previous next


Solis gemma1 is white, and, like the luminary from which it takes its name, emits brilliant rays in a circular form. Sagda is found by the people of Chaldæa adhering to ships, and is of a leek-green colour. The Isle of Samothrace gives its name to a stone2 which it produces, black and imponderous, and similar to wood in appearance. Sauritis3 is found, they say, in the belly of the green lizard, cut asunder with a reed. Sarcitis4 is a stone, like beef in appearance. Selenitis5 is white and transparent, with a reflected colour like that of honey. It has a figure within it like that of the moon, and reflects the face of that luminary, if what we are told is true, according to its phases, day by day, whether on the wane or whether on the increase: this stone is a native of Arabia, it is thought. Sideritis6 is a stone like iron, the presence of which in lawsuits creates discord. Sideropœcilos,7 which is a variety of the same stone, is a native of Æthiopia, and is covered with variegated spots.

Spongitis has its name from its resemblance to sponge. Synodontitis is a stone found in the brain of the fish known as "synodus."8 Syrtitis is a stone that used formerly to be found on the shores of the Syrtes,9 though now it is found on the coasts of Lucania as well: it is of a honey colour, with a reflected tint of saffron, and contains stars of a feeble lustre within. Syringitis10 is hollow throughout, like the space between the two joints in a straw.

1 "Gem of the Sun." According to some, this is the Girasol opal; but Ajasson has no doubt. from the description given of it by Photius, from Damascius, that it is identical with the "Asteria" of Chapter 47. See also the "Astrion" of Chapter 48.

2 Supposed to be jet.

3 "Lizard stone."

4 "Flesh stone"

5 "Moon stone." Our Selenite probably, crystallized sulphate of lime: the thin laminæ of which reflect the disk of the: un or moon.

6 "Stone like iron" See "Oritis" in Chapter 65; also B. xxxvi. c. 25, and Chapter 15 of this Book, for minerals of this name.

7 "Variegated iron."

8 So called from its teeth meeting evenly, like the jaw-teeth, and not shaped like those of a saw, so formed that the teeth of one jaw lock with those of the other. See B. xi. c. 5. The Linnæan genus Sparus is of this kind.

9 See B. v. cc. 4, 5, and B. vi. c. 37.

10 "Fistulous stone."

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Latin (Karl Friedrich Theodor Mayhoff, 1906)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

hide References (8 total)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: