But as to the thunnis, Aristotle says that this is the female, differing from the male thunnus in having a fin under the belly, the name of which fin is the “ather.” But in his treatise on the Parts of Animals, he again distinguishes the thunnis from the thunnus; saying, that “in the summer, about the month Hecatombæon, it drops something like a bag, in which there are a great number of small eggs.” And Speusippus, in the second book of his Similitudes, distin- guishes the thunnis from the thunnus; and so does Epichar- mus, in his Muses. But Cratinus, in his Pluti, says—
For I'm a thunnis, a melænas, orAnd Aristotle, in his treatise on Fishes, says that the thunnis is a gregarious fish, and also a migratory one. But Archestratus, who is so fond of petty details, says—
A thunnus, orphos, grayling, eel, or sea-dog.
And then the thunna's tail, which I call thunnis,And Antiphanes, in his Pæderastes, says—
That mighty fish, whose home's Byzantium.
Cut it in slices, and then roast it all
With accurate care, strewing on nought but salt,
Most thinly spread; then sprinkle a little oil;
Then eat it hot, first dipping it in brine.
Or if you like to eat them dry they're good;
Like the immortal gods in character,
And figure too; but if you once forget,
And vinegar add to them, then you spoil them.
And the middle slices takeAntiphanes also praises the tail of the thunnis, in his Couris, where he says—
Of the choice Byzantian tunny,
And let them be neatly hidden
Under leaves from beet-root torn.
A. The man who's country bred likes not to eatAnd some of these iambics may be found in the Acestria, and also in the Countryman, or Butalion. And Hiponax, as Lysanias quotes him in his treatise on the Iambic Poets, says—
Food from the sea extracted; unless indeed
It comes quite close in shore. Such as some conger,
Some ray, or tunny's . . .
B. Which part of the tunny?
A. The lower part.
B. Well, you may eat that safely.
A. All other fish I reckon cannibals.
B. Do not you eat those fish with the ugly backs?
B. The fat eels which haunt Copais' lake.
[p. 477] A. Aye, like a ploughman. For indeed I have
A farm not far from that most dainty lake.
But I impeach the eels now of desertion,
For none at all were there the other day.
For one of them with rapid extravaganceAnd Strattis also mentions the thunnis, in his Callipides.
Feasting each day on tunnies and on cheese-cakes,,
Like any eunuch of rich Lampsacus,
Ate up his whole estate. So that he now
Is forced to work and dig among the rocks,'
Eating poor figs, and small stale loaves of barley,
Food fit for slaves.