WE ſhall retain the name of Mule to the animal produced by the jack-aſs and mare; and to that procreated between the horſe and ſhe-aſs, we ſhall give the denomination of bardeau. The differences which ſubſiſt between theſe two mongrel animals have never hitherto been marked by any author. Theſe differences, however, afford the moſt certain criterion of diſtinguiſhing the relative influence of males and females in the product of generation. A compariſon of theſe two mules, and other mongrels proceeding from a mixture of different ſpecies, will give us more preciſe ideas concerning this relative influence, than could be obtained by ſimply comparing two individuals of the ſame ſpecies.
[Page 2] The bardeau is much ſmaller than the mule, and ſeems to preſerve the dimenſions of its mother, the ſhe-aſs; and the mule retains the dimenſions of the mare. Hence, in mixed ſpecies, the ſize of the body appears to depend more upon the mother than the father. Now, theſe two animals differ in figure. The neck of the bardeau is thinner, the back ſharper, and the crupper more pointed; while the fore-head of the mule is better ſhaped, the neck more beautiful, the ſides rounder, and the crupper more plump. Hence both of theſe animals retain more of the mother than of the father, not only in magnitude, but in figure of body. This remark, however, does not apply to the head, limbs, and tail. The head of the bardeau is longer, and not ſo thick in proportion as that of the aſs; and the head of the mule is ſhorter and thicker than that of the horſe. Hence, in the figure and dimenſions of the head, they have a greater reſemblance to the father than to the mother. The tail of the bardeau is garniſhed with hair nearly in the ſame manner as that of the horſe; and the tail of the mule is almoſt naked, like that of the aſs. In this extreme part of the body, therefore, the ſimilarity to the father predominates. The ears of the mule are longer than thoſe of the horſe; and the ears of the bardeau are ſhorter than thoſe of the aſs. The limbs of the mule are hard and limber, like thoſe of the horſe; and the limbs of the bardeau are [Page 3] more fleſhy. Hence theſe two animals, in the form of the head, limbs, and other extremities of the body, have a greater reſemblance to the father than to the mother.
In the years 1751 and 1752, I made two hegoats copulate with ſeveral ewes, and I obtained nine mules, ſeven males and and two females. Struck with this difference between the number of males and females, I endeavoured to diſcover whether the number of male mules, produced by the aſs and mare, predominated in the ſame proportion. The information I received did not aſcertain this point; but I learned that the number of male mules always exceeded that of the females. The Marquis de Spontin-Beaufort made a dog intermix with a ſhe-wolf, and procured four mules, three of which were males*. In fine, having made inquiries concerning mules which are more eaſily obtained, I learned, that the number of males greatly exceeded that of the females. In the article, Canary-birds †, I remarked, that of nine young produced between a gold-finch and a Canary-bird, there were only three females. Theſe are the only certain facts I could collect on this ſubject‡, which merits [Page 4] more attention than it has yet received; for the myſteries of generation by the concourſe of different ſpecies, and the aſcertaining of the proportional effective powers of males and females in every kind of reproduction, can alone be developed by an aſſemblage of ſimilar facts.
Of my nine mules produced by the he-goat and the ewes, the firſt was brought forth on the 15th day of April. When examined three days [Page 5] after birth, and compared with lambs of the ſame age, it differed from them in the following particulars: The ears, upper part of the head, as well as the diſtance between the eyes, were larger. It had, beſides, a band of whitiſh gray hair from the nap of the neck to the extremity of the tail. The four legs, the ſuperior part of the neck, the breaſt, and belly, were covered with the ſame white, coarſe hair. There was a ſmall quantity of wool upon the flanks only; and even this ſhort, curled wool, was mixed with a great deal of hair. The legs of this mule were alſo a foot and a half longer than thoſe of a lamb of the ſame age. When examined, eighteen days after birth, the white hairs were partly fallen off, and replaced by brown hairs, ſimilar in colour to thoſe of the he-goat, and nearly as coarſe. The limbs continued to be more than a foot and a half longer than thoſe of the lamb; and, on account of this length of limbs, it did not walk ſo well as the lamb. This lamb was killed by an accident; and I took no farther notice of the mule till four months afterward, when I compared it with a ſheep of the ſame age. In the mule, from the ſpace between the eyes to the extremity of the muzzle, the diſtance was at leaſt an inch ſhorter than in the ſheep; and the head of the mule was more than half an inch broader, at the broadeſt part. Hence the head of this mule was thicker and ſhorter than that of a ſheep of equal age. The curvature [Page 6] of the upper jaw, taken from the corner of the mouth, was near half an inch longer in the mule than in the ſheep. The head of the mule was not covered with wool, but with long, buſhy hair. The tail was two inches ſhorter than that of the ſheep.
In the beginning of the year 1752, I obtained, from the union of a he-goat with ewes, eight other mules, ſix of which were males, and two females. Two of them died before I could examine them; but they ſeemed to reſemble thoſe who ſurvived. Two of them, a male and a female, had four teats, two on each ſide, like thoſe of the goats. In general, theſe mules had long hair on the belly, and particularly about the penis, as in the he-goat, and alſo on the feet, and particularly thoſe behind. Moſt of them had the chanfrin leſs arched than is common to lambs, the diſtance between the hoofs larger, and the tail ſhorter.
Under the article Dog, I related ſome experiments made with a view to procure an intermixture between a dog and a wolf, where all the precautions employed for that purpoſe were abortive*. The concluſion drawn from theſe experiments was in the following words: 'I pretend not abſolutely to affirm, that the wolf, in no age or country, never intermixed with dogs. The contrary is aſſerted poſitively by the antients. Ariſtotle remarks, that, though [Page 7] animals of different ſpecies ſeldom intermix; yet it certainly happens among dogs, foxes, and wolves.' I have ſince learned the propriety of being thus cautious in my concluſions; for M. le Marquis de Spontin-Beaufort has ſucceeded in the junction of a dog and a wolf. I was informed of this fact by M. Surirey de Boiſſy, in a letter which he wrote me in the following terms:
Namur, June 9. 1773.
The Marquis de Spontin has in this place reared a very young ſhe-wolf, to whom he gave, as a companion, a dog of nearly the ſame age. They were left at full liberty, and came into the apartments, the kitchen, the ſtable, &c. They live in the moſt intimate friendſhip, and are extremely careſſing, lying under the table, and upon the feet of the perſons who ſit round it.
The dog is a kind of mongrel maſtiff, and full of vigour. During the firſt ſix months, the wolf was fed with milk, and afterward with raw fleſh, which it preferred to what was roaſted. When ſhe eat, no perſon durſt approach her. At other times, ſhe permitted every freedom, except abuſe. She careſſed all the dogs which came near her, till ſhe began to give a preference to her old companion; after which, ſhe was enraged at every other. She was covered, for the firſt time, on the 25th day of March laſt. Her amours continued fifteen days, with pretty frequent repetitions; [Page 8] and ſhe brought forth her young on the ſixth day of June at eight o'clock in the morning. Hence the time of her geſtation was ſeventy-three days. The young were four in number, and of a blackiſh colour. Some of them have the half of the breaſt, and the pats, white. Theſe colours are derived from the dog, who is black and white. From the moment of littering, ſhe growled and attacked all who approached her. She no longer diſtinguiſhed her maſters; and would even have devoured the dog, if he had come near her.
I add, that ſhe has been chained ever ſince ſhe made a break at her gallant, who had leaped a neighbouring wall, in order to come at a bitch in ſeaſon; that ſhe nearly worried his rival; and that the coachman ſeparated them by repeated blows of a large bludgeon, and conducted her to her lodge, where, imprudently commencing his chaſtiſement, her fury roſe to ſuch a degree, that ſhe bit him twice in the thigh, and the wounds confined him ſix weeks to his bed.
In my anſwer to this letter, I thanked M. de Boiſſy, and added ſome remarks, with a view to remove my doubts. M. le Marquis de Spontin having ſeen my anſwer, obligingly wrote me in the following terms:
Namur, July 14. 1773.
I read with much ſatisfaction the judicious remarks you tranſmitted to M. Surirey de Boiſſy, whom I [Page 9] had begged to communicate to you, during my abſence, a fact, which cannot be denied, notwithſtanding the force of your arguments, and the opinion I have always entertained, as well as the reſt of the world, of the excellence of the many learned productions by which you have enlightened the republic of letters. But, whether it was an effect of chance, or one of thoſe ſports of Nature, who, as you remark, ſometimes departs from her eſtabliſhed laws, the fact is inconteſtible; and you will be convinced of its truth, if you give credit to what I have the honour of writing you, which can be atteſted by two hundred perſons at leaſt, who were witneſſes to it as well as myſelf. This ſhe-wolf was only three days old when I purchaſed it from a peaſant, who had carried it off, after killing the mother. I fed it with milk till it was able to eat fleſh. I recommended to thoſe who had the care of it, to careſs, and handle it often, with a view to render it as tame as poſſible. At laſt, it became ſo familiar that I have taken it to hunt in the woods at the diſtance of a league from my houſe, without any danger of loſing it. Sometimes, when I was unable to call it back, it returned of its own accord in the night. I was always more certain of keeping it at home when I had a dog; for it was fond of dogs; and thoſe, who had overcome their natural repugnance, ſported with it, as if they had been [Page 10] animals of the ſame ſpecies. During all this time, it attacked only cats and poultry, whom it ſtrangled, without diſcovering any inclination to eat them. As ſoon as ſhe attained the age of twelve months, her ferocity increaſed, and I began to perceive that ſhe had a ſtrong deſire to attack ſheep and bitches. I then chained her; becauſe ſhe frequently ſprung upon her maſter, when he attempted to reſtrain her. ſhe was at leaſt one year old when I introduced her to the acquaintance of the dog who covered her. She has been kept in my garden, which is ſituated in the centre of the town, ſince the end of November laſt; and, therefore, no male wolf can be ſuppoſed to have had any communication with her. As ſoon as ſhe came in ſeaſon, ſhe diſcovered ſuch an affection for the dog, and the dog for her, that each of them howled frightfully when they were not together. She was firſt covered on the 28th day of March, and twice each day during the two following weeks. They continued attached to each other more than a quarter of an hour at every embrace, during which time the wolf complained, and ſeemed to ſuffer pain; but the dog was perfectly at his eaſe. Three weeks after, her pregnancy was perceptible. On the 6th day of June, ſhe brought forth four young, whom ſhe ſtill ſuckles, though they are five weeks old, and have pretty long ſharp teeth. They have a [Page 11] perfect reſemblance to puppies, having long pendulous ears. One of them is black, with a white breaſt, which was the colour of the dog. The others will probably be of the colour of the mother. The hair of each of them is courſer than that of ordinary dogs. There is but one female, with a very ſhort tail, like the dog, who had ſcarcely any tail. They promiſe to be large, ſtrong, and very ferocious. The mother is extremely ſolicitous concerning their wellfare. . . . . . I doubt whether I ſhall keep her any longer, having been chagrined by an accident that befell my coachman, whom ſhe bit ſo cruelly, that he has been confined to his bed theſe ſix weeks paſt. But I will engage, that, if preſerved, ſhe will again have puppies by the ſame dog, who is white, with large black ſpots on the back. I hope, Sir, that what I have ſaid will anſwer for a reply to your remarks, and that you will no longer heſitate concerning the truth of this ſingular event.
My doubts are entirely removed, and I am happy to embrace this opportunity of expreſſing my thanks. The eſtabliſhment of a rare fact in natural hiſtory is a great acquiſition. The means of obtaining ſuch facts are always difficult, and often, as we have ſeen, very dangerous. It was for this laſt reaſon that I fequeſtered my wolf and dog from all ſociety. I had formerly reared a young wolf, who, till the age of twelve months, did no miſchief, and followed his maſter [Page 12] like a dog. But, in the ſecond year, he committed ſo many exceſſes that it was neceſſary to kill him. I learned by experience, that theſe animals, though ſoftened by education, reſume, with age, their natural ferocity. Willing to prevent theſe inconveniences, I kept my ſhewolf always confined along with the dog; and I acknowledge that this method of procuring an union between them, was ill imagined; for, in this ſtate of ſlavery and diſguſt, the diſpoſitions of the wolf, inſtead of being ſoftened, were ſoured to ſuch a degree, that ſhe was more ferocious than if ſhe had been at full liberty; and the dog, having been early detached from his equals, and from the ſociety of men, had aſſumed a ſavage and cruel character, which the bad humour of the wolf ſerved only to augment; ſo that, during the two laſt years, their antipathy roſe to ſuch a degree, that they deſired nothing ſo much as to devour each other. In the experiment made by the Marquis de Spontin, every circumſtance was reverſed. The dog was in his ordinary condition: He had all the mildneſs and other qualities which this docile animal acquires by his intercourſe with man. The wolf was likewiſe reared in perfect freedom and familiarity along with the dog, which, by being under no reſtraint, had loſt his repugnance to her; and ſhe, by the ſame mild management, became ſuſceptible of attachment to him. She, therefore, received him with cordiality, whenever [Page 13] the hour of Nature ſtruck: And, though ſhe ſeemed to complain and to ſuffer, ſhe felt more pleaſure than pain; for ſhe allowed the operation to be repeated every day, during all the time ſhe was in ſeaſon. Beſides, the proper moment for this unnatural union was ſeized. The wolf felt the impreſſion of love for the firſt time. She was only in the ſecond year of her age; and, of courſe, had not entirely reſumed her natural ferocity.
All theſe circumſtances, and perhaps ſome others which were not obſerved, contributed to the ſucceſs of this fertile embrace. From what has been remarked, it would appear, that the moſt certain method of rendering animals unfaithful to their ſpecies, is to place them, like man, in ſociety, and to accuſtom them gradually to individuals which, without ſuch precautions, would not only be indifferent, but hoſtile to each other. However this matter ſtands, the Marquis de Spontin has aſcertained the fact, that the dog can produce with the wolf even in our climates. I could have wiſhed that the ſucceſs of this experiment had induced its author to try the union of a wolf with a bitch, and of foxes with dogs. But if this deſire ſhould be conſidered as exorbitant, he muſt aſcribe it to the inſatiable enthuſiaſm of a naturaliſt*.
[Page 14] But to return to our mules. In thoſe I obtained from the he-goat and ewe, the number of males was as ſeven to two; in thoſe from the dog and ſhe-wolf, the males were as three to one; and, in thoſe from the goldfinch and Canary bird, the mules were as ſixteen to three. It appears, therefore, to be certain, that the number of males, which is always greater than that of females in pure ſpecies, is ſtill greater in mixed ſpecies. Hence, the male, in general, has a greater influence on the produce of generation than the female, becauſe he tranſmits his ſex to the greateſt number, and becauſe the number of males augments in proportion to the remoteneſs of the ſpecies who intermix. The ſame thing muſt happen in the conjunction of different races: By croſſing the remoteſt of theſe, we will not only procure the moſt beautiful productions, but the greateſt number of males. [Page 15] I have often endeavoured to inveſtigate the reaſon why any religion, or any government, ſhould prohibit the marriage of brothers and ſiſters. Did men learn, by very antient experience, that the union of brother and ſiſter was leſs fertile than an intermixture with ſtrangers, or that the former produced fewer males, and feebler and more unhandſome children? It is certain, however, that, from a thouſand experiments, both in men and the other animals, croſſing the breed is the only mode of ennobling and preſerving the perfection of the ſpecies.
To theſe facts and experiments, let us add what the antients have ſaid upon this ſubject. Ariſtotle tells us, that the mule engenders with the mare, and that the junction produces an animal which the Greeks called hinnus or ginnus. He likewiſe remarks, that the ſhe-mule eaſily conceives, but ſeldom brings the foetus to perfection *. Of theſe two facts, the ſecond is more rare than the firſt; and both happen only in warm climates. M. de Bory, of the royal academy of Sciences, and formerly governour of the American iſlands, communicated to me a recent fact of this kind, in a letter, dated May 7. 1770, of which the following is an extrat.
You will perhaps recollect, Sir, that M. d' Almbert read, laſt year, in the Academy of Sciences, a letter, which informed him, that a ſhe-mule, in the iſland of St Domingo, [Page 16] had brought forth a foal. I was deſired to write for proper vouchers of the fact; and I have now the honour of ſending you the certificate which I received. . . . . My correſpondent is worthy of the higheſt credit. He adds, that he has ſeen mules cover, indiſcriminately, ſhe-mules and mares, and likewiſe ſhe-mules covered by ſtallions and he-mules.
This certificate is judicially atteſted, and ſigned by witneſſes of unqueſtionable veracity. The ſubſtance of it is, that, on the 14th day of May 1769, M. de Nort, Knight of St Louis, and late Major of the Royal Legion of St Domingo, had a ſhe-mule brought to him, which was ſaid to be ſick; that her belly was remarkably large, and a membrance protruded through the vagina. M. de Nort, believing the animal to be inflated, ſent for a Negro farrier, who had been accuſtomed to take care of diſeaſed animals; that this Negro, who arrived in the abſence of M. de Nort, had thrown down the mule, in order to give her a draught; that, the moment after the fall, ſhe brought forth a young mule, perfectly formed, and covered with long and very black hair; that the young mule lived an hour; but that, having been both hurt by the fall, and foal died ſoon after birth, and the mother ten hours after; and, in fine, that the young mule was ſkinned, and the ſkin ſent, ſays M. de Nort, to Doctor Matty, who depoſited it in the Muſaeum of the Royal Society at London.
[Page 17] Other eye-witneſſes, and particularly M. Cazavant, ſurgeon, add, that the young mule ſeemed to have been mature, and well formed; that, from the appearance of its hair, head, and ears, it had a greater reſemblance to the aſs than common mules; that the paps of the mother were ſwelled, and full of milk; that, when the ignorant Negro perceived the feet iſſuing from the vagina, he drew ſo forcibly as to invert the uterus, and lacerate the parts, which occaſioned the death of both mother and foal.
Theſe facts, which appear to be well aſcertained, demonſtrate, that, in warm climates, the mule is not only capable of conception, but of bringing the foetus to full maturity. From my correſpondents in Spain and Italy, I learn, that ſimilar events have happened in theſe countries: But the facts are not ſo completely authenticated. It ſtill remains to be inquired, whether this St Domingo mule was impregnated by an aſs or a mule. The ſuperior reſemblance of the young mule to the former ſeems to indicate, that ſhe had been covered by an aſs. The ferocious ardour of the aſs renders him very indifferent in the choice of females, and makes him attack, with nearly the ſame avidity, the ſhe-aſs, the mare, and the mule.
We may, therefore, conſider it as an eſtabliſhed fact, that the he-mule can generate, and the ſhe-mule produce. Like other animals, they have a ſeminal liquor, and all the organs neceſſary [Page 18] to generation. But mongrel animals are always leſs fertile, and more tardy than thoſe of a pure ſpecies. Beſides, mules have never produced in cold climates, ſeldom in warm regions, and ſtill more ſeldom in temperate countries*. Hence their barrenneſs, without being abſolute, [Page 19] may be regarded as poſitive; ſince their productions are ſo rare, that a few examples only can [Page 20] be collected. But men were wrong in aſſerting that mules were abſolutely barren, and that all animals proceeding from a mixture of different ſpecies were, like the mules, incapable of producing. The facts formerly related concerning the produce of a he-goat and a ewe, of a dog and a ſhe-wolf, and of Canary birds and gold-finches, demonſtrate, that theſe mongrels are by no means barren, and that ſome of them are equally prolific with their parents.
It is an unhappy circumſtance, that a ſmall, and often nominal error, extends over every object to which it has any relation, and at laſt not only becomes in an error in fact, but gives riſe to a general prejudice, that is more difficult to remove than the particular opinion from which it originated. A ſingle word, a name like that of mule, which ought ſolely to repreſent the idea of the animla proceeding from the aſs and mare, has been improperly applied to the animal produced by the horſe and the ſhe-aſs, and afterward, with ſtill greater impropriety, to all quadrupeds, and all birds, of mixed ſpecies: And, [Page 21] as this word mule, in its original acceptation, included the idea of the barrenneſs common to the animal proceeding from the aſs and mare, this idea of barrenneſs has been conveyed to all beings who have the denomination of mules; I ſay to all beings; for, independent of quadrupeds, birds, and fiſhes, mule plants have been fancied, to which, without heſitation, this general ſterility has alſo been aſcribed. None of theſe beings, however, is abſolutely barren. The mule, properly ſo called, or the animal produced by the aſs mare, is not abſolutely barren; but its prolific powers, when compared with thoſe of pure ſpecies, or even with thoſe of other animals of a mixed ſpecies, are much more feeble and uncertain.
All mules, ſays Prejudice, are vitiated animals, incapable of producing: No animal, ſays Reaſon and Experience, though proceeding from two ſpecies, is abſolutely barren. It ought to be remarked, however, that, in pure, as well as mixed ſpecies, the degrees of fertility are very different. In the firſt, ſome, like the fiſhes and inſects, multiply, annually, by millions; others, as the birds and ſmall quadrupeds, produce by twenties and dozens; in fine, others, as man, and the larger quadrupeds, produce only one in twelve months. The number produced may be ſaid to be in the inverſe proportion of the magnitude of animals. The horſe and aſs bring forth but one in a year; and, in the ſame period, [Page 22] the mouſe and Guinea pig produce thirty or forty. Hence the fecundity of theſe ſmall animals is thirty or forty times greater; and, if a ſcale were formed of the different degrees of fertility, the ſmall animals above enumerated would occupy the higheſt points, while the horſe and aſs would be found nearly in the loweſt; for the elephant alone is leſs fertile.
