and se t the m adrift again, and by this e xpe die nt the ir age s are
asce rtaine d. The se al is an amphibious animal: that is to say, it cannot take in
wate r, but bre athe s and sle e ps and brings forth on dry land-only close to the
shore -as be ing an animal furnishe d with fe e t; it spe nds, howe ve r, the gre ate r part
of its time in the se a and de rive s its food from it, so that it must be classe d in
the cate gory of marine animals. It is viviparous by imme diate conce ption and brings
forth its young alive , and e xhibits an afte r-birth and all e lse just like a e we . It
be ars one or two at a time , and thre e at the most. It has two te ats, and suckle s
its young like a quadrupe d. Like the human spe cie s it brings forth at all se asons
of the ye ar, but e spe cially at the time whe n the e arlie st kids are forthcoming. It
conducts its young one s, whe n the y are about twe lve days old, ove r and ove r again
during the day down to the se a, accustoming the m by slow de gre e s to the wate r. It
slips down ste e p place s inste ad of walking, from the fact that it cannot ste ady
itse lf by its fe e t. It can contract and draw itse lf in, for it is fle shy and soft
and its bone s are gristly. Owing to the flabbine ss of its body it is difficult to
kill a se al by a blow, unle ss you strike it on the te mple . It looks like a cow. The
fe male in re gard to its ge nital organs re se mble s the fe male of the ray; in all
othe r re spe cts it re se mble s the fe male of the human spe cie s. S o much for the
phe nome na of ge ne ration and of parturition in animals that live in wate r and are
viviparous e ithe r inte rnally or e xte rnally. 1 3
Oviparous fishe s have the ir womb bifurcate and place d low down, as was said
pre viously-and, by the way, all scaly fish are oviparous, as the basse , the mulle t,
the gre y mulle t, and the e te lis, and all the so-calle d white -fish, and all the
smooth or slippe ry fish e xce pt the e e l-and the ir roe is of a crumbling or granular
substance . This appe arance is due to the fact that the whole womb of such fishe s is
full of e ggs, so that in little fishe s the re se e m to be only a couple of e ggs
the re ; for in small fishe s the womb is indistinguishable , from its diminutive size
and thin conte xture . The pairing of fishe s has be e n discusse d pre viously. Fishe s
for the most part are divide d into male s and fe male s, but one is puzzle d to account
for the e rythrinus and the channa, for spe cime ns of the se spe cie s are ne ve r caught
e xce pt in a condition of pre gnancy. With such fish as pair, e ggs are the re sult
of copulation, but such fish have the m also without copulation; and this is shown
in the case of some rive r-fish, for the minnow has e ggs whe n quite small,-almost,
one may say, as soon as it is born. The se fishe s she d the ir e ggs little by little ,
and, as is state d, the male s swallow the gre ate r part of the m, and some portion of
the m goe s to waste in the wate r; but such of the e ggs as the fe male de posits on the
spawning be ds are save d. If all the e ggs we re pre se rve d, e ach spe cie s would be
infinite in numbe r. The gre ate r numbe r of the se e ggs so de posite d are not
productive , but only those ove r which the male she ds the milt or spe rm; for whe n
the fe male has laid he r e ggs, the male follows and she ds its spe rm ove r the m, and
from all the e ggs so be sprinkle d young fishe s proce e d, while the re st are le ft to
the ir fate . The same phe nome non is obse rve d in the case of molluscs also; for in
the case of the cuttle fish or se pia, afte r the fe male has de posite d he r e ggs, the
male be sprinkle s the m. It is highly probable that a similar phe nome non take s place
in re gard to molluscs in ge ne ral, though up to the pre se nt time the phe nome non has
be e n obse rve d only in the case of the cuttle fish. Fishe s de posit the ir e ggs
close in to shore , the goby close to stone s; and, by the way, the spawn of the goby
is flat and crumbly. Fish in ge ne ral so de posit the ir e ggs; for the wate r close in
to shore is warm and is be tte r supplie d with food than the oute r se a, and se rve s as
a prote ction to the spawn against the voracity of the large r fish. And it is for
this re ason that in the Euxine most fishe s spawn ne ar the mouth of the rive r
The rmodon, be cause the locality is she lte re d, ge nial, and supplie d with fre sh
wate r. Oviparous fish as a rule spawn only once a ye ar. The little phycis or
black goby is an e xce ption, as it spawns twice ; the male of the black goby diffe rs
from the fe male as be ing blacke r and having large r scale s. Fishe s the n in
ge ne ral produce the ir young by copulation, and lay the ir e ggs; but the pipe fish, as
some call it, whe n the time of parturition arrive s, bursts in two, and the e ggs
e scape out. For the fish has a diaphysis or clove n growth unde r the be lly and
abdome n (like the blind snake s), and, afte r it has spawne d by the splitting of this
diaphysis, the side s of the split grow toge the r again. De ve lopme nt from the e gg
take s place similarly with fishe s that are oviparous inte rnally and with fishe s
that are oviparous e xte rnally; that is to say, the e mbryo come s at the uppe r e nd of
the e gg and is e nve lope d in a me mbrane , and the e ye s, large and sphe rical, are the
first organs visible . From this circumstance it is plain that the asse rtion is
unte nable which is made by some write rs, to wit, that the young of oviparous fishe s
are ge ne rate d like the grubs of worms; for the opposite phe nome na are obse rve d in
the case of the se grubs, in that the ir lowe r e xtre mitie s are the large r at the
outse t, and that the e ye s and the he ad appe ar late r on. Afte r the e gg has be e n use d
up, the young fishe s are like tadpole s in shape , and at first, without taking any
nutrime nt, the y grow by suste nance de rive d from the juice oozing from the e gg; by
and by, the y are nourishe d up to full growth by the rive r-wate rs. Whe n the
Euxine is 'purge d' a substance calle d phycus is carrie d into the He lle spont, and
this substance is of a pale ye llow colour. S ome write rs ave r that it is the flowe r
of the phycus, from which rouge is made ; it come s at the be ginning of summe r.
Oyste rs and the small fish of the se localitie s fe e d on this substance , and some of
the inhabitants of the se maritime districts say that the purple mure x de rive s its
pe culiar colour from it. 1 4 Marsh-fishe s and
rive r-fishe s conce ive at the age of five months as a ge ne ral rule , and de posit
the ir spawn towards the close of the ye ar without e xce ption. And with the se fishe s,
like as with the marine fishe s, the fe male doe s not void all he r e ggs at one time ,
nor the male his spe rm; but the y are at all time s more or le ss provide d, the fe male
with e ggs, and the male with spe rm. The -carp spawns as the se asons come round, five
or six time s, and follows in spawning the rising of the gre ate r conste llations. The
chalcis spawns thre e time s, and the othe r fishe s once only in the ye ar. The y all
spawn in pools le ft by the ove rflowing of rive rs, and ne ar to re e dy place s in
marshe s; as for instance the phoxinus or minnow and the pe rch. The glanis or
she at-fish and the pe rch de posit the ir spawn in one continuous string, like the
frog; so continuous, in fact, is the convolute d spawn of the pe rch that, by re ason
of its smoothne ss, the fishe rme n in the marshe s can unwind it off the re e ds like
thre ads off a re e l. The large r individuals of the she at-fish spawn in de e p wate rs,
some in wate r of a fathom's de pth, the smalle r in shallowe r wate r, ge ne rally close
to the roots of the willow or of some othe r tre e , or close to re e ds or to moss. At
time s the se fishe s inte rtwine with one anothe r, a big with a little one , and bring
into juxtaposition the ducts-which some write rs de signate as nave ls-at the point
whe re the y e mit the ge ne rative products and discharge the e gg in the case of the
fe male and the milt in the case of the male . S uch e ggs as are be sprinkle d with the
milt grow, in a day or the re abouts, white r and large r, and in a little while
afte rwards the fish's e ye s be come visible for the se organs in all fishe s, as for
that matte r in all othe r animals, are e arly conspicuous and se e m disproportionate ly
big. But such e ggs as the milt fails to touch re main, as with marine fishe s,
use le ss and infe rtile . From the fe rtile e ggs, as the little fish grow, a kind of
she ath de tache s itse lf; this is a me mbrane that e nve lops the e gg and the young
fish. Whe n the milt has mingle d with the e ggs, the re sulting product be come s ve ry
sticky or viscous, and adhe re s to the roots of tre e s or whe re ve r it may have be e n
laid. The male ke e ps on guard at the principal spawning-place , and the fe male
afte r spawning goe s away. In the case of the she at-fish the growth from the e gg
is e xce ptionally slow, and, in conse que nce , the male has to ke e p watch for forty or
fifty days to pre ve nt the -spawn be ing de voure d by such little fishe s as chance to
come by. Ne xt in point of slowne ss is the ge ne ration of the carp. As with fishe s in
ge ne ral, so e ve n with the se , the spawn thus prote cte d disappe ars and ge ts lost
rapidly. In the case of some of the smalle r fishe s whe n the y are only thre e days
old young fishe s are ge ne rate d. Eggs touche d by the male spe rm take on incre ase
both the same day and also late r. The e gg of the she at-fish is as big as a ve tch-
se e d; the e gg of the carp and of the carp-spe cie s as big as a mille t-se e d. The se
fishe s the n spawn and ge ne rate in the way he re de scribe d. The chalcis, howe ve r,
spawns in de e p wate r in de nse shoals of fish; and the so-calle d tilon spawns ne ar
to be ache s in she lte re d spots in shoals like wise . The carp, the bale ros, and fishe s
in ge ne ral push e age rly into the shallows for the purpose of spawning, and ve ry
ofte n thirte e n or fourte e n male s are se e n following a single fe male . Whe n the
fe male de posits he r spawn and de parts, the male s follow on and she d the milt. The
gre ate r portion of the spawn ge ts waste d; be cause , owing to the fact that the
fe male move s about while spawning, the spawn scatte rs, or so much of it as is
caught in the stre am and doe s not ge t e ntangle d with some rubbish. For, with the
e xce ption of the she atfish, no fish ke e ps on guard; unle ss, by the way, it be the
carp, which is said to re main on guard, if it so happe n that its spawn lie s in a
solid mass. All male fishe s are supplie d with milt, e xce pting the e e l: with the
e e l, the male is de void of milt, and the fe male of spawn. The mulle t goe s up from
the se a to marshe s and rive rs; the e e ls, on the contrary, make the ir way down from
the marshe s and rive rs to the se a. 1 5 The gre at
majority of fish, the n, as has be e n state d, proce e d from e ggs. Howe ve r, the re are
some fish that proce e d from mud and sand, e ve n of those kinds that proce e d also
from pairing and the e gg. This occurs in ponds he re and the re , and e spe cially in a
pond in the ne ighbourhood of C nidos. This pond, it is said, at one time ran dry
about the rising of the Dogstar, and the mud had all drie d up; at the first fall of
the rains the re was a show of wate r in the pond, and on the first appe arance of the
wate r shoals of tiny fish we re found in the pond. The fish in que stion was a kind
of mulle t, one which doe s not proce e d from normal pairing, about the size of a
small sprat, and not one of the se fishe s was provide d with e ithe r spawn or milt.
The re are found also in Asia Minor, in rive rs not communicating with the se a,
little fishe s like white bait, diffe ring from the small fry found ne ar C nidos but
found unde r similar circumstance s. S ome write rs actually ave r that mulle t all grow
spontane ously. In this asse rtion the y are mistake n, for the fe male of the fish is
found provide d with spawn, and the male with milt. Howe ve r, the re is a spe cie s of
mulle t that grows spontane ously out of mud and sand. From the facts above
e nume rate d it is quite prove d that ce rtain fishe s come spontane ously into
e xiste nce , not be ing de rive d from e ggs or from copulation. S uch fish as are ne ithe r
oviparous nor viviparous arise all from one of two source s, from mud, or from sand
and from de caye d matte r that rise s the nce as a scum; for instance , the so-calle d
froth of the small fry come s out of sandy ground. This fry is incapable of growth
and of propagating its kind; afte r living for a while it die s away and anothe r
cre ature take s its place , and so, with short inte rvals e xce pte d, it may be said to
last the whole ye ar through. At all e ve nts, it lasts from the autumn rising of
Arcturus up to the spring-time . As a proof that the se fish occasionally come out of
the ground we have the fact that in cold we athe r the y are not caught, and that the y
are caught in warm we athe r, obviously coming up out of the ground to catch the
he at; also, whe n the fishe rme n use dre dge s and the ground is scrape d up fairly
ofte n, the fishe s appe ar in large r numbe rs and of supe rior quality. All othe r small
fry are infe rior in quality owing to rapidity of growth. The fry are found in
she lte re d and marshy districts, whe n afte r a spe ll of fine we athe r the ground is
ge tting warme r, as, for instance , in the ne ighbourhood of Athe ns, at S alamis and
ne ar the tomb of The mistocle s and at Marathon; for in the se districts the froth is
found. It appe ars, the n, in such districts and during such we athe r, and
occasionally appe ars afte r a he avy fall of rain in the froth that is thrown up by
the falling rain, from which circumstance the substance de rive s its spe cific name .
Foam is occasionally brought in on the surface of the se a in fair we athe r. (And in
this, whe re it has forme d on the surface , the so-calle d froth colle cts, as grubs
swarm in manure ; for which-re ason this fry is ofte n brought in from the ope n se a.
The fish is at its be st in quality and quantity in moist warm we athe r.) The
ordinary fry is the normal issue of pare nt fishe s: the so-calle d gudge on-fry of
small insignificant gudge on-like fish that burrow unde r the ground. From the
Phale ric fry come s the me mbras, from the me mbras the trichis, from the trichis the
trichias, and from one particular sort of fry, to wit from that found in the
harbour of Athe ns, come s what is calle d the e ncrasicholus, or anchovy. The re is
anothe r fry, de rive d from the mae nis and the mulle t. The unfe rtile fry is wate ry
and ke e ps only a short time , as has be e n state d, for at last only he ad and e ye s are
le ft. Howe ve r, the fishe rme n of late have hit upon a me thod of transporting it to a
distance , as whe n salte d it ke e ps for a conside rable time .
1 6 Ee ls are not the issue of pairing, ne ithe r are the y oviparous; nor was an e e l
e ve r found supplie d with e ithe r milt or spawn, nor are the y whe n cut ope n found to
have within the m passage s for spawn or for e ggs. In point of fact, this e ntire
spe cie s of bloode d animals proce e ds ne ithe r from pair nor from the e gg. The re
can be no doubt that the case is so. For in some standing pools, afte r the wate r
has be e n draine d off and the mud has be e n dre dge d away, the e e ls appe ar again afte r
a fall of rain. In time of drought the y do not appe ar e ve n in stagnant ponds, for
the simple re ason that the ir e xiste nce and suste nance is de rive d from rain-wate r.
The re is no doubt, the n, that the y proce e d ne ithe r from pairing nor from an e gg.
S ome write rs, howe ve r, are of opinion that the y ge ne rate the ir kind, be cause in
some e e ls little worms are found, from which the y suppose that e e ls are de rive d.
But this opinion is not founde d on fact. Ee ls are de rive d from the so-calle d
'e arth's guts' that grow spontane ously in mud and in humid ground; in fact, e e ls
have at time s be e n se e n to e me rge out of such e arthworms, and on othe r occasions
have be e n re nde re d visible whe n the e arthworms we re laid ope n by e ithe r scraping or
cutting. S uch e arthworms are found both in the se a and in rive rs, e spe cially whe re
the re is de caye d matte r: in the se a in place s whe re se a-we e d abounds, and in rive rs
and marshe s ne ar to the e dge ; for it is ne ar to the wate r's e dge that sun-he at has
its chie f powe r and produce s putre faction. S o much for the ge ne ration of the e e l.
1 7 Fish do not all bring forth the ir young at the same se ason nor all in like
manne r, ne ithe r is the pe riod of ge station for all of the same duration. Be fore
pairing the male s and fe male s gathe r toge the r in shoals; at the time for copulation
and parturition the y pair off. With some fishe s the time of ge station is not longe r
than thirty days, with othe rs it is a le sse r pe riod; but with all it e xte nds ove r a
numbe r of days divisible by se ve n. The longe st pe riod of ge station is that of the
spe cie s which some call a marinus. The sargue conce ive s during the month of
Pose ide on (or De ce mbe r), and carrie s its spawn for thirty days; and the spe cie s of
mulle t name d by some the che lon, and the myxon, go with spawn at the same pe riod
and ove r the same le ngth of time . All fish suffe r gre atly during the pe riod of
ge station, and are in conse que nce ve ry apt to be thrown up on shore at this time .
In some case s the y are drive n frantic with pain and throw the mse lve s on land. At
all e ve nts the y are throughout this time continually in motion until parturition is
ove r (this be ing e spe cially true of the mulle t), and afte r parturition the y are in
re pose . With many fish the time for parturition te rminate s on the appe arance of
grubs within the be lly; for small living grubs ge t ge ne rate d the re and e at up the
spawn. With shoal fishe s parturition take s place in the spring, and inde e d, with
most fishe s, about the time of the spring e quinox; with othe rs it is at diffe re nt
time s, in summe r with some , and with othe rs about the autumn e quinox. The first
of shoal fishe s to spawn is the athe rine , and it spawns close to land; the last is
the ce phalus: and this is infe rre d from the fact that the brood of the athe rine
appe ars first of all and the brood of the ce phalus last. The mulle t also spawns
e arly. The saupe spawns usually at the be ginning of summe r, but occasionally in the
autumn. The aulopias, which some call the anthias, spawns in the summe r. Ne xt in
orde r of spawning come s the chrysophrys or gilthe ad, the basse , the mormyrus, and
in ge ne ral such fish as are nickname d 'runne rs'. Late st in orde r of the shoal fish
come the re d mulle t and the coracine ; the se spawn in autumn. The re d mulle t spawns
on mud, and conse que ntly, as the mud continue s cold for a long while , spawns late
in the ye ar. The coracine carrie s its spawn for a long time ; but, as it live s
usually on rocky ground, it goe s
to a distance and spawns in place s abounding in se awe e d, at a pe riod late r than
the re d mulle t. The mae nis spawns about the winte r solstice . Of the othe rs, such as
are pe lagic spawn for the most part in summe r; which fact is prove d by the ir not
be ing caught by fishe rme n during this pe riod. Of ordinary fishe s the most
prolific is the sprat; of cartilaginous fishe s, the fishing-frog. S pe cime ns,
howe ve r, of the fishing-frog are rare from the facility with which the young are
de stroye d, as the fe male lays he r spawn all in a lump close in to shore . As a rule ,
cartilaginous fish are le ss prolific than othe r fish owing to the ir be ing
viviparous; and the ir young by re ason of the ir size have a be tte r chance of
e scaping de struction. The so-calle d ne e dle -fish (or pipe -fish) is late in
spawning, and the gre ate r portion of the m are burst asunde r by the e ggs be fore
spawning; and the e ggs are not so many in numbe r as large in size . The young fish
cluste r round the pare nt like so many young spide rs, for the fish spawns on to
he rse lf; and, if any one touch the young, the y swim away. The athe rine spawns by
rubbing its be lly against the sand. Tunny fish also burst asunde r by re ason of
the ir fat. The y live for two ye ars; and the fishe rme n infe r this age from the
circumstance that once whe n the re was a failure of the young tunny fish for a ye ar
the re was a failure of the full-grown tunny the ne xt summe r. The y are of opinion
that the tunny is a fish a ye ar olde r than the pe lamyd. The tunny and the macke re l
pair about the close of the month of Elaphe bolion, and spawn about the comme nce me nt
of the month of He catombae on; the y de posit the ir spawn in a sort of bag. The growth
of the young tunny is rapid. Afte r the fe male s have spawne d in the Euxine , the re
come s from the e gg what some call scordylae , but what the Byzantine s nickname the
'auxids' or 'growe rs', from the ir growing to a conside rable size in a fe w days;
the se fish go out of the Pontus in autumn along with the young tunnie s, and e nte r
Pontus in the spring as pe lamyds. Fishe s as a rule take on growth with rapidity,
but this is pe culiarly the case with all spe cie s of fish found in the Pontus; the
growth, for instance , of the amia-tunny is quite visible from day to day. To
re sume , we must be ar in mind that the same fish in the same localitie s have not the
same se ason for pairing, for conce ption, for parturition, or for favouring we athe r.
The coracine , for instance , in some place s spawns about whe at-harve st. The
state me nts he re give n pre te nd only to give the re sults of ge ne ral obse rvation.
The conge r also spawns, but the fact is not e qually obvious in all localitie s, nor
is the spawn plainly visible owing to the fat of the fish; for the spawn is lanky
in shape as it is with se rpe nts. Howe ve r, if it be put on the fire it shows its
nature ; for the fat e vaporate s and me lts, while the e ggs dance about and e xplode
with a crack. Furthe r, if you touch the substance s and rub the m with your finge rs,
the fat fe e ls smooth and the e gg rough. S ome conge rs are provide d with fat but not
with any spawn, othe rs are unprovide d with fat but have e gg-spawn as he re
de scribe d. 1 8 We have , the n, tre ate d pre tty
fully of the animals that fly in the air or swim in the wate r, and of such of those
that walk on dry land as are oviparous, to wit of the ir pairing, conce ption, and
the like phe nome na; it now re mains to tre at of the same phe nome na in conne xion with
viviparous land animals and with man. The state me nts made in re gard to the
pairing of the se xe s apply partly to the particular kinds of animal and partly to
all in ge ne ral. It is common to all animals to be most e xcite d by the de sire of one
se x for the othe r and by the ple asure de rive d from copulation. The fe male is most
cross-te mpe re d just afte r parturition, the male during the time of pairing; for
instance , stallions at this pe riod bite one anothe r, throw the ir ride rs, and chase
the m. Wild boars, though usually e nfe e ble d at this time as the re sult of
copulation, are now unusually fie rce , and fight with one anothe r in an
e xtraordinary way, clothing the mse lve s with de fe nsive armour, or in othe r words
de libe rate ly thicke ning the ir hide by rubbing against tre e s or by coating
the mse lve s re pe ate dly all ove r with mud and the n drying the mse lve s in the sun. The y
drive one anothe r away from the swine pasture s, and fight with such fury that ve ry
ofte n both combatants succumb. The case is similar with bulls, rams, and he -goats;
for, though at ordinary time s the y he rd toge the r, at bre e ding time the y hold aloof
from and quarre l with one anothe r. The male came l also is cross-te mpe re d at pairing
time if e ithe r a man or a came l come s ne ar him; as for a horse , a came l is re ady to
fight him at any time . It is the same with wild animals. The be ar, the wolf, and
the lion are all at this time fe rocious towards such as come in the ir way, but the
male s of the se animals are le ss give n to fight with one anothe r from the fact that
the y are at no time gre garious. The she -be ar is fie rce afte r cubbing, and the bitch
afte r pupping. Male e le phants ge t savage about pairing time , and for this re ason
it is state d that me n who have charge of e le phants in India ne ve r allow the male s
to have inte rcourse with the fe male s; on the ground that the male s go wild at this
time and turn topsy-turvy the dwe llings of the ir ke e pe rs, lightly constructe d as
the y are , and commit all kinds of havoc. The y also state that abundancy of food has
a te nde ncy to tame the male s. The y furthe r introduce othe r e le phants amongst the
wild one s, and punish and bre ak the m in by se tting on the ne w-come rs to chastise
the othe rs. Animals that pair fre que ntly and not at a single spe cific se ason, as
for instance animals dome sticate d by man, such as swine and dogs, are found to
indulge in such fre aks to a le sse r de gre e owing to the fre que ncy of the ir se xual
inte rcourse . Of fe male animals the mare is the most se xually wanton, and ne xt in
orde r come s the cow. In fact, the mare is said to go a-horsing; and the te rm
de rive d from the habits of this one animal se rve s as a te rm of abuse applicable to
such fe male s of the human spe cie s as are unbridle d in the way of se xual appe tite .
This is the common phe nome non as obse rve d in the sow whe n she is said to go a-
boaring. The mare is said also about this time to ge t wind-impre gnate d if not
impre gnate d by the stallion, and for this re ason in C re te the y ne ve r re move the
stallion from the mare s; for whe n the mare ge ts into this condition she runs away
from all othe r horse s. The mare s unde r the se circumstance s fly invariably e ithe r
northwards or southwards, and ne ve r towards e ithe r e ast or we st. Whe n this
complaint is on the m the y allow no one to approach, until e ithe r the y are e xhauste d
with fatigue or have re ache d the se a. Unde r e ithe r of the se circumstance s the y
discharge a ce rtain substance 'hippomane s', the title give n to a growth on a ne w-
born foal; this re se mble s the sow-virus, and is in gre at re que st amongst wome n who
de al in drugs and potions. About horsing time the mare s huddle close r toge the r, are
continually switching the ir tails, the ir ne igh is abnormal in sound, and from the
se xual organ the re flows a liquid re se mbling ge nital spe rm, but much thinne r than
the spe rm of the male . It is this substance that some call hippomane s, inste ad of
the growth found on the foal; the y say it is e xtre me ly difficult to ge t as it ooze s
out only in small drops at a time . Mare s also, whe n in he at, discharge urine
fre que ntly, and frisk with one anothe r. S uch are the phe nome na conne cte d with the
horse . C ows go a-bulling; and so comple te ly are the y unde r the influe nce of the
se xual e xcite me nt that the he rdsme n have no control ove r the m and cannot catch hold
of the m in the fie lds. Mare s and kine alike , whe n in he at, indicate the fact by the
upraising of the ir ge nital organs, and by continually voiding urine . Furthe r, kine
mount the bulls, follow the m about; and ke e p standing be side the m. The younge r
fe male s both with horse s and oxe n are the first to ge t in he at; and the ir se xual
appe tite s are all the ke e ne r if the we athe r warm and the ir bodily condition be
he althy. Mare s, whe n clipt of the ir coat, have the se xual fe e ling che cke d, and
assume a downcast drooping appe arance . The stallion re cognize s by the sce nt the
mare s that form his company, e ve n though the y have be e n toge the r only a fe w days
be fore bre e ding time : if the y ge t mixe d up with othe r mare s, the stallion bite s and
drive s away the inte rlope rs. He fe e ds apart, accompanie d by his own troop of mare s.
