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India and Africa produce the porcupine, the body of which is covered with prickles. It is a species of hedgehog, but the quills of the porcupine are longer, and when it stretches the skin, it discharges them like so many missiles. With these it pierces the mouths of the dogs which are pressing hard upon it, and even sends its darts to some distance further1 It conceals itself during the winter months, which, indeed, is the nature of many animals, and more especially the bear.

1 It is possible that the quills of the porcupine may be stuck into the skin of the dog so firmly, as to be detached from their natural situation; but there is no reason to believe that they can be darted out or projected by any exertion of the animal. Ælian, Anim. Nat. B. i. c. 31, and B. xii. c. 26, describes the hystrix; see also Aristotle, Hist. Anim. B. vi, c. 30.—B.

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