In mixt ſpecies, there are alſo differnt degrees of fecundity; for animals proceeding from two ſpecies partake of two natures, and are, in general, leſs fertile; and this want of fertility increaſes in proportion to the infecundity of the parents. Hence, if the horſe and aſs, two animals naturally not very fertile, mix, the original infecundity, inſtead of diminiſhing in the mongrel race, muſt be augemented. The mule will not only be leſs fertile than its parents, but, perhaps, the moſt unfertile of all mongrels; becauſe all the other mules which produce, ſuch as thoſe proceeding from the he-goat and ewe, from the goldfinch and Canary bird, &c. are much more fruitful than the aſs and horſe. It is to this original and particular cauſe, that the infecundity of the mule and bardeau ſhould be referred. A ſecond cauſe, ſtill more particular, renders the laſt animal leſs prolific than the firſt. The mule proceeding from the aſs and mare retains the ardent temperament of the father, and, of courſe, poſſeſſes a high degree of prolific power; while the bardeau proceeding from the [Page 23] horſe and aſs is, like its father, leſs potent, and leſs able to engender. Beſides, the mare being leſs ardent than the ſhe-aſs, is likewiſe more fertile, ſince ſhe conceives and retains with more certainty. Thus every circumſtance concurs in rendering the mule more prolific than the bardeau; for ardour of temperament in the male, which is ſo neceſſary to ſucceſsful generation and the number produced, is hurtful in the female, and almoſt always prevents conception and retention.
This fact holds generally both in man and the other animals. Cold women, joined to ardent men, produce a number of children. A woman, on the contrary, who feels too acutely the emotions of love, is ſeldom fertile. But, in moſt women who are merely paſſive, the effect is more certain; becauſe the fruit of generation is leſs diſturbed by the convulſions of pleaſure. Theſe are ſo marked, and ſo deſtructive to conception, in ſome females, ſuch as the ſheaſs, that ſhe requires cold water to be thrown on her crupper, and even heavy blows, in order to repreſs them. Without ſuch diſagreeable aids, the ſhe-aſs would never be impregnated, till age abated the fury of her paſſion. The ſame means are ſometimes employed to make mares conceive.
But, it may be ſaid, that female dogs and cats, who ſeem to be more ardent than the mare and ſhe-aſs, never fail to conceive; and, therefore, [Page 24] that the fact advanced concerning the infecundity of females whoſe feelings are exquiſite, is too general, and admits of many exceptions. But the example of dogs and cats, inſtead of being an exception, is rather a confirmation of the general rule; for, in the bitch, however violent the convulſions of the internal organs may be ſuppoſed, they have full time to be appeaſed during the long interval between conſummation and the retreat of the male, who cannot detach himſelf till the turgidity and irritation of the parts ſubſide. The female cat is in a ſimilar ſituation. Of all females, ſhe appears to be the moſt ardent in her amours; for ſhe calls to the males with lamentable cries, which announce the moſt preſſing neceſſity. But, as in the dog, from a particular conformation of the male cat, this violent female never miſſes conception. Her deſires, which are exceſſive, are neceſſarily tempered with a pain almoſt equally acute. The glans of the male cat is covered with large ſharp prickles. The intromiſſion of it, therefore, muſt be extremely painful to the female, who announces her ſufferings by loud cries. The pain is ſo great, that ſhe inſtantly makes every effort to eſcape, and the male, to retain her, is obliged to ſeize her by the neck with his teeth, and to compell ſubmiſſion from the very female who had invited his embraces
[Page 25] In domeſtic animals, who are well fed and taken care of, multiplication is greater than in thoſe who continue in a wild ſtate. Of this we have an example in domeſtic dogs and cats, who produce ſeveral times every year; but, when in a natural ſtate, they produce only once in the ſame period. Domeſtic birds furniſh an example ſtill more ſtriking: Can the fecundity of any ſpecies of wild birds be compared to that of a well fed hen, when properly ſerved with a cock? And, even in the human ſpecies, what a vaſt difference betwen the ſcanty propagation of ſavages, and the immenſe population of civilized nations, under the adminiſtration of a wiſe government? But we here confine ourſelves to the fecundity natural to animals in full poſſeſſion of liberty, the relative fertility of whom is exhibited in the following Table, from which ſome important concluſions may be drawn.
[Page 30] This is the order in which Nature has preſented to us the different degrees of fecundity in quadrupeds; and from it we perceive, that this fecundity diminiſhes in proportion to the magnitude of the animal. In general, this ſame ſcale of fecundity extends to all the other tribes of animated Nature. Small birds are more prolific than the larger kinds. The ſame thing holds in fiſhes, and perhaps in inſects. But, confining our remarks to quadrupeds alone, it appears from the above table, that the hog is the only exception to the general rule; for, from the ſize of his body, he ſhould be ranked with thoſe animals which produce only two or three, once in twelve months, while, in fact, he is equally prolific with the ſmall quadrupeds.
This table contains all that is known with regard to the fertility of pure ſpecies. But the fecundity of mixed ſpecies, which is always leſs than that of the pure, merits particular attention. The reaſon will be apparent, by ſuppoſing, for example, that all the males in the horſe ſpecies, and all the ſhe-aſſes, or, rather, all the jack-aſſes and all the mares, were deſtroyed: In this caſe, thoſe mixed animals alone, which we call mules and bardeaux, would be produced; and the number brought forth would be much fewer than that of horſes or aſſes; becauſe the natural conformities or relations between the horſe and ſhe-aſs, or between the jack-aſs and mare, are leſs than between the horſe and mare, or the male [Page 31] and female aſs. It is the number of conformities and diſſimilarities which conſtitutes or diſtinguiſhes ſpecies; and, ſince the ſpecies of the aſs has at all times been ſeparated from that of the horſe, it is apparent, that, by mixing theſe two ſpecies, whether by means of females or males, we diminiſh the number of conformities which conſtitute the ſpecies. Hence the males will engender and the females produce ſeldomer, and with more difficulty; and even thoſe mixed ſpecies, if their conformities were fewer, would become entirely barren. Mules of every kind, therefore, muſt be rare; becauſe it is only from being deprived of its natural female, that any animal will intermix with a female of a different ſpecies. Even when mongrel animals approach each other with ſome degree of warmth, their produce is neither ſo certain nor ſo frequent as in pure ſpecies, where the number of conformities is greater. Now, the produce of mixed ſpecies will be leſs frequent, in proportion to the infecundity of the pure ſpecies from whom they proceed; and the produce of animals proceeding from mixed ſpecies will always diminiſh in proportion as they recede from the original ſtock; becauſe the conformities between them and any other animal are augmented. For example, I am perſuaded, from the reaſons above aſſigned, that an intercourſe between two bardeaux would be abortive. Beſides, theſe animals proceed from two ſpecies which are not very fertile, and are [Page 32] alſo under the influence of the ſame cauſs which often prevent the ſhe-aſs from conceiving with her own male. I am more uncertain with regard to the ſterility of mules properly ſo called; becauſe they are not liable to the laſt cauſe of barrenneſs; for, as the mare conceives more eaſily than the ſhe-aſs, and the jack-aſs is more ardent than the horſe, their reſpective prolific powers are greater, and their produce not ſo rare as that of the ſhe-aſs and horſe. The mules, of courſe, will be leſs barren than the bardeaux. I ſuſpect, however, that two mules never engender; and I preſume, even from the examples of fertile mules, that they owe their impregnation to the aſs, rather than to the mule; for we ought not to regard the he-mule as the natural male of the ſhe-mule, though they both have the ſame name, or rather, differ only in ſex.
To explain this matter, let us ſuppoſe an order of kindred in ſpecies, like that which takes place in families. The horſe and mare will be brother and ſiſter in ſpecies, and parents in the firſt degree. It is the ſame with the male and female aſs. But, if the male aſs is given to the mare, they are only counſins in ſpecies, or kindred in the ſecond degree. The mule produced by them, participating one half of both ſpecies, will be removed to the third degree of kindred. Hence the male and female mule, though proceeding from the ſame father and mother, inſtead of being brother and ſiſter in ſpecies, are [Page 33] only kindred in the fourth degree; and, of courſe, will produce more difficultly between themſelves, than the jack-aſs and mare, who are kindred ſpecies in the ſecond degree. For the ſame reaſon, the male and female mules will not produce ſo eaſily between themſelves, as with the mare or aſs; becauſe the kindred of the latter in ſpecies is only in the third degree, while that of the former is in the fourth degree. The infecundity, which appears in the ſecond degree, ſhould be more conſpicuous in the third, and perhaps abſolute in the fourth.
In general, kindred of ſpecies is one of thoſe myſteries of Nature, which man can never unravel, without a long continued and difficult ſeries of experiments. How can we otherwiſe learn, than by the union of different ſpecies of animals many thouſand times repeated, the degree of their kindred? Is the aſs more allied to the horſe than the zebra? Does the wolf approach nearer to the dog than the fox or jackal? At what diſtance from man ſhall we place the large apes, who reſemble him ſo perfectly in conformation of body? Are all the ſpecies of animals the ſame now that they were orginally? Has not their number augmented, inſtead of being diminiſhed? Have not the feeble ſpecies been deſtroyed by the ſtronger, or by the tyranny of man, the number of whom has become a thouſand times greater than that of any other large animal? What relations can be eſtabliſhed between [Page 34] kindred ſpecies, and another kindred ſtill better known, that of different races in the ſame ſpecies? Does not a race, like the mixed ſpecies, proceed from an anomalous individual, which forms the original ſtock? In the dog ſpecies, there is, perhaps, a race ſo rare, that it is more difficult to procreate than the mixed ſpecies proceeding from the aſs and mare. How many queſtions does this ſubject admit of; and how few of them are we in a condition to reſolve? How many facts muſt be diſcovered before we can even form probable conjectures? However, inſtead of being diſcouraged, the philoſopher ought to applaud Nature, even when ſhe is moſt myſterious, and to rejoice that, in proportion as he removes one part of her veil, ſhe exhibits an immenſity of other objects, all worthy of his reſearches. For, what we already know ought to point out what may ſtill be known. There is no boundary to the human intellect. It extends in proportion as the univerſe is diſplayed. Hence man can and ought to attempt every thing: He wants nothing but time to enable him to obtain univerſal knowledge. By multiplying his obſervations, he might foreſee all the phaenomena and all the events of Nature with equal certainty, as if he deduced them from their immediate cauſs: And what enthuſiaſm can be more pardonable, or rather more noble, than to believe that man is capable, by his labours, to [Page 35] diſcover all the powers and myſteries of Nature!
Theſe labours conſiſt chiefly in making obſervations and experiments, from which we diſcover new truths. For example, the union of animals of different ſpecies, by which alone we can learn their kindred, has never been ſufficiently tried. The facts we have been able to collect concerning this union, whether voluntary or forced, are ſo few, that we are not in a condition to aſcertain the exiſtence of jumars. This name was firſt given to mules ſaid to have proceeded from the bull and mare; but it has likewiſe been applied to denote mongrels alledged to have been procreated by the jack-aſs and cow. Dr Shaw tells us, that, in the provinces of Tunis and Algiers, 'there is a little ſerviceable beaſt of burden, called Kumrah, begot betwixt an aſs and a cow. That which I ſaw at Algiers (where it was not looked upon as a rarity) was ſingle hoofed like the aſs, but diſtinguiſhed from it in having a ſleeker ſkin, with the tail and the head (though without horns) in faſhion of the dam's*.
Thus we have already two kinds of jumars, the one proceeding from the bull and mare, and the other from the jack-aſs and cow. A third is mentioned by Merolle, and is pretended to proceed from the bull and ſhe-aſs. ‘'There was a beaſt of burden which proceeds from [Page 36] the bull and ſhe-aſs, and is obtained by covering the aſs with a cow's ſkin, in order to deceive the bull*.'’
But I am equally doubtful concerning the exiſtence of all the three kinds of jumar; though I pretend not to deny the poſſibility of the fact. I have even enumerated ſome facts which prove an actual copulation between animals of very different ſpecies: But their embraces were ineffectual. Nothing ſeems to be more remote from the amiable character of the dog than the brutal manners and inſtinct of the hog; and the form of their bodies is as different as their natural diſpoſitions. I have ſeen, however, two examples of a violent attachment between a dog and a ſow. Even during this very ſummer 1774, a large ſpaniel diſcovered a violent paſſion for a ſow which was in ſeaſon: They were ſhut up together for ſeveral days; and all the domeſtics were witneſſes of the mutual ardour of theſe two animals. The dog exerted many violent efforts to copulate with the ſow; but the diſſimilarity of their organs prevented their union†. The ſame thing happened ſome years before‡. Hence animals, though of very different ſpecies, may contract a ſtrong affection to each other; for it is certain, that, in the above examples, nothing prevented the union of the dog and ſow but the [Page 37] conformation of their organs. It is not equally certain, however, that, if conſummation had taken place, production would have followed. It often happens, that animals of different ſpecies ſpontaneouſly unite. Theſe voluntary unions ought to be prolific, ſince they imply that the natural repugnance, which is the chief obſtacle, is ſurmounted, and alſo a conformity between the organs. No fertility, however, has reſulted from ſuch commixtures. Of this an example recently paſſed before my own eyes. In 1767, and ſome ſucceeding years, the miller at my eſtate of Buffon kept a mare and a bull in the ſame ſtable, who contracted ſuch a paſſion for each other, that, as often as the mare came in ſeaſon, the bull covered her three or four times every day. Theſe embraces were repeated during ſeveral years, and gave the maſter of the animals great hopes of ſeeing their offspring. Nothing, however, reſulted from them. All the inhabitants of the place were witneſſes to this fact, which proves, that, in our climate at leaſt, the bull cannot procreate with the mare, and renders this firſt kind of jumar extremely ſuſpicious. I have not equal evidence to oppoſe to the ſecond kind, which Dr Shaw ſays proceeds from the jack-aſs and cow. I acknowledge, that, though the diſſimilarities in ſtructure appear to be nearly equal in both caſes, the poſitive teſtimony of a traveller ſo well informed as Dr Shaw, ſeems to give a greater degree of probability to the exiſtence [Page 38] of this ſecond kind of jumar than we have for the firſt. With regard to the third jumar, proceeding from the bull and ſhe-aſs, I am perſuaded, notwithſtanding the authority of Merolle, that it has no more exiſtence than the one ſuppoſed to be produced by the bull and mare. The nature of the bull is ſtill farther removed from that of the ſhe-aſs, than from that of the mare: And the unfertility of the mare and bull, which is aſcertained by the above examples, ſhould apply with greater force to the union of the bull and aſs.
TO teach children, and to addreſs men, are two very different taſks. Children receive, without examination, and even with avidity, the arbitrary and the real, the true and the falſe, whenever they are preſented to them under the form of precepts. Men, on the contrary, reject with contempt all precepts which are not founded on ſolid principles. We ſhall, therefore, adopt none of thoſe methodical diſtributions by which, under the appellation of Ape, a multitude of animals, belonging to very different ſpecies, have been huddled together in one indiſcriminate maſs.
What I call an ape is an animal without a tail, whoſe face is flat, whoſe teeth, hands, fingers, and nails reſemble thoſe of man, and who, like him, walk erect on two feet. This definition, derived from the nature of the animal itſelf, and from its relations to man, excludes all animals who have tails; all thoſe who have prominent faces or long muzzles; all thoſe who have crooked or ſharp claws; and all thoſe who walk more willingly on four than on two legs. According to this preciſe idea, let us examine how many ſpecies of animals ought to be ranked under the denomination of ape. The antients knew only [Page 40] one. The pithecos of the Greeks, and the ſimia of the Latins, is a true ape, and was the ſubject upon which Ariſtotle, Pliny, and Galen inſtituted all the phyſical relations they diſcovered between that animal and man. But this ape, or pigmy of the antients, which ſo ſtrongly reſembles man in external ſtructure, and ſtill more ſtrongly in its internal organization, differs from him, however, by a quality, which, though relative in itſelf, is not the leſs eſſential. This quality is magnitude. The ſtature of man, in general, exceeds five feet; that of the pithecus, or pigmy, never riſes above one fourth of this height. Hence, if this ape had been ſtill more ſimilar to man, the antients would have been juſtified for regarding it only as an homunculus, an imperfect dwarf, a pigmy, capable of combating with cranes; while man knew how to tame the elephant and conquer the lion.
But, ſince the diſcovery of the ſouthern regions of Africa and India, we have found another ape poſſeſſing this quality of magnitude; an ape as tall and as ſtrong as man, and equally ardent for women as for its own females; an ape who knows how to bear arms, to attack his enemies with ſtones, and to defend himſelf with clubs. Beſides, he reſembles man ſtill more than the pigmy; for, independent of his having no tail, of his flat face, of the reſemblance of his arms, hands, toes, and nails to ours, and of his walking conſtantly on end, he has a kind of viſage [Page 41] with features which approach to thoſe of the human countenance, a beard on his chin, and no more hair on his body than men have, when in a ſtate of nature. Hence the inhabitants of his country, the civilized Indians, have not heſitated to aſſociate him with the human ſpecies, under the denomination of Orang-outang, or wild man; while the Negroes, almoſt equally wild, and as ugly as theſe apes, who imagine not that civilization exalts our nature, have given it the appellation of Pongo, which is the name of a beaſt, and has no relation to man. This orang-outang or pongo is only a brute, but a brute of a kind ſo ſingular, that man cannot behold it without contemplating himſelf, and without being thoroughly convinced that his body is not the moſt eſſential part of his nature.
Thus, we have diſcovered two animals, the pigmy and the orang-outang, to which the name of ape ought to be applied. There is a third, to which, though more deformed both in relation to man and to the ape, this appellation cannot be refuſed. This animal, which till now was unknown, and was brought from the Eaſt Indies, under the name of gibbon, walks on end, like the other two, and has a flat face. He likewiſe wants a tail. But his arms, inſtead of being proportioned to the height of his body, like thoſe of man, the orang-outang, or the pigmy, are ſo enormouſly long, that, when ſtanding on his two feet, he touches the ground with his hands, [Page 42] without bending either his body or limbs. This ape is the third and laſt to which the name ought to be applied: In this genus, he conſtitutes a ſingular or monſtrous ſpecies, like the race of thick-legged men, ſaid to inhabit the iſland of Saint-Thomas*.
After the apes, another tribe of animals preſent themſelves, to which we ſhall give the generic name of baboon. To diſtinguiſh them more accurately from the other kinds, let it be remarked, that the baboon has a ſhort tail, a long face, a broad high muzzle, canine teeth, proportionally larger than thoſe of man, and calloſities on its buttocks. By this definition, we exclude from the baboon tribe all the apes, who have no tail; all the monkeys, whoſe tails are as long or longer than their bodies; and all thoſe who have thin, ſharp pointed muzzles. The antients had no proper names for theſe animals. Ariſtotle alone ſeems to have pointed out one of the baboons under the name ſimia porcaria †, though he has given but a very imperfect idea of the animal. The Italians firſt called it babuino; the Germans, bavion; the French, babouin; [Page 43] the Britiſh, baboon; and all the modern writers of Latin, papio. We ſhall call it baboon, to diſtinguiſh it from the other ſpecies which have ſince been diſcovered in the ſouthern regions of Africa and India. We are acquainted with three ſpecies of theſe animals: 1. The baboon properly ſo called, which is found in Lybia, Arabia, &c. and is probably the ſimia porcaria of Ariſtotle. 2. The mandrill, or ribbed-noſe, is ſtill larger than the baboon, has a violet coloured face, the noſe and cheeks ribbed with deep oblique furrows, and is found in Guinea and in the warmeſt provinces of Africa. 3. The ouanderou, which is ſmaller than the baboon and mandrill; its body is thinner, its head and face are ſurrounded with a kind of long buſhy mane, and is found in Ceylon, Malabar, and other ſouthern regions of India. Thus we have properly defined three ſpecies of apes, and three ſpecies of baboons, which are all very different from one another.
But, as Nature knows none of our definitions, as ſhe has not claſſed her productions by bundles or genera, and as her progreſs is always gradual and marked by minute ſhades, ſome intermediate animal ſhould be found between the ape and baboon. This intermediate ſpecies actually exiſts, and is the animal which we call magot, or the Barbary ape. It occupies a middle ſtation between our two definitions. It forms the ſhade between the apes and baboons. It differs from [Page 44] the firſt by having a long muzzle and large canine teeth; and, from the ſecond, becauſe it actually wants the tail, though it has an appendix of ſkin, which has the appearance of a very ſmall tail. Of courſe, it is neither an ape nor a baboon, but, at the ſame time, partakes of the nature of both. This animal, which is very common in Higher Egypt, as well as in Barbary, was known to the antients. The Greeks and Romans called it cynocephalus, becauſe its muzzle reſembled that of a dog. Let us now arrange theſe animals in their proper order: The orang-outang is the firſt ape; the pigmy the ſecond; and the gibbon, though different in figure, the third; the cynocephalus or magot the fourth ape, or the firſt baboon; the papio is the firſt baboon; the mandrill the ſecond; and the ouanderou, or little baboon, the third. This order is neither arbitrary nor fictitious, but agreeable to the ſcale of Nature.
