CHAP. 96.—INSTANCES OF AFFECTION SHOWN BY SERPENTS.
On the other hand, there is a strict friendship existing between the peacock and the pigeon, the turtle-dove and the
parrot, the blackbird and the turtle, the crow and the heron,
all of which join in a common enmity against the fox. The
harpe also, and the kite, unite against the triorchis.
And then, besides, have we not seen instances of affection in
the serpent even, that most ferocious of all animals? We
related the story that is told of a man in Arcadia, who was saved by a dragon which had belonged to him,
and of his voice being recognized by the animal. We must
also make mention here of another marvellous story that is
related by Phylarchus about the asp. He tells us, that in
Egypt one of these animals, after having received its daily
nourishment at the table of a certain person, brought forth, and
that it so happened that the son of its entertainer was killed
by one of its young ones; upon which, returning to its food
as usual, and becoming sensible of the crime, it immediately
killed the young one, and returned to the house no more.