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Elephants of furious temper are tamed by hunger1 and blows, while other elephants are placed near to keep them quiet, when the violent fit is upon them, by means of chains. Besides this, they are more particularly violent when in heat,2 at which time they will level to the ground the huts of the Indians with their tusks. It is on this account that they are prevented from coupling, and the females are kept in herds separate from the males, just the same way as with other cattle. Elephants, when tamed, are employed in war, and carry into the ranks of the enemy towers filled with armed men; and on them, in a very great measure, depends the ultimate result of the battles that are fought in the East. They tread under foot whole companies, and crush the men in their armour. The very least sound, however, of the grunting of the hog terrifies them:3 when wounded and panic-stricken, they invariably fall back, and become no less formidable for the destruction which they deal to their own side, than to their opponents. The African elephant is afraid of the Indian, and does not dare so much as look at it, for the latter is of much greater bulk.4

1 We have the same account given by Ælian and by Strabo.—B.

2 Aristotle, Hist. Anim. B. vi. c. 18, remarks, that the violence of the animal, which is produced by an accidental cause, as also that arising from venereal excitement, are counteracted by opposite modes of treatment; the one by depriving it of food, the other by over-feeding it; the former, in order to break its strength, and the latter, to divert it into a different channel.—B.

3 Ælian, Anim. Nat. B. i. c. 38, states that the Romans employed this mode of terrifying the elephants brought against them by Pyrrhus.—B.

4 That this was the general opinion among the ancients, we learn from Polybius, Ælian, Livy, Diodorus Siculus, and others. Cuvier remarks, that this may have been the case with the animals from Barbary, or the north of Africa, but that it is not so with those from the middle or south of that continent.—B.

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