After the apes and baboons, come the guenons, or monkeys; that is, animals reſembling the apes and baboons, but which have tails as long, or longer than their bodies. The word guenon has, for ſome ages, had two acceptations different from that we have here given it: It is generally employed to ſignify ſmall apes, and ſometimes to denote the female of the ape. But, more antiently, we called ſinges, or magots, the apes without a tail, and guenons, or mones, thoſe which had long tails. This fact appears from the [Page 45] works of ſome travellers* in the ſixteenth and ſeventeenth centuries. The word guenon is probably derived from kébos, or képos, which the Greeks employed to denote the long-tailed apes. Theſe kébes, or guenons, are ſmaller and weaker than the apes and baboons. They are eaſily diſtinguiſhable from one another by this difference, and particularly by their long tail. With equal eaſe, they may be diſtinguiſhed from the makis or maucaucos; becauſe they have not a ſharp muzzle, and inſtead of ſix cutting teeth, like the makis, they have only four, like the apes and baboons. We know eight ſpecies of guenons; and, to prevent confuſion, we ſhall beſtow on each a proper name: 1. The macaque, or hare-lipped monkey; 2. The patas, or red monkey; 3. The malbrouk; 4. The mangabey, or monkey with the upper eye-lids of a pure white colour; 5. The mone, or varied monkey; 6 The callitrix, or green monkey: 7. The mouſtac, or whiſkered monkey; 8. The talapoin; 9. The douc, or monkey of Cochinchina. The antient Greeks knew only two of theſe guenons, [Page 46] or long-tailed monkeys, namely, the mone and the callitrix, who are natives of Arabia and the northern parts of Africa. They had no idea of the other kinds; becauſe theſe are only found in the ſouthern provinces of Africa and the Eaſt Indies, countries entirely unknown in the days of Ariſtotle. This great philoſopher, and the Greeks in general, were too wiſe to confound beings by common, and, therefore, equivocal names. They called the ape without a tail pithecos, and the monkey with a long tail, kébos. As they knew theſe animals to be diſtinct ſpecies, they gave to each a proper name, derived from their moſt ſtriking characters. All the apes and baboons which they knew, namely, the pigmy, the cynocephalus, or magot, and the ſimia porcaria, or papio, have their hair nearly of a uniform colour. But the monkey, which we have called mone, and the Greeks kébos, has hair of different colours, and is generally known by the name of the varied ape. This ſpecies of monkey was moſt common, and beſt known in the days of Ariſtotle; and, from its moſt diſtinguiſhed character, he called it kébos, which, in Greek, ſignifies varieties in colour. Thus all the animals belonging to the claſs of apes, baboons, and monkeys, mentioned by Ariſtotle, are reduced to four, the pithecos, the cynocephalos, the ſimia porcaria, and the kébos; which we believe to be the pigmy, the magot, or Barbary ape, the baboon, and the mone, or varied monkey, not [Page 47] only becauſe they agree with the characters given of them by Ariſtotle, but likewiſe becauſe the other ſpecies muſt have been unknown to the antients, ſince they are natives of countries into which the Greek travellers had never penetrated.
Two or three centuries after Ariſtotle, we find, in the Greek writers, two new names, callithrix and cercopithecos, both relative to the guenons, or long-tailed monkeys. In proportion as diſcoveries were made of the ſouthern regions of Africa and Aſia, we found new animals, and other ſpecies of monkeys: And, as moſt of theſe monkeys had not, like the kébos, various colours, the Greeks invented the generic name cercopithecos, or tailed ape, to denote all the ſpecies of monkeys or apes with long tails; and, having remarked, among theſe new ſpecies, a monkey with hair of a lively greeniſh colour, they called it callithrix, which ſignifies beautiful hair. This callithrix is found in the ſouth part of Mauritania, and in the neighbourhood of Cape de Verd, and is commonly known by the name of the green ape.
With regard to the other ſeven ſpecies of monkeys, mentioned above under the appellations of makaque, patas, malbrouk, mangabey, mouſtac, talapoin, and douc, they were unknown to the Greeks and Latins. The makaque is a native of Congo; the patas, of Senegal; the mangabey, of Madagaſcar; the malbrouk, of Bengal; the mouſtac, of Guinea; the talapoin, of Siam; [Page 84] and the douc, of Cochinchina. All theſe territories were equally unknown to the antients.
As the progreſs of Nature is uniform and gradual, we find between the baboons and monkeys an intermediate ſpecies, like that of the magot between the apes and baboons. The animal which fills this interval has a great reſemblance to the monkeys, particularly to the makaque; its muzzle, at the ſame time, is very broad, and its tail ſhort, like that of the baboons. Being ignorant of its name, we have called it maimon, or pig-tailed baboon, to diſtinguiſh it from the others. It is a native of Sumatra. Of all the monkeys or baboons, it alone has a naked tail; and, for this reaſon, ſeveral authors have given it the denomination of the pig-tailed, or rat-tailed ape.
We have now enumerated all the animals of the Old World, to whom the common name of ape has been applied, though they belong not only to different ſpecies, but to different genera. To augment the confuſion, the ſame names of ape, cynocephalus, kébos, and cercopithecos, which had been invented by the Greeks fifteen centuries ago, have been beſtowed on animals peculiar to the New World, though ſo recently diſcovered. They never dreamed that none of the African or Eaſt Indian animals had any exiſtence in the ſouthern regions of the New Continent. In America, we have diſcovered animals with hands and fingers. This ſimilarity was alone [Page 49] ſufficient to procure to them the name of apes, without conſidering that, for the transference of a name, identity of genus, and even of ſpecies, is neceſſary. Now, theſe American animals, of which we ſhall make two claſſes, under the appellations of ſapajous, or monkeys with prehenſile tails; and ſagoins, or monkeys with long tails, which are not prehenſile, or want the faculty of laying hold of any object, are very different from the apes of Aſia and Africa; and, in the ſame manner, as no apes, baboons, or monkeys are to be found in the New World, there are neither ſapajous nor ſagoins in the Old. Though we have already given a general view of theſe facts, in our diſſertation concerning the animals of both Continents, we can now prove them in a more particular manner, and demonſtrate, that, of ſeventeen ſpecies, to which all the animals of the Old World called apes, may be reduced, and, of twelve or thirteen in the New World, to whom this name has been transferred, none of them are the ſame, or to be found equally in both Worlds; for, of the ſeventeen ſpecies in the Old Continent, three or four apes muſt firſt be retrenched, who certainly exiſt not in America, and to whom the ſapajous and ſagoins have no reſemblance. In the ſecond place, three or four baboons muſt likewiſe be retrenched: They are larger than the ſapajous and ſagoins, and alſo very different in figure. There remain only nine monkeys with whom [Page 50] any compariſon can be inſtituted. Now, all theſe monkeys, as well as the apes and baboons, have general and particular characters, which ſeparate them entirely from the ſapajous and ſagoins. The firſt of theſe characters is to have naked buttocks, and natural calloſities peculiar to theſe parts: The ſecond is to have abajoues, or pouches under the cheeks, in which they can keep their victuals. The third is to have a narrow partition between the noſtrils, and the apertures of the noſtrils themſelves placed in the under part of the noſe, like thoſe of man. The ſapajous and ſagoins have none of theſe characters. The partition between their noſtrils is always very thick; the apertures of their noſtrils are ſituated in the ſides of the noſe, and not in the under part of it. They have hair on their buttocks, and no calloſities. They have no pouches under the cheeks. Hence they differ from the monkeys not only in ſpecies, but in genus, ſince they poſſeſs none of the general characters which are common to the whole tribe of monkeys. This difference of genus neceſſarily implies greater differences in ſpecies, and ſhows that theſe animals are very remote from each other.
It is with much impropriety, therefore, that the names ape and monkey have been applied to the ſapajous and ſagoins. We muſt preſerve their names, and, inſtead of aſſociating them with the apes, we ſhould begin by comparing [Page 51] them with one another. Theſe two tribes differ from each other by a remarkable character: All the ſapajous uſe their tail as a finger to hang upon branches, or to lay hold of any object they cannot reach with their hand. The ſagoins, on the contrary, have not the power of employing their tail in this manner. Their face, ears, and hair are alſo different: We may, therefore, ſeparate them into two diſtinct genera. In giving the hiſtory of the ſpecies, I ſhall avoid all thoſe denominations which can only apply to the apes, baboons, and monkeys, and preſerve the names they receive in their native country.
We are acquainted with ſix or ſeven ſpecies of ſapajous, and ſix of ſagoins, moſt of which have ſome varieties. We have carefully ſearched all the writings of travellers in order to diſcover the proper name of each ſpecies; becauſe the names they receive in the places they inhabit, generally point out ſome peculiar characteriſtic, which alone is ſufficient to diſtinguiſh them from one another.
With regard to the varieties, which, in this claſs of animals, are perhaps more numerous than the ſpecies, we ſhall endeavour to refer each of them to their proper kinds. We have had forty of theſe animals alive, each of which differed more or leſs from one another; and to us it appears that the whole may be reduced to thirty ſpecies, namely, three apes, and an intermediate ſpecies between them and the baboons; [Page 52] three baboons, and an intermediate ſpecies between them and the monkeys; nine monkeys; ſeven ſapajous; and ſix ſagoins. All the others, or at leaſt moſt of them, ought to be regarded as varieties only. But, as we are uncertain whether ſome of theſe varieties may not be diſtinct ſpecies, we ſhall endeavour to give all of them proper names.
On this occaſion, let us conſider terreſtrial animals, ſome of which have a great reſemblance to man, in a new point of view. The whole have improperly received the general name of quadrupeds. If the exceptions were few, we would not have found fault with the application of this name. It was formerly remarked, that our definitions and denominations, however general, never comprehend the whole; that beings always exiſt which elude the moſt cautious definitions which ever were invented; that intermediate beings are always diſcovered; that ſeveral of them, though apparently holding a middle ſtation, eſcape from the liſt; and that the general names, under which we mean to include them, are incomplete; becauſe Nature ſhould only be conſidered by unities, and not by aggregates; becauſe man has invented general denominations with the ſole view of aiding his memory, and ſupplying the defects of his underſtanding; and becauſe he afterwards fooliſhly conſidered theſe general names as realities; and, in fine, becauſe he has [Page 53] endeavoured to comprehend under them beings, and even whole claſſes of beings, which required different appellations. I can give an example, without departing from the claſs of quadrupeds, which, of all animals, we are beſt acquainted with, and, of courſe, were in a condition to have beſtowed on them the moſt preciſe denominations.
The name quadruped ſuppoſes that the animal has four feet. If it wants two feet, like the manati; if it has arms and hands, like the ape; or if it has wings, like the bat, it is not a quadruped. Hence this general term, when applied to theſe animals, is abuſed. To obtain preciſion in words, the ideas they preſent muſt be ſtrictly true. If we had a term for two hands ſimilar to that which denotes two feet, we might then ſay that man was the only biped and bimanus, becauſe he alone has two hands and two feet; that the manati is a bimonus; that the bat is only a biped; and that the ape is a quadrimanus, or four-handed animal. Let us now apply theſe new denominations to all the particular beings to which they belong, and we ſhall find, that, from about two hundred animals who go under the common name of quadrupeds, thirty-five ſpecies of apes, baboons, monkeys, ſapajous, ſagoins, and makis, muſt be retrenched, becauſe they are quadrimani, or four-handed; and that to theſe thirty-five ſpecies, the loris, or tailleſs maucauco, the Virginian, murine, and Mexican [Page 54] opoſſum, the Egyptian and woolly jerboa's, &c. ſhould be added, becauſe they are fourhanded like the apes and monkeys. Thus the liſt of four-handed animals being at leaſt forty ſpecies, the real number of quadrupeds is one fifth diminiſhed. We muſt likewiſe retrench twelve or fifteen ſpecies of bipeds, namely, the bats, whoſe fore-feet are rather wings than feet, and likewiſe three or four jerboa's, becauſe they can walk on their hind feet only, the fore-feet being too ſhort. If we ſubtract alſo the manati, which has no hind feet, the arctic and Indian walrus, and the ſeals, to whom the hind feet are uſeleſs; and, if we ſtill retrench thoſe animals which uſe their fore-feet like hands, as the bears, the marmots, the coati's the agouti's, the ſquirrels, the rats, and many others, the denomination of quadruped will appear to be applied improperly to more than one half of theſe animals. The whole and cloven-hoofed are indeed the only real quadrupeds. When we deſcend to the digitated claſs, we find four-handed, or ambiguous quadrupeds, who uſe their fore-feet as hands, and ought to be ſeparated or diſtinguiſhed from the others. Of whole-hoofed animals, there are three ſpecies, the horſe, the aſs, and the zebra. If to theſe we add the elephant, the rhinoceros, the hippopotamus, and the camel, whoſe feet, though terminated by nails, are ſolid, and ſerve the animals for walking only, we ſhall have ſeven [Page 55] ſpecies to which the name of quadruped is perfectly applicable. The number of cloven-hoofed animals greatly exceeds that of the wholehoofed. The oxen, the ſheep, the goats, the antilopes, the bubalus, the lama, the pacos, the the giraffe, the elk, the rain-deer, the ſtag, the fallow-deer, the roebuck, &c. are all clovenfooted, and conſtitute about forty ſpecies. Thus we have already fifty animals, ten whole and forty cloven-hoofed, to whom the name quadruped is properly applied. In the digitated animals, the lion, tiger, panther, leopard, lynx, cat, wolf, dog, fox, hyaena, badger, polecat, weaſels, ferret, porcupines, hedgehogs, armadillos, ant-eaters, and hogs, which laſt conſtitute the ſhade between the digitated and clovenfooted tribes, form a number conſiſting of more than forty ſpecies, to which the term of quadruped applies with perfect preciſion; becauſe, though their fore-feet be divided into four or five toes, they are never uſed as hands. But all the other digitated ſpecies, who uſe their fore-feet in carrying food to their mouths, are not, in ſtrict propriety of language, quadrupeds. Theſe ſpecies, which likewiſe amount to forty, make an intermediate claſs between quadrupeds and four-handed animals, being neither the one nor the other. Hence, to more than a fourth of our animals, the name of quadruped does not apply: and, to more than a half of them, the application of it is incomplete.
[Page 56] The four-handed animals fill the interval between man and the animals; and the two-handed ſpecies conſtitute a mean term in the diſtance between man and the cetaceous tribes. The bipeds with wings form the ſhade between quadrupeds and birds; and the digitated ſpecies, who uſe their fore-feet as hands, fill the whole ſpace between the quadrupeds and the fourhanded kinds. But I will purſue this ſubject no farther: However uſeful it may be for acquiring a diſtinct knowledge of animals, it is ſtill more ſo by affording a freſh proof, that all our definitions or general terms want preciſion, when applied to the objects or beings which they repreſent.
But why are theſe definitions and general terms, which appear to be the moſt brilliant exertions of the human intellect, ſo defective in their application? Does the error neceſſarily ariſe from the narrow limits of our underſtanding? Or, rather, does it not proceed ſolely from our incapacity of combining and perceiving at one time a great number of objects? Let us compare the works of Nature with thoſe of man. Let us examine how both operate, and inquire whether the mind, however acute, can follow the ſame route, without looſing itſelf in the immenſity of ſpace, in the obſcurity of time, or in the infinity of related beings. When man directs his mind to any object, if his perceptions be accurate, he takes the ſtraight line, [Page 57] runs over the ſmalleſt ſpace, and employs the leaſt poſſible time in accompliſhing his end. What an expence of thought, how many combinations are neceſſary to avoid thoſe deceitful and fallacious roads which at firſt preſent themſelves in ſuch numbers, that the choice of the right path requires the niceſt diſcrnment? This path, however, is not beyond the reach of the human intellect, which can proceed without deviating from the ſtraight line. The mind is enabled to arrive at a point by means of a line; and, if another point muſt be gained, it can only be attained by another line. The train of our ideas is a delicate thread, which extends in length, without any other dimenſions. Nature, on the contrary, never moves a ſtep which extends not on all ſides, and runs at once through the three dimenſions of length, breadth, and thickneſs. While man reaches but one point, Nature accompliſhes a ſolid, by penetrating the whole parts which compoſe a maſs. In beſtowing form on brute matter, our ſtatuaries, by the union of art and time, are enabled to make a ſurface which exactly repreſents the outſide of an object. Every point of this ſurface requires a thouſand combinations. Their genius is directly exerted upon as many lines as there are ſtrokes in the figure. The ſmalleſt deviation would be a deformity. This marble, ſo perfect that it ſeems to breathe, is, of courſe, only a multitude of points at which the artiſt arrives by a long ſucceſſion of labour; becauſe human genius, being unable to ſeize more than [Page 58] one dimenſion at the ſame time, and our ſenſes reaching no farther than ſurfaces, we cannot penetrate matter: But Nature, in a moment, puts every particle in motion. She produces forms by exertions almoſt inſtantaneous. She at once developes them in all their dimenſions. As ſoon as her movements reach the ſurface, the penetrating forces with which ſhe is animated operate internally. The ſmalleſt atom, when ſhe chooſes to employ it, is inſtantly compelled to obey. Hence ſhe acts, at the ſame time, on all ſides, before, behind, above, below, on the right and left; and, conſequently, ſhe embraces not only the ſurface, but every particle of the maſs. How different likewiſe is the product? What compariſon is there between a ſtatue and an organized body? How unequal, at the ſame time, are the powers, how diſproportioned the inſtruments? Man can employ only the power he poſſeſſes. Limited to a ſmall quantity of motion, which he can only communicate by the mode of impulſion, his exertions are confined to ſurfaces; becauſe, in general, the impulſive force is only tranſmitted by ſuperficial contact. He neither ſees nor touches more than the ſurfaces of bodies; and, when he wiſhes to attain a more intimate knowledge, though he opens and divides, ſtill he ſees and touches nothing more than their ſurfaces. To penetrate the interior parts of bodies, he would require a portion of that force which acts upon the maſs, or, of gravity, which is Nature's chief inſtrument. If man could employ this penetrating force as [Page 59] he does that of impulſion, or if he had a ſenſe relative to it, he would be enabled to perceive the eſſence of matter, and to arrange ſmall portions of it, in the ſame manner as Nature operates at large. It is owing to the want of inſtruments, therefore, that human art cannot approach that of Nature. His figures, his pictures, his deſigns, are only ſurfaces, or imitations of ſurfaces; becauſe the images he receives by his ſenſes are all ſuperficial, and he has no mode of giving them a body.
What is true with regard to the arts, applies likewiſe to the ſciences. The latter, however, are not ſo much limited; becauſe the mind is their chief inſtrument, and becauſe, in the former, it is ſubordinate to the ſenſes. But, in the ſciences, the mind commands the ſenſes as often as it is employed in thinking and not in operating, in comparing and not in imitating. Now, the mind, though bound up by the ſenſes, though often deceived by their fallacious reports, is neither diminiſhed in its purity nor activity. Man, who naturally loves knowledge, commenced by rectifying and demonſtrating the errors of the ſenſes. He has treated them as mechanical inſtruments, the effects of which muſt be ſubmitted to the teſt of experiment. Proceeding thus with the balance in one hand, and the compaſs in the other, he has meaſured both time and ſpace. He has cogniſed the whole outſide of Nature; and, being unable to penetrate her internal parts by his [Page 60] ſenſes, his deductions concerning them have been drawn from compariſon and analogy. He diſcovered that there exiſts in matter a general force, different from that of impulſion, a force which falls not under the cogniſance of our ſenſes, and which, though we are incapable of uſing it, Nature employs as her univerſal agent. He has demonſtrated, that this force belongs equally to all matter, in proportion to its maſs or real quantity; and that its action extends to immenſe diſtances, decreaſing as the ſpaces augment. Then, turning his views upon living beings, he perceived that heat was another force neceſſary to their production; that light was a matter endowed with infinite elaſticity and activity; that the formation and expanſion of organized bodies were effects of a combination of all theſe forces; that the extenſion and growth of animals and vegetables follow the laws of the attractive force, and are effected by an augmentation in the three dimenſions at the ſame time; and that a mould, when once formed, muſt, by theſe laws of affinity, produce a ſucceſſion of other moulds perfectly ſimilar to the original. By combining theſe attributes, common to the animal and vegetable, he recogniſed, that there exiſted in both an inexhauſtible, circulating ſtore of organic ſubſtance; a ſubſtance equally real as brute matter; a ſubſtance which continues always in a live as the other does in a dead ſtate; a ſubſtance univerſally diffuſed, which paſſes from [Page 61] vegetables to animals by means of nutrition, returns from animals to vegetables by the proceſs of putrefaction, and maintains a perpetual circulation for the animation of beings. He perceived, that theſe active organic particles exiſted in all organized bodies; that they were combined, in ſmaller or greater quantities, with dead matter; that they were more abundant in animals, in whom every thing is alive, and more rare in vegetables, in which death predominates, and life ſeems to be extinct, organization being ſurcharged with brute matter; and that plants are, of courſe, deprived of progreſſive motion, of heat, and of life, exhibiting no other quality of animation but expanſion and reproduction. Reflecting on the manner in which theſe laſt are accompliſhed, he diſcovered that every living being is a mould that has the power of aſſimilating the ſubſtances with which it is nouriſhed; that growth is an effect of this aſſimilation; that the development of a living body is not a ſimple augmentation of volume, but an extenſion in all dimenſions, a penetration of new matter through all parts of the maſs; that theſe parts, by increaſing proportionally to the whole, and the whole proportionally to the parts, the form is preſerved and continues always the ſame, till growth is completed; that, when the body has acquired its full expanſion, the ſame matter, formerly employed in augmenting its volume, is returned, as ſuperfluous, from all the parts to which it had been aſſimilated, [Page 62] and, by uniting in a common point, forms a new being perfectly ſimilar to the firſt, and, to attain the ſame dimenſions, requires only to be developed by the ſame mode of nutrition. He perceived that man, quadrupeds, cetaceous animals, birds, reptiles, inſects, trees, and herbs, were nouriſhed, expanded, and reproduced by the ſame law; and that the mode of their nutrition and generation, though depending on the ſame general cauſe, appeared to be very different, becauſe it could not operate but in a manner relative to the form of each particular ſpecies of being. Proceeding gradually in this inveſtigation, he began, after a ſuceſſion of ages, to compare objects. To diſtinguiſh them from each other, he gave them particular names; and, to unite them under one point of view, he invented general terms. Taking his own body as the phyſical model of all animated beings, he meaſured, examined, and compared all their parts, and he diſcovered that the form of every animal that breathes is nearly the ſame; that, by diſſecting an ape we may learn the anatomy of a man; that, taking another animal, we always find the ſame fund of organization, the ſame ſenſes, the ſame viſcera, the ſames bones, the ſame fleſh, the ſame motion of the fluids, the ſame play and action of the ſolids. In all of them he found a heart, veins, and arteries, and the ſame organs, circulation, reſpiration, digeſtion, nutrition, and ſecretion; in all of them, he found a ſolid ſtructure [Page 63] compoſed of the ſame pieces, and nearly ſituated in the ſame manner. This plan proceeds uniformly from man to the ape, from the ape to quadrupeds, from quadrupeds to cetaceous animals, to birds, to fiſhes, and to reptiles: This plan, I ſay, when well apprehended by the human intellect, exhibits a faithful picture of animated Nature, and affords the moſt general as well as the moſt ſimple view under which ſhe can be conſidered: And, when we want to extend it, and to paſs from the animal to the vegetable, we perceive this plan, which had at firſt varied only by ſhades, gradually degenerating from reptiles to inſects, from inſects to worms, from worms to zoophytes, from zoophytes to plants; and, though changed in all its external parts, ſtill preſerving the ſame character, the principal features of which are nutrition, growth, and reproduction. Theſe features are common to all organized ſubſtances. They are eternal and divine; and, inſtead of being effaced by time, it only renews and renders them more conſpicuous.
