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All animals take a right-hand direction when they first begin to walk, and lie down on the left side. While the other animals walk just as it may happen, the lion only and the camel walk foot by foot, or in such a way that the left foot never passes the right, but always comes behind it. Men have the largest feet; in every kind of animal the female has the smallest. Man only1 has calves, and flesh upon the legs: we find it stated by authors, however, that there was once an Egyptian who had no calves on his legs. All men, too, with some few exceptions, have a sole to the foot. It is from these exceptional cases that persons have obtained the names of Plancus,2 Plautus, Pansa, and Scaurus; just as, from the malformation of the legs, we find persons called Varus,3 Vacia, and Vatinius, all which blemishes are to be seen in quadrupeds also. Animals which have no horns have a solid hoof, from which circumstance it is used by them as a weapon of offence, in place of horns; such animals as these are also destitute of pastern bones, but those which have cloven hoofs have them; while those, again, which have toes have none, nor are they ever found in the fore-feet of animals. The camel has pastern bones like those of the ox, but somewhat smaller, the feet being cloven, with a slight line of division, and having a fleshy sole, like that of the bear: hence it is, that in a long journey, the animal becomes fatigued, and the foot cracks, if it is not shod.

1 The frog is, in some measure, an exception.

2 Or "flat-foot," "splay-foot," "large-foot," and "club-footed."

3 Words meaning "knock-kneed," "bow-legged," and "wry-legged."

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load focus Latin (Karl Friedrich Theodor Mayhoff, 1906)
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