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In the same gulf, there is the island of Tylos,1 covered with a forest2 on the side which looks towards the East, where it is washed also by the sea at high tides. Each of the trees is in size as large as the fig; the blossoms are of an indescribable sweetness, and the fruit is similar in shape to a lupine, but so rough and prickly, that it is never touched by any animal. On a more elevated plateau of the same island, we find trees that bear wool, but of a different nature from those of the Seres;3 as in these trees the leaves produce nothing at all, and, indeed, might very readily be taken for those of the vine, were it not that they are of smaller size. They bear a kind of gourd, about the size of a quince;4 which, when arrived at maturity, bursts asunder and discloses a ball of down, from which a costly kind of linen cloth is made.

(11.) This tree is known by the name of gossypinus:5 the smaller island of Tylos, which is ten miles distant from the larger one, produces it in even greater abundance.

1 B. vi. c. 32.

2 Fée suggests that some kind of mangrove is probably alluded to, of the kind known as avicennia, or bruguiera.

3 See B. vi. c. 20

4 "Cotonei." To this resemblance of its fruit to the quince, the cotton-tree, which is here alluded to, not improbably owes its modern name.

5 The cotton-tree, or Gossypium arboreum of Linnæus. It is worthy of remark, that Pliny copies here almost literally from Theophrastus. According to Philostratus, the byssus, or fine tissues worn by the Egyptian priests, were made of cotton.

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