If, from this grand picture of reſemblances exhibited in animated Nature, as conſtituting but one family, we paſs to that of the differences, where each ſpecies claims a ſeparate apartment, and a diſtinct portrait, we ſhall find, that, with the exception of a few large kinds, ſuch as the elephant, the rhinoceros, the hippopotamus, the tiger, and the lion, which ought to have particular [Page 64] frames, all the others ſeem to unite with their neighbours, and to form groups of degraded ſimilarities, or genera, repreſented by our nomeclators in a net-work of figures, ſome of which are ſupported by the feet, others by the teeth, by the hair, and others by relations ſtill more minute: And, even the apes, whoſe form ſeems to be moſt perfect, or approaches neareſt to that of man, preſent themſelves in a group, and require the utmoſt attention to be diſtinguiſhed from each other; becauſe the privilege of ſeparate ſpecies depends leſs on figure than magnitude; and man himſelf, though a diſtinct ſpecies, and infinitely removed from that of all other animals, being only of a middle ſize, has a greater number of neighbouring ſpecies than the very large kinds. In the hiſtory of the orang-outang, we ſhall find, that, if figure alone be regarded, we might conſider this animal as the firſt of apes, or the moſt imperfect of men; becauſe, except the intellect, the orang-outang wants nothing that we poſſeſs, and, in his body, differs leſs from man that from the other animals which receive the denomination of apes.
Hence mind, reflection, and language depend not on figure, or on the organization of the body. Theſe are endowments peculiar to man. The orang-outang, though he neither thinks nor ſpeaks, has a body, members, ſenſes, a brain, and a tongue perfectly ſimilar to thoſe of man: He counterfiets every human movement; but [Page 65] her performs no action that is characteriſtic of man. This imperfection is perhaps owing to want of education, or to an error in our judgment. You compare, it may be ſaid, an ape in the woods with a man in poliſhed ſociety. But, in order to form a proper judgment of them, a ſavage man and an ape ſhould be viewed together; for we have no juſt idea of man in a pure ſtate of nature. The head covered with briſtly hair, or with curled wool; the face veiled with a long beard; two creſcents of hairs ſtill groſſer, by their length and prominency contract the front, and not only obſcure the eyes, but ſink and round them like thoſe of the brutes; the lips thick and protruded; the noſe flat; the aſpect wild and ſtupid; the ears, the body, and the members covered with hair; the breaſts of the female long and flabby, and the ſkin of her belly hanging down as far as her knees; the children wallowing in filth, and crawling on their hands and feet; the father and mother ſitting ſquat on their hams, both hideous, and beſmeared with corrupted greaſe. This ſketch, drawn from a ſavage Hottentot, is a flattering portrait; for the diſtance between man in a pure ſtate of nature and a Hottentot, is greater than between a Hottentot and us. But, if we want to compare the ape to man, we muſt add the relations of organization, the conformities of temperament, the vehement appetite of the males for the females, the ſame ſtructure of genitals in both ſexes, the [Page 66] periodic courſes of the female, the voluntary or forced intermixture of the Negreſſes with the apes, the produce of which has entred into both ſpecies; and then conſider, on the ſuppoſition that they are not the ſame, how difficult it is to perceive the interval by which they are ſeparated.
If our judgment were limited to figure alone, I acknowledge that the ape might be regarded as a variety of the human ſpecies. The Creator has not formed man's body on a model abſolutely different from that of the mere animal. He has comprehended the figure of man, as well as that of all other animals, under one general plan. But, at the ſame time that he has given him a material form ſimilar to that of the ape, he has penetrated this animal body with a divine ſpirit. If he had conferred the ſame privilege, not on the ape, but on the meaneſt, and what appears to us to be the worſt conſtructed animal, this ſpecies would ſoon have become the rival of man; it would have excelled all the other animals by thinking and ſpeaking. Whatever reſemblance, therefore, takes place between the Hottentot and the ape, the interval which ſeparates them is immenſe; becauſe the former is endowed with the faculties of thought and of ſpeech.
Who will ever be able to aſcertain how the organization of an idiot differs from that of another man? Yet the defect is certainly in the material [Page 67] organs, ſince the idiot is likewiſe endowed with a ſoul. Now, as between one man and another, where the whole ſtructure is perfectly ſimilar, a difference ſo ſmall that it cannot be perceived is ſufficient to prevent thought, we ſhould not be ſurpriſed that it never appears in the ape, who is deprived of the neceſſary principle.
The ſoul, in general, has a proper action totally independent of matter. But, as its divine Author has been pleaſed to unite it to the body, the exerciſe of its particular acts depends on the ſtate of the material organs. This dependence is apparent, not only from the caſe of idiots, but from people affected with delirium, from ſleep, from new born infants, who cannot think, and from very old men, whom the power of thinking has forſaken. It is even probable, that the chief effect of education conſiſts not ſo much in inſtructing the mind, or maturing its operations, as in modifying the material organs, and bringing them into the moſt favourable ſtate for the exerciſe of the ſentient principle. Now, there are two kinds of education, which ought to be carefully diſtinguiſhed, becauſe their effects are extremely different; the education of the individual, which is common to man and the other animals; and the education of the ſpecies, which appertains to man alone. A young animal, both from natural encitements and from example, learns, in a few weeks, to do every thing its parents [Page 68] can perform. To an infant, ſeveral years are neceſſary before it acquires this degree of perfection; becauſe, when brought forth, it is incomparably leſs advanced, weaker, and more imperfectly formed, than the ſmaller animals. In early infancy, the mind is nothing, when compared to the powers it will afterwards acquire. In receiving individual education, therefore, the infant is much ſlower than the brute; but, for this very reaſon, it becomes ſuſceptible of that of the ſpecies. The multiplicity of ſuccours, the continual cares, which this ſtate of imbecillity for a long time requires, cheriſh and augment the attachment of the parents. In training the body, they cultivate the mind. The time employed in ſtrengthening the former gives an advantage to the latter. The bodily powers of moſt animals are more advanced in two months than thoſe of the infant in two years. Hence the time employed in beſtowing on the infant its individual education is as twelve to one, without eſtimating the fruits of what follows after this period, without conſidering that animals ſeparate from their parents as ſoon as they can provide for themſelves, and that, not long after this ſeparation, they know each other no more. All education ceaſes the moment that the aid of the parents become unneceſſary. This time of education being ſo ſhort, its effects muſt be very limited: It is even aſtoniſhing that the animals acquire, in two months, all that is neceſſary for [Page 69] them during the reſt of life: If we ſuppoſe that a child, in an equal period, were ſtrong enough to quit his parents, and never return to them, would there be any perceptible difference between this infant and a brute? However ingenious the parents, they would not have time ſufficient to modify and prepare his organs, or to eſtabliſh the ſmalleſt communication of thought between their minds and his. They could not excite his memory by impreſſions frequently enough reiterated. They could not even mollify or unfold the organs of ſpeech. Before a child can pronounce a ſingle word, his ears muſt be ſtruck many thouſand times with the ſame ſound; and, before he can make a proper application of it, the ſame combination of the word and the object to which it relates, muſt be many thouſand times preſented to him. Education, therefore, which alone can develope the powers of the mind, muſt be uninterruptedly continued for a long time. If ſtopt, not at two months, as in the animals, but even at the age of one year, the mind of the infant, having received no inſtruction, would remain inactive like that of the idiot, the defect of whoſe organs prevents the reception of knowledge. This reaſoning would acquire redoubled ſtrength, if the infant were born in a pure ſtate of nature, if it were confined to the ſole tutorage of a Hottentot mother, and were enabled by its bodily powers to ſeparate from her at the age of two months, would it not [Page 70] ſink below the condition of the idiot, and, with regard to its material part, be entirely levelled with the brutes? But in this condition of nature, the firſt education requires an equal time as in the civilized ſtate; for in both, the infant is equally feeble, and equally ſlow in its growth; and, conſequently, demands the care of its parents during an equal period. In a word, if abandoned before the age of three years, it would infallibly periſh. Now, this neceſſary, and ſo long continued intercourſe between the mother and child, is ſufficient to communicate to it all that ſhe poſſeſſes: And though we ſhould falſely ſuppoſe, that a mother, in a ſtate of nature, poſſeſſes nothing, not even the faculty of ſpeech, would not this long intercourſe with her infant produce a language? Hence a ſtate of pure nature, in which man is ſuppoſed neither to think nor ſpeak, is imaginary, and never had an exiſtence. This neceſſity of a long intercourſe between parents and children produces ſociety in the midſt of a deſert. The family underſtand each other both by ſigns and ſounds; and this firſt ray of intelligence, when cheriſhed, cultivated, and communicated, unfolds, in proceſs of time, all the germs of cogitation. As this habitual intercourſe could not ſubſiſt ſo long, without producing mutual ſigns and ſounds, theſe ſigns and ſounds, always repeated and gradually engraven on the memory of the child, would become permanent expreſſions. The catalogue of words, though [Page 71] ſhort, forms a language which will ſoon extend as the family augments, and will always follow, in its improvement, the progreſs of ſociety. As ſoon as ſociety begins to be formed, the education of the infant is no longer individual, ſince the parents communicate to it not only what they derive from Nature, but likewiſe what they have received from their progenitors, and from the ſociety to which they belong. It is no longer a communication between detached individuals, which, as in the animals, would be limited to the tranſmiſſion of ſimple faculties, but an inſtitution of which the whole ſpecies participate, and whoſe produce conſtitutes the baſis and bond of ſociety.
Even among brute animals, though deprived of the ſentient principle, thoſe whoſe education is longeſt appear to have moſt intelligence. The elephant, which takes the longeſt time in acquiring its full growth, and requires the ſuccour of its mother during the whole firſt year of its exiſtence, is alſo the moſt intelligent of all animals. The Guiney-pig, which is full grown, and capable of generating at the age of three weeks, is for this reaſon alone, perhaps, one of the moſt ſtupid ſpecies. With regard to the ape, whoſe nature we are endeavouring to aſcertain, however ſimilar to man, he is ſo ſtrongly marked with the features of brutality, that it is diſtinguiſhable from the moment of his birth. He is then proportionally ſtronger and better formed [Page 72] than the infant: He grows faſter: The ſupport of his mother is only neceſſary for a few months: His education is purely individual, and conſequently as limited as that of the other animals.
Hence the ape, notwithſtanding his reſemblance to man, is a brute, and, inſtead of approaching our ſpecies, holds not the firſt rank among the animals; becauſe he is by no means the moſt intelligent. The relation of corporeal reſemblance alone has given riſe to the prejudice in favour of the great faculties of the ape. He reſembles man, it has been ſaid, both externally and internally; and, therefore, he muſt not only imitate us, but do every thing which we perform. We have ſeen, that all the actions which ought to be denominated human, are relative to ſociety; that they depend, at firſt, on the mind, and afterwards on education, the phyſical principle of which is the long intercourſe that neceſſarily ſubſiſts between the parents and children; that, in the ape, this intercourſe is very ſhort; that, like the other animals, he receives only an individual education; and that he is not ſuſceptible of that of the ſpecies. Of courſe, he can perform no human actions, ſince no action of the ape has the ſame principle, or the ſame deſign. With regard to imitation, which appears to be the moſt ſtriking character of the ape-kind, and which the vulgar have attributed to him as a peculiar talent, before we decide, it is neceſſary to inquire whether this imitation be ſpontaneous or forced. Does the ape imitate us from inclination, [Page 73] or becauſe, without any exertion of the will, he feels the capacity of doing it? I appeal to all thoſe who have examined this animal without prejudice, and I am convinced that they will agree with me, that there is nothing voluntary in this imitation. The ape, having arms and hands, uſes them as we do, but without thinking of us. The ſimilarity of his members and organs neceſſarily produces movements, and ſometimes ſucceſſions of movements, which reſemble ours. Being endowed with the human ſtructure, the ape muſt move like man. But the ſame motions imply not that he acts from imitation. Two bodies which receive the ſame impulſe, two ſimilar pendulums or machines, will move in the ſame manner. But theſe bodies or machines can never be ſaid to intimate each other in their motions. The ape and the human body are two machines ſimilarly conſtructed, and neceſſarily move nearly in the ſame manner. But parity is not imitation. The one depends on matter and the other on mind. Imitation preſuppoſes the deſign of imitating. The ape is incapable of forming this deſign, which requires a train of thinking; and, conſequently, man, if he inclines, can imitate the ape; but the ape cannot even incline to imitate man.
This parity is only the phyſical part of imitation, and by no means ſo complete as the ſimilitude, from which, however, it proceeds as an immediate effect. The ape has a greater reſemblance [Page 74] to us in his body and members, than in the uſe he makes of them. By obſerving him attentively, we eaſily perceive, that all his movements are briſk, intermittent, and precipitous; and that, in order to compare them with thoſe of man, we muſt adopt another ſcale, or rather a different model. All the actions of the ape are derived from his education, which is purely animal. To us they appear ridiculous, inconſequent, and extravagant; becauſe, by referring them to our own, we aſſume a falſe ſcale, and a deceitful mode of meaſuring. As his nature is vivacious, his temperament warm, his diſpoſitions petulant, and none of his affections have been ſoftened or reſtrained by education, all his habitudes are exceſſive, and reſemble more the movements of a maniac than the actions of a man, or even of a peaceable animal. It is for this reaſon that we find him indocile, and that he receives with difficulty the impreſſions we wiſh to make on him. He is inſenſible to careſſes, and is rendered obedient by chaſtiſement alone. He may be kept in captivity, but not in a domeſtic ſtate. Always melancholy, ſtubborn, repugnant, or making grimaces, he may be ſaid to be rather conquered than tamed. The ſpecies, of courſe, have never been rendered domeſtic in any part of the world, and, conſequently, is farther removed from man than moſt other animals: For docility implies ſome analogy between the giver and the receiver of inſtruction. [Page 75] It is a relative quality, which cannot be exerted but when there is a certain number of common faculties on both ſides, that differ only between themſelves, becauſe they are active in the maſter, and paſſive in the ſcholar. Now, the paſſive qualities of the ape have leſs relation to the active qualities of man than thoſe of the dog or elephant, who require no more than good treatment to communicate to them the delicate and gentle ſenſations of faithful attachment, voluntary obedience, grateful ſervice, and unreſerved devotion.
In relative qualities, therefore, the ape is farther removed from the human race than moſt other animals. His temperament is alſo very different. Man can inhabit every climate. He lives and multiplies in the northern as well as the ſouthern regions of the earth. But the ape exiſts with difficulty in temperate countries, and can multiply only in thoſe which are warm. This difference of temperament implies others in organization, which, though concealed, are not the leſs real: It muſt likewiſe have a great influence on his natural diſpoſitions. The exceſs of heat, which is neceſſary to the conſtitution and vigour of this animal, renders all his qualities and affections inordinate. No other cauſe is requiſite to account for his petulance, his ſalaciouſneſs, and his other paſſions, which appear to be equally violent and diſorderly.
[Page 76] Thus the ape, which philoſophers, as well as the vulgar, have regarded as a being difficult to define, and whoſe nature was at leaſt equivocal, and intermediate between that of man and the animals, is, in fact, nothing but a real brute, endowed with the external mark of humanity, but deprived of thought, and of every faculty which properly conſtitutes the human ſpecies; a brute inferior to many others in his relative powers, and ſtill more eſſentially different from the human race by his nature, his temperament, and the time neceſſary to his education, geſtation, growth, and duration of life; that is, by all the real habitudes which conſtitute what is called Nature in a particular being.
WE ſhall give the hiſtory of theſe two animals under one article; becauſe it is not improbable they belong to the ſame ſpecies. [Page 78] Of all the apes, they have the greateſt reſemblance to man; and, conſequently, deſerve particular attention. We have ſeen the ſmall orangoutang, or jocko, alive, and have preſerved its ſkin. But, of the pongo, or great orang-outang, we can only give the relations of travellers. If theſe were faithful, if they were not often obſcure, falſe, and exaggerated, we could not heſitate in pronouncing it to be a different ſpecies from the jocko, a ſpecies more perfect, and approaching nearer to that of man. Bontius, who was chief phyſician of Batavia, and has left us ſome excellent remarks on the natural hiſtory of that part of the Indies, ſays expreſsly*, that he ſaw, with admiration, ſome individuals of this [Page 79] ſpecies walking on their two feet, and, among others, a female (of which he gives a figure) who ſeemed to have a ſenſe of modeſty, who covered herſelf with her hand when men appeared of whom ſhe had no acquaintance, who wept, groaned, and ſeemed to want nothing of humanity but the faculty of ſpeech. Linnaeus *, upon the authority of Kjoep, and ſome other voyagers, tells us, that the orang-outang is not deprived of this faculty; that he thinks, ſpeaks, and expreſſes himſelf by a kind of hiſſing words. This author calls him homo nocturnus, and, at the ſame time, gives ſuch a deſcription of him, that it is impoſſible to aſcertain whether he is a brute or a man. It may, however, be remarked, that, according to Linnaeus, this being, whatever he is, exceeds not the half of the human ſtature; and, as Bontius takes no notice of the magnitude of his orang-outang, we may preſume that they are the ſame. But this orangoutang of Linnaeus and Bontius would not be the true kind, which is larger than the talleſt man. Neither is he the jocko, which I have [Page 80] ſeen alive; for, though he was of the ſame ſize with that deſcribed by Linnaeus, he differed in every other character. I ſaw him frequently, and I can affirm, that he neither ſpoke, nor expreſſed himſelf by hiſſing, and that he did nothing which a well trained dog could not perform. Beſides, he differs in almoſt every article from Linnaeus's deſcription of the orang-outang, and correſponds better with the ſatyrus of the ſame author. For theſe reaſons, I ſuſpect the truth of the deſcription of this homo nocturnus. I even doubt of his exiſtence. It has probably been a white Negro, a Chacrelas*, whom the voyagers quoted by Linnaeus have ſuperficially examined and falſely deſcribed: For the Chacrelas, like the homo nocturnus of this author, have white, woolly, frizled hair, red eyes, a feeble voice, &c. But they are men, and neither hiſs, nor are they pigmies of thirty inches high: They think and act like other men, and are alſo of the ſame ſize.
Throwing aſide, therefore, this ill deſcribed being, and ſuppoſing a little exaggeration in the recital of Bontius concerning the modeſty of his female orang-outang, there only remains a brute creature, an ape, of which we ſhall find more pointed information in writers of better credit. Edward Tyſon†, a celebrated Engliſh anatomiſt, who has given an excellent deſcription [Page 81] both of the external and internal parts of the orang-outang, tell us, that there are two ſpecies, and that the one he deſcribed is not ſo large as the other, which is called barris * or baris by travellers, and drill by the Engliſh. This barris or drill is the large orang-outang of the Eaſt Indies, or the Pongo of Guiney. Gaſſendi having advanced, upon the authority of a voyager called St Amand, that, in the iſland of Java, there was creature which conſtituted the ſhade between man and the ape, the fact was ſtrenuously denied. To prove it, Peireſc produced a letter from M. Noël, (Natalis), a phyſician who reſided in Africa, from which it appeared †, that large apes were found in Guiney under the denomination of barris, who walk on two legs, have much more gravity and intelligence than the other ſpecies, and are extremely deſirous of women. Darcos, and afterwards Nieremberg‡ and Dapper§, give nearly the ſame account of the barris. Battel calls it pongo, [Page 82] and deſcribes it in the following manner: 'The greateſt of theſe two monſters is called Pongo, in their language; and the leſſer is called Engeco. This Pongo is in all proportion like a man; but that he is more like a giant in ſtature than a man; for he is very tall, and hath a man's face, hollow eyed, with long hair upon his brows. His face and ears are without hair, and his hands alſo. His body is full of hair, but not very thick, and it is of a dunniſh colour. He differeth not from a man, but in his legs, for they have no calf. He goeth always upon his legs, and carrieth his hands claſped on the nap of his neck, when he goeth upon the ground. They ſleep in the trees, and build ſhelters for the rain. They feed upon fruit that they find in the woods, and upon nuts, for they eat no kind of fleſh. They cannot ſpeak, and have no underſtanding more than a beaſt. The people of the country, when they travel in the woods, make fires where they ſleep in the night; and in the morning, when they are gone, the Pongoes will come and ſit about the ſire, till it goeth out; for they have no underſtanding to lay the wood together. They go many together, and kill many Negroes that travail in the woods. Many times they fall upon the elephants, which come to feed where they be, and ſo beat them with their clubbed fiſts, and pieces of wood, [Page 83] that they will run roaring away from them. Thoſe Pongoes are never taken alive, becauſe they are ſo ſtrong, that ten men cannot hold one of them; but yet they take many of their young ones with poiſoned arrows. The young Pongo hangeth on his mother's belly, with his hands faſt claſped about her; ſo that, when the country people kill any of the females, they take the young one, which hangeth faſt upon his mother.*.' It is from this explicit paſſage that I have derived the names pongo and jocko. Battel farther remarks, that, when one of theſe animals dies, the others cover his body with branches and leaves of trees. Purchas adds in a note, that, in the converſations he had with Battel, he learned that a pongo carried off a young Negro from him, who lived a whole year in the ſociety of theſe animals; that, on his return, the Negro ſaid, that they had never injured him; that they were generally as tall as a man, but much thicker; and that they were nearly double the volume of an ordinary man. Jobſon aſſures us, that, in places frequented by theſe animals, he ſaw a kind of habitations compoſed of interlaced branches of trees, which would at leaſt protect them from the ſcorching rays of the ſun†. 'The apes of Guiney,' ſays Boſman‡, 'which are called ſmitten by the Flemiſh, [Page 84] are of a yellow colour, and grow to a great ſize. I ſaw with my eyes one which was five feet high. Theſe apes have an ugly appearance, as well as thoſe of another ſpecies perfectly ſimilar in every reſpect, except that four of them would hardly be as large as one of the former kind. . . . They are capable of being taught almoſt every thing we chooſe.' Gauthier Schoutten remarks†, 'that the apes called orang-outangs by the Indians are nearly of the ſame figure and ſize with men, only their back and reins are covered with hair, though there is no hair on the fore part of their bodies; that the females have two large breaſts; that their viſage is coarſe, their noſe flat, and even ſunk, and their ears like thoſe of men; that they are robuſt and active; that they defend themſelves againſt armed men; that they are paſſionately fond of women, who cannot paſs through the woods, without being ſuddenly attacked and raviſhed by theſe apes.' Dampier, Froger, and other travellers, aſſure us, that the orang-outangs carry off girls of eight or ten years of age to the tops of trees, and that it is extremely difficult to reſcue them. To theſe teſtimonies we may add that of M. de la Broſſe, who aſſures us, in his voyage to Angola in the year 1738, that the orang-outangs, which he calls quimpezés, 'endeavour to ſurpriſe the Negreſſes, [Page 85] whom they detain for the purpoſe of enjoying them, and entertain them plentifully. I knew a Negreſs at Loango who remained three years with theſe animals. They grow from ſix to ſeven feet high. They erect huts, and uſe bludgeons in their own defence. They have flat faces, broad flat noſes, flat ears, ſkins clearer than thoſe of Molattoes, long thinly ſcattered hairs in ſeveral parts of their bodies, bellies extremely tenſe, and flat heels raiſed behind about half an inch. They walk upon two or four feet, at pleaſure. We purchaſed two young ones, a male of fourteen months of age, and a female of twelve,' &c.