Each stallion has assigne d to him about thirty mare s or e ve n some what more ; whe n a
strange stallion approache s, he huddle s his mare s into a close ring, runs round
the m, the n advance s to the e ncounte r of the ne wcome r; if one of the mare s make a
move me nt, he bite s he r and drive s he r back. The bull in bre e ding time be gins to
graze with the cows, and fights with othe r bulls (having hithe rto graze d with
the m), which is te rme d by grazie rs 'he rd-spurning'. Ofte n in Epirus a bull
disappe ars for thre e months toge the r. In a ge ne ral way one may state that of male
animals e ithe r none or fe w he rd with the ir re spe ctive fe male s be fore bre e ding time ;
but the y ke e p se parate afte r re aching maturity, and the two se xe s fe e d apart. S ows,
whe n the y are move d by se xual de sire , or are , as it is calle d, a-boaring, will
attack e ve n human be ings. With bitche s the same se xual condition is te rme d
'ge tting into he at'. The se xual organ rise s at this time , and the re is a moisture
about the parts. Mare s drip with a white liquid at this se ason. Fe male animals
are subje ct to me nstrual discharge s, but ne ve r in such-abundance as is the fe male
of the human spe cie s. With e we s and she -goats the re are signs of me nstruation in
bre e ding time , just be fore the for submitting to the male ; afte r copulation
also the signs are manife st, and the n ce ase for an inte rval until the pe riod of
parturition arrive s; the proce ss the n supe rve ne s, and it is by this supe rve ntion
that the she phe rd knows that such and such an e we is about to bring forth. Afte r
parturition come s copious me nstruation, not at first much tinge d with blood, but
de e ply dye d with it by and by. With the cow, the she ass, and the mare , the
discharge is more copious actually, owing to the ir gre ate r bulk, but proportionally
to the gre ate r bulk it is far le ss copious. The cow, for instance , whe n in he at,
e xhibits a small discharge to the e xte nt of a quarte r of a pint of liquid or a
little le ss; and the time whe n this discharge take s place is the be st time for he r
to be cove re d by the bull. Of all quadrupe ds the mare is the most e asily de live re d
of its young, e xhibits the le ast amount of discharge afte r parturition, and e mits
the le ast amount of blood; that is to say, of all animals in proportion to size .
With kine and mare s me nstruation usually manife sts itse lf at inte rvals of two,
four, and six months; but, unle ss one be constantly atte nding to and thoroughly
acquainte d with such animals, it is difficult to ve rify the circumstance , and the
re sult is that many pe ople are unde r the be lie f that the proce ss ne ve r take s place
with the se animals at all. With mule s me nstruation ne ve r take s place , but the
urine of the fe male is thicke r than the urine of the male . As a ge ne ral rule the
discharge from the bladde r in the case of quadrupe ds is thicke r than it is in the
human spe cie s, and this discharge with e we s and she -goats is thicke r than with rams
and he -goats; but the urine of the jackass is thicke r than the urine of the she -
ass, and the urine of the bull is more punge nt than the urine of the cow. Afte r
parturition the urine of all quadrupe ds be come s thicke r, e spe cially with such
animals as e xhibit comparative ly slight discharge s. At bre e ding time the milk
be come purule nt, but afte r parturition it be come s whole some . During pre gnancy e we s
and she -goats ge t fatte r and e at more ; as is also the case with cows, and, inde e d,
with the fe male s of all quadrupe ds. In ge ne ral the se xual appe tite s of animals
are ke e ne st in spring-time ; the time of pairing, howe ve r, is not the same for all,
but is adapte d so as to e nsure the re aring of the young at a conve nie nt se ason.
Dome sticate d swine carry the ir young for four months, and bring forth a litte r of
twe nty at the utmost; and, by the way, if the litte r be e xce e dingly nume rous the y
cannot re ar all the young. As the sow grows old she continue s to be ar, but grows
indiffe re nt to the boar; she conce ive s afte r a single copulation, but the y have to
put the boar to he r re pe ate dly owing to he r dropping afte r inte rcourse what is
calle d the sow-virus. This incide nt be falls all sows, but some of the m discharge
the ge nital spe rm as we ll. During conce ption any one of the litte r that ge ts
injure d or dwarfe d is calle d an afte rpig or scut: such injury may occur at any part
of the womb. Afte r litte ring the mothe r offe rs the fore most te at to the first-born.
Whe n the sow is in he at, she must not at once be put to the boar, but only afte r
she le ts he r lugs drop, for othe rwise she is apt to ge t into he at again; if she be
put to the boar whe n in full condition of he at, one copulation, as has be e n said,
is sufficie nt. It is as we ll to supply the boar at the pe riod of copulation with
barle y, and the sow at the time of parturition with boile d barle y. S ome swine give
fine litte rs only at the be ginning, with othe rs the litte rs improve as the mothe rs
grow in age and size . It is said that a sow, if she have one of he r e ye s knocke d
out, is almost sure to die soon afte rwards. S wine for the most part live for
fifte e n ye ars, but some fall little short of the twe nty.
1 9 Ewe s conce ive afte r thre e or four copulations with the ram. If rain falls
afte r inte rcourse , the ram impre gnate s the e we again; and it is the same with the
she -goat. The e we be ars usually two lambs, some time s thre e or four. Both e we and
she -goat carry the ir young for five months; conse que ntly whe re ve r a district is
sunny and the animals are use d to comfort and we ll fe d, the y be ar twice in the
ye ar. The goat live s for e ight ye ars and the she e p for te n, but in most case s not
so long; the be ll-we the r, howe ve r, live s to fifte e n ye ars. In e ve ry flock the y
train one of the rams for be ll-we the r. Whe n he is calle d on by name by the
she phe rd, he take s the le ad of the flock: and to this duty the cre ature is traine d
from its e arlie st ye ars. S he e p in Ethiopia live for twe lve or thirte e n ye ars, goats
for te n or e le ve n. In the case of the she e p and the goat the two se xe s have
inte rcourse all the ir live s long. Twins with she e p and goats may be due to
richne ss of pasturage , or to the fact that e ithe r the ram or the he -goat is a twin-
be ge tte r or that the e we or the she -goat is a twin-be are r. Of the se animals some
give birth to male s and othe rs to fe male s; and the diffe re nce in this re spe ct
de pe nds on the wate rs the y drink and also on the sire s. And if the y submit to the
male whe n north winds are blowing, the y are apt to be ar male s; if whe n south winds
are blowing, fe male s. S uch as be ar fe male s may ge t to be ar male s, due re gard be ing
paid to the ir looking northwards whe n put to the male . Ewe s accustome d to be put to
the ram e arly will re fuse him if he atte mpt to mount the m late . Lambs are born
white and black according as white or black ve ins are unde r the ram's tongue ; the
lambs are white if the ve ins are white , and black if the ve ins are black, and white
and black if the ve ins are white and black; and re d if the ve ins are re d. The
fe male s that drink salte d wate rs are the first to take the male ; the wate r should
be salte d be fore and afte r parturition, and again in the springtime . With goats the
she phe rds appoint no be ll-we the r, as the animal is not capable of re pose but frisky
and apt to ramble . If at the appointe d se ason the e lde rs of the flock are e age r for
inte rcourse , the she phe rds say that it bode s we ll for the flock; if the younge r
one s, that the flock is going to be bad. 2 0 Of
dogs the re are se ve ral bre e ds. Of the se the Laconian hound of e ithe r se x is fit for
bre e ding purpose s whe n e ight months old: at about the same age some dogs lift the
le g whe n voiding urine . The bitch conce ive s with one lining; this is cle arly se e n
in the case whe re a dog contrive s to line a bitch by ste alth, as the y impre gnate
afte r mounting only once . The Laconian bitch carrie s he r young the sixth part of a
ye ar or sixty days: or more by one , two, or thre e , or le ss by one ; the pups are
blind for twe lve days afte r birth. Afte r pupping, the bitch ge ts in he at again in
six months, but not be fore . S ome bitche s carry the ir young for the fifth part of
the ye ar or for se ve nty-two days; and the ir pups are blind for fourte e n days. Othe r
bitche s carry the ir young for a quarte r of a ye ar or for thre e whole months; and
the whe lps of the se are blind for se ve nte e n days. The bitch appe ars go in he at for
the same le ngth of time . Me nstruation continue s for se ve n days, and a swe lling of
the ge nital organ occurs simultane ously; it is not during this pe riod that the
bitch is dispose d to submit to the dog, but in the se ve n days that follow. The
bitch as a rule goe s in he at for fourte e n days, but occasionally for sixte e n. The
birth-discharge occurs simultane ously with the de live ry of the whe lps, and the
substance of it is thick and mucous. (The falling-off in bulk on the part of the
mothe r is not so gre at as might have be e n infe rre d from the size of he r frame .) The
bitch is usually supplie d with milk five days be fore parturition; some se ve n days
pre viously, some four; and the milk is se rvice able imme diate ly afte r birth. The
Laconian bitch is supplie d with milk thirty days afte r lining. The milk at first is
thickish, but ge ts thinne r by de gre e s; with the bitch the milk is thicke r than with
the fe male of any othe r animal e xce pting the sow and the hare . Whe n the bitch
arrive s at full growth an indication is give n of he r capacity for the male ; that is
to say, just as occurs in the fe male of the human spe cie s, a swe lling take s place
in the te ats of the bre asts, and the bre asts take on gristle . This incide nt,
howe ve r, it is difficult for any but an e xpe rt to de te ct, as the part that give s
the indication is inconside rable . The pre ce ding state me nts re late to the fe male ,
and not one of the m to the male . The male as a rule lifts his le g to void urine
whe n six months old; some at a late r pe riod, whe n e ight months old, some be fore
the y re ach six months. In a ge ne ral way one may put it that the y do so whe n the y
are out of puppyhood. The bitch squats down whe n she voids urine ; it is a rare
e xce ption that she lifts the le g to do so. The bitch be ars twe lve pups at the most,
but usually five or six; occasionally a bitch will be ar one only. The bitch of the
Laconian bre e d ge ne rally be ars e ight. The two se xe s have inte rcourse with e ach
othe r at all pe riods of life . A ve ry re markable phe nome non is obse rve d in the case
of the Laconian hound: in othe r words, he is found to be more vigorous in comme rce
with the fe male afte r be ing hard-worke d than whe n allowe d to live idle . The dog
of the Laconian bre e d live s te n ye ars, and the bitch twe lve . The bitch of othe r
bre e ds usually live s for fourte e n or fifte e n ye ars, but some live to twe nty; and
for this re ason ce rtain critics conside r that Home r did we ll in re pre se nting the
dog of Ulysse s as having die d in his twe ntie th ye ar. With the Laconian hound, owing
to the hardships to which the male is put, he is le ss long-live d than the fe male ;
with othe r bre e ds the distinction as to longe vity is not ve ry appare nt, though as a
ge ne ral rule the male is the longe r-live d. The dog she ds no te e th e xce pt the so-
calle d 'canine s'; the se a dog
of e ithe r se x she ds whe n four months old. As the y she d the se only, many pe ople are
in doubt as to the fact, and some pe ople , owing to the ir she dding but two and its
be ing hard to hit upon the time whe n the y do so, fancy that the animal she ds no
te e th at all; othe rs, afte r obse rving the she dding of two, come to the conclusion
that the cre ature she ds the re st in due turn. Me n disce rn the age of a dog by
inspe ction of its te e th; with young dogs the te e th are white and sharp pointe d,
with old dogs black and blunte d. 2 1 The bull
impre gnate s the cow at a single mount, and mounts with such vigour as to we igh down
the cow; if his e ffort be unsucce ssful, the cow must be allowe d an inte rval of
twe nty days be fore be ing again submitte d. Bulls of mature age de cline to mount the
same cow se ve ral time s on one day, e xce pt, by the way, at conside rable inte rvals.
Young bulls by re ason of the ir vigour are e nable d to mount the same cow se ve ral
time s in one day, and a good many cows be side s. The bull is the le ast salacious of
male animals.... The victor among the bulls is the one that mounts the fe male s;
whe n he ge ts e xhauste d by his amorous e fforts, his be ate n antagonist se ts on him
and ve ry ofte n ge ts the be tte r of the conflict. The bull and the cow are about a
ye ar old whe n it is possible for the m to have comme rce with chance of offspring: as
a rule , howe ve r, the y are about twe nty months old, but it is unive rsally allowe d
that the y are capable in this re spe ct at the age of two ye ars. The cow goe s with
calf for nine months, and she calve s in the te nth month; some maintain that the y go
in calf for te n months, to the ve ry day. A calf de live re d be fore the time s he re
spe cifie d is an abortion and ne ve r live s, howe ve r little pre mature its birth may
have be e n, as its hoove s are we ak and impe rfe ct. The cow as a rule be ars but one
calf, ve ry se ldom two; she submits to the bull and be ars as long as she live s.
C ows live for about fifte e n ye ars, and the bulls too, if the y have be e n castrate d;
but some live for twe nty ye ars or e ve n more , if the ir bodily constitutions be
sound. The he rdsme n tame the castrate d bulls, and give the m an office in the he rd
analogous to the office of the be ll-we the r in a flock; and the se bulls live to an
e xce ptionally advance d age , owing to the ir e xe mption from hardship and to the ir
browsing on pasture of good quality. The bull is in fulle st vigour whe n five ye ars
old, which le ads the critics to comme nd Home r for applying to the bull the e pithe ts
of 'five -ye ar-old', or 'of nine se asons', which e pithe ts are alike in me aning. The
ox she ds his te e th at the age of two ye ars, not all toge the r but just as the horse
she ds his. Whe n the animal suffe rs from podagra it doe s not she d the hoof, but is
subje ct to a painful swe lling in the fe e t. The milk of the cow is se rvice able afte r
parturition, and be fore parturition the re is no milk at all. The milk that first
pre se nts itse lf be come s as hard as stone whe n it clots; this re sult e nsue s unle ss
it be pre viously dilute d with wate r. Oxe n younge r than a ye ar old do not copulate
unle ss unde r circumstance s of an unnatural and porte ntous kind: instance s have be e n
re corde d of copulation in both se xe s at the age of four months. Kine in ge ne ral
be gin to submit to the male about the month of Tharge lion or of S cirophorion; some ,
howe ve r, are capable of conce ption right on to the autumn. Whe n kine in large
numbe rs re ce ive the bull and conce ive , it is looke d upon as prognostic of rain and
stormy we athe r. Kine he rd toge the r like mare s, but in le sse r de gre e .
2 2 In the case of horse s, the stallion and the mare are first fitte d for
bre e ding purpose s whe n two ye ars old. Instance s, howe ve r, of such e arly maturity
are rare , and the ir young are e xce ptionally small and we ak; the ordinary age for
se xual maturity is thre e ye ars, and from that age to twe nty the two se xe s go on
improving in the quality of the ir offspring. The mare carrie s he r foal for e le ve n
months, and casts it in the twe lfth. It is not a fixe d numbe r of days that the
stallion take s to impre gnate the mare ; it may be one , two, thre e , or more . An ass
in cove ring will impre gnate more e xpe ditiously than a stallion. The act of
inte rcourse with horse s is not laborious as it is with oxe n. In both se xe s the
horse is the most salacious of animals ne xt afte r the human spe cie s. The bre e ding
facultie s of the younge r horse s may be stimulate d be yond the ir ye ars if the y be
supplie d with good fe e ding in abundance . The mare as a rule be ars only one foal;
occasionally she has two, but ne ve r more . A mare has be e n known to cast two mule s;
but such a circumstance was re garde d as unnatural and porte ntous. The horse the n
is first fitte d for bre e ding purpose s at the age of two and a half ye ars, but
achie ve s full se xual maturity whe n it has ce ase d to she d te e th, e xce pt it be
naturally infe rtile ; it must be adde d, howe ve r, that some horse s have be e n known to
impre gnate the mare while the te e th we re in proce ss of she dding. The horse has
forty te e th. It she ds its first se t of four, two from the uppe r jaw and two from
the lowe r, whe n two and a half ye ars old. Afte r a ye ar's inte rval, it she ds anothe r
se t of four in like manne r, and anothe r se t of four afte r ye t anothe r ye ar's
inte rval; afte r arriving at the age of four ye ars and six months it she ds no more .
An instance has occurre d whe re a horse she d all his te e th at once , and anothe r
instance of a horse she dding all his te e th with his last se t of four; but such
instance s are ve ry rare . It conse que ntly happe ns that a horse whe n four and a half
ye ars old is in e xce lle nt condition for bre e ding purpose s. The olde r horse s,
whe the r of the male or fe male , are the more ge ne rative ly productive . Horse s will
cove r mare s from which the y have be e n foale d and mare s which the y have be gotte n;
and, inde e d, a troop of horse s is only conside re d pe rfe ct whe n such promiscuity of
inte rcourse occurs. S cythians use pre gnant mare s for riding whe n the e mbryo has
turne d rathe r soon in the womb, and the y asse rt that the re by the mothe rs have all
the e asie r de live ry. Quadrupe ds as a rule lie down for parturition, and in
conse que nce the young of the m all come out of the womb side ways. The mare , howe ve r,
whe n the time for parturition arrive s, stands e re ct and in that posture casts its
foal. The horse in ge ne ral live s for e ighte e n or twe nty ye ars; some horse s live
for twe nty-five or e ve n thirty, and if a horse be tre ate d with e xtre me care , it may
last on to the age of fifty ye ars; a horse , howe ve r, whe n it re ache s thirty ye ars
is re garde d as e xce ptionally old. The mare live s usually for twe nty-five ye ars,
though instance s have occurre d of the ir attaining the age of forty. The male is
le ss long-live d than the fe male by re ason of the se xual se rvice he is calle d on to
re nde r; and horse s that are re are d in a private stable live longe r than such as are
re are d in troops. The mare attains he r full le ngth and he ight at five ye ars old,
the stallion at six; in anothe r six ye ars the animal re ache s its full bulk, and
goe s on improving until it is twe nty ye ars old. The fe male , the n, re ache s maturity
more rapidly than the male , but in the womb the case is re ve rse d, just as is
obse rve d in re gard to the se xe s of the human spe cie s; and the same phe nome non is
obse rve d in the case of all animals that be ar se ve ral young. The mare is said to
suckle a mule -foal for six months, but not to allow its approach for any longe r on
account of the pain it is put to by the hard tugging of the young; an ordinary foal
it allows to suck for a longe r pe riod. Horse and mule are at the ir be st afte r
the she dding of the te e th. Afte r the y have she d the m all, it is not e asy to
distinguish the ir age ; he nce the y are said to carry the ir mark be fore the she dding,
but not afte r. Howe ve r, e ve n afte r the she dding the ir age is pre tty we ll re cognize d
by the aid of the canine s; for in the case of horse s much ridde n the se te e th are
worn away by attrition cause d by the inse rtion of the bit; in the case of horse s
not ridde n the te e th are large and de tache d, and in young horse s the y are sharp and
small. The male of the horse will bre e d at all se asons and during its whole
life ; the mare can take the horse all its life long, but is not thus re ady to pair
at all se asons unle ss it be he ld in che ck by a halte r or some othe r compulsion be
brought to be ar. The re is no fixe d time at which inte rcourse of the two se xe s
cannot take place ; and accordingly inte rcourse may chance to take place at a time
that may re nde r difficult the re aring of the future proge ny. In a stable in Opus
the re was a stallion that use d to se rve mare s whe n forty ye ars old: his fore le gs
had to be lifte d up for the ope ration. Mare s first take the horse in the spring-
time . Afte r a mare has foale d she doe s not ge t impre gnate d at once again, but only
afte r a conside rable inte rval; in fact, the foals will be all the be tte r if the
inte rval e xte nd ove r four or five ye ars. It is, at all e ve nts, absolute ly ne ce ssary
to allow an inte rval of one ye ar, and for that pe riod to le t he r lie fallow. A
mare , the n, bre e ds at inte rvals; a she -ass bre e ds on and on without inte rmission.
Of mare s some are absolute ly ste rile , othe rs are capable of conce ption but
incapable of bringing the foal to full te rm; it is said to be an indication of this
condition in a mare , that he r foal if disse cte d is found to have othe r kidne y-
shape d substance s round about its kidne ys, pre se nting the appe arance of having four
kidne ys. Afte r parturition the mare at once swallows the afte r-birth, and bite s
off the growth, calle d the 'hippomane s', that is found on the fore he ad of the foal.
This growth is some what smalle r than a drie d fig; and in shape is broad and round,
and in colour black. If any bystande r ge ts posse ssion of it be fore the mare , and
the mare
ge ts a sme ll of it, she goe s wild and frantic at the sme ll. And it is for this
re ason that ve nde rs of drugs and simple s hold the substance in high re que st and
include it among the ir store s. If an ass cove r a mare afte r the mare has be e n
cove re d by a horse , the ass will de stroy the pre viously forme d e mbryo. (Horse -
traine rs do not appoint a horse as le ade r to a troop, as he rdsme n appoint a bull as
le ade r to a he rd, and for this re ason that the horse is not ste ady but quick-
te mpe re d and skittish.) 2 3 The ass of both
se xe s is capable of bre e ding, and she ds its first te e th at the age of two and a
half ye ars; it she ds its se cond te e th within six months, its third within anothe r
six months, and the fourth afte r the like inte rval. The se fourth te e th are te rme d
the gnomons or age -indicators. A she -ass has be e n known to conce ive whe n a ye ar
old, and the foal to be re are d. Afte r inte rcourse with the male it will discharge
the ge nital spe rm unle ss it be hinde re d, and for this re ason it is usually be ate n
afte r such inte rcourse and chase d about. It casts its young in the twe lfth month.
It usually be ars but one foal, and that is its natural numbe r, occasionally howe ve r
it be ars twins. The ass if it cove r a mare de stroys, as has be e n said, the e mbryo
pre viously be gotte n by the horse ; but, afte r the mare has be e n cove re d by the ass,
the horse supe rve ning will not spoil the e mbryo. The she -ass has milk in the te nth
month of pre gnancy. S e ve n days afte r casting a foal the she -ass submits to the
male , and is almost sure to conce ive if put to the male on this particular day; the
same re sult, howe ve r, is quite possible late r on. The she -ass will re fuse to cast
he r foal with any one looking on or in the daylight and just be fore foaling she has
to be le d away into a dark place . If the she -ass has had young be fore the she dding
of the inde x-te e th, she will be ar all he r life through; but if not, the n she will
ne ithe r conce ive nor be ar for the re st of he r days. The ass live s for more than
thirty ye ars, and the she -ass live s longe r than the male . Whe n the re is a cross
be twe e n a horse and a she -ass or a jackass and a mare , the re is much gre ate r chance
of a miscarriage than whe re the comme rce is normal. The pe riod for ge station in the
case of a cross de pe nds on the male , and is just what it would have be e n if the
male had had comme rce with a fe male of his own kind. In re gard to size , looks, and
vigour, the foal is more apt to re se mble the mothe r than the sire . If such hybrid
conne xions be continue d without inte rmitte nce , the fe male will soon go ste rile ; and
for this re ason traine rs always allow of inte rvals be twe e n bre e ding time s. A mare
will not take the ass, nor a she ass the horse , unle ss the ass or she -ass shall
have be e n suckle d by a mare ; and for this re ason traine rs put foals of the she -ass
unde r mare s, which foals are te chnically spoke n of as 'mare -suckle d'. The se asse s,
thus re are d, mount the mare s in the ope n pasture s, maste ring the m by force as the
stallions do. 2 4 A mule is fitte d for comme rce
with the fe male afte r the first she dding of its te e th, and at the age of se ve n will
impre gnate e ffe ctually; and whe re conne xion has take n place with a mare , a 'hinny'
has be e n known to be produce d. Afte r the se ve nth ye ar it has no furthe r inte rcourse
with the fe male . A fe male mule has be e n known to be impre gnate d, but without the
impre gnation be ing followe d up by parturition. In S yrophoe nicia she -mule s submit to
the mule and be ar young; but the bre e d, though it re se mble s the ordinary one , is
diffe re nt and spe cific. The hinny or stunte d mule is foale d by a mare whe n she has
gone sick during ge station, and corre sponds to the dwarf in the human spe cie s and
to the afte r-pig or scut in swine ; and as is the case with dwarfs, the se xual organ
of the hinny is abnormally large . The mule live s for a numbe r of ye ars. The re
are on re cord case s of mule s living to the age of e ighty, as did one in Athe ns at
the time of the building of the te mple ; this mule on account of its age was le t go
fre e , but continue d to assist in dragging burde ns, and would go side by side with
the othe r draught-be asts and stimulate the m to the ir work; and in conse que nce a
public de cre e was passe d forbidding any bake r driving the cre ature away from his
bre ad-tray. The she -mule grows old more slowly than the mule . S ome asse rt that the
she -mule me nstruate s by the act of voiding he r urine , and that the mule owe s the
pre maturity of his de cay to his habit of sme lling at the urine . S o much for the
mode s of ge ne ration in conne xion with the se animals.
