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Nicander the Colophonian, in his book on the Farm, enumerates all the following kinds of oysters— [p. 154]
And all the oysters which the foaming brine
Beneath its vasty bosom cherishes,
The periwinkle, whilk, pelorias,
The mussel, and the slimy tellina,
And the deep shell which makes the pinna's hole.
And Archestratus says, in his Gastronomy—
Aenus has mussels fine, Abydus too
Is famous for its oysters; Parium produces
Crabs, the bears of the sea, and Mitylene periwinkles;
Ambracia in all kinds of fish abounds,
And the boar-fish sends forth: and in its narrow strait
Messene cherishes the largest cockles.
In Ephesus you shall catch chemæ, which are not bad,
And Chalcedon will give you oysters. But may Jupiter
Destroy the race of criers, both the fish born in the sea,
And those wretches which infest the city forum;
All except one man, for he is a friend of mine,
Dwelling in Lesbos, abounding in grapes; and his name is Agatho.
And Philyllius, or whoever is the author of the book called The Cities, says, “Chemæ, limpets, solens, mussels, pinnas and periwinkles from Methymna:” but ὄστρειον was the only form of the name for all these fish among the ancients. Cratinus says in his Archilochi—
Like the pinna or the oyster (ὄστρειον).
And Epicharmus says, in his Marriage of Hebe—
Oysters which have grown together.
Where he uses the same form ὄστρειον. But afterwards the form ὄστρεον like ὄρνεον began to be used. Plato, in his Phædrus, says, “bound together like oysters” (ὄστρεον). And in the tenth book of his Politia, he says, “oysters (ὄστρεα) stuck together;” “oysters (ὄστρεα) and seaweed.” But the peloris, or giant mussel, were so named from the word πελώριος, vast. For it is much larger than the cheme, and very different from it. But Aristotle says that they are generated in the sand. And Ion the Chian mentions the chema, in his Epidemiæ, and perhaps the shell-fish got the name of χήμη παρὰ τὸ κεχῃνέναι, from opening their mouths."

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