We have thus enumerated the moſt certain facts we could collect concerning the great orangoutang or pongo; and, as magnitude is the chief character by which it differs from the jocko, I perſiſt in thinking that they are of the ſame ſpecies: For, two circumſtances are at leaſt poſſible: 1. The jocko may be a permanent variety, a race much ſmaller than that of the pongo. In fact, they both inhabit the ſame climate; they live in the ſame manner; and, of courſe, ought to reſemble each other in every article, ſince they both receive equally the influences of the ſame ſoil and ſky. In the human ſpecies, have we not an example of a ſimilar variety? The Laplander and Fin, though they live under the ſame climate, differ nearly as much in ſtature, [Page 86] and much more in other qualities, than the jocko differs from the great orang-outang. 2. The jocko, or ſmall orang-outang, which we have ſeen alive, as well as thoſe of Tulpius, Tyſon, and others which have been brought to Europe, were all, perhaps, young animals, who had acquired only a part of their growth. The one I ſaw was about two feet and a half high; and the Sieur Nonfoux, to whom it belonged, aſſured me that it exceeded not two years of age. On the ſuppoſition, therefore, that its growth were proportional to that of man, it might, if it had lived, arrived at the height of more than five feet. The orang-outang of Tyſon was ſtill younger; for it was only about two feet high, and its teeth were not perfectly formed. Thoſe of Tulpius and Edwards were nearly of the ſame ſtature with the one I ſaw. Hence it is probable, that theſe young animals, if poſſeſſed of liberty in their own climate, would have acquired with age the ſame height and dimenſions which travellers have aſcribed to the great orang-outang. Of courſe, till better information be received, we muſt regard theſe two animals as conſtituting but one ſpecies.
The orang-outang which I ſaw, walked always on two feet, even when carrying things of conſiderable weight. His air was melancholy, his gate grave, his movements meaſured, his diſpoſitions gentle, and very different from thoſe of other apes. He had neither the impatience [Page 87] of the Barbary ape, the maliciouſneſs of the baboon, nor the extravagance of the monkeys. It may be alledged, that he had the benefit of inſtruction; but the other apes, which I ſhall compare with him, were educated in the ſame manner. Signs and words were alone ſufficient to make our orang-outang act: But the baboon required a cudgel, and the other apes a whip; for none of them would obey without blows. I have ſeen this animal preſent his hand to conduct the people who came to viſit him, and walk as gravely along with them as if he had formed a part of the company. I have ſeen him ſit down at table, unfold his towel, wipe his lips, uſe a ſpoon or a fork to carry the victuals to his mouth, pour his liquor into a glaſs, and make it touch that of the perſon who drank along with him. When invited to take tea, he brought a cup and ſaucer, placed them on the table, put in ſugar, poured out the tea, and allowed it to cool before he drank it. All theſe actions he performed, without any other inſtigation than the ſigns or verbal orders of his maſter, and often of his own accord. He did no injury to any perſon: He even approached company with circumſpection, and preſented himſelf as if he wanted to be careſſed. He was very fond of dainties, which every body gave him: And, as his breaſt was diſeaſed, and he was afflicted with a teazing cough, this quantity of ſweetmeats undoubtedly contributed to ſhorten his life. He lived one [Page 88] ſummer in Paris, and died in London the following winter. He eat almoſt every thing; but preferred ripe and dried fruits to all other kinds of food. He drank a little wine; but ſpontaneouſly left it for milk, tea, or other mild liquors. Tulpius*, who gives a good deſcription and a figure of one of theſe animals, that had been preſented to Frederick Henry, Prince of Orange, makes nearly the ſame obſervations with regard to it, as I have already related. But, if we wiſh to diſtinguiſh the inſtincts peculiar [Page 89] to this animal from the improvement it receives by education, we muſt compare the facts of which we have been eye-witneſſes, with the relations of travellers who have ſeen it in a ſtate of nature, in the full poſſeſſion of liberty, and in captivity. M. de la Broſſe, who purchaſed from a Negro two orang-outangs, whoſe age exceeded not twelve months, does not ſay that they had been inſtructed by the Negro. It appears, on the contrary, that they ſpontaneouſly performed moſt of the actions above recited. ‘'Theſe animals,' he remarks, 'have the inſtinct of ſitting at table like men. They eat every kind of food, without diſtinction. They uſe a knife, a fork, or a ſpoon, to cut or lay hold of what is put on their plate. They drink wine and other liquors. We carried them aboard. At table, when they wanted any thing, they made themſelves be underſtood to the cabbin-boy: And, when the boy refuſed to give them what they demanded, they ſometimes became enraged, ſeized him by the arm, bit, and threw him down. . . . . . The male was ſeized with ſickneſs in the road. He made himſelf be attended as a human being. He was even bled twice in the right arm: And, whenever he found himſelf afterwards in the ſame condition, he held out his arm to be bled, as if he knew that he had formerly received benefit from that operation.'’
That ſome places towards the hills are covered with immenſe impenetrable foreſts, that afford a ſhelter for wild beaſts of all ſorts. But in that which forms the inland boundary of the Carnatic Rajah's dominions, there is one ſingular ſpecies of creatures, of which I had heard much in India, and of the truth of which the following fact, that happened ſome time before my arrival there, may ſerve for an atteſtation.
Vancajee, a merchant of that country, and an inhabitant on the ſea coaſt, ſent up to Bombay to the then governour of it, Mr Horne, a couple of thoſe creatures before mentioned, as a preſent, by a coaſting veſſel, of which one Captain Boag was the maſter, and the make of which, according to his deſcription, and that of others, was as follows.
They were ſcarcely two feet high, walked erect, and had perfectly an human form. They were of a ſallow white, without any hair, except in thoſe parts that it is cuſtomary for mankind to have it. By their melancholy, they ſeemed to have a rational ſenſe of their captivity, and had many of the human actions. They made their bed very orderly in the cage in which they were ſent up, and on being viewed, would endeavour to conceal, with their hands, thoſe parts that modeſty forbids manifeſting. The joints of their knees were not re-entering, like thoſe of monkeys, but ſaliant, [Page 91] like thoſe of men; a circumſtance they have (if I miſtake not), in common with the orangoutangs in the eaſtern parts of India, in Sumatra, Java, and the Spice-iſlands, of which theſe ſeem to be the diminutives, though with nearer approaches of reſemblance to the human ſpecies. But, though the navigation from the Carnatic coaſt to Bombay is of a very ſhort run, of not above ſix or ſeven degrees, whether the ſea air did not agree with them, or that they could not brook their confinement, or that Captain Boag had not properly conſulted their proviſion, the female ſickening firſt, died; and the male giving all the demonſtrations of grief, ſeemed to take it to heart ſo, that he refuſed to eat, and, in two days after, followed her. The Captain, on his return to Bombay, reporting this to the governour, was by him aſked, What he had done with the bodies? He ſaid he had flung them over board. Being further aſked, why he did not keep them in ſpirits? He replied bluntly, that he did not think of it. Upon this, the governour wrote afreſh to Vancajee, and deſired him to procure another couple, at any rate, as he ſhould grudge no expence to be maſter of ſuch a curioſity. Vancajee's anſwer was, he ſhould very willingly oblige him, but that he was afraid it would not be in his power: That theſe creatures came from a foreſt about ſeventy leagues up the country, where the inhabitants would ſometimes [Page 92] catch them on the ſkirts of it; but that they were ſo exquiſitely cunning and fly, that this ſcarcely happened once in a century.
Francis Pyrard* relates, ‘'That, in the province of Sierra Leona, there is a ſpecies of animals called baris, who are ſtrong and well limbed, and ſo induſtrious, that, when properly trained and fed, they work like ſervants; that they generally walk on the two hind feet; that they pound any ſubſtances in a mortar; that they go to bring water from the river in ſmall pitchers, which they carry full on their heads. But, when they arrive at the door, if the pitchers are not ſoon taken off, they allow them to fall; and, when they perceive the pitcher overturned and broken, they weep and lament.’ Father Jarric, quoted by Nieremberg †, ſays the ſame thing, nearly in the ſame terms. With regard to the education of theſe animals, the teſtimony of Schoutten‡ accords with that of Pyrard.
'They are taken,' he remarks, 'with ſnares, taught to walk on their hind feet, and to uſe their fore feet as hands in performing different operations, as rinſing glaſſes, carrying drink round the company, turning a ſpit,' &c. 'I ſaw, at Java,' ſays Guat‖, 'a very extraordinary ape. It was a female. She [Page 93] was very tall, and often walked erect on her hind feet. On theſe occaſions, ſhe concealed with her hands the parts which diſtinguiſh the ſex. Except the eye-brows, there was no hair on her face, which pretty much reſembled the groteſque female faces I ſaw among the Hottentots at the Cape. She made her bed very neatly every day, lay upon her ſide, and covered herſelf with the bed-clothes. . . . When her head ached, ſhe bound it up with a handkerchief; and it was amuſing to ſee her thus hooded in bed. I could relate many other little articles which appeared to be extremely ſingular. But I admired them not ſo much as the multitude; becauſe, as I knew the deſign of bringing her to Europe to be exhibited as a ſhew, I was inclined to think that ſhe had been taught many of theſe monkey-tricks, which the people conſidered as being natural to the animal. She died in our ſhip, about the latitude of the Cape of Good Hope. The figure of this ape had a very great reſemblance to that of man,' &c. Gemelli Carreri tells us, that he ſaw one of theſe apes, which cried like an infant, walked upon its hind feet, and carried a matt under its arm to lie down and ſleep upon. Theſe apes, he adds, appear, in ſome reſpects, to have more ſagacity than men: For, when the fruits on the mountains are exhauſted, they come down to the ſea coaſts, where they feed [Page 94] upon carbs, oyſters, and other ſhell-fiſhes. There is a ſpecies of oyſter called taclovo, which weighs ſeveral pounds, and commonly lies open on the ſhore. The ape, when he wants to eat one of them, being afraid left it ſhould cloſe on his paw, puts a ſtone into the ſhell, which prevents it from ſhutting, and then eats the oyſter at his eaſe.
'The apes along the banks of the river Gambia,' ſays Froger, 'are larger and more miſchieveous than in any part of Africa: The Negroes dread them, and cannot travel alone in the country, without running the hazard of being attacked by theſe animals, who often preſent them with a ſtick, and force them to fight. I have heard the Portugueſe ſay, that they have often ſeen them hoiſt up young girls, about ſeven or eight years old, into trees, and that they could not be wreſted from them without a great deal of difficulty. The moſt part of the Negroes imagine them to be a foreign nation come to inhabit their country, and that they do not ſpeak for fear of being compelled to work.'
'We might diſpenſe,' another traveller* remarks, 'with ſeeing a number of apes at Macacar; becauſe a rencounter with them is often fatal. It is neceſſary to be always well armed to defend ourſelves againſt their attacks. . . . [Page 95] They have no tail, and walk always erect on their two hind feet, like men.'
Theſe are nearly all the facts, concerning this animal, which have been related by voyagers who are leaſt credulous, and deſerve moſt credit. I have quoted the paſſages entire, becauſe every article is important in the hiſtory of a brute which has ſo great a reſemblance to man. And, that we may be enabled to aſcertain the nature of this animal with the greater preciſion, we ſhall now mark the differences and conformities which make him approach or recede from the human ſpecies. He differs from man externally by the flatneſs of his noſe, by the ſhortneſs of his front, and by his chin, which is not elevated at the baſe. His ears are proportionally too large, his eyes too near each other, and the diſtance between his noſe and mouth is too great. Theſe are the only differences between the face of an orang-outang and that of a man. With regard to the body and members, the thighs are proportionally too ſhort, the arms too long, the fingers too ſmall, the palm of the hands too long and narrow, and the feet rather reſemble hands than the human foot. The male organs of generation differ not from thoſe of man, except that the prepuce has no fraenum. The female organs are extremely ſimilar to thoſe of a woman.
The orang-outang differs internally from the human ſpecies in the number of ribs: Man has only twelve; but the orang-outang has [Page 96] thirteen. The vertebrae of the neck are alſo ſhorter, the bones of the pelvis narrow, the buttocks flatter, and the orbits of the eyes ſunk deeper. He has no ſpinal proceſs on the firſt vertebra of the neck. The kidneys are rounder than thoſe of man, and the ureters have a different figure, as well as the bladder and gall-bladder, which are narrower and longer than in the human ſpecies. All the other parts of the body, head, and members, both external and internal, ſo perfectly reſemble thoſe of man, that we cannot make the compariſon without being aſtoniſhed that ſuch a ſimilarity in ſtructure and organization ſhould not produce the ſame effects. The tongue, and all the organs of ſpeech, for example, are the ſame as in man; and yet the orang-outang enjoys not the faculty of ſpeaking; the brain has the ſame figure and proportions; and yet he poſſeſſes not the power of thinking. Can there be a more evident proof than is exhibited in the orang-outang, that matter alone, though perfectly organized, can produce neither language nor thought, unleſs it be animated by a ſuperior principle? Man and the orang-outang are the only animals who have buttocks and calfs of the legs, and who, of courſe, are formed for walking erect; the only animals who have a broad cheſt, flat ſhoulders, and vertebrae of the ſame ſtructure; and the only animals whoſe brain, heart, lungs, liver, ſpleen, ſtomach, and inteſtines are perfectly ſimilar, [Page 97] and who have an appendix vermiformis or blind-gut. In fine, the orang-outang has a greater reſemblance to man than even to the baboons or monkeys, not only in all the parts we have mentioned, but in the largeneſs of the face, the figure of the cranium, of the jaws, of the teeth, and of the other bones of the head and face; in the thickneſs of the fingers and thumb, the figure of the nails, and the number of vertebrae; and, laſtly, in the conformity of the articulations, the magnitude and figure of the rotula, ſternum, &c. Hence, as there is a greater ſimilarity between this animal and man, than between thoſe creatures which reſemble him moſt, as the Barbary ape, the baboon, and monkey, who have all been deſigned by the general name of apes, the Indians are to be excuſed for aſſociating him with the human ſpecies, under the denomination of orang-outang, or wild man. As ſome of the facts we have related may appear ſuſpicious to thoſe who never ſaw this animal, we ſhall ſupport them by the authority of two celebrated anatomiſts. Tyſon* and Cowper diſſected him [Page 98] with the moſt ſcrupulous exactneſs, and have given us the reſults of the compariſons they made [Page 99] between the different parts of his body with that of man. I have tranſlated this article from the [Page 100] Engliſh, that the reader may be enabled to form a judgment of the almoſt entire reſemblance between this animal and the human ſpecies. [Page 101] I ſhall only remark, for the better underſtanding of this note, that the Engliſh are not confined, like the French, to a ſingle name to denote apes. Like the Greeks, they have two denominations, the one for the apes without tails, which they call apes *, and the other for the apes with tails, which they call monkeys. The apes of Tyſon could be no other than thoſe which we denominate pithecus or pigmy, and the cynocephalus or Barbary ape. I ſhould likewiſe remark, that this author gives ſome reſemblances and differences which are not ſufficiently accurate.
1. Tyſon makes it peculiar to man and the orang-outang, to have the hair on the ſhoulders directed downward, and that of the arms upward. The hair of moſt animals, it is true, is directed backward or downward; but there are ſome exceptions. The ſloth, and the leaſt ant-eater have the hair of their anterior parts directed backward, and that of the crupper and reins directed [Page 102] forward. Hence this character is of no great moment in the compariſon of the orang-outang with man.
2. In the paſſage quoted from Tyſon, I took no notice of the four firſt differences; becauſe they are either too ſlight, or ill founded. The firſt is the difference of ſtature, which is an uncertain and gratuitous character, eſpecially as the author acknowledges that his animal was very young. The ſecond, third, and fourth are derived from the form of the noſe, the quantity of hair, and other minute relations. I retrenched ſeveral other differences; for example, the twenty-firſt, drawn from the number of teeth. It is certain that both the human ſpecies and this animal have an equal number of teeth. If the latter had only twenty-eight, as our author remarks, it was owing to his youth; and, it is well known, that man, when young, has not a greater number.
4. The forty-eight mark of reſemblance, and the twenty-firſt, twenty-ſecond, twenty-third, twenty-fourth, and twenty-fifth marks of difference, are derived from the figure or preſence of certain muſcles, which, as they vary in moſt individuals of the human ſpecies, ought not to be regarded as eſſential characters.
[Page 103] 5. All the reſemblances and differences drawn from parts too minute, as the proceſſes of the vertebrae, or derived from the poſition and magnitude of certain parts, ſhould only be conſidered as acceſſory characters; ſo that the whole detail of Tyſon's table may be reduced to the reſemblances and differences we have pointed out.
6. I ſhall mention ſome characters of a more general nature, ſome of which have been omitted by Tyſon, and others imperfectly related. 1. Of all the apes, baboons, and monkeys, the orang-outang alone wants thoſe pouches within the cheeks, into which they put their food, before they ſwallow it; for the inſide of his mouth is the ſame as in man. 2. The gibbon, the Barbary ape, all the baboons, and all the monkeys, except the douc, have flat buttocks, with calloſities on them. The orang-outang alone has plump buttocks without calloſities. The douc likewiſe has no calloſities; but his buttocks are flat and covered with hair; ſo that, in this reſpect, the douc forms the ſhade between the orang-outang and the monkeys. 3. The orang-outang alone has calfs of the legs and fleſhy buttocks. This ſingle character ſhows that he is beſt formed for walking erect; only his toes are very long, and his heel reſts with more difficulty on the ground than that of man. He runs with more eaſe than he walks; and, to enable him to walk eaſily and long, he would [Page 104] require artificial heels higher than thoſe of our ſhoes. 4. Though the orang-outang has thirteen ribs, and man but twelve. This difference does not make him approach nearer to the baboons or monkeys than it removes him from man; becauſe the number of ribs varies in moſt of thoſe ſpecies, ſome of them having twelve, others eleven, others ten, &c. Hence the only differences between the body of this animal and that of man are reduced to two, namely, the figure of the bones of the pelvis, and the conformation of the feet. Theſe are the only parts worthy of conſideration, by which the orang-outang has a greater reſemblance to the other apes than he has to man.
The orang-outang has no pouches within his cheeks, no tail, and no calloſities on his buttocks; which laſt are plump and fleſhy. All his teeth are ſimilar to thoſe of man. His face is flat, naked, and tawny. His ears, hands, feet, breaſt, and belly, are likewiſe naked. The hair of his head deſcends on both temples in the form of treſſes. He has hair on his back and loins, but in ſmall quantities. He is five or ſix feet high, and walks always erect on his two feet. We have not been able to aſcertain whether the females, like women, are ſubject to periodical courſes; but analogy renders this matter almoſt unqueſtionable.
1.4. THE PIGMY*.[Page]
ARISTOTLE remarks, 'that there are animals whoſe nature is ambiguous, and are partly allied to man, and partly to quadrupeds; ſuch as the pigmies, the kebes, and the cynocephali. The kebe is a pigmy with a tail; and the cynocephalus is perfectly ſimilar to the pigmy, except that it is larger and ſtronger, and has a longer muzzle, approaching nearly to that of the bull-dog, from which circumſtance its name has been derived. Its manners are likewiſe more ferocious, and its [Page 107] teeth are ſtronger than thoſe of the pigmy, and have a greater reſemblance to thoſe of the dog.' From this paſſage, it is apparent, that neither the pigmy nor the cynocephalus mentioned by Ariſtotle have a tail; for he ſays, that the pigmies with tails are called kebes, and that the cynocephalus reſembles the pigmy in every article, except the muzzle and teeth. Hence Ariſtotle takes notice of two apes without tails, the pigmy and cynocephalus, and other apes with tails, to which he gives the denomination of kebes. Now, to compare our own knowledge with that of Ariſtotle, we ſhall remark, that we have ſeen three ſpecies of apes without tails, the orang-outang, the gibbon, or long armed ape, and the magot, or Barbary ape, and that the pigmy is none of theſe three ſpecies; for the orang-outang and gibbon could not be known to Ariſtotle, ſince theſe animals are only found in the ſouthern parts of Africa and India, which were not diſcovered in his time; beſides, they have characters very different from thoſe he aſcribes to the pigmy. But the third ſpecies, which we call the magot, or Barbary ape, is the cynocephalus of Ariſtotle; for it has no tail; its muzzle reſembles that of a bull-dog; and its canine teeth are long and thick. Beſides, this animal is common in Aſia Minor, and other eaſtern provinces which were known to the Greeks. The pigmy belongs to the ſame country; but we know it only from the relations of travellers. [Page 108] But, though we have never been able to procure this ape, its exiſtence is equally real with that of the cynocephalus. Geſner and Johnſton have given figures of the pigmy. M. Briſſon mentions his having ſeen it, and he diſtinguiſhes it from the cynocephalus or Barbary ape, which he likewiſe ſaw. He confirms Ariſtotle's remark, that theſe two animals reſemble each other in every thing, except that the cynocephalus has a longer muzzle than the pigmy*.