2 5 Bre e de rs and traine rs can distinguish be twe e n young and old quadrupe ds. If,
whe n drawn back from the jaw, the skin at once goe s back to its place , the animal
is young; if it re mains long wrinkle d up, the animal is old.
2 6 The came l carrie s its young for te n months, and be ars but one at a time and
ne ve r more ; the young came l is re move d from the mothe r whe n a ye ar old. The animal
live s for a long pe riod, more than fifty ye ars. It be ars in spring-time , and give s
milk until the time of the ne xt conce ption. Its fle sh and milk are e xce ptionally
palatable . The milk is drunk mixe d with wate r in the proportion of e ithe r two to
one or thre e to one . 2 7 The e le phant of e ithe r
se x is fitte d for bre e ding be fore re aching the age of twe nty. The fe male carrie s
he r young, according to some accounts, for two and a half ye ars; according to
othe rs, for thre e ye ars; and the discre pancy in the assigne d pe riods is due to the
fact that the re are ne ve r human e ye witne sse s to the comme rce be twe e n the se xe s. The
fe male se ttle s down on its re ar to cast its young, and obviously suffe rs gre atly
during the proce ss. The young one , imme diate ly afte r birth, sucks the mothe r, not
with its trunk but with the mouth; and can walk about and se e distinctly the mome nt
it is born. 2 8 The wild sow submits to the boar
at the be ginning of winte r, and in the spring-time re tre ats for parturition to a
lair in some district inacce ssible to intrusion, he mme d in with she e r cliffs and
chasms and ove rshadowe d by tre e s. The boar usually re mains by the sow for thirty
days. The numbe r of the litte r and the pe riod ge station is the same as in the case
of the dome sticate d conge ne r. The sound of the grunt also is similar; only that the
sow grunts continually, and the boar but se ldom. Of the wild boars such as are
castrate d grow to the large st size and be come fie rce st: to which circumstance Home r
allude s whe n he says:- 'He re are d against him a wild castrate d boar: it was not
like a food-de vouring brute , but like a fore st-clad promontory.' Wild boars
be come castrate d owing to an itch be falling the m in e arly life in the re gion of the
te sticle s, and the castration is supe rinduce d by the ir rubbing the mse lve s against
the trunks of tre e s. 2 9 The hind, as has be e n
state d, submits to the stag as a rule only unde r compulsion, as she is unable to
e ndure the male ofte n owing to the rigidity of the pe nis. Howe ve r, the y do
occasionally submit to the stag as the e we submits ram; and whe n the y are in he at
the hinds avoid one anothe r. The stag is not constant to one particular hind, but
afte r a while quits one and mate s with othe rs. The bre e ding time is afte r the
rising of Arcturus, during the months of Boe dromion and Maimacte rion. The pe riod of
ge station lasts for e ight months. C once ption come s on a fe w days afte r inte rcourse ;
and a numbe r of hinds can be impre gnate d by a single male . The hind, as a rule ,
be ars but one fawn, although instance s have be e n known of he r casting two. Out of
dre ad of wild be asts she casts he r young by the side of the high-road. The young
fawn grows with rapidity. Me nstruation occurs at no othe r time with the hind; it
take s place only afte r parturition, and the substance is phle gm-like . The hind
le ads the fawn to he r lair; this is he r place of re fuge , a cave with a single
inle t, inside which she she lte rs he rse lf against attack. Fabulous storie s are
told conce rning the longe vity of the animal, but the storie s have ne ve r be e n
ve rifie d, and the bre vity of the pe riod of ge station and the rapidity of growth in
the fawn would not le ad one to attribute e xtre me longe vity to this cre ature . In
the mountain calle d Elaphoe is or De e r Mountain, which is in Arginussa in Asia
Minor-the place , by the way, whe re Alcibiade s was assassinate d-all the hinds have
the e ar split, so that, if the y stray to a distance , the y can be re cognize d by this
mark; and the e mbryo actually has the mark while ye t in the womb of the mothe r.
The hind has four te ats like the cow. Afte r the hinds have be come pre gnant, the
male s all se gre gate one by one , and in conse que nce of the viole nce of the ir se xual
passions the y ke e p e ach one to himse lf, dig a hole in the ground, and be llow from
time to time ; in all the se particulars the y re se mble the goat, and the ir fore he ads
from ge tting we tte d be come black, as is also the case with the goat. In this way
the y pass the time until the rain falls, afte r which time the y turn to pasture . The
animal acts in this way owing to its se xual wantonne ss and also to its obe sity; for
in summe r-time it be come s so e xce ptionally fat as to be unable to run: in fact at
this pe riod the y can be ove rtake n by the hunte rs that pursue the m on foot in the
se cond or third run; and, by the way, in conse que nce of the he at of the we athe r and
the ir ge tting out of bre ath the y always make for wate r in the ir runs. In the
rutting se ason, the fle sh of the de e r is unsavoury and rank, like the fle sh of the
he -goat. In winte r-time the de e r be come s thin and we ak, but towards the approach of
the spring he
is at his be st for running. Whe n on the run the de e r ke e ps pausing from time to
time , and waits until his pursue r draws upon him, whe re upon he starts off again.
This habit appe ars due to some inte rnal pain: at all e ve nts, the gut is so sle nde r
and we ak that, if you strike the animal e ve r so softly, it is apt to bre ak asunde r,
though the hide of the animal re mains sound and uninjure d.
30 Be ars, as has be e n pre viously state d, do not copulate with the male mounting
the back of the fe male , but with the fe male lying down unde r the male . The she -be ar
goe s with young for thirty days. S he brings forth some time s one cub, some time s two
cubs, and at most five . Of all animals the ne wly born cub of the she be ar is the
smalle st in proportion to the size of the mothe r; that is to say, it is large r than
a mouse but smalle r than a we ase l. It is also smooth and blind, and its le gs and
most of its organs are as ye t inarticulate . Pairing take s Place in the month of
Elaphe bolion, and parturition about the time for re tiring into winte r quarte rs;
about this time the be ar and the she -be ar are at the fatte st. Afte r the she -be ar
has re are d he r young, she come s out of he r winte r lair in the third month, whe n it
is alre ady spring. The fe male porcupine , by the way, hibe rnate s and goe s with young
the same numbe r of days as the she -be ar, and in all re spe cts as to parturition
re se mble s this animal. Whe n a she -be ar is with young, it is a ve ry hard task to
catch he r. 31 It has alre ady be e n state d that
the lion and lione ss copulate re arwards, and that the se animals are opisthure tic.
The y do not copulate nor bring forth at all se asons indiscriminate ly, but once in
the ye ar only. The lione ss brings forth in the spring, ge ne rally two cubs at a
time , and six at the ve ry most; but some time s only one . The story about the lione ss
discharging he r womb in the act of parturition is a pure fable , and was me re ly
inve nte d to account for the scarcity of the animal; for the animal is, as is we ll
known, a rare animal, and is not found in many countrie s. In fact, in the whole of
Europe it is only found in the strip be twe e n the rive rs Ache lous and Ne ssus. The
cubs of the lione ss whe n ne wly born are e xce e dingly small, and can scarce ly walk
whe n two months old. The S yrian lion be ars cubs five time s: five cubs at the first
litte r, the n four, the n thre e , the n two, and lastly one ; afte r this the lione ss
ce ase s to be ar for the re st of he r days. The lione ss has no mane , but this
appe ndage is pe culiar to the lion. The lion she ds only the four so-calle d canine s,
two in the uppe r jaw and two in the lowe r; and it she ds the m whe n it is six months
old. 32 The hye na in colour re se mble s the
wolf, but is more shaggy, and is furnishe d with a mane running all along the spine .
What is re counte d conce rning its ge nital organs, to the e ffe ct that e ve ry hye na is
furnishe d with the organ both of the male and the fe male , is untrue . The fact is
that the se xual organ of the male hye na re se mble s the same organ in the wolf and in
the dog; the part re se mbling the fe male ge nital organ lie s unde rne ath the tail, and
doe s to some e xte nt re se mble the fe male organ, but it is unprovide d with duct or
passage , and the passage for the re siduum come s unde rne ath it. The fe male hye na has
the part that re se mble s the organ of the male , and, as in the case of the male , has
it unde rne ath he r tail, unprovide d with duct or passage ; and afte r it the passage
for the re siduum, and unde rne ath this the true fe male ge nital organ. The fe male
hye na has a womb, like all othe r fe male animals of the same kind. It is an
e xce e dingly rare circumstance to me e t with a fe male hye na. At le ast a hunte r said
that out of e le ve n hye nas he had caught, only one was a fe male .
33 Hare s copulate in a re arward posture , as has be e n state d, for the animal is
opisthure tic. The y bre e d and be ar at all se asons, supe rfoe tate during pre gnancy,
and be ar young e ve ry month. The y do not give birth to the ir young one s all toge the r
at one time , but bring the m forth at inte rvals ove r as many days as the
circumstance s of e ach case may re quire . The fe male is supplie d with milk be fore
parturition; and afte r be aring submits imme diate ly to the male , and is capable of
conce ption while suckling he r young. The milk in consiste ncy re se mble s sow's milk.
The young are born blind, as is the case with the gre ate r part Of the fissipe ds or
toe d animals. 34 The fox mounts the vixe n in
copulation, and the vixe n be ars young like the she -be ar; in fact, he r young one s
are e ve n more inarticulate ly forme d. Be fore parturition she re tire s to se que ste re d
place s, so that it is a gre at rarity for a vixe n to be caught while pre gnant. Afte r
parturition she warms he r young and ge ts the m into shape by licking the m. S he be ars
four at most at a birth. 35 The wolf re se mble s
the dog in re gard to the time of conce ption and parturition, the numbe r of the
litte r, and the blindne ss of the ne wborn young. The se xe s couple at one spe cial
pe riod, and the fe male brings forth at the be ginning of the summe r. The re is an
account give n of the parturition of the she -wolf that borde rs on the fabulous, to
the e ffe ct that she confine s he r lying-in to within twe lve particular days of the
ye ar. And the y give the re ason for this in the form of a myth, viz. that whe n the y
transporte d Le to in so many days from the land of the Hype rbore ans to the island of
De los, she assume d the form of a she -wolf to e scape the ange r of He re . Whe the r the
account be corre ct or not has not ye t be e n ve rifie d; I give it me re ly as it is
curre ntly told. The re is no more of truth in the curre nt state me nt that the she -
wolf be ars once and only once in he r life time . The cat and the ichne umon be ar as
many young as the dog, and live on the same food; the y live about six ye ars. The
cubs of the panthe r are born blind like those of the wolf, and the fe male be ars
four at the most at one birth. The particulars of conce ption are the same for the
thos, or cive t, as for the dog; the cubs of the animal are born blind, and the
fe male be ars two, or thre e , or four at a birth. It is long in the body and low in
stature ; but not withstanding the shortne ss of its le gs it is e xce ptionally fle e t
of foot, owing to the supple ne ss of its frame and its capacity for le aping.
36 The re is found in S yria a so-calle d mule . It is not the same as the cross
be twe e n the horse and ass, but re se mble s it just as a wild ass re se mble s the
dome sticate d conge ne r, and de rive s its name from the re se mblance . Like the wild
ass, this wild mule is re markable for its spe e d. The animals of this spe cie s
inte rbre e d with one anothe r; and a proof of this state me nt may be gathe re d from the
fact that a ce rtain numbe r of the m we re brought into Phrygia in the time of
Pharnace s, the fathe r of Pharnabazus, and the animal is the re still. The numbe r
originally introduce d was nine , and the re are thre e the re at the pre se nt day.
37 The phe nome na of ge ne ration in re gard to the mouse are the most astonishing
both for the numbe r of the young and for the rapidity of re curre nce in the births.
On one occasion a she -mouse in a state of pre gnancy was shut up by accide nt in a
jar containing mille t-se e d, and afte r a little while the lid of the jar was re move d
and upwards of one hundre d and twe nty mice we re found inside it. The rate of
propagation of fie ld mice in country place s, and the de struction that the y cause ,
are be yond all te lling. In many place s the ir numbe r is so incalculable that but
ve ry little of the corn-crop is le ft to the farme r; and so rapid is the ir mode of
proce e ding that some time s a small farme r will one day obse rve that it is time for
re aping, and on the following morning, whe n he take s his re ape rs afie ld, he finds
his e ntire crop de voure d. The ir disappe arance is unaccountable : in a fe w days not a
mouse will the re be to be se e n. And ye t in the time be fore the se fe w days me n fail
to ke e p down the ir numbe rs by fumigating and une arthing the m, or by re gularly
hunting the m and turning in swine upon the m; for pigs, by the way, turn up the
mouse -hole s by rooting with the ir snouts. Foxe s also hunt the m, and the wild
fe rre ts in particular de stroy the m, but the y make no way against the prolific
qualitie s of the animal and the rapidity of its bre e ding. Whe n the y are supe r-
abundant, nothing succe e ds in thinning the m down e xce pt the rain; but afte r he avy
rains the y disappe ar rapidly. In a ce rtain district of Pe rsia whe n a fe male
mouse is disse cte d the fe male e mbryos appe ar to be pre gnant. S ome pe ople asse rt,
and positive ly asse rt, that a fe male mouse by licking salt can be come pre gnant
without the inte rve ntion of the male . Mice in Egypt are cove re d with bristle s
like the he dge hog. The re is also a diffe re nt bre e d of mice that walk on the ir two
hind-le gs; the ir front le gs are small and the ir hind-le gs long; the bre e d is
e xce e dingly nume rous. The re are many othe r bre e ds of mice than are he re re fe rre d
to. Book VII 1
As to Man's growth, first within his mothe r's womb and afte rward to old age , the
course of nature , in so far as man is spe cially conce rne d, is afte r the following
manne r. And, by the way, the diffe re nce of male and fe male and of the ir re spe ctive
organs has be e n de alt with he re tofore . Whe n twice se ve n ye ars old, in the most of
case s, the male be gins to e nge nde r se e d; and at the same time hair appe ars upon the
pube s, in like manne r, so Alcmae on of C roton re marks, as plants first blossom and
the n se e d. About the same time , the voice be gins to alte r, ge tting harshe r and more
une ve n, ne ithe r
shrill as forme rly nor de e p as afte rward, nor ye t of any e ve n tone , but like an
instrume nt whose strings are fraye d and out of tune ; and it is calle d, by way of
by-word, the ble at of the billy-goat. Now this bre aking of the voice is the more
appare nt in those who are making trial of the ir se xual powe rs; for in those who are
prone to lustfulne ss the voice turns into the voice of a man, but not so in the
contine nt. For if a lad strive dilige ntly to hinde r his voice from bre aking, as
some do of those who de vote the mse lve s to music, the voice lasts a long while
unbroke n and may e ve n pe rsist with little change . And the bre asts swe ll and
like wise the private parts, alte ring in size and shape . (And by the way, at this
time of life those who try by friction to provoke e mission of se e d are apt to
e xpe rie nce pain as we ll as voluptuous se nsations.) At the same age in the fe male ,
the bre asts swe ll and the so-calle d catame nia comme nce to flow; and this fluid
re se mble s fre sh blood. The re is anothe r discharge , a white one , by the way, which
occurs in girls e ve n at a ve ry e arly age , more e spe cially if the ir die t be large ly
of a fluid nature ; and this malady cause s arre st of growth and loss of fle sh. In
the majority of case s the catame nia are notice d by the time the bre asts have grown
to the he ight of two finge rs' bre adth. In girls, too, about this time the voice
change s to a de e pe r note ; for while in ge ne ral the woman's voice is highe r than the
man's, so also the voice s of girls are pitche d in a highe r ke y than the e lde r
wome n's, just as the boy's are highe r than the me n's; and the girls' voice s are
shrille r than the boys', and a maid's flute is tune d sharpe r than a lad's. Girls
of this age have much ne e d of surve illance . For the n in particular the y fe e l a
natural impulse to make usage of the se xual facultie s that are de ve loping in the m;
so that unle ss the y guard against any furthe r impulse be yond that ine vitable one
which the ir bodily de ve lopme nt of itse lf supplie s, e ve n in the case of those who
abstain altoge the r from passionate indulge nce , the y contract habits which are apt
to continue into late r life . For girls who give way to wantonne ss grow more and
more wanton; and the same is true of boys, unle ss the y be safe guarde d from one
te mptation and anothe r; for the passage s be come dilate d and se t up a local flux or
running, and be side s this the re colle ction of ple asure associate d with forme r
indulge nce cre ate s a longing for its re pe tition. S ome me n are conge nitally
impote nt owing to structural de fe ct; and in like manne r wome n also may suffe r from
conge nital incapacity. Both me n and wome n are liable to constitutional change ,
growing he althie r or more sickly, or alte ring in the way of le anne ss, stoutne ss,
and vigour; thus, afte r pube rty some lads who we re thin be fore grow stout and
he althy, and the conve rse also happe ns; and the same is e qually true of girls. For
whe n in boy or girl the body is loade d with supe rfluous matte r, the n, whe n such
supe rfluitie s are got rid of in the spe rmatic or catame nial discharge , the ir bodie s
improve in he alth and condition owing to the re moval of what had acte d as an
impe dime nt to he alth and prope r nutrition; but in such as are of opposite habit
the ir bodie s be come e maciate d and out of he alth, for the n the spe rmatic discharge
in the one case and the catame nial flow in the othe r take place at the cost of
natural he althy conditions. Furthe rmore , in the case of maide ns the condition of
the bre asts is dive rse in diffe re nt individuals, for the y are some time s quite big
and some time s little ; and as a ge ne ral rule the ir size de pe nds on whe the r or not
the body was burthe ne d in childhood with supe rfluous mate rial. For whe n the signs
of womanhood are nigh but not come , the more the re be of moisture the more will it
cause the bre asts to swe ll, e ve n to the bursting point; and the re sult is that the
bre asts re main during afte r-life of the bulk that the y the n acquire d. And among
me n, the bre asts grow more conspicuous and more like to those of wome n, both in
young me n and old, whe n the individual te mpe rame nt is moist and sle e k and the
re ve rse of sine wy, and all the more among the dark-comple xione d than the fair.
At the outse t and till the age of one and twe nty the spe rmatic discharge is de void
of fe cundity; afte rwards it be come s fe rtile , but young me n and wome n produce
unde rsize d and impe rfe ct proge ny, as is the case also with the common run of
animals. Young wome n conce ive re adily, but, having conce ive d, the ir labour in
childbe d is apt to be difficult. The frame fails of re aching its full
de ve lopme nt and age s quickly in me n of inte mpe rate lusts and in wome n who be come
mothe rs of many childre n; for it appe ars to be the case that growth ce ase s whe n the
woman has give n birth to thre e childre n. Wome n of a lascivious disposition grow
more se date and virtuous afte r the y have borne se ve ral childre n. Afte r the age
of twe nty-one wome n are fully ripe for child-be aring, but me n go on incre asing in
vigour. Whe n the spe rmatic fluid is of a thin consiste ncy it is infe rtile ; whe n
granular it is fe rtile and like ly to produce male childre n, but whe n thin and
unclotte d it is apt to produce fe male offspring. And it is about this time of life
that in me n the be ard make s its appe arance . 2
The onse t of the catame nia in wome n take s place towards the e nd of the month; and
on this account the wise acre s asse rt that the moon is fe minine , be cause the
discharge in wome n and the waning of the moon happe n at one and the same time , and
afte r the wane and the discharge both one and the othe r grow whole again. (In some
wome n the catame nia occur re gularly but sparse ly e ve ry month, and more abundantly
e ve ry third month.) With those in whom the ailme nt lasts but a little while , two
days or thre e , re cove ry is e asy; but whe re the duration is longe r, the ailme nt is
more trouble some . For wome n are ailing during the se days; and some time s the
discharge is sudde n and some time s gradual, but in all case s alike the re is bodily
distre ss until the attack be ove r. In many case s at the comme nce me nt of the attack,
whe n the discharge is about to appe ar, the re occur spasms and rumbling noise s
within the womb until such time as the discharge manife sts itse lf. Unde r natural
conditions it is afte r re cove ry from the se symptoms that conce ption take s place in
wome n, and wome n in whom the signs do not manife st the mse lve s for the most part
re main childle ss. But the rule is not without e xce ption, for some conce ive in spite
of the abse nce of the se symptoms; and the se are case s in which a se cre tion
accumulate s, not in such a way as actually to issue forth, but in amount e qual to
the re siduum le ft in the case of child-be aring wome n afte r the normal discharge has
take n place . And some conce ive while the signs are on but not afte rwards, those
name ly in whom the womb close s up imme diate ly afte r the discharge . In some case s
the me nse s pe rsist during pre gnancy up to the ve ry last; but the re sult in the se
case s is that the offspring are poor, and e ithe r fail to survive or grow up we akly.
In many case s, owing to e xce ssive de sire , arising e ithe r from youthful impe tuosity
or from le ngthe ne d abstine nce , prolapsion of the womb take s place and the catame nia
appe ar re pe ate dly, thrice in the month, until conce ption occurs; and the n the womb
withdraws upwards again to its prope r place ... As we have re marke d above , the
discharge is wont to be more abundant in wome n than in the fe male s of any othe r
animals. In cre ature s that do not bring forth the ir young alive nothing of the sort
manife sts itse lf, this particular supe rfluity be ing conve rte d into bodily
substance ; and by the way, in such animals the fe male s are some time s large r than
the male s; and more ove r, the mate rial is use d up some time s for scute s and some time s
for scale s, and some time s for the abundant cove ring of fe athe rs, whe re as in the
vivipara posse sse d of limbs it is turne d into hair and into bodily substance (for
man alone among the m is smooth-skinne d), and into urine , for this e xcre tion is in
the majority of such animals thick and copious. Only in the case of wome n is the
supe rfluity turne d into a discharge inste ad of be ing utilize d in the se othe r ways.
The re is some thing similar to be re marke d of me n: for in proportion to his size man
e mits more se minal fluid than any othe r animal (for which re ason man is the
smoothe st of animals), e spe cially such me n as are of a moist habit and not ove r
corpule nt, and fair me n in gre ate r de gre e than dark. It is like wise with wome n; for
in the stout, gre at part of the e xcre tion goe s to nourish the body. In the act of
inte rcourse , wome n of a fair comple xion discharge a more ple ntiful se cre tion than
the dark; and furthe rmore , a wate ry and punge nt die t conduce s to this phe nome non.
3 It is a sign of conce ption in wome n whe n the place is dry imme diate ly afte r
inte rcourse . If the lips of the orifice be smooth conce ption is difficult, for the
matte r slips off; and if the y be thick it is also difficult. But if on digital
e xamination the lips fe e l some what rough and adhe re nt, and if the y be like wise
thin, the n the chance s are in favour of conce ption. Accordingly, if conce ption be
de sire d, we must bring the parts into such a condition as we have just de scribe d;
but if on the contrary we want to avoid conce ption the n we must bring about a
contrary disposition. Whe re fore , since if the parts be smooth conce ption is
pre ve nte d, some anoint that part of the womb on which the se e d falls with oil of
ce dar, or with ointme nt of le ad or with frankince nse , commingle d with olive oil. If
the se e d re main within for se ve n days the n it is ce rtain that conce ption has take n
place ; for it is during that pe riod that what is known as e ffluxion take s place .
