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2 Cuvier remarks that, in this Chapter, there are many details relative to the polypus, that have not been observed by modern naturalists; but they may have been observed by the Greeks, upon whose shores and islands the animal was much more frequently to be found than in the west of Europe.
3 Oppian, Halieut. B. ii. 1. 260, describes the battles of these animals with the polypus. He also says, B. iii. c. 198, that they are attracted by the smell of the flesh of the polypus, and so are easily taken.
4 Aristotle, Hist. Anim. B. ix. c. 59.
5 Oppian, Halieut. B. i. 1. 551, says, that they hardly live a year; and Ælian, Hist. Anim. B. vi. c. 28, states to a similar effect.
6 Basil attributes a similar craftiness to the crab; Hexaem. Homil. vii.
7 The fishermen at the present day, upon the coast of Normandy, say that the polypus, which they call the chatrou, is a most formidable enemy to swimmers and divers; for when it has embraced any of the limbs with—its tentacles, it adheres with such tenacity, that it is quite impossible for a person to disengage himself, or to move any of his limbs.
8 In Spain; see B. iii. c. 3. Ælian, Hist. Anim. B. vi. c. 13, tells a similar story about a polypus at Puteoli.
9 "Lacus ;" large tubs used in the process of pickling. This story, Cuvier observes, is only surpassed by those told by the Norwegians relative to the "kraken" of their seas, which, according to some versions of the fable, is a polypus of such vast size, that sailors have sometimes mistaken it for an island.
10 "Nassis." The "nassa" was a contrivance for catching fish by the junction of osier or willow rods. It was probably made in the shape of a large bottle with a narrow mouth, and placed with the mouth facing the current. Aristotle, Hist. Anim. B. iv. c. 8, states, that the fishermen, when they were desirous of bringing the fish out of their holes, were in the habit of rubbing the mouth of the holes with salted flesh.
11 Oppian, Halieut. B. i. c. 310, tells a story of a polypus, of the ozæna species, that was in the habit of climbing trees, and plundering the fruit.
12 "Afflatu terribili." This, as Hardouin says, may either mean its had smell, or stinking water, ejected from its canal.
13 Its arms or feelers. The amphora, as a measure of capacity, held about nine English gallons.
14 "Caliculis;" literally, "little glasses." Its "acetabula," or suckers, are so called from their peculiar shape.
15 Aristotle, Hist. Anim. B. iv. c. 2, says the same; but, as Hardouin observes, he must mean the Ionian sea.
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