We remarked, that the orang-outang, the pigmy, the gibbon, and the Barbary ape, are the only animals to which the generic name ape ought to be applied; becauſe they alone want the tail, and walk ſpontaneouſly, and oftener on two feet than on four. The orang-outang and the gibbon are very different from the pigmy and Barbary ape. But, as the two latter have a perfect reſemblance, except in the length of the muzzle and the largeneſs of the canine teeth, the one has frequently been miſtaken for the other. They have always been mentioned under [Page 109] the common appellation of ape, even in languages which have one name for apes without tails, and another for thoſe which have tails. In German, both the pigmy and Barbary ape are called aff, and ape in Engliſh. It is only in the Greek language that each of theſe animals has a proper name. Cynocephalus is rather an adjective than a proper ſubſtantive; and for that reaſon we have not adopted it.
From the teſtimony of the antients, it appears, that the pigmy is more mild and docile than all the other apes with which they were acquainted, and that it was common in Aſia as well as in Lybia, and other provinces of Africa which were frequented by the Greek and Roman travellers. Hence I preſume that the following paſſages of Leo Africanus and Marmol ought to be applied to the pigmy. They tell us, that the apes with long tails, which are ſhown in Mauritania, and which the Africans call mones, come from the Negro country; but that the apes without tails are natives, and very numerous in the mountains of Mauritania, Bugia, and Conſtantina: 'They have,' ſays Marmol, 'the feet, the hands, and the countenance of a man, and are extremely malicious and full of ſpirit. They live upon herbs, corn, and all kinds of fruits. They go in troops into the gardens or fields; but, before they leave the thickets, one of them aſcends an eminence, from which he views the country; and, when he ſees no perſon, he [Page 110] gives the ſignal, by a cry for the reſt to proceed, and removes not from his ſtation as long as they continue abroad. But, whenever he perceives any perſon approaching, he ſcreams with a loud voice; and, by leaping from tree to tree, they all fly to the mountains. Their flight is worthy of admiration; for the females, though they carry four or five young ones on their backs, make great ſprings from branch to branch. Though extremely cunning, vaſt numbers of them are taken by different arts. When wild, they bite deſperately; but by carreſſes they are eaſily tamed. They do much miſchief to the fruits and corn; for they gather it together in heaps, cut it, and throw it on the ground, whether it be ripe or not, and deſtroy more than they eat or carry off. Thoſe who are tamed perform things which are almoſt incredible, and imitate every human action*.' Kolbe relates nearly the ſame facts with regard to the apes of the Cape of Good Hope. But, from his figure and deſcription, it is obvious, that theſe apes are baboons, and have a ſhort tail, a long muzzle, pointed nails, &c.; and that they are much larger and ſtronger than the apes of Mauritania†. We may, therefore, preſume, that Kolbe has copied the paſſage from Marmol, and attributed to the baboons of the [Page 111] Cape the manners and diſpoſitions of Mauritanian pigmies.
The pigmy, the Barbary ape, and the baboon, were known to the antients; theſe animals are found in Aſia Minor, Arabia, Upper Egypt, and in all the northern parts of Africa. Hence this paſſage of Marmol may be applied to all the three. But it correſponds not with the baboon; for it mentions, that theſe apes have no tails. Neither is it the Barbary ape, but the pigmy, of which this author treats; for the Barbary ape is not eaſily tamed, and, inſtead of four or five, it generally produces only two young. But the pigmy, being ſmaller, ſhould produce a greater number. Beſides, it is milder and more docile than the Barbary ape, who is never perfectly tamed. For theſe reaſons, I am convinced that it is not the Barbary ape, but the pigmy, to which the paſſage in the above author ought to be applied. The ſame remark is applicable to a paſſage of Rubruquis; when mentioning the apes of Cathay, he remarks, 'That, in every article, they are faſhioned like man. . . . That they are more than a foot and a half high, and all covered with hair; that they live in caverns; that, in order to ſeize them, the natives put ſtrong inebriating liquors in the caverns they frequent;. . . . that they aſſemble together to drink theſe liquors, crying chinchin, from which they have obtained the name of chinchin; and that, after intoxicating themſelves, they fall [Page 112] aſleep, when they are eaſily taken by the hunters.' Theſe characters correſpond with the pigmy, and by no means with the Barbary ape. The latter we have ſeen alive, and never heard it cry chinchin. Beſides, it is much more than a foot and a half high, and has not ſo great a reſemblance to man as the author alledges. We have the ſame reaſons for applying to the pigmy the figure and remark of Proſper Alpinus: He tells us, that the ſmall apes without tails, which he ſaw in Egypt, tame ſooner and more eaſily than any other; that they have likewiſe more ſagacity and induſtry, and are gayer and more frolicſome. Now, the Barbary ape is thick, and of a conſiderable ſtature; it is a dirty, ferocious, melancholy animal, and is never fully tamed. Hence the characters given by Proſper Alpinus to his ape without a tail, apply not to the Barbary ape, and can belong to no other animal than the pigmy.
The pigmy has no tail, and his canine teeth are not proportionally larger than thoſe of man. He has a flat face; his nails are likewiſe flat, and rounded like thoſe of the human ſpecies. He walks on two feet, and is about a foot and a half in length. His diſpoſition is mild, and he is eaſily tamed. The antients alledge, that the female is ſubject to the menſtrual diſcharge, and analogy permits us not to doubt the fact.
1.5. The GIBBON, or Long-armed APE*.[Page]
THE Gibbon keeps himſelf always erect, even when he walks on four feet; becauſe his arms are as long as both his body and legs. We have ſeen him alive. He exceeded not three feet in height; but he was young, and in captivity. Hence we may preſume, that he had not acquired his full dimenſions, and that, in a natural ſtate, he might arrive at four feet. He has not the veſtige of a tail. But he is diſtinguiſhed [Page 114] from the other apes by the prodigious length of his arms: When ſtanding erect on his hind feet, his hands touch the ground; and he can walk on his four feet without bending his body. Round the face there is a circle of white, which gives him a very extraordinary appearance. His eyes are large, but deep ſunk. His ears are naked. His face is flat, of a tawny colour, and pretty ſimilar to that of man. After the orang-outang and the pigmy, the gibbon would make the neareſt approach to the human figure, if he was not deformed by the exceſſive length of his arms; for, in a ſtate of nature, man would likewiſe have a ſtrange aſpect. The hair and the beard, if neglected, would form round his countenance a circle ſimilar to that which ſurrounds the face of the gibbon.
This ape appeared to be of a tranquil diſpoſition, and of gentle manners. His movements were neither too briſk nor precipitant. He received mildly what was given him to eat. He was fed with bread, fruits, almonds, &c. He was afraid of cold and moiſture, and did not live long in a foreign climate. He is a native of the Eaſt Indies, and particularly of Coromandel, Malacca, and the Molucca iſlands*. It appears [Page 115] that he is likewiſe found in more northern provinces, and that we ought to refer to the gibbon, the ape of the kingdom of Gannaura, on the frontier of China, to which ſome travellers have given the name of fefé †.
The gibbon varies in ſize and colour. There are two in the royal cabinet, of which the ſecond, though an adult, is much ſmaller than the firſt, and is brown in all the parts where the other is black. But they ſo perfectly reſemble each other in every other article, that they unqueſtionably belong to the ſame ſpecies.
The gibbon has no tail. There are ſlight calloſities on his buttocks. His face is flat, brown, and ſurrounded with a circle of gray hairs. His canine teeth are proportionally larger than thoſe of man. The ears are naked, black, and round. The arms are enormouſly long. He walks on his two hind feet, and is about a foot and a half or three feet high. The female, like women, is ſubject to a periodical evacuation.
1.6. The MAGOT, or BARBARY APE*.[Page]
OF all the apes without tails†, the Magot agrees beſt with the temperature of our climate. We kept one ſeveral years. In ſummer, he delighted to be in the open air; and, in winter, he might be kept in a room without fire. Though by no means delicate, he was always melancholy, and ſometimes dirty. He uſed the ſame grimaces to mark his anger, or to expreſs his appetite. His movements were briſk, his manners groſs, and his aſpect more ugly than [Page 118] ridiculous. When agitated with paſſion, he exhibited and grinded his teeth. He filled the pouches of his cheeks with the food which was given him, and generally eat every thing, except raw fleſh, cheeſe, and whatever had undergone a kind of fermentation. When about to ſleep, he loved to perch upon an iron or wooden bar. He was always chained; becauſe, though he had been long in a domeſtic ſtate, he was not civilized, and had no attachment to his maſters. He ſeems to have been ill educated; for I have ſeen others of the ſame ſpecies more intelligent, more obedient, more gay, and ſo docile as to learn to dance, to make geſticulations in cadence, and to allow themſelves peaceably to be clothed.
This ape, when erect upon his two hind legs, is generally two feet and a half, or three feet high; the female is ſmaller than the male. He walks more willingly on four feet than on two. When reſting, he commonly ſupports his body on two prominent calloſities, which are ſituated where the buttocks ought to be: The anus is placed higher. Hence his body is more inclined than that of a man, when ſitting. He differs from the pigmy or ape properly ſo called: 1. Becauſe his muzzle is thick and long, as in the dog; but the face of the pigmy is flat; 2. Becauſe he has very long canine teeth; 3. Becauſe his nails and fingers are neither ſo flat nor ſo round; and, 4. Becauſe he is larger, more [Page 119] ſquat, and of a more ferocious and untractable diſpoſition.
There are ſome varieties in this ſpecies. We have ſeen magots of different ſizes, and with hair more or leſs deeply coloured, and more or leſs buſhy. It even appears, that the five animals deſcribed and drawn by Proſper Alpinus, under the denomination of cynocephali *, are all magots, which differ only in magnitude, and in ſome other characters too ſlight to conſtitute diſtinct ſpecies. It likewiſe appears that the ſpecies is pretty generally diffuſed over all the warm climates of the Old Continent, and that they are found in Tartary, Arabia, AEthiopia, Malabar†, Barbary, Mauritania, and as far as the Cape of Good Hope‡.
The magot has no tail, though there is a ſmall portion of ſkin which has the appearance of one. He has cheek-pouches, large prominent calloſities on his buttocks, canine teeth, proportionally longer than thoſe of man, and the under part of the face turned up, like the muzzle of a bull-dog. He has down on his face; the hair on his body is of a greeniſh brown colour, and that on his belly is a whitiſh yellow. He walks on the two hind feet, but oftener on four. He is three feet or three feet and a half high; and ſome of this ſpecies appear to be ſtill larger. The females are ſubject to a periodical diſcharge.
1.7. The BABOON, properly ſo called*.[Page]
IN man, the phyſiognomy is deceitful, and the figure of his body gives no indication of the qualities of his mind. But, in the brute creation, we may judge of the diſpoſition by the aſpect; for every internal quality appears externally. For example, in looking at the apes and baboons, it is eaſy to perceive, that the latter ought to be the moſt ſavage and miſchievous. Their manners differ as much as their figures. The orang-outang has the greateſt reſemblance to man; and he is the moſt grave, docile, and intelligent of the whole race. The Barbary ape, which begins to recede from the human figure, and approaches to that of the brutes by his muzzle and canine teeth, is briſk, diſobedient, and naſty. The baboons, who reſemble man in the hands only, and who have a tail, ſharp nails, a large muzzle, &c. have the air of ferocious beaſts, which they are in effect. The baboon, of which a figure is [Page 122] here given, I ſaw alive. He was not perfectly hideous; and yet he excited a degree of horror. Perpetually grinding his teeth, fretting and chafing with rage, his owner was obliged to keep him confined in an iron cage, the bars of which he moved ſo powerfully with his hands, that he inſpired the ſpectators with terror. He is a ſquat animal, whoſe compact body and nervous members indicate ſtrength and agility. He is covered with long cloſe hair, which gives him the appearance of being larger than he is in reality. His ſtrength, however, is ſo great, that he would eaſily overcome one or ſeveral men, if not provided with arms*. Beſides, he is continually agitated by that paſſion which renders the gentleſt animals ferocious. He is inſolently ſalacious, affects to ſhow himſelf in this ſituation, and ſeems to gratify his deſires, per manum ſuum, before the whole world. This deteſtable action recalls the idea of vice, and renders diſguſtful the aſpect of an animal, which Nature ſeems to have particularly devoted to ſuch an uncommon ſpecies of impudence; for, in all other [Page 123] animals, and even in man, ſhe has covered theſe parts with a veil. In the baboon, on the contrary, they are perpetually naked, and the more conſpicuous, becauſe the reſt of the body is covered with long hair. The buttocks are likewiſe naked, and of a blood red colour; the teſticles are pendulous; the anus is uncovered, and the tail always elevated. He ſeems to be proud of all thoſe nudities; for the preſents his hind parts more frequently than his front, eſpecially when he ſees women, before whom he diſplays an effrontery ſo matchleſs, that it can originate from nothing but the moſt inordinate deſire*. The magot, and ſome others, have the ſame inclinations; but, as they are ſmaller and not ſo petulant, they are taught modeſty by the whip. The baboon, however, is perfectly incorrigible, and nothing can tame him.
Notwithſtanding the violence of their paſſion, [Page 124] theſe animals produce not in temperate climates. The female generally brings forth but one young at a time, which ſhe carries between her arms, in a manner fixed to her pap. Like women, ſhe is ſubject to a periodical evacuation, which is common to her with the other female apes who have naked buttocks. Theſe baboons, though miſchievous and fierce, are not carnivorous. They live chiefly on fruits, roots, and ſeeds*. They aſſemble in troops for the purpoſe of robbing gardens: They throw the fruit from hand to hand, and over the walls; and they make great havock in all the cultivated lands.
The baboon has cheek-pouches and large calloſities on his thighs, which are naked, and of a blood colour. His tail is arched, and about ſeven or eight inches long. The canine teeth are proportionally much longer and larger than thoſe of man. The muzzle is very thick and long; the ears are naked; the body is maſſy and contracted; the members are thick and ſhort; the organs of generation are naked and fleſh-coloured. The hair is long, buſhy, of a reddiſh brown, and pretty uniform over the whole body. He walks oftener on four than on two feet. When erect, he is three or four feet high. In this ſpecies, there ſeem to be races ſtill larger, and others much ſmaller. We have given figures both of the large and ſmall kinds, in which we can perceive no other difference but that of magnitude. This difference, however, proceeds not from age; for the ſmall baboon appeared to be an adult as well as the large. The females are ſubject to the menſtrual diſcharge*
* In Auguſt 1779, a male baboon, remarkable for its magnitude, ſtrength, and beautiful colours, was exihibited at Edinburgh. It was generally thought to be a variety of the mandrill deſcribed by Geſner, Buffon, Ray, Linnaeus, and Briſſon. But, as it differed from the mandrill of theſe authors in [Page 126] a number of characters, the Tranſlator cauſed a drawing of it to be made. [See the plate]. The mandrill is ſaid not to exceed two feet in length. But this baboon, when erect, was near five feet high. The mandrill is repreſented as a good-natured, though not a ſportive animal. This baboon, on the contrary, was exceſſively fierce, preſented uniformly to the ſpectators the moſt threatening aſpect, and attempted to ſeize every perſon who came within reach of his chain. On ſuch occaſions, he made a deep grunting noiſe, and toſſed up his head almoſt perpetually. The baboon deſcribed by Buffon ‘preſented his hind parts more frequently than his front, eſpecially when he ſaw women.’ But this baboon uniformly preſented his face, and allowed no perſon to approach him behind. The Count de Buffon remarks, that the mandrill is an animal of the moſt diſguſting deformity, and that he perpetually licks a ſnot which runs from his noſe. But the baboon under conſideration was an animal of great beauty, and had no viſible diſtillation from his noſtrils.
Since writing the above, Mr Pennant obligingly communicated to the Tranſlator the proof ſheet of a new and elegant edition of his excellent Synopſis of Quadrupeds, in which is contained the following accurate deſcription of this animal, under the appellation of the Great Baboon.‘
220.127.116.11.1. GREAT BABOON.
Papio; Geſner. quad. p. 560. Simia Sphynx; Linn. ſyſt. nat. p. 35. Le Choras. Simia mormon; Alſtroemar Schreber. p. 92. tab. 8. MUS. LEV.
Baboon with hazel irides; ears ſmall and naked; face canine, and very thick; middle of the face and forehead naked, and of a bright vermilion colour; tip of the noſe of the ſame; it ended truncated like that of a hog: Sides of the noſe broadly ribbed, and of a fine violet blue; the opening of the mouth ſmall; cheeks, throat, and goat-like beard, yellow: Hair on the forehead is very long, turns back, is black, and forms a kind of pointed creſt. Head, arms, and legs, covered with ſhort hair, yellow and black intermixed; the breaſt with long, whitiſh, yellow hairs; the ſhoulders with long brown hair.
[Page 127] Nails flat; feet and hands black: Tail four inches long, and very hairy: Buttocks bare, red, and filthy; but the ſpace about them is of a moſt elegant purple colour, which reaches to the inſide of the upper part of the thighs.
This was deſcribed from a ſtuffed ſpecimen in Sir Aſhton Lever's muſeum. In October 1779, a live animal of this ſpecies was ſhown at Cheſter, which differed a little in colour from the above, being in general much darker. Eyes much ſunk in the head, and ſmall. On the internal ſide of each ear was a white line, pointing upwards. The hair on the forehead turned up, like a toupée. Feet black; in other reſpects reſembled the former.
In this I had an opportunity of examining the teeth. The cutting teeth were like thoſe of the reſt of the genus; but, in the upper and lower jaw, were two canine, or rather tuſks, near three inches long, and exceedingly ſharp and pointed.
Mr Schreber ſays, that this ſpecies lives on ſucculent fruits, and on nuts; is very fond of eggs, and will put eight at once into its pouches, and, taking them out one by one, break them at the end, and ſwallow the yolk and white: Rejects all fleſh-meat, unleſs it be dreſſed: Would drink quantities of wine or brandy: Was leſs agile than other baboons: Very cleanly; for it would immediately fling its excrements out of its hut.
That which was ſhown at Cheſter was particularly fond of cheeſe. Its voice was a kind of roar, not unlike that of a lion, but low and ſomewhat inward. It went upon all fours, and never ſtood on its hind legs, unleſs forced by the keeper; but would frequently ſit on its rump in a crouching manner, and drop its arms before the belly.
To this deſcription very little can be added. In the individual ſhown at Edinburgh, which was probably the ſame that Mr Pennant afterwards ſaw at Cheſter, the colours of the face were diſtinct and unmixed. The ribbed cheeks were of a ſky-blue colour. A vermilion line began a little above the eyes, and running down between them, and on each ſide of [Page 128] the noſe, ſpread over the ſnout. The inſide of the ears was blue, which, ſoftening from purple, terminated in vermilion. The beard, at the roots, was of the ſame dark brown colour with that on upper part of the body; but it ſoon changed into a deep orange, and ended in yellow. The hairs on the belly were of an aſh-colour, and ſpeckled like the ſides of a partridge. The rump was of a vermillion colour; and the beautiful colours on the hips were only gradations from red to blue. If it had any calloſities on the buttocks, they were not apparent. The penis was nearly of the ſame red colour with the rump; that of the teſticles was more fiery, and ſoftened into a light blue, which likewiſe ſpread over the inſide of the thighs.—It was very fond of the ears of wheat, the grains of which it dexterouſly picked out, one by one, with its teeth.
[Page] The MANDRILL*, or Ribbed Noſe BABOON.
THE ugglineſs of this baboon is perfectly diſguſting. His noſe, or rather his two noſtrils, are flat, from which a ſnot perpetually runs, and he licks it into his mouth with his tongue. His head is very large, and his muzzle long. His body is ſquat, and his buttocks are of a blood colour. His anus is conſpicuous, and ſituated almoſt as high as the loins. His face is of a violet colour, and ſurrounded on each ſide with deep longitudinal wrinkles, which [Page 130] augment the ſullenneſs and deformity of his aſpect. He is likewiſe larger, and perhaps ſtronger than the baboon; but, at the ſame time, he is more peaceable, and leſs ferocious. We here give figures of both the male and the female, which we have ſeen alive. Whether they had received a better education, or if they be naturally more gentle than the baboon, they appeared to be more tractable and leſs impudent; but they were equally diſagreeable.
This ſpecies of baboon is found on the Gold Coaſt, and in the other ſouthern provinces of Africa, where he is called boggo by the Negroes, and mandrill by the Europeans. Next to the orang-outang, he is the largeſt of all the apes or baboons. Smith relates*, that he had a preſent [Page 131] of a female mandrill, which was only ſix months old, and that it was as large as an adult baboon. He adds, that theſe mandrills walk always on two feet; that they weep and groan like men; that they have a violent paſſion for women, which they never fail to gratify when they find a woman at a diſtance from relief.