In most case s the me nstrual discharge
re curs for some time afte r conce ption has take n place , its duration be ing mostly
thirty days in the case of a fe male and about forty days in the case of a male
child. Afte r parturition also it is common for the discharge to be withhe ld for an
e qual numbe r of days, but not in all case s with e qual e xactitude . Afte r conce ption,
and whe n the above -me ntione d days are past, the discharge no longe r take s its
natural course but finds its way to the bre asts and turns to milk. The first
appe arance of milk in the bre asts is scant in quantity and so to spe ak cobwe bby or
inte rspe rse d with little thre ads. And whe n conce ption has take n place , the re is apt
to be a sort of fe e ling in the re gion of the flanks, which in some case s quickly
swe ll up a little , e spe cially in thin pe rsons, and also in the groin. In the
case of male childre n the first move me nt usually occurs on the right-hand side of
the womb and about the fortie th day, but if the child be a fe male the n on the le ft-
hand side and about the nine tie th day. Howe ve r, we must by no me ans assume this to
be an accurate state me nt of fact, for the re are many e xce ptions, in which the
move me nt is manife ste d on the right-hand side though a fe male child be coming, and
on the le ft-hand side though the infant be a male . And in short, the se and all
suchlike phe nome na are usually subje ct to diffe re nce s that may be summe d up as
diffe re nce s of de gre e . About this pe riod the e mbryo be gins to re solve into
distinct parts, it having hithe rto consiste d of a fle shlike substance without
distinction of parts. What is calle d e ffluxion is a de struction of the e mbryo
within the first we e k, while abortion occurs up to the fortie th day; and the
gre ate r numbe r of such e mbryos as pe rish do so within the space of the se forty
days. In the case of a male e mbryo aborte d at the fortie th day, if it be place d
in cold wate r it holds toge the r in a sort of me mbrane , but if it be place d in any
othe r fluid it dissolve s and disappe ars. If the me mbrane be pulle d to bits the
e mbryo is re ve ale d, as big as one of the large kind of ants; and all the limbs are
plain to se e , including the pe nis, and the e ye s also, which as in othe r animals are
of gre at size . But the fe male e mbryo, if it suffe r abortion during the first thre e
months, is as a rule found to be undiffe re ntiate d; if howe ve r it re ach the fourth
month it come s to be subdivide d and quickly attains furthe r diffe re ntiation. In
short, while within the womb, the fe male infant accomplishe s the whole de ve lopme nt
of its parts more slowly than the male , and more fre que ntly than the man-child
take s te n months to come to pe rfe ction. But afte r birth, the fe male s pass more
quickly than the male s through youth and maturity and age ; and this is e spe cially
true of those that be ar many childre n, as inde e d I have alre ady said.
4 Whe n the womb has conce ive d the se e d, straightway in the majority of case s it
close s up until se ve n months are fulfille d; but in the e ighth month it ope ns, and
the e mbryo, if it be fe rtile , de sce nds in the e ighth month. But such e mbryos as are
not fe rtile but are de void of bre ath at e ight months old, the ir mothe rs do not
bring into the world by parturition at e ight months, ne ithe r doe s the e mbryo
de sce nd within the womb at that pe riod nor doe s the womb ope n. And it is a sign
that the e mbryo is not capable of life if it be forme d without the above -name d
circumstance s taking place . Afte r conce ption wome n are prone to a fe e ling of
he avine ss in all parts of the ir bodie s, and for instance the y e xpe rie nce a
se nsation of darkne ss in front of the e ye s and suffe r also from he adache . The se
symptoms appe ar soone r or late r, some time s as e arly as the te nth day, according as
the patie nt be more or le ss burthe ne d with supe rfluous humours. Nause a also and
sickne ss affe ct the most of wome n, and e spe cially such as those that we have just
now me ntione d, afte r the me nstrual discharge has ce ase d and be fore it is ye t turne d
in the dire ction of the bre asts. More ove r, some wome n suffe r most at the
be ginning of the ir pre gnancy and some at a late r pe riod whe n the e mbryo has had
time to grow; and in some wome n it is a common occurre nce to suffe r from strangury
towards the e nd of the ir time . As a ge ne ral rule wome n who are pre gnant of a male
child e scape comparative ly e asily and re tain a comparative ly he althy look, but it
is othe rwise with those whose infant is a fe male ; for the se latte r look as a rule
pale r and suffe r more pain, and in many case s the y are subje ct to swe llings of the
le gs and e ruptions on the body. Ne ve rthe le ss the rule is subje ct to e xce ptions.
Wome n in pre gnancy are a pre y to all sorts of longings and to rapid change s of
mood, and some folks call this the 'ivy-sickne ss'; and with the mothe rs of fe male
infants the longings are more acute , and the y are le ss conte nte d whe n the y have got
what the y de sire d. In a ce rtain fe w case s the patie nt fe e ls unusually we ll
during pre gnancy. The worst time of all is just whe n the child's hair is be ginning
to grow. In pre gnant wome n the ir own natural hair is incline d to grow thin and
fall out, but on the othe r hand hair te nds to grow on parts of the body whe re it
was not wont to be . As a ge ne ral rule , a man-child is more prone to move me nt within
its mothe r's womb than a fe male child, and it is usually born soone r. And labour in
the case of fe male childre n is apt to be protracte d and sluggish, while in the case
of male childre n it is acute and by a long way more difficult. Wome n who have
conne xion with the ir husbands shortly be fore childbirth are de live re d all the more
quickly. Occasionally wome n se e m to be in the pains of labour though labour has not
in fact comme nce d, what se e me d like the comme nce me nt of labour be ing re ally the
re sult of the foe tus turning its he ad. Now all othe r animals bring the time of
pre gnancy to an e nd in a uniform way; in othe r words, one single te rm of pre gnancy
is de fine d for e ach of the m. But in the case of mankind alone of all animals the
time s are dive rse ; for pre gnancy may be of se ve n months' duration, or of e ight
months or of nine , and still more commonly of te n months, while some fe w wome n go
e ve n into the e le ve nth month. C hildre n that come into the world be fore se ve n
months can unde r no circumstance s survive . The se ve n-months' childre n are the
e arlie st that are capable of life , and most of the m are we akly-for which re ason, by
the way, it is customary to swaddle the m in wool,-and many of the m are born with
some of the orifice s of the body impe rforate , for instance the e ars or the
nostrils. But as the y ge t bigge r the y be come more pe rfe ctly de ve lope d, and many of
the m grow up. In Egypt, and in some othe r place s whe re the wome n are fruitful
and are wont to be ar and bring forth many childre n without difficulty, and whe re
the childre n whe n born are capable of living e ve n if the y be born subje ct to
de formity, in the se place s the e ight-months' childre n live and are brought up, but
in Gre e ce it is only a fe w of the m that survive while most pe rish. And this be ing
the ge ne ral e xpe rie nce , whe n such a child doe s happe n to survive the mothe r is apt
to think that it was not an e ight months' child afte r all, but that she had
conce ive d at an e arlie r pe riod without be ing aware of it. Wome n suffe r most pain
about the fourth and the e ighth months, and if the foe tus pe rishe s in the fourth or
in the e ighth month the mothe r also succumbs as a ge ne ral rule ; so that not only do
the e ight-months' childre n not live , but whe n the y die the ir mothe rs are in gre at
dange r of the ir own live s. In like manne r childre n that are appare ntly born at a
late r te rm than e le ve n months are he ld to be in doubtful case ; inasmuch as with
the m also the be ginning of conce ption may have e scape d the notice of the mothe r.
What I me an to say is that ofte n the womb ge ts fille d with wind, and the n whe n at a
late r pe riod conne xion and conce ption take place , the y think that the forme r
circumstance was the be ginning of conce ption from the similarity of the symptoms
that the y e xpe rie nce d. S uch the n are the diffe re nce s be twe e n mankind and othe r
animals in re gard to the many various mode s of comple tion of the te rm of pre gnancy.
Furthe rmore , some animals produce one and some produce many at a birth, but the
human spe cie s doe s some time s the one and some time s the othe r. As a ge ne ral rule and
among most nations the wome n be ar one child a birth; but fre que ntly and in many
lands the y be ar twins, as for instance in Egypt e spe cially. S ome time s wome n bring
forth thre e and e ve n four childre n, and e spe cially in ce rtain parts of the world,
as has alre ady be e n state d. The large st numbe r e ve r brought forth is five , and such
an occurre nce has be e n witne sse d on se ve ral occasions. The re was once upon a time a
ce rtain wome n who had twe nty childre n at four births; e ach time she had five , and
most of the m gre w up. Now among othe r animals, if a pair of twins happe n to be
male and fe male the y have as good a chance of surviving as though both had be e n
male s or both fe male s; but among mankind ve ry fe w twins survive if one happe n to be
a boy and the othe r a girl. Of all animals the woman and the mare are most
incline d to re ce ive the comme rce of the male during pre gnancy; while all othe r
animals whe n the y are pre gnant avoid the male , save those in which the phe nome non
of supe rfoe tation occurs, such as the hare . Unlike that animal, the mare afte r once
conce iving cannot be re nde re d pre gnant again, but brings forth one foal only, at
le ast as a ge ne ral rule ; in the human spe cie s case s of supe rfoe tation are rare , but
the y do happe n now and the n. An e mbryo conce ive d some conside rable time afte r a
pre vious conce ption doe s not come to pe rfe ction, but give s rise to pain and cause s
the de struction of the e arlie r e mbryo; and, by the way, a case has be e n known to
occur whe re
owing to this de structive influe nce no le ss than twe lve e mbryos conce ive d by
supe rfoe tation have be e n discharge d. But if the se cond conce ption take place at a
short inte rval, the n the mothe r be ars that which was late r conce ive d, and brings
forth the two childre n like actual twins, as happe ne d, according to the le ge nd, in
the case of Iphicle s and He rcule s. The following also is a striking e xample : a
ce rtain woman, having committe d adulte ry, brought forth the one child re se mbling
he r husband and the othe r re se mbling the adulte rous love r. The case has also
occurre d whe re a woman, be ing pre gnant of twins, has subse que ntly conce ive d a third
child; and in course of time she brought forth the twins pe rfe ct and at full te rm,
but the third a five -months' child; and this last die d the re and the n. And in
anothe r case it happe ne d that the woman was first de live re d of a se ve n-months'
child, and the n of two which we re of full te rm; and of the se the first die d and the
othe r two survive d. S ome also have be e n known to conce ive while about to
miscarry, and the y have lost the one child and be e n de live re d of the othe r. If
wome n while going with child cohabit afte r the e ighth month the child is in most
case s born cove re d ove r with a slimy fluid. Ofte n also the child is found to be
re ple te with food of which the mothe r had partake n.
5 Whe n wome n have partake n of salt in ove rabundance the ir childre n are apt to be
born de stitute of nails. Milk that is produce d e arlie r than the se ve nth month is
unfit for use ; but as soon as the child is fit to live the milk is fit to use . The
first of the milk is saltish, as it is like wise with she e p. Most wome n are se nsibly
affe cte d by wine during pre gnancy, for if the y partake of it the y grow re laxe d and
de bilitate d. The be ginning of child-be aring in wome n and of the capacity to
procre ate in me n, and the ce ssation of the se functions in both case s, coincide in
the one case with the e mission of se e d and in the othe r with the discharge of the
catame nia: with this qualification that the re is a lack of fe rtility at the
comme nce me nt of the se symptoms, and again towards the ir close whe n the e missions
be come scanty and we ak. The age at which the se xual powe rs be gin has be e n re late d
alre ady. As for the ir e nd, the me nstrual discharge s ce ase s in most wome n about
the ir fortie th ye ar; but with those in whom it goe s on longe r it lasts e ve n to the
fiftie th ye ar, and wome n of that age have be e n known to be ar childre n. But be yond
that age the re is no case on re cord. 6 Me n in
most case s continue to be se xually compe te nt until the y are sixty ye ars old, and if
that limit be ove rpasse d the n until se ve nty ye ars; and me n have be e n actually known
to procre ate childre n at se ve nty ye ars of age . With many me n and many wome n it so
happe ns that the y are unable to produce childre n to one anothe r, while the y are
able to do so in union with othe r individuals. The same thing happe ns with re gard
to the production of male and fe male offspring; for some time s me n and wome n in
union with one anothe r produce male childre n or fe male , as the case may be , but
childre n of the opposite se x whe n othe rwise mate d. And the y are apt to change in
this re spe ct with advancing age : for some time s a husband and wife while the y are
young produce fe male childre n and in late r life male childre n; and in othe r case s
the ve ry contrary occurs. And just the same thing is true in re gard to the
ge ne rative faculty: for some while young are childle ss, but have childre n whe n the y
grow olde r; and some have childre n to be gin with, and late r on no more . The re
are ce rtain wome n who conce ive with difficulty, but if the y do conce ive , bring the
child to maturity; while othe rs again conce ive re adily, but are unable to bring the
child to birth. Furthe rmore , some me n and some wome n produce fe male offspring and
some male , as for instance in the story of He rcule s, who among all his two and
se ve nty childre n is said to have be gotte n but one girl. Those wome n who are unable
to conce ive , save with the he lp of me dical tre atme nt or some othe r adve ntitious
circumstance , are as a ge ne ral rule apt to be ar fe male childre n rathe r than male .
It is a common thing with me n to be at first se xually compe te nt and afte rwards
impote nt, and the n again to re ve rt to the ir forme r powe rs. From de forme d pare nts
come de forme d childre n, lame from lame and blind from blind, and, spe aking
ge ne rally, childre n ofte n inhe rit anything that is pe culiar in the ir pare nts and
are born with similar marks, such as pimple s or scars. S uch things have be e n known
to be hande d down through thre e ge ne rations; for instance , a ce rtain man had a mark
on his arm which his son did not posse ss, but his grandson had it in the same spot
though not ve ry distinct. S uch case s, howe ve r, are fe w; for the childre n of
cripple s are mostly sound, and the re is no hard and fast rule re garding the m. While
childre n mostly re se mble the ir pare nts or the ir ance stors, it some time s happe ns
that no such re se mblance is to be trace d. But pare nts may pass on re se mblance afte r
se ve ral ge ne rations, as in the case of the woman in Elis, who committe d adulte ry
with a ne gro; in this case it was not the woman's own daughte r but the daughte r's
child that was a blackamoor. As a rule the daughte rs have a te nde ncy to take
afte r the mothe r, and the boys afte r the fathe r; but some time s it is the othe r way,
the boys taking afte r the mothe r and the girls afte r the fathe r. And the y may
re se mble both pare nts in particular fe ature s. The re have be e n known case s of
twins that had no re se mblance to one anothe r, but the y are alike as a ge ne ral rule .
The re was once upon a time a woman who had inte rcourse with he r husband a we e k
afte r giving birth to a child and she conce ive d and bore a se cond child as like the
first as any twin. S ome wome n have a te nde ncy to produce childre n that take afte r
the mse lve s, and othe rs childre n that take afte r the husband; and this latte r case
is like that of the ce le brate d mare in Pharsalus, that got the name of the Hone st
Wife . 7 In the e mission of spe rm the re is a
pre liminary discharge of air, and the outflow is manife stly cause d by a blast of
air; for nothing is cast to a distance save by pne umatic pre ssure . Afte r the se e d
re ache s the womb and re mains the re for a while , a me mbrane forms around it; for
whe n it happe ns to e scape be fore it is distinctly forme d, it looks like an e gg
e nve lope d in its me mbrane afte r re moval of the e ggshe ll; and the me mbrane is full
of ve ins. All animals whatsoe ve r, whe the r the y fly or swim or walk upon dry
land, whe the r the y bring forth the ir young alive or in the e gg, de ve lop in the same
way: save only that some have the nave l attache d to the womb, name ly the viviparous
animals, and some have it attache d to the e gg, and some to both parts alike , as in
a ce rtain sort of fishe s. And in some case s me mbranous e nve lope s surround the e gg,
and in othe r case s the chorion surrounds it. And first of all the animal de ve lops
within the inne rmost e nve lope , and the n anothe r me mbrane appe ars around the forme r
one , which latte r is for the most part attache d to the womb, but is in part
se parate d from it and contains fluid. In be twe e n is a wate ry or sanguine ous fluid,
which the wome n folk call the fore wate rs. 8
All animals, or all such as have a nave l, grow by the nave l. And the nave l is
attache d to the cotyle don in all such as posse ss cotyle dons, and to the womb itse lf
by a ve in in all such as have the womb smooth. And as re gards the ir shape within
the womb, the four-foote d animals all lie stre tche d out, and the footle ss animals
lie on the ir side s, as for instance fishe s; but two-le gge d animals lie in a be nt
position, as for instance birds; and human e mbryos lie be nt, with nose be twe e n the
kne e s and e ye s upon the kne e s, and the e ars fre e at the side s. All animals alike
have the he ad upwards to be gin with; but as the y grow and approach the te rm of
e gre ss from the womb the y turn downwards, and birth in the natural course of things
take s place in all animals he ad fore most; but in abnormal case s it may take place
in a be nt position, or fe e t fore most. The young of quadrupe ds whe n the y are ne ar
the ir full time contain e xcre me nts, both liquid and in the form of solid lumps, the
latte r in the lowe r part of the bowe l and the urine in the bladde r. In those
animals that have cotyle dons in the womb the cotyle dons grow le ss as the e mbryo
grows bigge r, and at le ngth the y disappe ar altoge the r. The nave l-string is a she ath
wrappe d about blood-ve sse ls which have the ir origin in the womb, from the
cotyle dons in those animals which posse ss the m and from a blood-ve sse l in those
which do not. In the large r animals, such as the e mbryos of oxe n, the ve sse ls are
four in numbe r, and in smalle r animals two; in the ve ry little one s, such as fowls,
one ve sse l only. Of the four ve sse ls that run into the e mbryo, two pass through
the live r whe re the so-calle d gate s or 'portae ' are , running in the dire ction of
the gre at ve in, and the othe r two run in the dire ction of the aorta towards the
point whe re it divide s and be come s two ve sse ls inste ad of one . Around e ach pair of
blood-ve sse ls are me mbrane s, and surrounding the se me mbrane s is the nave l-string
itse lf, afte r the manne r of a she ath. And as the e mbryo grows, the ve ins the mse lve s
te nd more and more to dwindle in size . And also as the e mbryo mature s it come s down
into the hollow of the womb and is obse rve d to move he re , and some time s rolls ove r
in the vicinity of the groin. 9 Whe n wome n are
in labour, the ir pains de te rmine towards many dive rs parts of the body, and in most
case s to one or othe r of the thighs. Those are the quicke st
to be de live re d who e xpe rie nce se ve re pains in the re gion of the be lly; and
parturition is difficult in those who be gin by suffe ring pain in the loins, and
spe e dy whe n the pain is abdominal. If the child about to be born be a male , the
pre liminary flood is wate ry and pale in colour, but if a girl it is tinge d with
blood, though still wate ry. In some case s of labour the se latte r phe nome na do not
occur, e ithe r one way or the othe r. In othe r animals parturition is
unaccompanie d by pain, and the dam is plainly se e n to suffe r but mode rate
inconve nie nce . In wome n, howe ve r, the pains are more se ve re , and this is e spe cially
the case in pe rsons of se de ntary habits, and in those who are we ak-che ste d and
short of bre ath. Labour is apt to be e spe cially difficult if during the proce ss the
woman while e xe rting force with he r bre ath fails to hold it in. First of all,
whe n the e mbryo starts to move and the me mbrane s burst, the re issue s forth the
wate ry flood; the n afte rwards come s the e mbryo, while the womb e ve rts and the
afte rbirth come s out from within. 1 0 The
cutting of the nave l-string, which is the nurse 's duty, is a matte r calling for no
little care and skill. For not only in case s of difficult labour must she be able
to re nde r assistance with skilful hand, but she must also have he r wits about he r
in all continge ncie s, and e spe cially in the ope ration of tying the cord. For if the
afte rbirth have come away, the nave l is ligature d off from the afte rbirth with a
woolle n thre ad and is the n cut above the ligature ; and at the place whe re it has
be e n tie d it he als up, and the re maining portion drops off. (If the ligature come
loose the child die s from loss of blood.) But if the afte rbirth has not ye t come
away, but re mains afte r the child itse lf is e xtrude d, it is cut away within afte r
the ligaturing of the cord. It ofte n happe ns that the child appe ars to have be e n
born de ad whe n it is me re ly we ak, and whe n be fore the umbilical cord has be e n
ligature d, the blood has run out into the cord and its surroundings. But
e xpe rie nce d midwive s have be e n known to sque e ze back the blood into the child's
body from the cord, and imme diate ly the child that a mome nt be fore was bloodle ss
came back to life again. It is the natural rule , as we have me ntione d above , for
all animals to come into the world he ad fore most, and childre n, more ove r, have
the ir hands stre tche d out by the ir side s. And the child give s a cry and puts its
hands up to its mouth as soon as it issue s forth. More ove r the child voids
e xcre me nt some time s at once , some time s a little late r, but in all case s during the
first day; and this e xcre me nt is unduly copious in comparison with the size of the
child; it is what the midwive s call the me conium or 'poppy-juice '. In colour it
re se mble s blood, e xtre me ly dark and pitch-like , but late r on it be come s milky, for
the child take s at once to the bre ast. Be fore birth the child make s no sound, e ve n
though in difficult labour it put forth its he ad while the re st of the body re mains
within. In case s whe re flooding take s place rathe r be fore its time , it is apt to
be followe d by difficult parturition. But if discharge take place afte r birth in
small quantity, and in case s whe re it only take s place at the be ginning and doe s
not continue till the fortie th day, the n in such case s wome n make a be tte r re cove ry
and are the soone r re ady to conce ive again. Until the child is forty days old it
ne ithe r laughs nor we e ps during waking hours, but of nights it some time s doe s both;
and for the most part it doe s not e ve n notice be ing tickle d, but passe s most of its
time in sle e p. As it ke e ps on growing, it ge ts more and more wake ful; and more ove r
it shows signs of dre aming, though it is long afte rwards be fore it re me mbe rs what
it dre ams. In othe r animals the re is no contrasting diffe re nce be twe e n one bone
and anothe r, but all are prope rly forme d; but in childre n the front part of the
he ad is soft and late of ossifying. And by the way, some animals are born with
te e th, but childre n be gin to cut the ir te e th in the se ve nth month; and the front
te e th are the first to come through, some time s the uppe r and some time s the lowe r
one s. And the warme r the nurse s' milk so much the quicke r are the childre n's te e th
to come . 1 1 Afte r parturition and the cle asing
flood the milk come s in ple nty, and in some wome n it flows not only from the
nipple s but at dive rs parts of the bre asts, and in some case s e ve n from the
armpits. And for some time afte rwards the re continue to be ce rtain indurate d parts
of the bre ast calle d strangalide s, or 'knots', which occur whe n it so happe ns that
the moisture is not concocte d, or whe n it finds no outle t but accumulate s within.
For the whole bre ast is so spongy that if a woman in drinking happe n to swallow a
hair, she ge ts a pain in he r bre ast, which ailme nt is calle d 'trichia'; and the
pain lasts till the hair e ithe r find its own way out or be sucke d out with the
milk. Wome n continue to have milk until the ir ne xt conce ption; and the n the milk
stops coming and goe s dry, alike in the human spe cie s and in the quadrupe dal
vivipara. S o long as the re is a flow of milk the me nstrual purgations do not take
place , at le ast as a ge ne ral rule , though the discharge has be e n known to occur
during the pe riod of suckling. For, spe aking ge ne rally, a de te rmination of moisture
doe s not take place at one and the same time in se ve ral dire ctions; as for instance
the me nstrual purgations te nd to be scanty in pe rsons suffe ring from hae morrhoids.
And in some wome n the like happe ns owing to the ir suffe ring from varice s, whe n the
fluids issue from the pe lvic re gion be fore e nte ring into the womb. And patie nts who
during suppre ssion of the me nse s happe n to vomit blood are no whit the worse .
1 2 C hildre n are ve ry commonly subje ct to convulsions, more e spe cially such of
the m as are more than ordinarily we ll-nourishe d on rich or unusually ple ntiful milk
from a stout nurse . Wine is bad for infants, in that it te nds to e xcite this
malady, and re d wine is worse than white , e spe cially whe n take n undilute d; and most
things that te nd to induce flatule ncy are also bad, and constipation too is
pre judicial. The majority of de aths in infancy occur be fore the child is a we e k
old, he nce it is customary to name the child at that age , from a be lie f that it has
now a be tte r chance of survival. This malady is worst at the full of the moon; and
by the way, it is a dange rous symptom whe n the spasms be gin in the child's back.
Book VIII 1 WE have now discusse d the physical
characte ristics of animals and the ir me thods of ge ne ration. The ir habits and the ir
mode s of living vary according to the ir characte r and the ir food. In the gre at
majority of animals the re are trace s of psychical qualitie s or attitude s, which
qualitie s are more marke dly diffe re ntiate d in the case of human be ings. For just as
we pointe d out re se mblance s in the physical organs, so in a numbe r of animals we
obse rve ge ntle ne ss or fie rce ne ss, mildne ss or cross te mpe r, courage , or timidity,
fe ar or confide nce , high spirit or low cunning, and, with re gard to inte llige nce ,
some thing e quivale nt to sagacity. S ome of the se qualitie s in man, as compare d with
the corre sponding qualitie s in animals, diffe r only quantitative ly: that is to say,
a man has more or le ss of this quality, and an animal has more or le ss of some
othe r; othe r qualitie s in man are re pre se nte d by analogous and not ide ntical
qualitie s: for instance , just as in man we find knowle dge , wisdom, and sagacity, so
in ce rtain animals the re e xists some othe r natural pote ntiality akin to the se . The
truth of this state me nt will be the more cle arly appre he nde d if we have re gard to
the phe nome na of childhood: for in childre n may be obse rve d the trace s and se e ds of
what will one day be se ttle d psychological habits, though psychologically a child
hardly diffe rs for the time be ing from an animal; so that one is quite justifie d in
saying that, as re gards man and animals, ce rtain psychical qualitie s are ide ntical
with one anothe r, whilst othe rs re se mble , and othe rs are analogous to, e ach othe r.
