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Diocles, in the first book of his treatise on Wholesome Things, says—“The molluscous fish are calculated to give pleasure, and to excite the amorous propensities; especially the polypi (οἱ πολύποδες).” And Aristotle relates that the polypus has eight feet, of which the two highest and the two lowest are the smallest, and those in the middle are the largest; and they have also two feelers, with which they bring their food to their mouth. And they have their eyes placed above their two upper feet; and their mouth and teeth are between their feet. And when the polypus is dissected, he has a brain divided into two parts; and what is called his ink is not black, like the cuttle-fish, but of a reddish colour, in that part of him which is called the poppy; but the poppy lies above the stomach, like a bladder: and it has no intestines, like other fish. But for food it uses at times the flesh of small shell-fish, and casts the shells outside its body; by which the [p. 498] hunters know where to find it. And it propagates its species by becoming intertwined with the female, and is a long time about it, because it is destitute of blood: and it ejects its young through the orifice which is called the spiracle, which is the only passage for its body; and it lays eggs in clusters, like bunches of grapes.
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