The mandrill has cheek-pouches, and calloſities on the buttocks. The tail exceeds not two or three inches. The canine teeth are much thicker and longer than thoſe of man. The muzzle is very thick, very long, and furrowed on each ſide with deep longitudinal wrinkles. The face is naked, and of a blueiſh colour. The ears, as well as the palm of the hands and ſoles of the feet, are naked. The hair is long, [Page 132] of a reddiſh brown upon the body, and gray upon the breaſt and belly. He walks on two feet oftener than on four. When erect, he is four or four and a half feet high; and ſome of them ſeem to be ſtill larger. The females are ſubject to the menſes.
THOUGH theſe two animals appear to belong to the ſame ſpecies, we have preſerved to each of them the proper names they receive in Ceylon, which is their native country; becauſe they conſtitute, at leaſt, two diſtinct and permanent races. The body of the ouanderou is covered with brown and black hairs; it has a buſhy head, and a large beard. The body of the lowando, on the contrary, is covered with whitiſh hairs, and the hair on its head and beard is black. In the ſame country, there is a third race or variety, which [Page 134] is probably the common ſtock of the other two; for the hair on its body, head, and beard, is of one uniform white colour. Theſe three animals are not apes, but baboons, of which they have all the characters both in figure and diſpoſitions. They are wild, and even ferocious. Their muzzle is long, their tail ſhort, and they are nearly of the ſame ſize and ſtrength as the baboons. Their bodies are indeed leſs ſquat, and their hind parts ſeem to be more feeble. That of which we have given a figure, was exhibited to us under falſe appellations, both with regard to its name and climate. Its owners told us, that it came from the continent of America, and that it was called cayouvaſſou. I ſoon recollected that this word cayouvaſſou is a Braſilian term, which is pronounced ſajuouaſſou, and ſignifies ſapajou; and, conſequently, that it was improperly applied; ſince all the ſapajous have very long tails. But the animal under conſideration is a baboon with a very ſhort tail. Beſides, not a ſingle ſpecies of baboon exiſts in America. Errors with regard to climate are very common, eſpecially among thoſe who exhibit wild beaſts: When they are ignorant of the climate and the name of an animal, they fail not to give it a foreign denomination, which, whether true or falſe, equally ſerves their purpoſe.
Theſe baboon-ouanderous, when not tamed, are ſo miſchievous, that they muſt be kept in iron cages, where they are frequently agitated [Page 135] with vaſt fury. But, when taken young, they are eaſily tamed, and appear to be even more ſuſceptible of education than the other baboons. The Indians delight in inſtructing theſe animals, and pretend that the other apes, that is, the monkeys, have a great reſpect for the baboons, who are poſſeſſed of more gravity and intelligence. In a ſtate of liberty*, they are extremely wild, and keep perpetually in the woods†. If we may credit travellers, thoſe which are all white are the ſtrongeſt and moſt miſchievous. They are violently fond of women, ſtrong enough to raviſh them when found alone‡, and often injure them ſo as to prove fatal.
The ouanderous has cheek-pouches, and calloſities on the buttocks. The tail is ſeven or eight inches in length. The canine teeth are longer and larger than thoſe of man. The muzzle is thick and long. The head is environed with a broad mane, and a large beard of coarſe hairs. The body is pretty long, and thin behind. In this ſpecies, there are races which vary in colour. Some have the hair on the body black, and a white beard; in others, the hair on the body is whitiſh, and the beard black. They walk more frequently on four than on two feet; and, when erect, they are three or three and a half feet high. The females are ſubject to the periodical evacuation.
1.10. The MAIMON, or Pig-tailed BABOON*.[Page]
THE apes, baboons, and monkeys, form three tribes, with intervals between each, the firſt of which is filled by the magot, and the ſecond by the maimon. The latter conſtitutes the link or ſhade between the baboons and monkeys, as the magot does between the apes and baboons. In effect, the maimon reſembles the baboons by the thickneſs and largeneſs of his muzzle, and by his ſhort, arched tail; but he differs from them, and approaches the monkeys, by the ſmallneſs of his ſize, and the mildneſs of his nature. Mr Edwards has given a figure and deſcription of the maimon, under the denomination of the pig-tailed ape. This peculiar character [Page 138] is ſufficient to diſtinguiſh him; for, of all the baboons or monkeys, he alone has a naked, ſlender, and arched tail, like that of a pig. He is nearly of the ſize of the magot, and has ſo ſtrong a reſemblance to the macaque, or hare-lipped monkey, that he might be regarded as a variety of this ſpecies, if his tail were not totally different. He has a naked, tawny face, cheſnut-coloured eyes, black eye-lids, a flat noſe, and thin lips, with ſome ſtiff hairs, but too ſhort to form whiſkers. He has not, like the apes and baboons, his teſticles and penis prominent and apparent; the whole organs are concealed under the ſkin. Hence the maimon, though vivacious and full of fire, has none of that impudent petulance peculiar to the baboons. He is gentle, tractable, and even careſſing. He is found in Sumatra, and probably in other ſouthern provinces of India; of courſe, he endures with difficulty the cold of our climate. The one we ſaw in Paris lived only a ſhort time, and that which Mr Edwards deſcribed, exiſted only twelve months in London*.
The maimon has cheek-pouches, calloſities on the buttocks, and a naked, curled up tail from five to ſix inches in length. The canine teeth are not proportionally longer than thoſe of man. The muzzle is very large; the orbits of the eyes are prominent above; the face, the ears, the hands, and the feet are naked and fleſh-coloured. The hair on the body is of an olive black colour, and of a reddiſh yellow on the belly. He ſometimes walks on two, and ſometimes on four feet. When erect, he is two feet, or two feet and a half high. The female is ſubject to the menſtrual flux.
OF all the guenons, or monkeys with long tails, the macaque makes the neareſt approach to the baboons. Like them, his body is [Page 141] ſhort and ſquat, his head and muzzle large, his noſe flat, his cheeks wrinkled, and, at the ſame time, he exceeds moſt of the other monkeys in ſize. He is alſo extremely ugly; ſo that he might be regarded as a ſmall ſpecies of baboon, if his tail were not long and buſhy, while that of the baboons in general is very ſhort. This ſpecies is a native of Congo, and other ſouthern provinces of Africa. It is numerous, and ſubject to ſeveral varieties in ſize, in colour, and in the diſpoſition of the hair. The body of that deſcribed by Haſſelquiſt was more than two feet long; and thoſe we have ſeen exceeded not a foot and a half. The one we have denominated egret, becauſe it has a creſt or tuft of hair on the top of the head, appears to be only a variety of the macaque, which it reſembles in every article, except this, and ſome other ſlight differences in the hair. They are both of mild manners, and extremely tractable. But, independent of a diſagreeable muſky odour which they both diffuſe, they are ſo dirty, ſo ugly, and ſo loathſome, that, when they make their grimaces, they cannot be viewed without horror and diſguſt. Theſe monkeys go often in troops, eſpecially in their expeditions to rob gardens. Boſman relates, that they take in each paw a quantity of millet, [Page 142] and an equal quantity under their arms and in their mouths; that they return thus loaded leaping on their hind feet, and, when purſued, they drop the ſtalks which they held under their arms and in their hands, preſerving only what they carry in their teeth, to enable them to run with more ſpeed on their four feet. He adds, that they examine, with the moſt ſcrupulous accuracy, every ſtalk of millet they pull, and, if it does not pleaſe them, they throw it on the ground, and tear up others. By this delicacy of choice, they do more damage than by their robberies*.
The egret ſeems to be only a variety of the macaque: He is about one third leſs in all his dimenſions. Inſtead of a ſmall creſt of hair on the top of the head, as in the macaque, the egret has an erect, pointed tuft. The hair on his front is black; but that on the front of the macaque is greeniſh. The tail of the egret is likewiſe proportionally larger than that of the macaque. The females of both kinds have periodic evacuations.
1.12. The PATAS* or red MONKEY.[Page]
THE Patas belongs to the ſame country, and is nearly of the ſame ſize with the macaque; but his body is longer, his face leſs hideous, and his hair more beautiful. He is remarkable for the brilliancy of his robe, which is of ſo vivid a red as to have the appearance of being painted. We have ſeen two varieties of this ſpecies. The firſt has a black line above the eyes, which extends from ear to ear. The ſecond differs from the firſt only in the colour of this line, which is white. Both have long hair under the chin and round the cheeks, which makes a fine beard: But, in the firſt, it is yellow, and, in the ſecond, white. This variety ſeems to indicate others in the colour of the hair; and I am inclined to think, that the monkey [Page 145] mentioned by Marmol*, which is of the colour of a wild cat, and ſaid to come from the Negro country, is a variety of the patas.
Theſe monkeys are not equally dexterous as the other kinds; and, at the ſame time, they are extremely inquiſitive. ‘'I have ſeen them,' ſays Brue, 'deſcend from the tops of the trees to the extremities of the branches, in order to admire the barks as they paſſed. They ſtare for ſome time, ſeem to be entertained with what they have ſeen, and then give place to thoſe who come after. They became ſo familiar as to throw branches at the Frenchmen, who returned the compliment by the ſhot of their muſkets. Some of them ſell, others were wounded, and the reſt were ſtruck with a ſtrange conſternation. One party raiſed hideous cries; another collected ſtones to throw at the enemy: Some of them, with their bowels in their hands, attempted to throw their intrails at the ſpectators. At laſt, perceiving the combat to be at leaſt equal, they retired†.'’
It is probably of this ſpecies of monkey which le Maire ſpeaks of in the following terms: ‘'The havock which theſe monkeys make in the fields of Senegal, when the millet and other grains are ripe, is not to be expreſſed. They aſſemble [Page 146] to the number of forty or fifty. One of them ſtands ſentinel on a tree, liſtens, and looks about on all ſides, while the others are buſy. When he perceives any perſon, he ſets up loud ſhrieks to alarm the band, who obey the ſignal, fly off with their prey, leaping from tree to tree with prodigious agility. The females, who carry their young in their arms, fly with the reſt, and leap as if they were loaded with no burden*'’
Though, in every region of Africa, the ſpecies of apes, baboons, and monkeys, are very numerous, ſome of which are pretty ſimilar; yet it is remarked by travellers, that they never intermix, and that each ſpecies commonly inhabits a different quarter of the country†
THESE two monkeys ſeem to be of the ſame ſpecies, which, though different in ſome reſpects from that of the Macaque, makes ſo near an approach to it, that we are doubtful whether the macaque, the egret, the malbrouck, and the Chineſe-bonnet, are only four varieties, or permanent races, of the ſame ſpecies. As theſe animals produce not in our climate, we cannot aſcertain the identity or diverſity of their ſpecies, but muſt judge from the differences in their figure and in their external qualities. The macaque and the egret are ſo ſimilar, that we preſumed them to be one ſpecies. It is the ſame with the malbrouck and Chineſe-bonnet. But, as the latter differ from the former more than they differ between themſelves, we thought it beſt to ſeparate them.
Our preſumption, with regard to the diverſity of theſe two ſpecies, is founded, 1. On the difference [Page 149] in their figure; 2. On that of the colour and diſpoſition of the hair; 3. On the different proportions in the ſkeletons of the two kinds; and, in fine, on the two former being natives of the ſouthern regions of Africa, while the two latter are natives of Bengal. This laſt conſideration is of equal weight with any of the others; for we have ſhown, that, in wild animals totally independent of man, the diſtance of climate is a pretty certain indication of remoteneſs of ſpecies. Beſides, the malbrouck and Chineſe-bonnet are not the only ſpecies or races of monkeys found in Bengal* It appears, from the evidence of travellers, that there are four varieties, namely, white, black, red, and gray monkeys. They alledge that the black kind are moſt eaſily tamed. Thoſe we ſaw were of a reddiſh gray colour, and appeared to be tame, and even docile.
'Theſe animals,' travellers remark† 'ſteal fruits, and particularly the ſugar cane. One ſtands ſentinel on a tree, while the others load themſelves with the booty. If he perceives any perſon, he cries houp, houp, houp, with a [Page 150] loud and diſtinct voice. The moment this ſignal is given, the whole troop throw down the canes they held in their left hand, and run off on three feet. When purſued hard, they quit what they had in their right hand, and ſave themſelves by climbing trees, which are the uſual places of their abode. They leap from tree to tree; and even the females, though loaded with their young, which they hold firmly, leap like the others; but they ſometimes fall. Theſe animals are never more than half-tamed, and always require a chain. Even in their own country, they never produce, when in bondage: They require to be at perfect freedom in the woods. When fruits and ſucculent plants fail, they eat inſects, and ſometimes deſcend to the margins of rivers, and the ſea-coaſt, to catch fiſhes and crabs. They put their tail between the pincers of the crab, and, whenever the pincers are cloſed, they carry it quickly off, and eat it at their leiſure. They gather cocoa nuts, and are well acquainted with the method of extracting the juice for drink, and the kernel for food. They likewiſe drink the zari which drops from the bamboos, which they place on the tops of trees, in order to extract the liquors; and they uſe it occaſionally. They are taken by means of a cocoa nut, with a ſmall hole made in it. They put their paw into the hole with difficulty [Page 151] becauſe it is narrow; and the people who are watching, ſeize them before they can diſengage themſelves. In the provinces of India inhabited by the Bramins, who kill no animals, the number of monkeys, which are highly venerated, is almoſt infinite. They come in troops into the cities, and enter the houſes at all times with perfect freedom; ſo that thoſe who ſell proviſions, and particularly fruits, pot-herbs, &c. have much difficulty in preſerving their commodities.' In Amadabad, the capital of Guzarat, there are three hoſpitals for animals, where lame and ſick monkeys, and even thoſe who, without being diſeaſed, chooſe to dwell there, are fed and cheriſhed. Twice every week, the monkeys in the neighbourhood aſſemble ſpontaneouſly in the ſtreets of the city. They then mount upon the houſes, each of which has a ſmall terrace, or flat roof, where they lie during the great heats. On theſe two days, the inhabitants fail not to lay upon theſe terraces rice, millet, ſugar canes, and other fruits in their ſeaſon; for, if theſe animals, by any accident, find not their proviſions in the accuſtomed place, they break the tiles which cover the reſt of the houſe, and commit great outrages. They never eat any thing, without thoroughly examining it; and, when full, they fill their cheek-pouches for another occaſion. In places frequented by the monkeys, the birds dare not build their neſts on [Page 152] the trees; for they never fail to deſtroy the neſts, and daſh the eggs on the ground*.
Neither the tiger nor other ferocious animals are the moſt formidable enemies to the monkeys; for they eaſily make their eſcape by their nimbleneſs, and by living on the tops of trees, where nothing but ſerpents have the art of ſurpriſing them. ‘'The apes,' a traveller remarks, 'are maſters of the foreſts; for their dominion is not diſputed either by the tiger or lion. The only animals they have to dread are the ſerpents, who make perpetual war upon them. Some of theſe ſerpents are of a prodigious ſize, and ſwallow an ape in a moment. Others are ſmaller, but more agile, and go in queſt of the apes on the trees. . . . . They watch the time when the apes ſleep† &c.'’
The Chineſe-bonnet appears to be a variety of the malbrouck. They differ in the two following articles: In the former, the hair on the top of the head is diſpoſed in the form of a flat bonnet, from which its name has been derived, and its tail is proportionally longer. The females of both theſe races are ſubject to a periodic evacuation.
1.14. The MANGABEY*, or MONKEY with white EYE-LIDS.[Page]
The mangabey has cheek-pouches and calloſities on the buttocks. The tail is as long as both the body and head. He has a prominent ring round the eyes, and the upper eye-lid is extremely white. The muzzle is thick and long. The eye-brows conſiſt of ſtiff, criſped hair, and the ears are black and almoſt naked. The hair on the ſuperior parts of the body is brown, and that on the inferior is gray. There are varieties in this ſpecies: Some of them are of a uniform colour; others have a white circle round the neck, and round the cheeks, in the form of a beard. They walk on four feet, and are nearly a foot and a half long, from the extremity of the muzzle to the origin of the tail. The females of theſe ſpecies menſtruate.
1.15. The MONA,* or varied MONKEY.[Page]
THE mona is the moſt common of the monkeys. We had one alive for ſeveral years. The mona and the magot agree beſt with the temperature of our climate. This circumſtance is alone ſufficient to prove, that the mona is not a native of the ſouthern regions of Africa and the Eaſt Indies; and, in fact, it is found in Barbary, Arabia, Perſia, and other parts of Aſia [Page 157] which were known to the antients*, who called it kebos, cebus, or coephus, on account of the variety of its colours. Its face is brown, with a kind of beard interſperſed with white, yellow, and a little black. The hair on the top of the head and neck is a mixture of yellow and black: That on the back is a mixture of red and black. The belly, as well as the inſide of the thighs and legs, are whitiſh. The external parts of the legs and feet are black, and the tail is of a deep gray colour. There are two ſmall white ſpots, one on each ſide of the root of the tail, a creſcent of gray hair on the front, and a black band from the eyes to the ears, and from the ears to the ſhoulder and arms. Some have called it nonne from a corruption of mone or mona, and others the old man, on account of its gray beard. But the vulgar appellation of varied monkey is beſt known, and correſponds with the Greek name kebos, and Ariſtotle's definition of the monkey with a long tail, and various colours.
In general, the monkeys have milder diſpoſitions than the baboons, and their character is leſs melancholy than that of the apes. They are extravagantly vivacious; but have no ferocity; for they become tractable the moment their attention is fixed by fear or reſtraint. The mona is particularly ſuſceptible of education, and even of ſome attachment to thoſe who take [Page 158] care of him. The one we kept allowed himſelf to be touched and carried about by the people with whom he was acquainted; but, to others, he permitted not this freedom, and even bit them. He likewiſe endeavoured to obtain his liberty: He was fixed with a long chain. When he could either break the chain or diſengage himſelf, he fled to the fields, and, though he did not ſpontaneouſly return, he allowed himſelf to be taken by his maſter. He eat every thing, roaſted meat, bread, and particularly fruits. He likewiſe ſearched for ſpiders, ants, and inſects* When ſeveral morſels were thrown to him at once, he filled his cheeks with them. This practice is common to all the baboons and monkeys, to whom Nature has given pouches in their cheeks, where they can keep a quantity of food ſufficient to nouriſh them for a day or two.
1.16. The CALLITRIX, or GREEN-MONKEY*.[Page]
CALLITRIX is a term employed by Homer, to denote, in general, the beautiful colour of the hair of animals. It was not till ſeveral ages after Homer's time, that the Greeks applied this name to particular ſpecies of monkeys. Its application to the animal under conſideration is peculiarly proper. The body is of a beautiful green colour, the throat and belly are white, and the face is of a fine black. He is found in Mauritania, and in the territories of antient Carthage. Hence it is probable that he was known to the Greeks and Romans, and [Page 161] that it was one of thoſe long-tailed monkeys to which they gave the name of callitrix. In the neighbourhood of Egypt, both on the AEthiopian and Arabian ſide, there are white monkeys, which the antients have likewiſe denoted by the generic name of callitrix. Proſper Alpinus and Pietro della Valle* mention theſe white monkeys. We have not ſeen this white ſpecies: It is perhaps only a variety of the green monkey, or of the mona, which is very common in theſe countries.
The green monkey ſeems alſo to be found in Senegal, as well as in Mauritania and the Cape de Verd iſlands. M. Adanſon relates, that the woods of Podor, along the river Niger, are filled with green apes. 'I diſcovered apes,' ſays he, 'only by the branches they throw down from the tops of the trees; for, in other reſpects, they are ſo ſilent and nimble in their gambols, that it would be difficult to perceive them. I killed one, two, and even three, before the others ſeemed to be alarmed. However, after moſt of them were wounded, they began to take ſhelter; [Page 162] ſome of them concealed themſelves behind the large branches, ſome deſcended on the ground, and the greateſt number ſprung from the top of one tree to another. . . . . . . During this operation, I continued to ſhoot, and, in the ſpace of twenty fathoms, I killed twenty-three in leſs than an hour, and not one one of them uttered the ſmalleſt cry, though they frequently aſſembled in troops, grinded their teeth, and aſſumed a threatening aſpect, as if they meant to attack me;' Voyage au Senegal, par M. Adanſon, p. 178.
The callitrix has cheek-pouches and calloſities on the buttocks. The tail is much longer than both the body and head. The head is ſmall, the muzzle long, and the face and ears are black. Inſtead of eye-brows, a band of black hairs runs along the bottom of the front. The body is of a vivid green mixed with a little yellow. He walks on four feet; and the length of his body, comprehending that of the head, is about fifteen inches. The female is ſubject to the menſtrual flux.
1.17. THE MUSTACHE*.[Page]
THE muſtache ſeems to belong to the ſame country as the macaque; becauſe, like the latter, his body is ſhorter and more ſquat than in the other monkeys. It is probably the ſame animal which the voyagers to Guinea have called white-noſe *; becauſe the lips below the noſe are of a bright white colour, and the reſt of the face is of a blackiſh blue. There are alſo two tufts of yellow hair under the ears, which [Page 164] give it a ſingular appearance; and, as it is, at the ſame time, very ſmall, it appears to be the moſt beautiful of all the monkeys.
The muſtache has cheek-pouches and calloſities on the thighs. Its tail is much longer than the body and head, being nineteen or twenty inches in length. Its face is of a blueiſh black colour, with a large white mark which extends over the whole upper lip, which is naked, except a border of black hairs that ſurrounds the margins of both lips. Its body is ſhort and ſquat. It has two tufts of bright yellow hair under the ears, and likewiſe a tuft of curled hair on the top of the head. The hair on the body is of a greeniſh aſh-colour, and that on the breaſt and belly is of a whitiſh aſh-colour. It walks on four feet; and, from noſe to tail, exceeds not eighteen inches in length. The female is ſubject to the menſtrual flux.