Nature proce e ds little by little from things life le ss to animal life in such a way
that it is impossible to de te rmine the e xact line of de marcation, nor on which side
the re of an inte rme diate form should lie . Thus, ne xt afte r life le ss things in the
upward scale come s the plant, and of plants one will diffe r from anothe r as to its
amount of appare nt vitality; and, in a word, the whole ge nus of plants, whilst it
is de void of life as compare d with an animal, is e ndowe d with life as compare d with
othe r corpore al e ntitie s. Inde e d, as we just re marke d, the re is obse rve d in plants
a continuous scale of asce nt towards the animal. S o, in the se a, the re are ce rtain
obje cts conce rning which one would be at a loss to de te rmine whe the r the y be animal
or ve ge table . For instance , ce rtain of the se obje cts are fairly roote d, and in
se ve ral case s pe rish if de tache d; thus the pinna is roote d to a particular spot,
and the sole n (or razor-she ll) cannot survive withdrawal from its burrow. Inde e d,
broadly spe aking, the e ntire ge nus of te stace ans have a re se mblance to ve ge table s,
if the y be contraste d with such animals as are capable of progre ssion. In re gard
to se nsibility, some animals give no indication whatsoe ve r of it, whilst othe rs
indicate it but indistinctly. Furthe r, the substance of some of the se inte rme diate
cre ature s is fle shlike , as is the case with the so-calle d te thya (or ascidians) and
the acale phae (or se a-ane mone s); but the sponge is in e ve ry re spe ct like a
ve ge table . And so throughout the e ntire animal scale the re is a graduate d
diffe re ntiation in amount of vitality
and in capacity for motion. A similar state me nt holds good with re gard to
habits of life . Thus of plants that spring from se e d the one function se e ms to be
the re production of the ir own particular spe cie s, and the sphe re of action with
ce rtain animals is similarly limite d. The faculty of re production, the n, is common
to all alike . If se nsibility be supe radde d, the n the ir live s will diffe r from one
anothe r in re spe ct to se xual inte rcourse through the varying amount of ple asure
de rive d the re from, and also in re gard to mode s of parturition and ways of re aring
the ir young. S ome animals, like plants, simply procre ate the ir own spe cie s at
de finite se asons; othe r animals busy the mse lve s also in procuring food for the ir
young, and afte r the y are re are d quit the m and have no furthe r de alings with the m;
othe r animals are more inte llige nt and e ndowe d with me mory, and the y live with
the ir offspring for a longe r pe riod and on a more social footing. The life of
animals, the n, may be divide d into two acts-procre ation and fe e ding; for on the se
two acts all the ir inte re sts and life conce ntrate . The ir food de pe nds chie fly on
the substance of which the y are se ve rally constitute d; for the source of the ir
growth in all case s will be this substance . And whatsoe ve r is in conformity with
nature is ple asant, and all animals pursue ple asure in ke e ping with the ir nature .
2 Animals are also diffe re ntiate d locally: that is to say, some live upon dry
land, while othe rs live in the wate r. And this diffe re ntiation may be inte rpre te d
in two diffe re nt ways. Thus, some animals are te rme d te rre strial as inhaling air,
and othe rs aquatic as taking in wate r; and the re are othe rs which do not actually
take in the se e le me nts, but ne ve rthe le ss are constitutionally adapte d to the
cooling influe nce , so far as is ne e dful to the m, of one e le me nt or the othe r, and
he nce are calle d te rre strial or aquatic though the y ne ithe r bre athe air nor take in
wate r. Again, othe r animals are so calle d from the ir finding the ir food and fixing
the ir habitat on land or in wate r: for many animals, although the y inhale air and
bre e d on land, ye t de rive the ir food from the wate r, and live in wate r for the
gre ate r part of the ir live s; and the se are the only animals to which as living in
and on two e le me nts the te rm 'amphibious' is applicable . The re is no animal taking
in wate r that is te rre strial or ae rial or that de rive s its food from the land,
whe re as of the gre at numbe r of land animals inhaling air many ge t the ir food from
the wate r; more ove r some are so pe culiarly organize d that if the y be shut off
altoge the r from the wate r the y cannot possibly live , as for instance , the so-calle d
se a-turtle , the crocodile , the hippopotamus, the se al, and some of the smalle r
cre ature s, such as the fre sh-wate r tortoise and the frog: now all the se animals
choke or drown if the y do not from time to time bre athe atmosphe ric air: the y bre e d
and re ar the ir young on dry land, or ne ar the land, but the y pass the ir live s in
wate r. But the dolphin is e quippe d in the most re markable way of all animals:
the dolphin and othe r similar aquatic animals, including the othe r ce tace ans which
re se mble it; that is to say, the whale , and all the othe r cre ature s that are
furnishe d with a blow-hole . One can hardly allow that such an animal is te rre strial
and te rre strial only, or aquatic and aquatic only, if by te rre strial we me an an
animal that inhale s air, and if by aquatic we me an an animal that take s in wate r.
For the fact is the dolphin pe rforms both the se proce sse s: he take s in wate r and
discharge s it by his blow-hole , and he also inhale s air into his lungs; for, by the
way, the cre ature is furnishe d with this organ and re spire s the re by, and
accordingly, whe n caught in the ne ts, he is quickly suffocate d for lack of air. He
can also live for a conside rable while out of the wate r, but all this while he
ke e ps up a dull moaning sound corre sponding to the noise made by air-bre athing
animals in ge ne ral; furthe rmore , whe n sle e ping, the animal ke e ps his nose above
wate r, and he doe s so that he may bre athe the air. Now it would be unre asonable to
assign one and the same class of animals to both cate gorie s, te rre strial and
aquatic, se e ing that the se cate gorie s are more or le ss e xclusive of one anothe r; we
must accordingly supple me nt our de finition of the te rm 'aquatic' or 'marine '. For
the fact is, some aquatic animals take in wate r and discharge it again, for the
same re ason that le ads air-bre athing animals to inhale air: in othe r words, with
the obje ct of cooling the blood. Othe rs take in wate r as incide ntal to the ir mode
of fe e ding; for as the y ge t the ir food in the wate r the y cannot but take in wate r
along with the ir food, and if the y take in wate r the y must be provide d with some
organ for discharging it. Those bloode d animals, the n, that use wate r for a purpose
analogous to re spiration are provide d with gills; and such as take in wate r whe n
catching the ir pre y, with the blow-hole . S imilar re marks are applicable to molluscs
and crustace ans; for again it is by way of procuring food that the se cre ature s take
in wate r. Aquatic in diffe re nt ways, the diffe re nce s de pe nding on bodily
re lation to e xte rnal te mpe rature and on habit of life , are such animals on the one
hand as take in air but live in wate r, and such on the othe r hand as take in wate r
and are furnishe d with gills but go upon dry land and ge t the ir living the re . At
pre se nt only one animal of the latte r kind is known, the so-calle d cordylus or
wate r-ne wt; this cre ature is furnishe d not with lungs but with gills, but for all
that it is a quadrupe d and fitte d for walking on dry land. In the case of all
the se animals the ir nature appe ars in some kind of a way to have got warpe d, just
as some male animals ge t to re se mble the fe male , and some fe male animals the male .
The fact is that animals, if the y be subje cte d to a modification in minute organs,
are liable to imme nse modifications in the ir ge ne ral configuration. This phe nome non
may be obse rve d in the case of ge lde d animals: only a minute organ of the animal is
mutilate d, and the cre ature passe s from the male to the fe male form. We may infe r,
the n, that if in the primary conformation of the e mbryo an infinite simally minute
but absolute ly e sse ntial organ sustain a change of magnitude one way or the othe r,
the animal will in one case turn to male and in the othe r to fe male ; and also that,
if the said organ be oblite rate d altoge the r, the animal will be of ne ithe r one se x
nor the othe r. And so by the occurre nce of modification in minute organs it come s
to pass that one animal is te rre strial and anothe r aquatic, in both se nse s of the se
te rms. And, again, some animals are amphibious whilst othe r animals are not
amphibious, owing to the circumstance that in the ir conformation while in the
e mbryonic condition the re got inte rmixe d into the m some portion of the matte r of
which the ir subse que nt food is constitute d; for, as was said above , what is in
conformity with nature is to e ve ry single animal ple asant and agre e able . Animals
the n have be e n cate gorize d into te rre strial and aquatic in thre e ways, according to
the ir assumption of air or of wate r, the te mpe rame nt of the ir bodie s, or the
characte r of the ir food; and the mode of life of an animal corre sponds to the
cate gory in which it is found. That is to say, in some case s the animal de pe nds for
its te rre strial or aquatic nature on te mpe rame nt and die t combine d, as we ll as upon
its me thod of re spiration; and some time s on te mpe rame nt and habits alone . Of
te stace ans, some , that are incapable of motion, subsist on fre sh wate r, for, as the
se a wate r dissolve s into its constitue nts, the fre sh wate r from its gre ate r
thinne ss pe rcolate s through the grosse r parts; in fact, the y live on fre sh wate r
just as the y we re originally e nge nde re d from the same . Now that fre sh wate r is
containe d in the se a and can be straine d off from it can be prove d in a thoroughly
practical way. Take a thin ve sse l of moulde d wax, attach a cord to it, and le t it
down quite e mpty into the se a: in twe nty-four hours it will be found to contain a
quantity of wate r, and the wate r will be fre sh and drinkable . S e a-ane mone s fe e d
on such small fishe s as come in the ir way. The mouth of this cre ature is in the
middle of its body; and this fact may be cle arly obse rve d in the case of the large r
varie tie s. Like the oyste r it has a duct for the outle t of the re siduum; and this
duct is at the top of the animal. In othe r words, the se a-ane mone corre sponds to
the inne r fle shy part of the oyste r, and the stone to which the one cre ature clings
corre sponds to the she ll which e ncase s the othe r. The limpe t de tache s itse lf
from the rock and goe s about in que st of food. Of she ll-fish that are mobile , some
are carnivorous and live on little fishe s, as for instance , the purple mure x-and
the re can be no doubt that the purple mure x is carnivorous, as it is caught by a
bait of fish; othe rs are carnivorous, but fe e d also on marine ve ge tation. The
se a-turtle s fe e d on she ll-fish-for, by the way, the ir mouths are e xtraordinarily
hard; whate ve r obje ct it se ize s, stone or othe r, it crunche s into bits, but whe n it
le ave s the wate r for dry land it browse s on grass). The se cre ature s suffe r gre atly,
and ofte ntime s die whe n the y lie on the surface of the wate r e xpose d to a scorching
sun; for, whe n once the y have rise n to the surface , the y find a difficulty in
sinking again. C rustace ans fe e d in like manne r. The y are omnivorous; that is to
say, the y live on stone s, slime , se a-we e d, and e xcre me nt-as for instance the rock-
crab-and are also carnivorous. The crawfish or spiny-lobste r can ge t the be tte r of
fishe s e ve n of the large r spe cie s, though in some of the m it occasionally finds
more than its match. Thus, this animal is so ove rmaste re d and cowe d by the octopus
that it die s of te rror if it be come aware of an octopus in the same ne t with
itse lf. The crawfish can maste r the conge r-e e l, for owing to the rough spine s of
the crawfish the e e l cannot slip away and e lude its hold. The conge r-e e l, howe ve r,
de vours the octopus, for owing to the slippe rine ss of its antagonist the octopus
can make nothing of it. The crawfish fe e ds on little fish, capturing the m be side
its hole or dwe lling place ; for, by the way, it is found out at se a on rough and
stony bottoms, and in such place s it make s its de n. Whate ve r it catche s, it puts
into its mouth with its pince r-like claws, like the common crab. Its nature is to
walk straight forward whe n it has nothing to fe ar, with its fe e le rs hanging
side ways; if it be frighte ne d, it make s its e scape backwards, darting off to a
gre at distance . The se animals fight one anothe r with the ir claws, just as rams
fight with the ir horns, raising the m and striking the ir oppone nts; the y are ofte n
also se e n crowde d toge the r in he rds. S o much for the mode of life of the
crustace an. Molluscs are all carnivorous; and of molluscs the calamary and the
se pia are more than a match for fishe s e ve n of the large spe cie s. The octopus for
the most part gathe rs she llfish, e xtracts the fle sh, and fe e ds on that; in fact,
fishe rme n re cognize the ir hole s by the numbe r of she lls lying about. S ome say that
the octopus de vours its own spe cie s, but this state me nt is incorre ct; it is
doubtle ss founde d on the fact that the cre ature is ofte n found with its te ntacle s
re move d, which te ntacle s have re ally be e n e ate n off by the conge r. Fishe s, all
without e xce ption, fe e d on spawn in the spawning se ason; but in othe r re spe cts the
food varie s with the varying spe cie s. S ome fishe s are e xclusive ly carnivorous, as
the cartilaginous ge nus, the conge r, the channa or S e rranus, the tunny, the bass,
the synodon or De nte x, the amia, the se a-pe rch, and the murae na. The re d mulle t is
carnivorous, but fe e ds also on se a-we e d, on she ll-fish, and on mud. The gre y mulle t
fe e ds on mud, the dascyllus on mud and offal, the scarus or parrot-fish and the
me lanurus on se a-we e d, the saupe on offal and se a-we e d; the saupe fe e ds also on
zoste ra, and is the only fish that is capture d with a gourd. All fishe s de vour
the ir own spe cie s, with the single e xce ption of the ce stre us or mulle t; and the
conge r is e spe cially rave nous in this re spe ct. The ce phalus and the mulle t in
ge ne ral are the only fish that e at no fle sh; this may be infe rre d from the facts
that whe n caught the y are ne ve r found with fle sh in the ir inte stine s, and that the
bait use d to catch the m is not fle sh but barle y-cake . Eve ry fish of the mulle t-kind
live s on se a-we e d and sand. The ce phalus, calle d by some the 'che lon', ke e ps ne ar
in to the shore , the pe rae as ke e ps out at a distance from it, and fe e ds on a mucous
substance e xuding from itse lf, and conse que ntly is always in a starve d condition.
The ce phalus live s in mud, and is in conse que nce he avy and slimy; it ne ve r fe e ds on
any othe r fish. As it live s in mud, it has e ve ry now and the n to make a le ap
upwards out of the mud so as to wash the slime from off its body. The re is no
cre ature known to pre y upon the spawn of the ce phalus, so that the spe cie s is
e xce e dingly nume rous; whe n, howe ve r, the is full-grown it is pre ye d upon by a
numbe r of fishe s, and e spe cially by the acharnas or bass. Of all fishe s the mulle t
is the most voracious and insatiable , and in conse que nce its be lly is ke pt at full
stre tch; whe ne ve r it is not starving, it may be conside re d as out of condition.
Whe n it is frighte ne d, it hide s its he ad in mud, unde r the notion that it is hiding
its whole body. The synodon is carnivorous and fe e ds on molluscs. Ve ry ofte n the
synodon and the channa cast up the ir stomachs while chasing smalle r fishe s; for, be
it re me mbe re d, fishe s have the ir stomachs close to the mouth, and are not furnishe d
with a gulle t. S ome fishe s the n, as has be e n state d, are carnivorous, and
carnivorous only, as the dolphin, the synodon, the gilt-he ad, the se lachians, and
the molluscs. Othe r fishe s fe e d habitually on mud or se a-we e d or se a-moss or the
so-calle d stalk-we e d or growing plants; as for instance , the phycis, the goby, and
the rock-fish; and, by the way, the only me at that the phycis will touch is that of
prawns. Ve ry ofte n, howe ve r, as has be e n state d, the y de vour one anothe r, and
e spe cially do the large r one s de vour the smalle r. The proof of the ir be ing
carnivorous is the fact that the y can be caught with fle sh for a bait. The
macke re l, the tunny, and the bass are for the most part carnivorous, but the y do
occasionally fe e d on se a-we e d. The sargue fe e ds on the le avings of the trigle or
re d mulle t. The re d mulle t burrows in the mud, whe n it se ts the mud in motion and
quits its haunt, the sargue se ttle s down into the place and fe e ds on what is le ft
be hind, and pre ve nts any smalle r fish from se ttling in the imme diate vicinity.
Of all fishe s the so-calle d scarus, or parrot, wrasse , is the only one known to
che w the cud like a quadrupe d. As a ge ne ral rule the large r fishe s catch the
smalle r one s in the ir mouths whilst swimming straight afte r the m in the ordinary
position; but the se lachians, the dolphin, and all the ce tace a must first turn ove r
on the ir backs, as the ir mouths are place d down be low; this allows a fair chance of
e scape to the smalle r fishe s, and, inde e d, if it we re not so, the re would be ve ry
fe w of the little fishe s le ft, for the spe e d and voracity of the dolphin is
some thing marve llous. Of e e ls a fe w he re and the re fe e d on mud and on chance
morse ls of food thrown to the m; the gre ate r part of the m subsist on fre sh wate r.
Ee l-bre e de rs are particularly care ful to have the wate r ke pt pe rfe ctly cle ar, by
its pe rpe tually flowing on to flat slabs of stone and the n flowing off again;
some time s the y coat the e e l-tanks with plaste r. The fact is that the e e l will soon
choke if the wate r is not cle ar as his gills are pe culiarly small. On this account,
whe n fishing for e e ls, the y disturb the wate r. In the rive r S trymon e e l-fishing
take s place at the rising of the Ple iads, be cause at this pe riod the wate r is
trouble d and the mud raise d up by contrary winds; unle ss the wate r be in this
condition, it is as we ll to le ave the e e ls alone . Whe n de ad the e e l, unlike the
majority of fishe s, ne ithe r floats on nor rise s to the surface ; and this is owing
to the smallne ss of the stomach. A fe w e e ls are supplie d with fat, but the gre ate r
part have no fat whatsoe ve r. Whe n re move d from the wate r the y can live for five or
six days; for a longe r pe riod if north winds pre vail, for a shorte r if south winds.
If the y are re move d in summe r from the pools to the tanks the y will die ; but not so
if re move d in the winte r. The y are not capable of holding out against any abrupt
change ; conse que ntly the y ofte n die in large numbe rs whe n me n e ngage d in
transporting the m from one place to anothe r dip the m into wate r particularly cold.
The y will also die of suffocation if the y be ke pt in a scanty supply of wate r. This
same re mark will hold good for fishe s in ge ne ral; for the y are suffocate d if the y
be long confine d in a short supply of wate r, with the wate r ke pt unchange d-just as
animals that re spire are suffocate d if the y be shut up with a scanty supply of air.
The e e l in some case s live s for se ve n or e ight ye ars. The rive r-e e l fe e ds on his
own spe cie s, on grass, or on roots, or on any chance food found in the mud. The ir
usual fe e ding-time is at night, and during the day-time the y re tre at into de e p
wate r. And so much for the food of fishe s. 3
Of birds, such as have crooke d talons are carnivorous without e xce ption, and cannot
swallow corn or bre ad-food e ve n if it be put into the ir bills in tit-bits; as for
instance , the e agle of e ve ry varie ty, the kite , the two spe cie s of hawks, to wit,
the dove -hawk and the sparrow-hawk-and, by the way, the se two hawks diffe r gre atly
in size from one anothe r-and the buzzard. The buzzard is of the same size as the
kite , and is visible at all se asons of the ye ar. The re is also the phe ne (or
lamme rge ie r) and the vulture . The phe ne is large r than the common e agle and is
ashe n in colour. Of the vulture the re are two varie tie s: one small and whitish, the
othe r comparative ly large and rathe r more ashe n-coloure d than white . Furthe r, of
birds that fly by night, some have crooke d talons, such as the night-rave n, the
owl, and the e agle -owl. The e agle -owl re se mble s the common owl in shape , but it is
quite as large as the e agle . Again, the re is the e le us, the Ae golian owl, and the
little horne d owl. Of the se birds, the e le us is some what large r than the barn-door
cock, and the Ae golian owl is of about the same size as the e le us, and both the se
birds hunt the jay; the little horne d owl is smalle r than the common owl. All the se
thre e birds are alike in appe arance , and all thre e are carnivorous. Again, of
birds that have not crooke d talons some are carnivorous, such as the swallow.
Othe rs fe e d on grubs, such as the chaffinch, the sparrow, the 'batis', the gre e n
linne t, and the titmouse . Of the titmouse the re are thre e varie tie s. The large st is
the finch-titmouse --for it is about the size of a finch; the se cond has a long
tail, and from its habitat is calle d the hill-titmouse ; the third re se mble s the
othe r two in appe arance , but is le ss in size than e ithe r of the m. The n come the
be cca-fico, the black-cap, the bull-finch, the robin, the e pilais, the midge t-bird,
and the golde n-cre ste d wre n. This wre n is little large r than a locust, has a cre st
of bright re d gold, and is in e ve ry way a be autiful and grace ful little bird. The n
the anthus, a bird about the size of a finch; and the mountain-finch, which
re se mble s a finch and is of much the same size , but its ne ck is blue , and it is
name d from its habitat; and lastly the wre n and the rook. The above -e nume rate d
birds and the like of the m fe e d e ithe r wholly or for the most part on grubs, but
the following and the like fe e d on thistle s; to wit, the linne t, the thraupis, and
the goldfinch. All the se birds fe e d on thistle s, but ne ve r on grubs or any living
thing whate ve r; the y live and roost also on the plants from which the y de rive the ir
food. The re are othe r birds whose favourite food consists of inse cts found
be ne ath the bark of tre e s; as for instance , the gre at and the small pie , which are
nickname d the woodpe cke rs. The se two birds re se mble one anothe r in plumage and in
note , only that the note of the large r bird is the loude r of the two; the y both
fre que nt the trunks of tre e s in que st of food. The re is also the gre e npie , a bird
about the size of a turtle -dove , gre e n-coloure d all ove r, that pe cks at the bark of
tre e s with e xtraordinary vigour, live s ge ne rally on the branch of a tre e , has a
loud note , and is mostly found in the Pe loponne se . The re is anothe r bird calle d the
'grub-picke r' (or tre e -cre e pe r), about as small as the pe nduline titmouse , with
spe ckle d plumage of an ashe n colour, and with a poor note ; it is a varie ty of the
woodpe cke r. The re are othe r birds that live on fruit and he rbage , such as the
wild pige on or ringdove , the common pige on, the rock-dove , and the turtle -dove . The
ring-dove and the common pige on are visible at all se asons; the turtle dove only in
the summe r, for in winte r it lurks in some hole or othe r and is ne ve r se e n. The
rock-dove is chie fly visible in the autumn, and is caught at that se ason; it is
large r than the common pige on but smalle r than the wild one ; it is ge ne rally caught
while drinking. The se pige ons bring the ir young one s with the m whe n the y visit this
country. All our othe r birds come to us in the e arly summe r and build the ir ne sts
he re , and the gre ate r part of the m re ar the ir young on animal food, with the sole
e xce ption of the pige on and its varie tie s. The whole ge nus of birds may be
pre tty we ll divide d into such as procure the ir food on dry land, such as fre que nt
rive rs and lake s, and such as live on or by the se a. Of wate r-birds such as are
we b-foote d live actually on the wate r, while such as are split-foote d live by the
e dge of it-and, by the way, wate r-birds that are not carnivorous live on wate r-
plants, (but most of the m live on fish), like the he ron and the spoonbill that
fre que nt the banks of lake s and rive rs; and the spoonbill, by the way, is le ss than
the common he ron, and has a long flat bill. The re are furthe rmore the stork and the
se ame w; and the se ame w, by the way, is ashe n-coloure d. The re is also the
schoe nilus, the cinclus, and the white -rump. Of the se smalle r birds the last
me ntione d is the large st, be ing about the size of the common thrush; all thre e may
be de scribe d as 'wag-tails'. The n the re is the scalidris, with plumage ashe n-gre y,
but spe ckle d. More ove r, the family of the halcyons or kingfishe rs live by the
wate rside . Of kingfishe rs the re are two varie tie s; one that sits on re e ds and
sings; the othe r, the large r of the two, is without a note . Both the se varie tie s
are blue on the back. The re is also the trochilus (or sandpipe r). The halcyon also,
including a varie ty te rme d the ce rylus, is found ne ar the se aside . The crow also
fe e ds on such animal life as is cast up on the be ach, for the bird is omnivorous.
The re are also the white gull, the ce pphus, the ae thyia, and the charadrius. Of
we b-foote d birds, the large r spe cie s live on the banks of rive rs and lake s; as the
swan, the duck, the coot, the gre be , and the te al-a bird re se mbling the duck but
le ss in size -and the wate r-rave n or cormorant. This bird is the size of a stork,
only that its le gs are shorte r; it is we b-foote d and is a good swimme r; its plumage
is black. It roosts on tre e s, and is the only one of all such birds as the se that
is found to build its ne st in a tre e . Furthe r the re is the large goose , the little
gre garious goose , the vulpanse r, the horne d gre be , and the pe ne lops. The se a-e agle
live s in the ne ighbourhood of the se a and se e ks its quarry in lagoons. A gre at
numbe r of birds are omnivorous. Birds of pre y fe e d on any animal or bird, othe r
than a bird of pre y, that the y may catch. The se birds ne ve r touch one of the ir own
ge nus, whe re as fishe s ofte n de vour me mbe rs actually of the ir own spe cie s. Birds,
as a rule , are ve ry spare drinke rs. In fact birds of pre y ne ve r drink at all,
e xce pting a ve ry fe w, and the se drink ve ry rare ly; and this last obse rvation is
pe culiarly applicable to the ke stre l. The kite has be e n se e n to drink, but he
ce rtainly drinks ve ry se ldom. 4 Animals that
are coate d with te sse llate s-such as the lizard and the othe r quadrupe ds, and the
se rpe nts-are omnivorous: at all e ve nts the y are carnivorous and graminivorous; and
se rpe nts, by the way, are of all animals the gre ate st gluttons. Te sse llate d
animals are spare drinke rs, as are also all such animals as have a spongy lung, and
such a lung, scantily supplie d with blood, is found in all oviparous animals.
