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Arcadia produces a wonder in its fish called exocœtus,1 from the fact that it comes ashore to sleep. In the neighbourhood of the river Clitorius,2 this fish is said to be gifted with powers of speech, and to have no gills;3 by some writers it is called the adonis.

1 ᾿απὸ το̂ν ἔξω κοιτᾶν, "from its sleeping out of the water." This fish is also mentioned by Theophrastus, in his Fragment on the "Fish that live on dry land;" by Clearchus the Peripatetic, as quoted by Athenæus, B. viii.; Oppian, in his Halieutics, B. i. 1. 158; and. Ælian, Hist. Anim. B. ix. c. 36. The fish, however, mentioned by all these authorities, is a sea- fish, while that of Pliny, being found in Arcadia, must, of necessity, be a river fish. The proper name of the fish here mentioned by him was ποικιλίας, Hardouin says, so called from the variety of its colours. Cuvier says, that the fish here mentioned is not the Exocœtus of Linnæus, which is one of the flying fish, but is clearly of opinion that it is one of the genus Blennius, or Gobio, that is alluded to; for these small fish are often to be found left on the shore when the waters retire, and have the property of being able to remain alive for a considerable time without water.

2 In the river Aroanius, which falls into the Clitorius. Pausanias mentions this story, but adds, that he never could hear the fish, although he often went there to listen, Mnaseas of Patræ, an author quoted by Athenæus, B. viii., also mentions these vocal fishes.

3 Cuvier understands this to mean only, that the openings of the gills are remarkably small: for, as he says, there is no fish whatever without gills. It is very possible, however, that Pliny may have mistranslated a passage found in Athenæus, and quoted from Clearchus the Peripatetic, in which he says that some fish have a voice, and yet have no throat, βρόγχον; which may have, possibly, been mistaken by our author for βράγχια, "gills."

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