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There is also the cestreus. Icesius says, “if the fish which are called by one general name of leucisci there are many sorts; for some are called cephali, and some cestres, and some chellones, and some myxini. But the cephali are the best both in flavour and juiciness; the next to them are those called the cestres; the myxini are inferior to either. But the worst of all are the chellones, which are called bacchi; and they are all full of wholesome juice, not very nutritious, but very digestible.” And Dorion, in his essay on Fish, mentions the sea cestreus, but does not approve of the river one. And the sea cestreus he subdivides into two species—the cephalus and the nestis. But the cestreus, which is like the sea-urchin about the head, he calls sphondylus. And he says “that the cephalinus differs from the cephalus, and that this last is also called the blepsias.” But Aristotle says, in the fifth book of his treatise on the Parts of Animals, “But of the different kinds of cestreus, the chellones begin to be pregnant in the month Poseideon; so does the sargus and the fish called the myxus; and so does the cephalus: and they go thirty days with young. But some of the cestres are not generated by copulation, but are produced by the slime and the sand.” And in other places Aristotle says, “The cestreus is a fish with serrated teeth, but he does not eat other fishes; and, indeed, he is in no respect carnivorous. But of these fish there are several kinds—the cephalus, the chellon, and the pheræus. And the chellon feeds close to land, but the pheræus does not; and they use the following food—the pheræus uses the mucus which proceeds from itself, and the chellon eats slime and sand. It is said, also, that the spawn of the cestreus is not eaten by any other fish, just as the cestreus also eats no other fish.” But Euthydemus the Athenian, in his treatise on Cured Fish, says that the spheneus and the dactyleus are both different species of cestres; and also that there is a species which are called cephali, because they have very large heads. And those which are called spheneus,1 are called so because [p. 482] they are thin and four-cornered; and the dactyleis are not so thick as two fingers. But the most excellent of the cestres are those which are caught near Abdera, as Archestratus has told us; and the second-best are those which come from Sinope.
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