S e rpe nts, by the by, have an insatiate appe tite for wine ; conse que ntly, at time s
me n hunt for snake s by pouring wine into sauce rs and putting the m into the
inte rstice s of walls, and the cre ature s are caught whe n ine briate d. S e rpe nts are
carnivorous, and whe ne ve r the y catch an animal the y e xtract all its juice s and
e je ct the cre ature whole . And, by the way, this is done by all othe r cre ature s of
similar habits, as for instance the spide r; only that the spide r sucks out the
juice s of its pre y outside , and the se rpe nt doe s so in its be lly. The se rpe nt take s
any food pre se nte d to him, e ats birds and animals, and swallows e ggs e ntire . But
afte r taking his pre y he stre tche s himse lf until he stands straight out to the ve ry
tip, and the n he contracts and sque e ze s himse lf into little compass, so that the
swallowe d mass may pass down his outstre tche d body; and this action on his part is
due to the te nuity and le ngth of his gulle t. S pide rs and snake s can both go without
food for a long time ; and this re mark may be ve rifie d by obse rvation of spe cime ns
ke pt alive in the shops of the apothe carie s. 5
Of viviparous quadrupe ds such as are fie rce and jag-toothe d are without e xce ption
carnivorous; though, by the way, it is state d of the wolf, but of no othe r animal,
that in e xtre mity of hunge r it will e at a ce rtain kind of e arth. The se carnivorous
animals ne ve r e at grass e xce pt whe n the y are sick, just as dogs bring on a vomit by
e ating grass and the re by purge the mse lve s. The solitary wolf is more apt to
attack man than the wolf that goe s with a pack. The animal calle d 'glanus' by
some and 'hyae na' by othe rs is as large as a wolf, with a mane like a horse , only
that the hair is stiffe r and longe r and e xte nds ove r the e ntire le ngth of the
chine . It will lie in wait for a man and chase him, and will inve igle a dog within
its re ach by making a noise that re se mble s the re tching noise of a man vomiting. It
is e xce e dingly fond of putre fie d fle sh, and will burrow in a grave yard to gratify
this prope nsity. The be ar is omnivorous. It e ats fruit, and is e nable d by the
supple ne ss of its body to climb a tre e ; it also e ats ve ge table s, and it will bre ak
up a hive to ge t at the hone y; it e ats crabs and ants also, and is in a ge ne ral way
carnivorous. It is so powe rful that it will attack not only the de e r but the wild
boar, if it can take it unaware s, and also the bull. Afte r coming to close quarte rs
with the bull it falls on its back in front of the animal, and, whe n the bull
proce e ds to butt, the be ar se ize s hold of the bull's horns with its front paws,
faste ns its te e th into his shoulde r, and drags him down to the ground. For a short
time toge the r it can walk e re ct on its hind le gs. All the fle sh it e ats it first
allows to be come carrion. The lion, like all othe r savage and jag-toothe d
animals, is carnivorous. It de vours its food gre e dily and fie rce ly, and ofte n
swallows its pre y e ntire without re nding it at all; it will the n go fasting for two
or thre e days toge the r, be ing re nde re d capable of this abstine nce by its pre vious
surfe it. It is a spare drinke r. It discharge s the solid re siduum in small
quantitie s, about e ve ry othe r day or at irre gular inte rvals, and the substance of
it is hard and dry like the e xcre me nt of a dog. The wind discharge d from off its
stomach is punge nt, and its urine e mits a strong odour, a phe nome non which, in the
case of dogs, accounts for the ir habit of sniffing at tre e s; for, by the way, the
lion, like the dog, lifts its le g to void its urine . It infe cts the food it e ats
with a strong sme ll by bre athing on it, and whe n the animal is cut ope n an
ove rpowe ring vapour e xhale s from its inside . S ome wild quadrupe ds fe e d in lake s
and rive rs; the se al is the only one that ge ts its living on the se a. To the forme r
class of animals be long the so-calle d castor, the satyrium, the otte r, and the so-
calle d latax, or be ave r. The be ave r is flatte r than the otte r and has strong te e th;
it ofte n at night-time e me rge s from the wate r and goe s nibbling at the bark of the
aspe ns that fringe the rive rside s. The otte r will bite a man, and it is said that
whe ne ve r it bite s it will ne ve r le t go until it he ars a bone crack. The hair of the
be ave r is rough, inte rme diate in appe arance be twe e n the hair of the se al and the
hair of the de e r. 6 Jag-toothe d animals drink
by lapping, as do also some animals with te e th diffe re ntly forme d, as the mouse .
Animals whose uppe r and lowe r te e th me e t e ve nly drink by suction, as the horse and
the ox; the be ar ne ithe r laps nor sucks, but gulps down his drink. Birds, a rule ,
drink by suction, but the long ne cke d birds stop and e le vate the ir he ads at
inte rvals; the purple coot is the only one (of the long-ne cke d birds) that swallows
wate r
by gulps. Horne d animals, dome sticate d or wild, and all such as are not jag-
toothe d, are all frugivorous and graminivorous, save unde r gre at stre ss of hunge r.
The pig is an e xce ption, it care s little for grass or fruit, but of all animals it
is the fonde st of roots, owing to the fact that its snout is pe culiarly adapte d for
digging the m out of the ground; it is also of all animals the most e asily ple ase d
in the matte r of food. It take s on fat more rapidly in proportion to its size than
any othe r animal; in fact, a pig can be fatte ne d for the marke t in sixty days. Pig-
de ale rs can te ll the amount of fle sh take n on, by having first we ighe d the animal
while it was be ing starve d. Be fore the fatte ning proce ss be gins, the cre ature must
be starve d for thre e days; and, by the way, animals in ge ne ral will take on fat if
subje cte d pre viously to a course of starvation; afte r the thre e days of starvation,
pig-bre e de rs fe e d the animal lavishly. Bre e de rs in Thrace , whe n fatte ning pigs,
give the m a drink on the first day; the n the y miss one , and the n two days, the n
thre e and four, until the inte rval e xte nds ove r se ve n days. The pigs' me at use d for
fatte ning is compose d of barle y, mille t, figs, acorns, wild pe ars, and cucumbe rs.
The se animals-and othe r animals that have warm be llie s-are fatte ne d by re pose .
(Pigs also fatte n the be tte r by be ing allowe d to wallow in mud. The y like to fe e d
in batche s of the same age . A pig will give battle e ve n to a wolf.) If a pig be
we ighe d whe n living, you may calculate that afte r de ath its fle sh will we igh five -
sixths of that we ight, and the hair, the blood, and the re st will we igh the othe r
sixth. Whe n suckling the ir young, swine like all othe r animals-ge t atte nuate d. S o
much for the se animals. 7 C attle fe e d on corn
and grass, and fatte n on ve ge table s that te nd to cause flatule ncy, such as bitte r
ve tch or bruise d be ans or be an-stalks. The olde r one s also will fatte n if the y be
fe d up afte r an incision has be e n made into the ir hide , and air blown the re into.
C attle will fatte n also on barle y in its natural state or on barle y fine ly
winnowe d, or on swe e t food, such as figs, or pulp from the wine -pre ss, or on e lm-
le ave s. But nothing is so fatte ning as the he at of the sun and wallowing in warm
wate rs. If the horns of young cattle be sme are d with hot wax, you may mold the m to
any shape you ple ase , and cattle are le ss subje ct to dise ase of the hoof if you
sme ar the horny parts with wax, pitch, or olive oil. He rde d cattle suffe r more whe n
the y are force d to change the ir pasture ground by frost than whe n snow is the cause
of change . C attle grow all the more in size whe n the y are ke pt from se xual comme rce
ove r a numbe r of ye ars; and it is with a vie w to growth in size that in Epirus the
so-calle d Pyrrhic kine are not allowe d inte rcourse with the bull until the y are
nine ye ars old; from which circumstance the y are nickname d the 'unbulle d' kine . Of
the se Pyrrhic cattle , by the way, the y say that the re are only about four hundre d
in the world, that the y are the private prope rty of the Epirote royal family, that
the y cannot thrive out of Epirus, and that pe ople e lse whe re have trie d to re ar
the m, but without succe ss. 8 Horse s, mule s,
and asse s fe e d on corn and grass, but are fatte ne d chie fly by drink. Just in
proportion as be asts of burde n drink wate r, so will the y more or le ss e njoy the ir
food, and a place will give good or bad fe e ding according as the wate r is good or
bad. Gre e n corn, while ripe ning, will give a smooth coat; but such corn is
injurious if the spike s are too stiff and sharp. The first crop of clove r is
unwhole some , and so is clove r ove r which ill-sce nte d wate r runs; for the clove r is
sure to ge t the taint of the wate r. C attle like cle ar wate r for drinking; but the
horse in this re spe ct re se mble s the came l, for the came l like s turbid and thick
wate r, and will ne ve r drink from a stre am until he has trample d it into a turbid
condition. And, by the way, the came l can go without wate r for as much as four
days, but afte r that whe n he drinks, he drinks in imme nse quantitie s.
9 The e le phant at the most can e at nine Mace donian me dimni of fodde r at one
me al; but so large an amount is unwhole some . As a ge ne ral rule it can take six or
se ve n me dimni of fodde r, five me dimni of whe at, and five mare is of wine -six cotylae
going to the maris. An e le phant has be e n known to drink right off fourte e n
Mace donian me tre tae of wate r, and anothe r me tre tae late r in the day. C ame ls live
for about thirty ye ars; in some e xce ptional case s the y live much longe r, and
instance s have be e n known of the ir living to the age of a hundre d. The e le phant is
said by some to live for about two hundre d ye ars; by othe rs, for thre e hundre d.
1 0 S he e p and goats are graminivorous, but she e p browse assiduously and ste adily,
whe re as goats shift the ir ground rapidly, and browse only on the tips of the
he rbage . S he e p are much improve d in condition by drinking, and accordingly the y
give the flocks salt e ve ry five days in summe r, to the e xte nt of one me dimnus to
the hundre d she e p, and this is found to re nde r a flock he althie r and fatte r. In
fact the y mix salt with the gre ate r part of the ir food; a large amount of salt is
mixe d into the ir bran (for the re ason that the y drink more whe n thirsty), and in
autumn the y ge t cucumbe rs with a sprinkling of salt on the m; this admixture of salt
in the ir food te nds also to incre ase the quantity of milk in the e we s. If she e p be
ke pt on the move at midday the y will drink more copiously towards e ve ning; and if
the e we s be fe d with salte d food as the lambing se ason draws ne ar the y will ge t
large r udde rs. S he e p are fatte ne d by twigs of the olive or of the ole aste r, by
ve tch, and bran of e ve ry kind; and the se article s of food fatte n all the more if
the y be first sprinkle d with brine . S he e p will take on fle sh all the be tte r if the y
be first put for thre e days through a proce ss of starving. In autumn, wate r from
the north is more whole some for she e p than wate r from the south. Pasture grounds
are all the be tte r if the y have a we ste rly aspe ct. S he e p will lose fle sh if the y
be ke pt ove rmuch on the move or be subje cte d to any hardship. In winte r time
she phe rds can e asily distinguish the vigorous she e p from the we akly, from the fact
that the vigorous she e p are cove re d with hoar-frost while the we akly one s are quite
fre e of it; the fact be ing that the we akly one s fe e ling oppre sse d with the burde n
shake the mse lve s and so ge t rid of it. The fle sh of all quadrupe ds de te riorate s in
marshy pasture s, and is the be tte r on high grounds. S he e p that have flat tails can
stand the winte r be tte r than long-taile d she e p, and short-fle e ce d she e p than the
shaggy-fle e ce d; and she e p with crisp wool stand the rigour of winte r ve ry poorly.
S he e p are he althie r than goats, but goats are stronge r than she e p. (The fle e ce s and
the wool of she e p that have be e n kille d by wolve s, as also the clothe s made from
the m, are e xce ptionally infe ste d with lice .) 1 1
Of inse cts, such as have te e th are omnivorous; such as have a tongue fe e d on
liquids only, e xtracting with that organ juice s from all quarte rs. And of the se
latte r some may be calle d omnivorous, inasmuch as the y fe e d on e ve ry kind of juice ,
as for instance , the common fly; othe rs are blood-sucke rs, such as the gadfly and
the horse -fly, othe rs again live on the juice s of fruits and plants. The be e is the
only inse ct that invariably e sche ws whate ve r is rotte n; it will touch no article of
food unle ss it have a swe e t-tasting juice , and it is particularly fond of drinking
wate r if it be found bubbling up cle ar from a spring unde rground. S o much for
the food of animals of the le ading ge ne ra. 1 2
The habits of animals are all conne cte d with e ithe r bre e ding and the re aring of
young, or with the procuring a due supply of food; and the se habits are modifie d so
as to suit cold and he at and the variations of the se asons. For all animals have an
instinctive pe rce ption of the change s of te mpe rature , and, just as me n se e k she lte r
in house s in winte r, or as me n of gre at posse ssions spe nd the ir summe r in cool
place s and the ir winte r in sunny one s, so also all animals that can do so shift
the ir habitat at various se asons. S ome cre ature s can make provision against
change without stirring from the ir ordinary haunts; othe rs migrate , quitting Pontus
and the cold countrie s afte r the autumnal e quinox to avoid the approaching winte r,
and afte r the spring e quinox migrating from warm lands to cool lands to avoid the
coming he at. In some case s the y migrate from place s ne ar at hand, in othe rs the y
may be said to come from the e nds of the world, as in the case of the crane ; for
the se birds migrate from the ste ppe s of S cythia to the marshlands south of Egypt
whe re the Nile has its source . And it is he re , by the way, that the y are said to
fight with the pygmie s; and the story is not fabulous, but the re is in re ality a
race of dwarfish me n, and the horse s are little in proportion, and the me n live in
cave s unde rground. Pe licans also migrate , and fly from the S trymon to the Iste r,
and bre e d on the banks of this rive r. The y de part in flocks, and the birds in front
wait for those in the re ar, owing to the fact that whe n the flock is passing ove r
the inte rve ning mountain range , the birds in the re ar lose sight of the ir
companions in the van. Fishe s also in a similar manne r shift the ir habitat now
out of the Euxine and now into it. In winte r the y move from the oute r se a in
towards land in que st of he at; in summe r the y shift from shallow wate rs to the de e p
se a to e scape the he at. We akly birds in winte r and in frosty we athe r come down
to the plains for warmth, and in
summe r migrate to the hills for coolne ss. The more we akly an animal is the gre ate r
hurry will it be in to migrate on account of e xtre me s of te mpe rature , e ithe r hot or
cold; thus the macke re l migrate s in advance of the tunnie s, and the quail in
advance of the crane s. The forme r migrate s in the month of Boe dromion, and the
latte r in the month of Mae macte rion. All cre ature s are fatte r in migrating from
cold to he at than in migrating from he at to cold; thus the quail is fatte r whe n he
e migrate s in autumn than whe n he arrive s in spring. The migration from cold
countrie s is conte mporane ous with the close of the hot se ason. Animals are in
be tte r trim for bre e ding purpose s in spring-time , whe n the y change from hot to cool
lands. Of birds, the crane , as has be e n said, migrate s from one e nd of the world
to the othe r; the y fly against the wind. The story told about the stone is untrue :
to wit, that the bird, so the story goe s, carrie s in its inside a stone by way of
ballast, and that the stone whe n vomite d up is a touchstone for gold. The cushat
and the rock-dove migrate , and ne ve r winte r in our country, as is the case also
with the turtle -dove ; the common pige on, howe ve r, stays be hind. The quail also
migrate s; only, by the way, a fe w quails and turtle -dove s may stay be hind he re and
the re in sunny districts. C ushats and turtle -dove s flock toge the r, both whe n the y
arrive and whe n the se ason for migration come s round again. Whe n quails come to
land, if it be fair we athe r or if a north wind is blowing, the y will pair off and
manage pre tty comfortably; but if a southe rly wind pre vail the y are gre atly
distre sse d owing to the difficultie s in the way of flight, for a southe rly wind is
we t and viole nt. For this re ason bird-catche rs are ne ve r on the ale rt for the se
birds during fine we athe r, but only during the pre vale nce of southe rly winds, whe n
the bird from the viole nce of the wind is unable to fly. And, by the way, it is
owing to the distre ss occasione d by the bulkine ss of its body that the bird always
scre ams while flying: for the labour is se ve re . Whe n the quails come from abroad
the y have no le ade rs, but whe n the y migrate he nce , the glottis flits along with
the m, as doe s also the landrail, and the e are d owl, and the corncrake . The
corncrake calls the m in the night, and whe n the birdcatche rs he ar the croak of the
bird in the nighttime the y know that the quails are on the move . The landrail is
like a marsh bird, and the glottis has a tongue that can proje ct far out of its
be ak. The e are d owl is like an ordinary owl, only that it has fe athe rs about its
e ars; by some it is calle d the night-rave n. It is a gre at rogue of a bird, and is a
capital mimic; a bird-catche r will dance be fore it and, while the bird is mimicking
his ge sture s, the accomplice come s be hind and catche s it. The common owl is caught
by a similar trick. As a ge ne ral rule all birds with crooke d talons are short-
ne cke d, flat-tongue d, and dispose d to mimicry. The Indian bird, the parrot, which
is said to have a man's tongue , answe rs to this de scription; and, by the way, afte r
drinking wine , the parrot be come s more saucy than e ve r. Of birds, the following
are migratory-the crane , the swan, the pe lican, and the le sse r goose .
1 3 Of fishe s, some , as has be e n obse rve d, migrate from the oute r se as in towards
shore , and from the shore towards the oute r se as, to avoid the e xtre me s of cold and
he at. Fish living ne ar to the shore are be tte r e ating than de e p-se a fish. The
fact is the y have more abundant and be tte r fe e ding, for whe re ve r the sun's he at can
re ach ve ge tation is more abundant, be tte r in quality, and more de licate , as is se e n
in any ordinary garde n. Furthe r, the black shore -we e d grows ne ar to shore ; the
othe r shore -we e d is like wild we e d. Be side s, the parts of the se a ne ar to shore are
subje cte d to a more e quable te mpe rature ; and conse que ntly the fle sh of shallow-
wate r fishe s is firm and consiste nt, whe re as the fle sh of de e p-wate r fishe s is
flaccid and wate ry. The following fishe s are found ne ar into the shore -the
synodon, the black bre am, the me rou, the gilthe ad, the mulle t, the re d mulle t, the
wrasse , the we ave r, the callionymus, the goby, and rock-fishe s of all kinds. The
following are de e p-se a fishe s--the trygon, the cartilaginous fishe s, the white
conge r, the se rranus, the e rythrinus, and the glaucus. The braize , the se a-
scorpion, the black conge r, the murae na, and the pipe r or se a-cuckoo are found
alike in shallow and de e p wate rs. The se fishe s, howe ve r, vary for various
localitie s; for instance , the goby and all rock-fish are fat off the coast of
C re te . Again, the tunny is out of se ason in summe r, whe n it is be ing pre ye d on by
its own pe culiar louse -parasite , but afte r the rising of Arcturus, whe n the
parasite has le ft it, it come s into se ason again. A numbe r of fish also are found
in se a-e stuarie s; such as the saupe , the gilthe ad, the re d mulle t, and, in point of
fact, the gre ate r part of the gre garious fishe s. The bonito also is found in such
wate rs, as, for instance , off the coast of Alope conne sus; and most spe cie s of
fishe s are found in Lake Bistonis. The coly-macke re l as a rule doe s not e nte r the
Euxine , but passe s the summe r in the Propontis, whe re it spawns, and winte rs in the
Ae ge an. The tunny prope r, the pe lamys, and the bonito pe ne trate into the Euxine in
summe r and pass the summe r the re ; as do also the gre ate r part of such fish as swim
in shoals with the curre nts, or congre gate in shoals toge the r. And most fish
congre gate in shoals, and shoal-fishe s in all case s have le ade rs. Fish pe ne trate
into the Euxine for two re asons, and firstly for food. For the fe e ding is more
abundant and be tte r in quality owing to the amount of fre sh rive r-wate r that
discharge s into the se a, and more ove r, the large fishe s of this inland se a are
smalle r than the large fishe s of the oute r se a. In point of fact, the re is no large
fish in the Euxine e xce pting the dolphin and the porpoise , and the dolphin is a
small varie ty; but as soon as you ge t into the oute r se a the big fishe s are on the
big scale . Furthe rmore , fish pe ne trate into this se a for the purpose of bre e ding;
for the re are re ce sse s the re favourable for spawning, and the fre sh and
e xce ptionally swe e t wate r has an invigorating e ffe ct upon the spawn. Afte r
spawning, whe n the young fishe s have attaine d some size , the pare nt fish swim out
of the Euxine imme diate ly afte r the rising of the Ple iads. If winte r come s in with
a southe rly wind, the y swim out with more or le ss of de libe ration; but, if a north
wind be blowing, the y swim out with gre ate r rapidity, from the fact that the bre e ze
is favourable to the ir own course . And, by the way, the young fish are caught about
this time in the ne ighbourhood of Byzantium ve ry small in size , as might have be e n
e xpe cte d from the shortne ss of the ir sojourn in the Euxine . The shoals in ge ne ral
are visible both as the y quit and e nte r the Euxine . The trichiae , howe ve r, only can
be caught during the ir e ntry, but are ne ve r visible during the ir e xit; in point of
fact, whe n a trichia is caught running outwards in the ne ighbourhood of Byzantium,
the fishe rme n are particularly care ful to cle anse the ir ne ts, as the circumstance
is so singular and e xce ptional. The way of accounting for this phe nome non is that
this fish, and this one only, swims northwards into the Danube , and the n at the
point of its bifurcation swims down southwards into the Adriatic. And, as a proof
that this the ory is corre ct, the ve ry opposite phe nome non pre se nts itse lf in the
Adriatic; that is to say, the y are not caught in that se a during the ir e ntry, but
are caught during the ir e xit. Tunny-fish swim into the Euxine ke e ping the shore
on the ir right, and swim out of it with the shore upon the ir le ft. It is state d
that the y do so as be ing naturally we ak-sighte d, and se e ing be tte r with the right
e ye . During the daytime shoal-fish continue on the ir way, but during the night
the y re st and fe e d. But if the re be moonlight, the y continue the ir journe y without
re sting at all. S ome pe ople accustome d to se a-life asse rt that shoal-fish at the
pe riod of the winte r solstice ne ve r move at all, but ke e p pe rfe ctly still whe re ve r
the y may happe n to have be e n ove rtake n by the solstice , and this lasts until the
e quinox. The coly-macke re l is caught more fre que ntly on e nte ring than on
quitting the Euxine . And in the Propontis the fish is at its be st be fore the
spawning se ason. S hoal-fish, as a rule , are caught in gre ate r quantitie s as the y
le ave the Euxine , and at that se ason the y are in the be st condition. At the time of
the ir e ntrance the y are caught in ve ry plump condition close to shore , but those
are in comparative ly poor condition that are caught farthe r out to se a. Ve ry ofte n,
whe n the coly-macke re l and the macke re l are me t by a south wind in the ir e xit,
the re are be tte r catche s to the southward than in the ne ighbourhood of Byzantium.
S o much the n for the phe nome non of migration of fishe s. Now the same phe nome non
is obse rve d in fishe s as in te rre strial animals in re gard to hibe rnation: in othe r
words, during winte r fishe s take to conce aling the mse lve s in out of the way place s,
and quit the ir place s of conce alme nt in the warme r se ason. But, by the way, animals
go into conce alme nt by way of re fuge against e xtre me he at, as we ll as against
e xtre me cold. S ome time s an e ntire ge nus will thus se e k conce alme nt; in othe r case s
some spe cie s will do so and othe rs will not. For instance , the she ll-fish se e k
conce alme nt without e xce ption, as is se e n in the case of those dwe lling in the se a,
the purple mure x, the ce ryx, and all such like ; but though in the case of the
de tache d spe cie s the phe nome non is obvious-for the y hide the mse lve s, as is se e n in
the scallop, or the y are provide d with an ope rculum on the fre e surface , as in the
case of land snails-in the
case of the non-de tache d the conce alme nt is not so cle arly obse rve d. The y do not
go into hiding at one and the same se ason; but the snails go in winte r, the purple
mure x and the ce ryx for about thirty days at the rising of the Dog-star, and the
scallop at about the same pe riod. But for the most part the y go into conce alme nt
whe n the we athe r is e ithe r e xtre me ly cold or e xtre me ly hot.
