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The other fruits belong to the fleshy kind, and differ both in the shape and the flesh. The flesh of the various berries,1 of the mulberry, and of the arbute, are quite different from one another—and then what a difference, too, between the grape, which is only skin and juice,2 the myxa plum, and the flesh of some berries,3 such as the olive, for instance! In the flesh of the mulberry there is a juice of a vinous flavour, and the fruit assumes three different colours, being at first white, then red, and ripe when black. The mulberry blossoms one of the very last,4 and yet is among the first to ripen: the juice of the fruit, when ripe, will stain the hands, but that of the unripe fruit will remove the marks. It is in this tree that human ingenuity has effected the least Improvement5 of all; there are no varieties here, no modifications effected by grafting, nor, in fact, any other improvement except that the size of the fruit, by careful management, has been increased. At Rome, there is a distinction made between the mulberries of Ostia and those of Tusculum. A variety grows also on brambles, but the flesh of the fruit is of a very different nature.6

1 "Acinis." The grape, ivy-berry, elder-berry, and others.

2 "Inter cutem succumque."

3 Baccis. Some confusion is created by the non-existence of English words to denote the difference between a acinus" and "bacca." The latter is properly the "berry;" the grape being the type of the "acinus."

4 See B. xvi. c. 41. The mulberry is the Morus nigra of modern naturalists. It is generally thought that this was the only variety known to the ancients; but Fée queries, from the story of Pyramus and Thisbe, which represents the mulberry as changing from white to blood colour, that the white mulberry was not unknown to them; but through some cause, now unknown, was gradually lost sight of.

5 This is still the case with the mulberry.

6 See B. xvi. c. 71, and B. xxiv. c. 73. He alludes to the blackberry.

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