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Trebius Niger informs us that whenever the loligo1 is seen darting above the surface of the water, it portends a change of weather: that the xiphias,2 or, in other words, the swordfish, has a sharp-pointed muzzle, with which it is able to pierce the sides of a ship and send it to the bottom: instances of which have been known near a place in Mauritania, known as Cotte, not far from the river Lixus.3 He says, too, that the loligo sometimes darts above the surface, in such vast numbers, as to sink the ships upon which they fall.

1 See B. ix. cc. 44, 45, and B. xviii. c. 87.

2 See B. ix. cc. 1, 21 and c. 53 of the present Book. There are two varieties of it, the Xiphias gladius of Bloch and Lacépède, and the Xiphias machæra of Shaw.

3 See B. v. c. 1.

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