1 4 Inse cts almost all go into hiding, with the e xce ption of such of the m as live
in human habitations or pe rish be fore the comple tion of the ye ar. The y hide in the
winte r; some of the m for se ve ral days, othe rs for only the colde st days, as the
be e . For the be e also goe s into hiding: and the proof that it doe s so is that
during a ce rtain pe riod be e s ne ve r touch the food se t be fore the m, and if a be e
cre e ps out of the hive , it is quite transpare nt, with nothing whatsoe ve r in its
stomach; and the pe riod of its re st and hiding lasts from the se tting of the
Ple iads until springtime . Animals take the ir winte r-sle e p or summe r-sle e p by
conce aling the mse lve s in warm place s, or in place s whe re the y have be e n use d to lie
conce ale d. 1 5 S e ve ral bloode d animals take this
sle e p, such as the pholidote s or te sse llate s, name ly, the se rpe nt, the lizard, the
ge cko, and the rive r. crocodile , all of which go into hiding for four months in the
de pth of winte r, and during that time e at nothing. S e rpe nts in ge ne ral burrow unde r
ground for this purpose ; the vipe r conce als itse lf unde r a stone . A gre at numbe r
of fishe s also take this sle e p, and notably, the hippurus and coracinus in winte r
time ; for, whe re as fish in ge ne ral may be caught at all pe riods of the ye ar more or
le ss, the re is this singularity obse rve d in the se fishe s, that the y are caught
within a ce rtain fixe d pe riod of the ye ar, and ne ve r by any chance out of it. The
murae na also hide s, and the orphus or se a-pe rch, and the conge r. Rock-fish pair
off, male and fe male , for hiding (just as for bre e ding); as is obse rve d in the case
of the spe cie s of wrasse calle d the thrush and the owze l, and in the pe rch. The
tunny also take s a sle e p in winte r in de e p wate rs, and ge ts e xce e dingly fat afte r
the sle e p. The fishing se ason for the tunny be gins at the rising of the Ple iads and
lasts, at the longe st, down to the se tting of Arcturus; during the re st of the ye ar
the y are hid and e njoying immunity. About the time of hibe rnation a fe w tunnie s or
othe r hibe rnating fishe s are caught while swimming about, in particularly warm
localitie s and in e xce ptionally fine we athe r, or on nights of full moon; for the
fishe s are induce d (by the warmth or the light) to e me rge for a while from the ir
lair in que st of food. Most fishe s are at the ir be st for the table during the
summe r or winte r sle e p. The primas-tunny conce als itse lf in the mud; this may be
infe rre d from the fact that during a particular pe riod the fish is ne ve r caught,
and that, whe n it is caught afte r that pe riod, it is cove re d with mud and has its
fins damage d. In the spring the se tunnie s ge t in motion and proce e d towards the
coast, coupling and bre e ding, and the fe male s are now caught full of spawn. At this
time the y are conside re d as in se ason, but in autumn and in winte r as of infe rior
quality; at this time also the male s are full of milt. Whe n the spawn is small, the
fish is hard to catch, but it is e asily caught whe n the spawn ge ts large , as the
fish is the n infe ste d by its parasite . S ome fish burrow for sle e p in the sand and
some in mud, just ke e ping the ir mouths outside . Most fishe s hide , the n, during
the winte r only, but crustace ans, the rock-fish, the ray, and the cartilaginous
spe cie s hide only during e xtre me ly se ve re we athe r, and this may be infe rre d from
the fact that the se fishe s are ne ve r by any chance caught whe n the we athe r is
e xtre me ly cold. S ome fishe s, howe ve r, hide during the summe r, as the glaucus or
gre y-back; this fish hide s in summe r for about sixty days. The hake also and the
gilthe ad hide ; and we infe r that the hake hide s ove r a le ngthe ne d pe riod from the
fact that it is only caught at long inte rvals. We are le d also to infe r that fishe s
hide in summe r from the circumstance that the take s of ce rtain fish are made
be twe e n the rise and se tting of ce rtain conste llations: of the Dog-star in
particular, the se a at this pe riod be ing upturne d from the lowe r de pths. This
phe nome non may be obse rve d to be st advantage in the Bosporus; for the mud is the re
brought up to the surface and the fish are brought up along with it. The y say also
that ve ry ofte n, whe n the se a-bottom is dre dge d, more fish will be caught by the
se cond haul than by the first one . Furthe rmore , afte r ve ry he avy rains nume rous
spe cime ns be come visible of cre ature s that at othe r time s are ne ve r se e n at all or
se e n only at inte rvals. 1 6 A gre at numbe r of
birds also go into hiding; the y do not all migrate , as is ge ne rally suppose d, to
warme r countrie s. Thus, ce rtain birds (as the kite and the swallow) whe n the y are
not far off from place s of this kind, in which the y have the ir pe rmane nt abode ,
be take the mse lve s thithe r; othe rs, that are at a distance from such place s, de cline
the trouble of migration and simply hide the mse lve s whe re the y are . S wallows, for
instance , have be e n ofte n found in hole s, quite de nude d of the ir fe athe rs, and the
kite on its first e me rge nce from torpidity has be e n se e n to fly from out some such
hiding-place . And with re gard to this phe nome non of pe riodic torpor the re is no
distinction obse rve d, whe the r the talons of a bird be crooke d or straight; for
instance , the stork, the owze l, the turtle -dove , and the lark, all go into hiding.
The case of the turtle dove is the most notorious of all, for we would de fy any one
to asse rt that he had anywhe re se e n a turtle -dove in winte r-time ; at the be ginning
of the hiding time it is e xce e dingly plump, and during this pe riod it moults, but
re tains its plumpne ss. S ome cushats hide ; othe rs, inste ad of hiding, migrate at the
same time as the swallow. The thrush and the starling hide ; and of birds with
crooke d talons the kite and the owl hide for a fe w days.
1 7 Of viviparous quadrupe ds the porcupine and the be ar re tire into conce alme nt.
The fact that the be ar hide s is we ll e stablishe d, but the re are doubts as to its
motive for so doing, whe the r it be by re ason of the cold or from some othe r cause .
About this pe riod the male and the fe male be come so fat as to be hardly capable of
motion. The fe male brings forth he r young at this time , and re mains in conce alme nt
until it is time to bring the cubs out; and she brings the m out in spring, about
thre e months afte r the winte r solstice . The be ar hide s for at le ast forty days;
during fourte e n of the se days it is said not to move at all, but during most of the
subse que nt days it move s, and from time to time wake s up. A she -be ar in pre gnancy
has e ithe r ne ve r be e n caught at all or has be e n caught ve ry se ldom. The re can be no
doubt but that during this pe riod the y e at nothing; for in the first place the y
ne ve r e me rge from the ir hiding-place , and furthe r, whe n the y are caught, the ir
be lly and inte stine s are found to be quite e mpty. It is also said that from no food
be ing take n the gut almost close s up, and that in conse que nce the animal on first
e me rging take s to e ating arum with the vie w of ope ning up and diste nding the gut.
The dormouse actually hide s in a tre e , and ge ts ve ry fat at that pe riod; as doe s
also the white mouse of Pontus. (Of animals that hide or go torpid some slough
off what is calle d the ir 'old-age '. This name is applie d to the oute rmost skin, and
to the casing that e nve lops the de ve loping organism.) In discussing the case of
te rre strial vivipara we state d that the re ason for the be ar's se e king conce alme nt
is an ope n que stion. We now proce e d to tre at of the te sse llate s. The te sse llate s
for the most part go into hiding, and if the ir skin is soft the y slough off the ir
'old-age ', but not if the skin is she ll-like , as is the she ll of the tortoise -for,
by the way, the tortoise and the fre sh wate r tortoise be long to the te sse llate s.
Thus, the old-age is sloughe d off by the ge cko, the lizard, and above all, by
se rpe nts; and the y slough off the skin in springtime whe n e me rging from the ir
torpor, and again in the autumn. Vipe rs also slough off the ir skin both in spring
and in autumn, and it is not the case , as some ave r, that this spe cie s of the
se rpe nt family is e xce ptional in not sloughing. Whe n the se rpe nt be gins to slough,
the skin pe e ls off at first from the e ye s, so that any one ignorant of the
phe nome non would suppose the animal we re going blind; afte r that it pe e ls off the
he ad, and so on, until the cre ature pre se nts to vie w only a white surface all ove r.
The sloughing goe s on for a day and a night, be ginning with the he ad and e nding
with the tail. During the sloughing of the skin an inne r laye r come s to the
surface , for the cre ature e me rge s just as the e mbryo from its afte rbirth. All
inse cts that slough at all slough in the same way; as the silphe , and the e mpis or
midge , and all the cole opte ra, as for instance the cantharus-be e tle . The y all
slough afte r the pe riod of de ve lopme nt; for just as the afte rbirth bre aks from off
the young of the vivipara so the oute r husk bre aks off from around the young of the
ve rmipara, in the same way both with the be e and the grasshoppe r. The cicada the
mome nt afte r issuing from the husk goe s and sits upon an olive tre e or a re e d;
afte r the bre aking up of the husk the cre ature issue s out, le aving a little
moisture be hind, and afte r a short inte rval flie s up into the air and se ts a.
chirping. Of marine animals the crawfish and the lobste r slough some time s in the
spring, and some time s in autumn afte r parturition. Lobste rs have be e n
caught occasionally with the parts about the thorax soft, from the she ll having
the re pe e le d off, and the lowe r parts hard, from the she ll having not ye t pe e le d
off the re ; for, by the way, the y do not slough in the same manne r as the se rpe nt.
The crawfish hide s for about five months. C rabs also slough off the ir old-age ; this
is ge ne rally allowe d with re gard to the soft-she lle d crabs, and it is said to be
the case with the te stace ous kind, as for instance with the large 'granny' crab.
Whe n the se animals slough the ir she ll be come s soft all ove r, and as for the crab,
it can scarce ly crawl. The se animals also do not cast the ir skins once and for all,
but ove r and ove r again. S o much for the animals that go into hiding or
torpidity, for the time s at which, and the ways in which, the y go; and so much also
for the animals that slough off the ir old-age , and for the time s at which the y
unde rgo the proce ss. 1 8 Animals do not all
thrive at the same se asons, nor do the y thrive alike during all e xtre me s of
we athe r. Furthe r animals of dive rse spe cie s are in a dive rse way he althy or sickly
at ce rtain se asons; and, in point of fact, some animals have ailme nts that are
unknown to othe rs. Birds thrive in time s of drought, both in the ir ge ne ral he alth
and in re gard to parturition, and this is e spe cially the case with the cushat;
fishe s, howe ve r, with a fe w e xce ptions, thrive be st in rainy we athe r; on the
contrary rainy se asons are bad for birds-and so by the way is much drinking-and
drought is bad for fishe s. Birds of pre y, as has be e n alre ady state d, may in a
ge ne ral way be said ne ve r to drink at all, though He siod appe ars to have be e n
ignorant of the fact, for in his story about the sie ge of Ninus he re pre se nts the
e agle that pre side d ove r the augurie s as in the act of drinking; all othe r birds
drink, but drink sparingly, as is the case also with all othe r spongy-lunge d
oviparous animals. S ickne ss in birds may be diagnose d from the ir plumage , which is
ruffle d whe n the y are sickly inste ad of lying smooth as whe n the y are we ll.
1 9 The majority of fishe s, as has be e n state d, thrive be st in rainy se asons. Not
only have the y food in gre ate r abundance at this time , but in a ge ne ral way rain is
whole some for the m just as it is for ve ge tation-for, by the way, kitche n
ve ge table s, though artificially wate re d, de rive be ne fit from rain; and the same
re mark applie s e ve n to re e ds that grow in marshe s, as the y hardly grow at all
without a rainfall. That rain is good for fishe s may be infe rre d from the fact that
most fishe s migrate to the Euxine for the summe r; for owing to the numbe r of the
rive rs that discharge into this se a its wate r is e xce ptionally fre sh, and the
rive rs bring down a large supply of food. Be side s, a gre at numbe r of fishe s, such
as the bonito and the mulle t, swim up the rive rs and thrive in the rive rs and
marshe s. The se a-gudge on also fatte ns in the rive rs, and, as a rule , countrie s
abounding in lagoons furnish unusually e xce lle nt fish. While most fishe s, the n, are
be ne fite d by rain, the y are chie fly be ne fite d by summe r rain; or we may state the
case thus, that rain is good for fishe s in spring, summe r, and autumn, and fine dry
we athe r in winte r. As a ge ne ral rule what is good for me n is good for fishe s also.
Fishe s do not thrive in cold place s, and those fishe s suffe r most in se ve re winte rs
that have a stone in the ir he ad, as the chromis, the basse , the sciae na, and the
braize ; for owing to the stone the y ge t froze n with the cold, and are thrown up on
shore . Whilst rain is whole some for most fishe s, it is, on the contrary,
unwhole some for the mulle t, the ce phalus, and the so-calle d marinus, for rain
supe rinduce s blindne ss in most of the se fishe s, and all the more rapidly if the
rainfall be supe rabundant. The ce phalus is pe culiarly subje ct to this malady in
se ve re winte rs; the ir e ye s grow white , and whe n caught the y are in poor condition,
and e ve ntually the dise ase kills the m. It would appe ar that this dise ase is due to
e xtre me cold e ve n more than to an e xce ssive rainfall; for instance , in many place s
and more e spe cially in shallows off the coast of Nauplia, in the Argolid, a numbe r
of fishe s have be e n known to be caught out at se a in se asons of se ve re cold. The
gilthe ad also suffe rs in winte r; the acharnas suffe rs in summe r, and lose s
condition. The coracine is e xce ptional among fishe s in de riving be ne fit from
drought, and this is due to the fact that he at and drought are apt to come
toge the r. Particular place s suit particular fishe s; some are naturally fishe s of
the shore , and some of the de e p se a, and some are at home in one or the othe r of
the se re gions, and othe rs are common to the two and are at home in both. S ome
fishe s will thrive in one particular spot, and in that spot only. As a ge ne ral rule
it may be said that place s abounding in we e ds are whole some ; at all e ve nts, fishe s
caught in such place s are e xce ptionally fat: that is, such fishe s a a habit all
sorts of localitie s as we ll. The fact is that we e d-e ating fishe s find abundance of
the ir spe cial food in such localitie s, and carnivorous fish find an unusually large
numbe r of smalle r fish. It matte rs also whe the r the wind be from the north or
south: the longe r fish thrive be tte r whe n a north wind pre vails, and in summe r at
one and the same spot more long fish will be caught than flat fish with a north
wind blowing. The tunny and the sword-fish are infe ste d with a parasite about
the rising of the Dog-star; that is to say, about this time both the se fishe s have
a grub be side the ir fins that is nickname d the 'gadfly'. It re se mble s the scorpion
in shape , and is about the size of the spide r. S o acute is the pain it inflicts
that the sword-fish will ofte n le ap as high out of the wate r as a dolphin; in fact,
it some time s le aps ove r the bulwarks of a ve sse l and falls back on the de ck. The
tunny de lights more than any othe r fish in the he at of the sun. It will burrow for
warmth in the sand in shallow wate rs ne ar to shore , or will, be cause it is warm,
disport itse lf on the surface of the se a. The fry of little fishe s e scape by
be ing ove rlooke d, for it is only the large r one s of the small spe cie s that fishe s
of the large spe cie s will pursue . The gre ate r part of the spawn and the fry of
fishe s is de stroye d by the he at of the sun, for whate ve r of the m the sun re ache s it
spoils. Fishe s are caught in gre ate st abundance be fore sunrise and afte r sunse t,
or, spe aking ge ne rally, just about sunse t and sunrise . Fishe rme n haul up the ir ne ts
at the se time s, and spe ak of the hauls the n made as the 'nick-of-time ' hauls. The
fact is, that at the se time s fishe s are particularly we ak-sighte d; at night the y
are at re st, and as the light grows stronge r the y se e comparative ly we ll. We
know of no pe stile ntial malady attacking fishe s, such as those which attack man,
and horse s and oxe n among the quadrupe dal vivipara, and ce rtain spe cie s of othe r
ge ne ra, dome sticate d and wild; but fishe s do se e m to suffe r from sickne ss; and
fishe rme n infe r this from the fact that at time s fishe s in poor condition, and
looking as though the y we re sick, and of alte re d colour, are caught in a large haul
of we ll-conditione d fish of the ir own spe cie s. S o much for se a-fishe s.
2 0 Rive r-fish and lake -fish also are e xe mpt from dise ase s of a pe stile ntial
characte r, but ce rtain spe cie s are subje ct to spe cial and pe culiar maladie s. For
instance , the she at-fish just be fore the rising of the Dog-star, owing to its
swimming ne ar the surface of the wate r, is liable to sunstroke , and is paralyse d by
a loud pe al of thunde r. The carp is subje ct to the same e ve ntualitie s but in a
le sse r de gre e . The she atfish is de stroye d in gre at quantitie s in shallow wate rs by
the se rpe nt calle d the dragon. In the bale rus and tilon a worm is e nge nde re d about
the rising of the Dog-star, that sicke ns the se fish and cause s the m to rise towards
the surface , whe re the y are kille d by the e xce ssive he at. The chalcis is subje ct to
a ve ry viole nt malady; lice are e nge nde re d unde rne ath the ir gills in gre at numbe rs,
and cause de struction among the m; but no othe r spe cie s of fish is subje ct to any
such malady. If mulle in be introduce d into wate r it will kill fish in its
vicinity. It is use d e xte nsive ly for catching fish in rive rs and ponds; by the
Phoe nicians it is made use of also in the se a. The re are two othe r me thods
e mploye d for catch-fish. It is a known fact that in winte r fishe s e me rge from the
de e p parts of rive rs and, by the way, at all se asons fre sh wate r is tole rably cold.
A tre nch accordingly is dug le ading into a rive r, and wattle d at the rive r e nd with
re e ds and stone s, an ape rture be ing le ft in the wattling through which the rive r
wate r flows into the tre nch; whe n the frost come s on the fish can be take n out of
the tre nch in we e ls. Anothe r me thod is adopte d in summe r and winte r alike . The y run
across a stre am a dam compose d of brushwood and stone s le aving a small ope n space ,
and in this space the y inse rt a we e l; the y the n coop the fish in towards this
place , and draw the m up in the we e l as the y swim through the ope n space . S he ll-
fish, as a rule , are be ne fite d by rainy we athe r. The purple mure x is an e xce ption;
if it be place d on a shore ne ar to whe re a rive r discharge s, it will die within a
day afte r tasting the fre sh wate r. The mure x live s for about fifty days afte r
capture ; during this pe riod the y fe e d off one anothe r, as the re grows on the she ll
a kind of se a-we e d or se a-moss; if any food is thrown to the m during this pe riod,
it is said to be done not to ke e p the m alive , but to make the m we igh more . To
she ll-fish in ge ne ral drought is unwhole some . During dry we athe r the y de cre ase in
size and de ge ne rate in quality; and it is during such we athe r that the re d scallop
is
found in more than usual abundance . In the Pyrrhae an S trait the clam was
e xte rminate d, partly by the dre dging-machine use d in the ir capture , and partly by
long-continue d droughts. Rainy we athe r is whole some to the ge ne rality of she llfish
owing to the fact that the se a-wate r the n be come s e xce ptionally swe e t. In the
Euxine , owing to the coldne ss of the climate , she llfish are not found: nor ye t in
rive rs, e xce pting a fe w bivalve s he re and the re . Univalve s, by the way, are ve ry
apt to fre e ze to de ath in e xtre me ly cold we athe r. S o much for animals that live in
wate r. 2 1 To turn to quadrupe ds, the pig
suffe rs from thre e dise ase s, one of which is calle d branchos, a dise ase atte nde d
with swe llings about the windpipe and the jaws. It may bre ak out in any part of the
body; ve ry ofte n it attacks the foot, and occasionally the e ar; the ne ighbouring
parts also soon rot, and the de cay goe s on until it re ache s the lungs, whe n the
animal succumbs. The dise ase de ve lops with gre at rapidity, and the mome nt it se ts
in the animal give s up e ating. The swine he rds know but one way to cure it, name ly,
by comple te e xcision, whe n the y de te ct the first signs of the dise ase . The re are
two othe r dise ase s, which are both alike te rme d craurus. The one is atte nde d with
pain and he avine ss in the he ad, and this is the commone r of the two, the othe r with
diarrhoe a. The latte r is incurable , the forme r is tre ate d by applying wine
fome ntations to the snout and rinsing the nostrils with wine . Eve n this dise ase is
ve ry hard to cure ; it has be e n known to kill within thre e or four days. The animal
is chie fly subje ct to branchos whe n it ge ts e xtre me ly fat, and whe n the he at has
brought a good supply of figs. The tre atme nt is to fe e d on mashe d mulbe rrie s, to
give re pe ate d warm baths, and to lance the unde r part of the tongue . Pigs with
flabby fle sh are subje ct to me asle s about the le gs, ne ck, and shoulde rs, for the
pimple s de ve lop chie fly in the se parts. If the pimple s are fe w in numbe r the fle sh
is comparative ly swe e t, but if the y be nume rous it ge ts wate ry and flaccid. The
symptoms of me asle s are obvious, for the pimple s show chie fly on the unde r side of
the tongue , and if you pluck the bristle s off the chine the skin will appe ar
suffuse d with blood, and furthe r the animal will be unable to ke e p its hind-fe e t at
re st. Pigs ne ve r take this dise ase while the y are me re sucklings. The pimple s may
be got rid of by fe e ding on this kind of spe lt calle d tiphe ; and this spe lt, by the
way, is ve ry good for ordinary food. The be st food for re aring and fatte ning pigs
is chickpe as and figs, but the one thing e sse ntial is to vary the food as much as
possible , for this animal, like animals in ge ne ral lights in a change of die t; and
it is said that one kind of food blows the animal out, that anothe r supe rinduce s
fle sh, and that anothe r puts on fat, and that acorns, though like d by the animal,
re nde r the fle sh flaccid. Be side s, if a sow e ats acorns in gre at quantitie s, it
will miscarry, as is also the case with the e we ; and, inde e d, the miscarriage is
more ce rtain in the case of the e we than in the case of the sow. The pig is the
only animal known to be subje ct to me asle s. 2 2
Dogs suffe r from thre e dise ase s; rabie s, quinsy, and sore fe e t. Rabie s drive s the
animal mad, and ary animal whate ve r, e xce pting man, will take the dise ase if bitte n
by a dog so afflicte d; the dise ase is fatal to the dog itse lf, and to any animal it
may bite , man e xce pte d. Quinsy also is fatal to dogs; and only a fe w re cove r from
dise ase of the fe e t. The came l, like the dog, is subje ct to rabie s. The e le phant,
which is re pute d to e njoy immunity from all othe r illne sse s, is occasionally
subje ct to flatule ncy. 2 3 C attle in he rds are
liable to two dise ase s, foot, sickne ss and craurus. In the forme r the ir fe e t suffe r
from e ruptions, but the animal re cove rs from the dise ase without e ve n the loss of
the hoof. It is found of se rvice to sme ar the horny parts with warm pitch. In
craurus, the bre ath come s warm at short inte rvals; in fact, craurus in cattle
answe rs to fe ve r in man. The symptoms of the dise ase are drooping of the e ars and
disinclination for food. The animal soon succumbs, and whe n the carcase is ope ne d
the lungs are found to be rotte n. 2 4 Horse s out
at pasture are fre e from all dise ase s e xce pting dise ase of the fe e t. From this
dise ase the y some time s lose the ir hoove s: but afte r losing the m the y grow the m soon
again, for as one hoof is de caying it is be ing re place d by anothe r. S ymptoms of the
malady are a sinking in and wrinkling of the lip in the middle unde r the nostrils,
and in the case of the male , a twitching of the right te sticle . S tall-re are d
horse s are subje ct to ve ry nume rous forms of dise ase . The y are liable to dise ase
calle d 'e ile us'. Unde r this dise ase the animal trails its hind-le gs unde r its be lly
so far forward as almost to fall back on its haunche s; if it goe s without food for
se ve ral days and turns rabid, it may be of se rvice to draw blood, or to castrate
the male . The animal is subje ct also to te tanus: the ve ins ge t rigid, as also the
he ad and ne ck, and the animal walks with its le gs stre tche d out straight. The horse
suffe rs also from absce sse s. Anothe r painful illne ss afflicts the m calle d the
'barle y-surfe it'. The are a softe ning of the palate and he at of the bre ath; the
animal may re cove r through the stre ngth of its own constitution, but no formal
re me die s are of any avail. The re is also a dise ase calle d nymphia, in which the
animal is said to stand still and droop its he ad on he aring flute -music; if during
this ailme nt the horse be mounte d, it will run off at a gallop until it is pulle d.
