[66a] and because of these properties all such are called “pungent.” Again, when particles already refined by putrefaction, entering into the narrow veins, are symmetrical with the particles of earth and air contained therein, so that they cause them to circulate round one another and ferment, then, in thus fermenting they change round and pass into fresh places, and thereby create fresh hollows which envelop the entering particles. By this means, the air being veiled in a moist film, [66b] sometimes of earth, sometimes of pure moisture, moist and hollow and globular vessels of air are formed; and those formed of pure moisture are the transparent globules called by the name of “bubbles,” while those of the earthy formation which moves throughout its mass and seethes are designated “boiling” and “fermenting”; and the cause of these processes is termed “acid.”An affection which is the opposite of all those last described [66c] results from an opposite condition. Whenever the composition of the particles which enter into the moist parts is naturally akin to the state of the tongue, they oil its roughened parts and smooth it, contracting the parts that are unnaturally dilated or dilating those that are contracted, and thus settling them all, so far as possible, in their natural condition; and every such remedy of the forcible affections, being pleasant and welcome to everyone, is called “sweet.” [66d] For this subject, then, let this account suffice. Next, as regards the property of the nostrils, it does not contain fixed kinds. For the whole range of smells is a half-formed class, and no kind possesses the symmetry requisite for containing any smell; for our veins in these organs are of too narrow a construction for the kinds of earth and of water and too wide for those of fire and air, so that no one has ever yet perceived any smell from any of these, but only from substances which are in process of being moistened or putrefied or melted or vaporized. [66e] For smells arise in the intermediate state, when water is changing into air or air into water, and they are all smoke or mist; and of these, the passage from air to water is mist, and the passage from water to air is smoke whence it is that all the smells are thinner than water and thicker than air. Their nature is made clear whenever there is some block in the respiration and a man draws in his breath forcibly; for then no accompanying smell is strained through, but the breath passes in alone by itself isolated from the smells. So for these reasons the varieties of these smells have no name,
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