Eve n with this rabie s in full force , it pre se rve s a de je cte d spiritle ss appe arance ;
some of the symptoms are a throwing back of the e ars followe d by a proje ction of
the m, gre at languor, and he avy bre athing. He art-ache also is incurable , of which
the symptom is a drawing in of the flanks; and so is displace me nt of the bladde r,
which is accompanie d by a re te ntion of urine and a drawing up of the hoove s and
haunche s. Ne ithe r is the re any cure if the animal swallow the grape -be e tle , which
is about the size of the sphondyle or knuckle -be e tle . The bite of the shre wmouse is
dange rous to horse s and othe r draught animals as we ll; it is followe d by boils. The
bite is all the more dange rous if the mouse be pre gnant whe n she bite s, for the
boils the n burst, but do not burst othe rwise . The cicigna-calle d 'chalcis' by some ,
and 'zignis' by othe rs-e ithe r cause s de ath by its bite or, at all e ve nts, inte nse
pain; it is like a small lizard, with the colour of the blind snake . In point of
fact, according to e xpe rts, the horse and the she e p have pre tty we ll as many
ailme nts as the human spe cie s. The drug known unde r the name of 'sandarace ' or
re algar, is e xtre me ly injurious to a horse , and to all draught animals; it is give n
to the animal as a me dicine in a solution of wate r, the liquid be ing filte re d
through a colande r. The mare whe n pre gnant apt to miscarry whe n disturbe d by the
odour of an e xtinguishe d candle ; and a similar accide nt happe ns occasionally to
wome n in the ir pre gnancy. S o much for the dise ase s of the horse . The so-calle d
hippomane s grows, as has state d, on the foal, and the mare nibble s it off as she
licks and cle ans the foal. All the curious storie s conne cte d with the hippomane s
are due to old wive s and to the ve nde rs of charms. What is calle d the 'polium' or
foal's me mbrane , is, as all the accounts state , de live re d by the mothe r be fore the
foal appe ars. A horse will re cognize the ne ighing of any othe r horse with which
it may have fought at any pre vious pe riod. The horse de lights in me adows and
marshe s, and like s to drink muddy wate r; in fact, if wate r be cle ar, the horse will
trample in it to make it turbid, will the n drink it, and afte rwards will wallow in
it. The animal is fond of wate r in e ve ry way, whe the r for drinking or for bathing
purpose s; and this e xplains the pe culiar constitution of the hippopotamus or rive r-
horse . In re gard to wate r the ox is the opposite of the horse ; for if the wate r be
impure or cold, or mixe d up with alie n matte r, it will re fuse to drink it.
2 5 The ass suffe rs chie fly from one particular dise ase which the y call 'me lis'.
It arise s first in the he ad, and a clammy humour runs down the nostrils, thick and
re d; if it stays in the he ad the animal may re cove r, but if it de sce nds into the
lungs the animal will die . Of all animals on its of its kind it is the le ast
capable of e nduring e xtre me cold, which circumstance will account for the fact that
the animal is not found on the shore s of the Euxine , nor in S cythia.
2 6 Ele phants suffe r from flatule nce , and whe n thus afflicte d can void ne ithe r
solid nor liquid re siduum. If the e le phant swallow e arth-mould it suffe rs from
re laxation; but if it go on taking it ste adily, it will e xpe rie nce no harm. From
time to time it take s to swallowing stone s. It suffe rs also from diarrhoe a: in this
case the y administe r draughts of luke warm wate r or dip its fodde r in hone y, and
e ithe r one or the othe r pre scription will prove a costive . Whe n the y suffe r from
insomnia, the y will be re store d to he alth if the ir shoulde rs be rubbe d with salt,
olive -oil, and warm wate r; whe n the y have ache s in the ir shoulde rs the y will de rive
gre at be ne fit from the application of roast pork. S ome e le phants like olive oil,
and othe rs do not. If the re is a bit of iron in the inside of an e le phant it is
said that it will pass out if the animal take s a drink of olive -oil; if the animal
re fuse s olive -oil, the y soak a root in the oil and give it the root to swallow. S o
much, the n, for quadrupe ds.
2 7 Inse cts, as a ge ne ral rule , thrive be st in the
time of ye ar in which the y come into be ing, e spe cially if the se ason be moist and
warm, as in spring. In be e -hive s are found cre ature s that do gre at damage to the
combs; for instance , the grub that spins a we b and ruins the hone ycomb: it is
calle d the 'cle ros'. It e nge nde rs an inse ct like itse lf, of a spide r-shape , and
brings dise ase into the swarm. The re is anothe r inse ct re se mbling the moth, calle d
by some the 'pyrauste s', that flie s about a lighte d candle : this cre ature e nge nde rs
a brood full of a fine down. It is ne ve r stung by a be e , and can only be got out of
a hive by fumigation. A cate rpillar also is e nge nde re d in hive s, of a spe cie s
nickname d the te re do, or 'bore r', with which cre ature the be e ne ve r inte rfe re s.
Be e s suffe r most whe n flowe rs are cove re d with milde w, or in se asons of drought.
All inse cts, without e xce ption, die if the y be sme are d ove r with oil; and the y die
all the more rapidly if you sme ar the ir he ad with the oil and lay the m out in the
sun. 2 8 Varie ty in animal life may be produce d
by varie ty of locality: thus in one place an animal will not be found at all, in
anothe r it will be small, or short-live d, or will not thrive . S ome time s this sort
of diffe re nce is obse rve d in close ly adjace nt districts. Thus, in the te rritory of
Mile tus, in one district cicadas are found while the re are none in the district
close adjoining; and in C e phale nia the re is a rive r on one side of which the cicada
is found and not on the othe r. In Pordose le ne the re is a public road one side of
which the we ase l is found but not on the othe r. In Boe otia the mole is found in
gre at abundance in the ne ighbourhood of Orchome nus, but the re are none in Le badia
though it is in the imme diate vicinity, and if a mole be transporte d from the one
district to the othe r it will re fuse to burrow in the soil. The hare cannot live in
Ithaca if introduce d the re ; in fact it will be found de ad, turne d towards the point
of the be ach whe re it was lande d. The horse man-ant is not found in S icily; the
croaking frog has only re ce ntly appe are d in the ne ighbourhood of C yre ne . In the
whole of Libya the re is ne ithe r wild boar, nor stag, nor wild goat; and in India,
according to C te sias-no ve ry good authority, by the way-the re are no swine , wild or
tame , but animals that are de void of blood and such as go into hiding or go torpid
are all of imme nse size the re . In the Euxine the re are no small molluscs nor
te stace ans, e xce pt a fe w he re and the re ; but in the Re d S e a all the te stace ans are
e xce e dingly large . In S yria the she e p have tails a cubit in bre adth; the goats have
e ars a span and a palm long, and some have e ars that flap down to the ground; and
the cattle have humps on the ir shoulde rs, like the came l. In Lycia goats are shorn
for the ir fle e ce , just as she e p are in all othe r countrie s. In Libya the long-
horne d ram is born with horns, and not the ram only, as Home r' words it, but the
e we as we ll; in Pontus, on the confine s of S cythia, the ram is without horns. In
Egypt animals, as a rule , are large r than the ir conge ne rs in Gre e ce , as the cow and
the she e p; but some are le ss, as the dog, the wolf, the hare , the fox, the rave n,
and the hawk; othe rs are of pre tty much the same size , as the crow and the goat.
The diffe re nce , whe re it e xists, is attribute d to the food, as be ing abundant in
one case and insufficie nt in anothe r, for instance for the wolf and the hawk; for
provision is scanty for the carnivorous animals, small birds be ing scarce ; food is
scanty also for the hare and for all frugivorous animals, be cause ne ithe r the nuts
nor the fruit last long. In many place s the climate will account for
pe culiaritie s; thus in Illyria, Thrace , and Epirus the ass is small, and in Gaul
and in S cythia the ass is not found at all owing to the coldne ss of the climate of
the se countrie s. In Arabia the lizard is more than a cubit in le ngth, and the mouse
is much large r than our fie ld-mouse , with its hind-le gs a span long and its front
le gs the le ngth of the first finge r-joint. In Libya, according to all accounts, the
le ngth of the se rpe nts is some thing appalling; sailors spin a yarn to the e ffe ct
that some cre ws once put ashore and saw the bone s of a numbe r of oxe n, and that
the y we re sure that the oxe n had be e n de voure d by se rpe nts, for, just as the y we re
putting out to se a, se rpe nts came chasing the ir galle ys at full spe e d and
ove rturne d one galle y and se t upon the cre w. Again, lions are more nume rous in
Libya, and in that district of Europe that lie s be twe e n the Ache lous and the
Ne ssus; the le opard is more abundant in Asia Minor, and is not found in Europe at
all. As a ge ne ral rule , wild animals are at the ir wilde st in Asia, at the ir bolde st
in Europe , and most dive rse in form in Libya; in fact, the re is an old saying,
'Always some thing fre sh in Libya.' It would appe ar that in that country animals
of dive rse spe cie s me e t, on account of the rainle ss climate , at the wate ring-
place s, and the re pair toge the r; and that such pairs will ofte n bre e d if the y be
ne arly of the same size and have pe riods of ge station of the same le ngth. For it is
said that the y are tame d down in the ir be haviour towards e ach othe r by e xtre mity of
thirst. And, by the way, unlike animals e lse whe re , the y re quire to drink more in
winte rtime than in summe r: for the y acquire the habit of not drinking in summe r,
owing to the circumstance that the re is usually no wate r the n; and the mice , if
the y drink, die . Else whe re also bastard-animals are born to he te roge ne ous pairs;
thus in C yre ne the wolf and the bitch will couple and bre e d; and the Laconian hound
is a cross be twe e n the fox and the dog. The y say that the Indian dog is a cross
be twe e n the tige r and the bitch, not the first cross, but a cross in the third
ge ne ration; for the y say that the first cross is a savage cre ature . The y take the
bitch to a lone ly spot and tie he r up: if the tige r be in an amorous mood he will
pair with he r; if not he will e at he r up, and this casualty is of fre que nt
occurre nce . 2 9 Locality will diffe re ntiate
habits also: for instance , rugge d highlands will not produce the same re sults as
the soft lowlands. The animals of the highlands look fie rce r and bolde r, as is se e n
in the swine of Mount Athos; for a lowland boar is no match e ve n for a mountain
sow. Again, locality is an important e le me nt in re gard to the bite of an animal.
Thus, in Pharos and othe r place s, the bite of the scorpion is not dange rous;
e lse whe re -in C aria, for instance s-whe re scorpions are ve nomous as we ll as ple ntiful
and of large size , the sting is fatal to man or be ast, e ve n to the pig, and
e spe cially to a black pig, though the pig, by the way, is in ge ne ral most
singularly indiffe re nt to the bite of any othe r cre ature . If a pig goe s into wate r
afte r be ing struck by the scorpion of C aria, it will sure ly die . The re is gre at
varie ty in the e ffe cts produce d by the bite s of se rpe nts. The asp is found in
Libya; the so-calle d 'se ptic' drug is made from the body of the animal, and is the
only re me dy known for the bite of the original. Among the silphium, also, a snake
is found, for the bite or which a ce rtain stone is said to be a cure : a stone that
is brought from the grave of an ancie nt king, which stone is put into wate r and
drunk off. In ce rtain parts of Italy the bite of the ge cko is fatal. But the
de adlie st of all bite s of ve nomous cre ature s is whe n one ve nomous animal has bitte n
anothe r; as, for instance , a vipe r's afte r it has bitte n a scorpion. To the gre at
majority of such cre ature s man's is fatal. The re is a ve ry little snake , by some
e ntitle d the 'holy-snake ', which is dre ade d by e ve n the large st se rpe nts. It is
about an e ll long, and hairy-looking; whe ne ve r it bite s an animal, the fle sh all
round the wound will at once mortify. The re is in India a small snake which is
e xce ptional in this re spe ct, that for its bite no spe cific whate ve r is known.
30 Animals also vary as to the ir condition of he alth in conne xion with the ir
pre gnancy. Te stace ans, such as scallops and all the oyste r-family, and
crustace ans, such as the lobste r family, are be st whe n with spawn. Eve n in the case
of the te stace an we spe ak of spawning (or pre gnancy); but whe re as the crustace ans
may be se e n coupling and laying the ir spawn, this is ne ve r the case with
te stace ans. Molluscs are be st in the bre e ding time , as the calamary, the se pia, and
the octopus. Fishe s, whe n the y be gin to bre e d, are ne arly all good for the
table ; but afte r the fe male has gone long with spawn the y are good in some case s,
and in othe rs are out of se ason. The mae nis, for instance , is good at the bre e ding
time . The fe male of this fish is round, the male longe r and flatte r; whe n the
fe male is be ginning to bre e d the male turns black and mottle d, and is quite unfit
for the table ; at this pe riod he is nickname d the 'goat'. The wrasse s calle d the
owze l and the thrush, and the smaris have diffe re nt colours at diffe re nt se asons,
as is the case with the plumage of ce rtain birds; that is to say, the y be come black
in the spring and afte r the spring ge t white again. The phycis also change s its
hue : in ge ne ral it is white , but in spring it is mottle d; it is the only se a-fish
which is said make a be d for itse lf, and the fe male lays he r spawn in this be d or
ne st. The mae nis, as was obse rve d, change s its colour as doe s the smaris, and in
summe r-time change s back from whitish to black, the change be ing e spe cially marke d
about the fins and gills. The coracine , like the mae nis, is in be st condition at
bre e ding time ; the mulle t, the basse , and scaly fishe s in ge ne ral are in bad
condition at this pe riod. A fe w fish are in much the same condition at all time s,
whe the r with spawn or
not, as the glaucus. Old fishe s also are bad e ating; the old tunny is unfit e ve n
for pickling, as a gre at part of its fle sh waste s away with age , and the same
wasting is obse rve d in all old fishe s. The age of a scaly fish may be told by the
size and the hardne ss of its scale s. An old tunny has be e n caught we ighing fifte e n
tale nts, with the span of its tail two cubits and a palm broad. Rive r-fish and
lake -fish are be st afte r the y have discharge d the spawn in the case of the fe male
and the milt in the case of the male : that is, whe n the y have fully re cove re d from
the e xhaustion of such discharge . S ome are good in the bre e ding time , as the
sape rdis, and some bad, as the she at-fish. As a ge ne ral rule , the male fish is
be tte r e ating than the fe male ; but the re ve rse holds good of the she at-fish. The
e e ls that are calle d fe male s are the be st for the table : the y look as though the y
we re fe male , but the y re ally are not so. Book IX
1 OF the animals that are comparative ly obscure and short-live d the characte rs
or dispositions are not so obvious to re cognition as are those of animals that are
longe r-live d. The se latte r animals appe ar to have a natural capacity corre sponding
to e ach of the passions: to cunning or simplicity, courage or timidity, to good
te mpe r or to bad, and to othe r similar dispositions of mind. S ome also are
capable of giving or re ce iving instruction-of re ce iving it from one anothe r or from
man: those that have the faculty of he aring, for instance ; and, not to limit the
matte r to audible sound, such as can diffe re ntiate the sugge ste d me anings of word
and ge sture . In all ge ne ra in which the distinction of male and fe male is found,
Nature make s a similar diffe re ntiation in the me ntal characte ristics of the two
se xe s. This diffe re ntiation is the most obvious in the case of human kind and in
that of the large r animals and the viviparous quadrupe ds. In the case of the se
latte r the fe male softe r in characte r, is the soone r tame d, admits more re adily of
care ssing, is more apt in the way of le arning; as, for instance , in the Laconian
bre e d of dogs the fe male is cle ve re r than the male . Of the Molossian bre e d of dogs,
such as are e mploye d in the chase are pre tty much the same as those e lse whe re ; but
she e p-dogs of this bre e d are supe rior to the othe rs in size , and in the courage
with which the y face the attacks of wild animals. Dogs that are born of a mixe d
bre e d be twe e n the se two kinds are re markable for courage and e ndurance of hard
labour. In all case s, e xce pting those of the be ar and le opard, the fe male is
le ss spirite d than the male ; in re gard to the two e xce ptional case s, the
supe riority in courage re sts with the fe male . With all othe r animals the fe male is
softe r in disposition than the male , is more mischie vous, le ss simple , more
impulsive , and more atte ntive to the nurture of the young: the male , on the othe r
hand, is more spirite d than the fe male , more savage , more simple and le ss cunning.
The trace s of the se diffe re ntiate d characte ristics are more or le ss visible
e ve rywhe re , but the y are e spe cially visible whe re characte r is the more de ve lope d,
and most of all in man. The fact is, the nature of man is the most rounde d off
and comple te , and conse que ntly in man the qualitie s or capacitie s above re fe rre d to
are found in the ir pe rfe ction. He nce woman is more compassionate than man, more
e asily move d to te ars, at the same time is more je alous, more que rulous, more apt
to scold and to strike . S he is, furthe rmore , more prone to de sponde ncy and le ss
hope ful than the man, more void of shame or se lf-re spe ct, more false of spe e ch,
more de ce ptive , and of more re te ntive me mory. S he is also more wake ful, more
shrinking, more difficult to rouse to action, and re quire s a smalle r quantity of
nutrime nt. As was pre viously state d, the male is more courage ous than the
fe male , and more sympathe tic in the way of standing by to he lp. Eve n in the case of
molluscs, whe n the cuttle -fish is struck with the tride nt the male stands by to
he lp the fe male ; but whe n the male is struck the fe male runs away. The re is
e nmity be twe e n such animals as dwe ll in the same localitie s or subsist on the food.
If the me ans of subsiste nce run short, cre ature s of like kind will fight toge the r.
Thus it is said that se als which inhabit one and the same district will fight, male
with male , and fe male with fe male , until one combatant kills the othe r, or one is
drive n away by the othe r; and the ir young do e ve n in like manne r. All cre ature s
are at e nmity with the carnivore s, and the carnivore s with all the re st, for the y
all subsist on living cre ature s. S oothsaye rs take notice of case s whe re animals
ke e p apart from one anothe r, and case s whe re the y congre gate toge the r; calling
those that live at war with one anothe r 'dissociate s', and those that dwe ll in
pe ace with one anothe r 'associate s'. One may go so far as to say that if the re we re
no lack or stint of food, the n those animals that are now afraid of man or are wild
by nature would be tame and familiar with him, and in like manne r with one anothe r.
This is shown by the way animals are tre ate d in Egypt, for owing to the fact that
food is constantly supplie d to the m the ve ry fie rce st cre ature s live pe ace ably
toge the r. The fact is the y are tame d by kindne ss, and in some place s crocodile s are
tame to the ir prie stly ke e pe r from be ing fe d by him. And e lse whe re also the same
phe nome non is to be obse rve d. The e agle and the snake are e ne mie s, for the e agle
live s on snake s; so are the ichne umon and the ve nom-spide r, for the ichne umon pre ys
upon the latte r. In the case of birds, the re is mutual e nmity be twe e n the poe cilis,
the cre ste d lark, the woodpe cke r (?), and the chlore us, for the y de vour one
anothe r's e ggs; so also be twe e n the crow and the owl; for, owing to the fact that
the owl is dim-sighte d by day, the crow at midday pre ys upon the owl's e ggs, and
the owl at night upon the crow's, e ach having the whip-hand of the othe r, turn and
turn about, night and day. The re is e nmity also be twe e n the owl and the wre n;
for the latte r also de vours the owl's e ggs. In the daytime all othe r little birds
flutte r round the owl-a practice which is popularly te rme d 'admiring him'-buffe t
him, and pluck out his fe athe rs; in conse que nce of this habit, bird-catche rs use
the owl as a de coy for catching little birds of all kinds. The so-calle d pre sbys
or 'old man' is at war with the we ase l and the crow, for the y pre y on he r e ggs and
he r brood; and so the turtle -dove with the pyrallis, for the y live in the same
districts and on the same food; and so with the gre e n wood pe cke r and the libyus;
and so with kite and the rave n, for, owing to his having the advantage from
stronge r talons and more rapid flight the forme r can ste al whate ve r the latte r is
holding, so that it is food also that make s e ne mie s of the se . In like manne r the re
is war be twe e n birds that ge t the ir living from the se a, as be twe e n the bre nthus,
the gull, and the harpe ; and so be twe e n the buzzard on one side and the toad and
snake on the othe r, for the buzzard pre ys upon the e ggs of the two othe rs; and so
be twe e n the turtle -dove and the chlore us; the chlore us kills the dove , and the crow
kills the so-calle d drumme r-bird. The ae golius, and birds of pre y in ge ne ral,
pre y upon the calaris, and conse que ntly the re is war be twe e n it and the m; and so is
the re war be twe e n the ge cko-lizard and the spide r, for the forme r pre ys upon the
latte r; and so be twe e n the woodpe cke r and the he ron, for the forme r pre ys upon the
e ggs and brood of the latte r. And so be twe e n the ae githus and the ass, owing to the
fact that the ass, in passing a furze -bush, rubs its sore and itching parts against
the prickle s; by so doing, and all the more if it brays, it topple s the e ggs and
the brood out of the ne st, the young one s tumble out in fright, and the mothe r-
bird, to ave nge this wrong, flie s at the be ast and pe cks at his sore place s. The
wolf is at war with the ass, the bull, and the fox, for as be ing a carnivore , he
attacks the se othe r animals; and so for the same re ason with the fox and the
circus, for the circus, be ing carnivorous and furnishe d with crooke d talons,
attacks and maims the animal. And so the rave n is at war with the bull and the ass,
for it flie s at the m, and strike s the m, and pe cks at the ir e ye s; and so with the
e agle and the he ron, for the forme r, having crooke d talons, attacks the latte r, and
the latte r usually succumbs to the attack; and so the me rlin with the vulture ; and
the cre x with the e le us-owl, the blackbird, and the oriole (of this latte r bird, by
the way, the story goe s that he was originally born out of a fune ral pyre ): the
cause of warfare is that the cre x injure s both the m and the ir young. The nuthatch
and the wre n are at war with the e agle ; the nuthatch bre aks the e agle 's e ggs, so
the e agle is at war with it on spe cial grounds, though, as a bird of pre y, it
carrie s on a ge ne ral war all round. The horse and the anthus are e ne mie s, and the
horse will drive the bird out of the fie ld whe re he is grazing: the bird fe e ds on
grass, and se e s too dimly to fore se e an attack; it mimics the whinnying of the
horse , flie s at him, and trie s to frighte n him away; but the horse drive s the bird
away, and whe ne ve r he catche s it he kills it: this bird live s be side rive rs or on
marsh ground; it has pre tty plumage , and finds its without trouble . The ass is at
e nmity with the lizard, for the lizard sle e ps in his mange r, ge ts into his nostril,
and pre ve nts his e ating. Of he rons the re are thre e kinds: the ash coloure d, the
white , and the starry he ron (or bitte rn). Of the se the first me ntione d submits with
re luctance to the dutie s of incubation, or to union of the se xe s; in fact, it
scre ams during the union, and it is said drips blood from its e ye s;
it lays its e ggs also in an awkward manne r, not unatte nde d with pain. It is at war
with ce rtain cre ature s that do it injury: with the e agle for robbing it, with the
fox for worrying it at night, and with the lark for ste aling its e ggs. The snake
is at war with the we ase l and the pig; with the we ase l whe n the y are both at home ,
for the y live on the same food; with the pig for pre ying on he r kind. The me rlin is
at war with the fox; it strike s and claws it, and, as it has crooke d talons, it
kills the animal's young. The rave n and the fox are good frie nds, for the rave n is
at e nmity with the me rlin; and so whe n the me rlin assails the fox the rave n come s
and he lps the animal. The vulture and the me rlin are mutual e ne mie s, as be ing both
furnishe d with crooke d talons. The vulture fights with the e agle , and so, by the
way, doe s doe s swan; and the swan is ofte n victorious: more ove r, of all birds swans
are most prone to the killing of one anothe r. In re gard to wild cre ature s, some
se ts are at e nmity with othe r se ts at all time s and unde r all circumstance s;
othe rs, as in the case of man and man, at spe cial time s and unde r incide ntal
circumstance s. The ass and the acanthis are e ne mie s; for the bird live s on
thistle s, and the ass browse s on thistle s whe n the y are young and te nde r. The
anthus, the acanthis, and the ae githus are at e nmity with one anothe r; it is said
that the blood of the anthus will not inte rcommingle with the blood of the
ae githus. The crow and the he ron are frie nds, as also are the se dge -bird and lark,
the lae dus and the ce le us or gre e n woodpe cke r; the woodpe cke r live s on the banks of
rive rs and be side brake s, the lae dus live s on rocks and bills, and is gre atly
attache d to its ne sting-place . The piphinx, the harpe , and the kite are frie nds; as
are the fox and the snake , for both burrow unde rground; so also are the blackbird
and the turtle -dove . The lion and the thos or cive t are e ne mie s, for both are
carnivorous and live on the same food. Ele phants fight fie rce ly with one anothe r,
and stab one anothe r with the ir tusks; of two combatants the be ate n one ge ts
comple te ly cowe d, and dre ads the sound of his conque ror's voice . The se animals
diffe r from one anothe r an e xtraordinary e xte nt in the way of courage . Indians
e mploy the se animals for war purpose s, irre spe ctive of se x; the fe male s, howe ve r,
are le ss in size and much infe rior in point of spirit. An e le phant by pushing with
his big tusks can batte r down a wall, and will butt with his fore he ad at a palm
until he brings it down, whe n he stamps on it and lays it in orde rly fashion on the
ground. Me n hunt the e le phant in the following way: the y mount tam