1.18. THE TALAPOIN*.[Page]
THOUGH the ſize of this monkey be ſmall, its figure is beautiful. Its name ſeems to indicate that it comes from Siam, and the other eaſtern provinces of Aſia. It is certain, however, that it is a native of the Old Continent, and exiſts not in the New; becauſe it has cheek-pouches and calloſities on the buttocks, neither of which characters belong to the ſagoins or ſapajous, the only American animals who can be compared to the monkeys. But, independent of the name, I am inclined to think that this monkey is more common in the Eaſt Indies than in Africa; becauſe it is affirmed by voyagers, that moſt of the apes in this part of Aſia are of a browniſh green colour. ‘'The apes of Guzarat are of a browniſh green colour, and have long white beards and eye-brows. Theſe animals, which the Banians, [Page 166] from a religious principle, allow to multiply without end, are ſo familiar, that numbers of them perpetually enter the houſes; and the ſellers of fruits and confections have much difficulty in preſerving their wares*.'’
1.19. The DOUC*, or Cochin-China Monkey.[Page]
THE Douc is the laſt of that claſs of animals which we have called apes, baboons, and monkeys. Without being preciſely any of theſe three kinds, he participates of each. He is allied to the monkeys by the length of his tail, to the baboons by his ſize, and to the apes by his flat face. He ſeems, by a particular character, to form the ſhade between the monkey's and ſapajous: In theſe two tribes of animals, the monkeys are diſtinguiſhed by naked buttocks, and all the ſapajous have theſe parts covered with hair: Of all the monkeys the douc has hair on the buttocks, like the ſapajous. He reſembles them alſo in the flatneſs of the muzzle. But, upon the whole, he has much more affinity to [Page 169] the monkeys than to the ſapajous, from which he differs by his tail not being prehenſile, and by other eſſential characters. Beſides, the interval which ſeparates the two tribes is immenſe; for the douc and all the monkeys belong to the Old Continent, and all the ſapajous are natives of the New World. It may likewiſe be remarked, that, as the douc, like the monkeys, has a long tail, but has no calloſities on the buttocks, he forms the ſhade between the orang-outangs and monkeys; as the gibbon does on another account, having no tail, like the orang-outangs, but, like the monkeys, having calloſities on the buttocks. Independent of theſe general relations, the douc has peculiar characters which render him diſtinguiſhable, at firſt ſight, from the apes, baboons, monkeys, and ſapajous. His robe, which is variegated with many colours, ſeems to indicate the ambiguity of his nature, and diſtinguiſhes his ſpecies in a conſpicuous manner. Round his neck there is a collar of a purpliſh blue colour. A white beard ſurrounds his cheeks. His lips are black, and he has a black ring round his eyes. His face and ears are red, the top of his head and body gray, the breaſt and belly yellow. His legs are white below and black above. His tail is white, with a large ſpot of the ſame colour on the loins. The feet are black, with ſeveral ſhades of different colours.
[Page 170] This animal, which I was aſſured came from Cochin-China, is likewiſe found in Madagaſcar; and it is the ſame with what Flacourt mentions, under the name of Sifac, in the following terms: 'In Madagaſcar, there is another ſpecies of white monkey, with a tawny collar, which frequently walks on the two hind legs. It has a white tail, and two tawny ſpots on the flanks. It is larger than the vari (maucauco), and ſmaller than the varicoſſi (vari). This ſpecies is called Sifac, and feeds upon beans. It is very frequent about Andrivoura, Dambourlomb, and Ranafoulchy*.' The tawny collar, the white tail, and the ſpots on the flanks, indicate, in the cleareſt manner, that the Sifac of Madagaſcar is the ſame ſpecies with the douc of Cochin-China.
Travellers aſſure us, that, in the ſtomachs of the large apes in the ſouthern provinces of Aſia, bezoars are found of a ſuperior quality to thoſe of the goats and gazelles. Theſe large apes are the ouanderou and the douc; and, of courſe, to them the production of the bezoars muſt be referred. It is alledged, that the bezoars of the ape are always round, while the other kinds are of different figures†.
The douc has no calloſities on the buttocks, but is every where covered with hair. His tail is not ſo long as his body and head. His face is covered with a reddiſh down. The ears are naked, and of the ſame colour with the face. The lips, as well as the orbits of the eyes, are brown. The colours of the hair are vivid and various. He has a purpliſh brown collar round his neck. He has white on his front, head, body, arms, legs, &c. and a kind of yellowiſh white beard. The top of the front and the upper part of the arms, are black. The under parts of the body are of a cinereous gray and a whitiſh yellow colour. The tail and under part of the loins are white. He walks as often on two as on four feet. When erect, he is three and a half or four feet high. It is uncertain whether the females of this ſpecies be ſubject to the menſtrual diſcharge.
WE now paſs from the Old Continent to the New. All the four-handed animals formerly deſcribed, and which were comprehended under the generic names of apes, baboons, and monkeys, belong excluſively to the Old Continent; and all the reſt, whoſe hiſtory we are about to relate, are found only in the New World. We firſt diſtinguiſh them by the two generic names ſapajous and ſagoins. The feet of both are conſtructed nearly in the ſame manner with thoſe of the apes, baboon, and monkeys. But they differ from the apes by having tails. They differ from the baboons by the want of cheek-pouches and calloſities on their buttocks. In fine, they differ from the apes, baboons, and monkeys, by having the portion between their noſtrils very broad and thick, and the apertures placed to a ſide and not under the noſe. Hence the ſapajous and ſagoins differ not only ſpecifically, but generically from the apes, [Page 173] baboons, and monkeys. When compared with each other, we likewiſe find that they differ in generic characters; for all the ſapajous have prehenſile tails, which are ſo conſtructed that the animals can uſe them as fingers to lay hold of any thing. This under part of the tail, which they fold, extend, curl up, or unfold at pleaſure, and by the extremity of which they ſuſpend themſelves on the branches of trees, is generally deprived of hair, and covered with a ſmooth ſkin. The tails of all the ſagoins, on the contrary, are proportionally longer than thoſe of the ſapajous, and are ſtraight, flaccid, and entirely covered with hair; ſo that they can neither uſe the tail in laying hold of any thing, nor in ſuſpending themſelves. This differnce alone is ſufficient to diſtinguiſh a ſapajou from a ſagoin.
We know eight ſapajous, which may be reduced to five ſpecies: 1. The ouarine or gouariba of Braſil. This ſapajou is as large as a fox, and differs from the alouate of Cayenne in colour only. The hair of the ouarine is black, and that of the alouate is reddiſh; and, as they reſemble each other in every other reſpect, I conſider them as belonging to the ſame ſpecies. 2. The coaita, which is black like the ouarine, but not ſo large. The exquima ſeems to be a variety of this ſpecies. 3. The ſajou, or ſapajou properly ſo called, is ſmall, of a brown colour, [Page 174] and commonly known by the name of the capuchin monkey. Of this ſpecies there is a variety, which we ſhall call the gray ſajou, to diſtinguiſh it from the brown ſajou. 4. The ſai, which ſome travellers have called the weeper, is ſomewhat larger than the ſajou, and has a broader muzzle. There are two kinds, which differ only in colour, the one being reddiſh brown, and the other whitiſh red. 5. The ſaimiri, which is commonly called the orange monkey. It is the ſmalleſt and moſt beautiful of the ſapajous.
We are acquainted with ſix ſpecies of ſagoins: 1. The ſaki, which is the largeſt, and whoſe tail is covered with hair ſo long and buſhy, that it has been called the fox-tailed monkey. There ſeems to be a variety in this ſpecies. I have ſeen two, both of which appeared to be adults; but the one was almoſt twice as large as the other. 2. The tamarin is generally black, with the four feet yellow. But they vary in colour; for I have ſeen ſome of them brown, and ſpotted with yellow. 3. The ouiſtiti, which is remarkable for large tufts of hair round its face, and an annulated tail. 4. The marikina, which has a mane round the neck, and buſhy hair, like the lion, at the end of the tail. From this circumſtance it has received the appellation of the lionmonkey. 5. The pinche, whoſe face is of a beautiful black colour, with hair which deſcends [Page 175] from the top and each ſide of the head, in the form of long ſmooth treſſes. 6. The mico is the moſt beautiful of the ſagoins. Its hair is of a ſilver white colour, and its face is as red as vermilion.
THE Ouarine and Alouate are the largeſt four-handed animals in the New Continent. In ſize they much exceed the largeſt monkeys, and approach to the magnitude of [Page 177] baboons. They have prehenſile tails, and conſequently belong to the family of ſapajous, in which they hold a diſtinguiſhed rank, not only by their ſtature, but alſo by their voice, which reſounds like a drum, and is heard at a great diſtance. Maregrave relates*, 'That, every morning and evening, the ouarines aſſemble in the woods; that one of them takes a more elevated ſtation, and gives a ſignal with his hand for the others to ſit around and liſten to him; that, when he peceives them to be all ſeated, he begins a diſcourſe, in a tone ſo loud and rapid as to be heard at a great diſtance; and a perſon would be led to think that the whole were crying together; that all the reſt, however, keep the moſt profound ſilence; that, when he ſtops, he gives a ſignal with his hand for the others to reply; that, in an inſtant, the whole cry together, till he commands ſilence by another ſignal, which they obey in a moment; that the firſt reſumes his diſcourſe or ſong; and that, after hearing him attentively for a conſiderable time, the aſſembly breaks up.' Theſe facts, which Marcgrave ſays he has often witneſſed, may perhaps be exaggerated, and ſeaſoned a little with the marvellous: The whole may be founded on the terrible noiſe made by theſe animals. They have a kind of oſſeous drum in their throat, in the concavity of which the ſound is augmented, multiplied, and [Page 178] makes a howling noiſe. Hence theſe ſapajous have been diſtinguiſhed from all others by the name of howlers. We have never ſeen the ouarine, but have the ſkin of an alouate, and likewiſe a dried foetus of the ſame ſpecies, in which the bone of the throat, the inſtrument of the great noiſe he makes, is already perceptible*. According to Marcgrave, the ouarine has a large ſquare face, black and brilliant eyes, ſhort, roundiſh ears, and a tail naked at the extremity, which adheres firmly to every thing it can embrace. The hair on the whole body is black, long, ſmooth, and luſtrous; that on the chin and throat is longer, and forms a kind of round beard; and that on the hands, feet, and part of the tail, is brown. The female is of the ſame colour with the male, and differs from him only in being ſmaller. The females carry their young on their back, and leap with them from branch to branch, and from tree to tree. The young embrace with their arms and hands the narroweſt part of the mother's body, and remain firmly fixed as long as ſhe is in motion. Beſides, [Page 179] theſe animals are ſo wild and miſchievous, that they can neither be conquered nor tamed. They bite cruelly; and, though not carnivorous, they fail not to excite terror by their frightful voice, and their ferocious aſpect. As they feed only upon fruits, pot-herbs, grain, and ſome inſects, their fleſh is not bad eating*. ‘'The hunters,' Oexmelin remarks, 'bring home in the evening the monkeys they kill in the country of Cape Gracias-a-Dio. They roaſt one part of theſe monkeys, and boil the other: The fleſh is good, and reſembles that of the hare; [Page 180] but it is ſweetiſh, and requires a great deal of ſalt in dreſſing. The fat is very good, and as yellow as that of a capon. We lived upon theſe animals during all the time we remained there, becauſe we could procure no other food, and the hunters ſupplied us daily with as many as we could eat. I went to ſee this ſpecies of hunting, and was ſurpriſed at the ſagacity of theſe animals, not only in diſtinguiſhing particularly thoſe who make war againſt them, but, when attacked, in defending themſelves and providing for their own ſafety. When we approached, they all aſſembled together, uttered loud and frightful cries, and threw at us dried branches which they broke off from the trees. Some of them voided their excrements in their hands, and threw them at our heads. I likewiſe remarked, that they never abandoned one another; that they leapt from tree to tree with incredible agility; and that they flung themſelves headlong from branch to branch, without ever falling to the ground; becauſe, before reaching the earth, they always caught hold of a branch either with their hands or tail; ſo that, if not ſhot dead at once, they could not be laid hold of; for, even when mortally wounded, they remain fixed to the trees, where they often die, and fall not till they are corrupted. More than four days after death, I have ſeen them firmly fixed to the trees; and fifteen or ſixteen of them are frequently [Page 181] ſhot before three or four of them can be obtained. What is ſingular, as ſoon as one is wounded, the reſt collect about him, and put their fingers into the wound, as if they meant to ſound it; and, when much blood is diſcharged, ſome of them keep the wound ſhut, while others make a maſh of leaves, and dexterouſly ſtop up the aperture. This operation I have often obſerved with much admiration. The females bring forth but one young, which they carry in the ſame manner as the Negreſſes do their children. The young monkey embraces its mother's neck with the two fore-feet, and with the two hind it lays hold of the middle of her back. When ſhe wants to give it ſuck, ſhe takes it in her paws, and preſents the breaſt to it, like a woman. . . . There is no other method of obtaining the young but by killing the mother; for ſhe never abandons it. When ſhe is killed, it falls from her, and may then be ſeized. When theſe animals are embarraſſed, they aſſiſt each other in paſſing a brook, or from one tree to another. . . . Their cries are heard at the diſtance of more than a league*.'’
Moſt of theſe facts are confirmed by Dampier [Page 182] †: He aſſures us, however, that the females generally produce two young, one of which the [Page 183] mother carries between her arms, and the other on her back. In general, the ſapajous, even of the ſmalleſt ſpecies, are not very prolific; and it is probable that the largeſt produce not above one or two at a time.
The ouarine has the apertures of the noſtrils placed at a ſide, and not under the noſe; the partition of the noſtrils is very thick. He has neither cheek-pouches, nor calloſities on the buttocks, which are covered with hair, like the reſt of the body. He has a long, prehenſile tail, black, long hair, and a large concave bone in his throat. He is of the ſize of a greyhound; and the long hair under his neck forms a kind of round beard. He generally walks on four feet.
The alouate has the ſame characters with the ouarine, and only differs from him by having a larger beard, and the hair of a reddiſh brown colour. I know not whether the females of theſe ſpecies be ſubject to the menſes: From analogy, I ſhould preſume that they are not, having generally found, that the apes, baboons, and monkeys with naked buttocks, are alone ſubject to this evacuation.
NEXT to the ouarine and alouate, the coaita is the largeſt of the ſapajous. I ſaw one of them at the palace of the Duke of Bouillon, [Page 185] where, by its familiarity, and even its careſſes, it procured the affection of thoſe who had the charge of it. But, notwithſtanding all the care and attention it received, it was unable to reſiſt the cold of the winter 1764. It died, to the regret of its maſter, who was ſo obliging as to ſend it to me, to be placed in the Royal Cabinet. I ſaw another in the houſe of the Marquis de Montmirail. This was a male, and the former a female. Both were equally tractable and well tamed. Hence this ſapajou, by its mild and docile diſpoſition, differs much from the ouarine and alouate, who are ſo wild that no art can tame them. Neither has it, like them, an oſſeous pouch in the throat. Like the ouarine, its hair is black, but rough. The coaita likewiſe differs from all the other ſapajous, by having only four fingers on his hands. By this character and his prehenſile tail, he is eaſily diſtinguiſhed from the monkeys, who have all five fingers, and a flaccid tail.
The animal called exquima by Marcgrave, is a ſpecies very nearly allied to the coaita, and is perhaps only a variety of it. This author ſeems to have been deceived when he tells us, that the exquima is a native of Guiney and Congo. The figure he has given of it was alone ſufficient to have convinced him of his error; for it repreſents this animal with a tail rolled up at the point, a character which belongs excluſively to the ſapajous. Of courſe, Marcgrave's exquima is not [Page 186] a monkey of Guiney, but a ſapajou with a prehenſile tail, which had been tranſported thither from Braſil. The name exquima, or quima, by abſtracting the article ex, and which ought to be pronounced quoima, is not very different from quoaita, the manner in which ſeveral authors ſpell the name coaita, Hence every circumſtance concurs in eſtabliſhing Marcgrave's exquima, which he calls a Guiney monkey, to be a Braſilian ſapajou, and a variety only of the coaita, which it reſembles in diſpoſitions, ſize, colour, and the prehenſile tail. The moſt remarkable difference is, that the exquima has whitiſh hair on the belly, and a white beard, two inches long, under the chin*. Our coaitas have neither a beard nor white hair on the belly. But theſe differences ſeem not ſufficient to conſtitute two diſtinct ſpecies; for we learn from the evidence of travellers, that ſome coaitas are black and others white, and ſome have beards and others no beards: 'There are,' ſays Dampier, 'great droves of monkeys, ſome of them white, but moſt of them black; ſome have beards, others [Page 187] are beardleſs. They are of a middle ſize, yet extraordinary fat at the dry ſeaſon, when the fruits are ripe; and they are very good meat, for we ate of them very plentifully. The Indians were ſhy of eating them for a while; but they ſoon were perſuaded to it, by ſeeing us feed on them ſo heartily. In the rainy ſeaſon they have worms in their bowels. I have taken a handful of them out of one monkey we cut open; and ſome of them ſeven or eight feet long. They are a very waggiſh kind of monkey, and played a thouſand antick tricks as we marched at any time through the woods, ſkipping from bough to bough, with the young ones hanging at the old ones backs, making faces at us, chattering, and, if they had opportunity, piſſing down purpoſely on our heads. To paſs from top to top of high trees, whoſe branches are a little too far aſunder for their leaping, they will ſometimes hang down by one another's tails in a chain; and ſwinging in that manner, the lowermoſt catches hold of a bough of the other tree, and draws up the reſt of them*.' All theſe facts, even the worms in the inteſtines, correſpond with our coaitas. M. Daubenton, in diſſecting theſe animals, found a great number of worms, ſome of which were from twelve to thirteen inches long. It is obvious, therefore, that the exquima of Marcgrave is [Page 188] a ſapajou of the ſame ſpecies, or, at leaſt, of a ſpecies very nearly allied to that of the coaita.
We muſt likewiſe remark, that, if the animal mentioned by Linnaeus, under the name of Diana *, is really, as he ſays, the exquima of Marcgrave, he has omitted the prehenſile tail, which is the moſt eſſential character, and ought alone to determine whether this diana belongs to the genus of ſapajous, or to that of the monkeys, and, of courſe, whether it is found in the Old or the New Continent.
Independent of this variety, the characters of which are conſpicuous, there are other varieties, though leſs remarkable, in the ſpecies of the coaita. That deſcribed by M. Briſſon had whitiſh hair on all the under parts of the body. But thoſe I have ſeen were entirely black, and had very few hairs on the inferior parts of the body, where the ſkin appeared, and was equally black with the hair. Of the two coaitas mentioned by Mr Edwards†, the one was black and [Page 189] the other brown. On account of the length and ſlenderneſs of their legs and tail, they were called ſpider monkeys.
Some years ago, a coaita was ſent me, under the denomination of chamek, which, I was told, came from the coaſt of Peru. I ſhall give a deſcription of it in the margin*, from which it will appear that this chamek of Peru, with the exception of a few varieties, is the ſame animal with the coaita of Guiana.
Theſe ſapajous are very dexterous and intelligent. They go in companies, and mutually warn and aſſiſt each other. It uſes its tail as a fifth hand, and ſeems to employ this inſtrument more than either its hands or feet†. To balance [Page 190] this advantage, Nature has deprived this animal of a thumb. We are aſſured that it ſeizes fiſhes with its tail; which is by no means incredible; for we have ſeen one of our coaitas lay hold in this manner of a ſquirrel, which had been put into its chamber as a companion. They have the addreſs to break the ſhells of oyſters, in order to eat them*. It is certain, that, in order to paſs from one tree to another, whoſe branches are too diſtant for a leap, they form a chain, by hanging down†, linked to each other by their tails, and ſwinging in that manner till the loweſt catches hold of a branch, and draws up the reſt. They ſometimes paſs rivers by the ſame expedient. [Page 191] The females bring forth but one or two young, which they always carry on their back. They eat fiſh, worms, and inſects; but fruits are their common food. When the fruits are ripe, they become very fat, and their fleſh is then ſaid to be excellent*.
The coaita has neither cheek-pouches nor calloſities on the buttocks. He has a very long, prehenſile tail. The partition of the noſtrils is very thick, and their apertures are placed at a ſide, and not under the noſe. He has only four fingers on his hands or fore feet. Both his hair and ſkin are black. His face is naked and tawny. His ears are alſo naked, and reſemble thoſe of man. He is about a foot and a half in length; and his tail is longer than the body and head together. He walks on four feet.
The exquima is nearly of the ſame ſize with the coaita, and has likewiſe a prehenſile tail. But his colour, inſtead of being black, is variegated. The hairs on his back are black and yellow, and white on the throat and belly. He has, beſides, a remarkable beard. Theſe differences, [Page 192] however, are not ſufficient to conſtitute two diſtinct ſpecies; eſpecially as ſome coaitas are not entirely black, but are whitiſh on the throat and belly. The females of theſe two ſpecies are not ſubject to the periodical evacuation.
1.23. The SAJOU*, or Capuchin Monkey.[Page]
WE are acquainted with two varieties of this ſpecies, the brown ſajou, or capuchin monkey; and the gray ſajou, which differs from the brown in colour only. They are [Page 194] both of the ſame ſize, and have the ſame figure and diſpoſitions. They are both very agile, and their nimbleneſs and dexterity are extremely amuſing. We have had them alive; and, of all the ſapajous, their conſtitution ſeems to be beſt adapted to our climate. If kept in a chamber during the winter, they live comfortably for ſeveral years. We can even give ſeveral examples of their producing in this country. Two young ones were brought forth in the M. de Pompadour's lodging at Verſailles; one in the houſe of M. de Reaumur at Paris, and another in Mad. de Pourſel's in Gatinois*. But, in this country, they never produced above one at a time, while, in their native climate, they often produce two. Beſides, theſe ſajous are very whimſical in their taſte and affections. They are fond of particular perſons, and diſcover the greateſt averſion to others.
The ſajous have neither cheek-pouches, nor calloſities on their buttocks. Their face and ears are fleſh-coloured, with a little down above. The partition of the noſtrils is thick, and their apertures are placed at a ſide, and not under the noſe. The eyes are cheſnut-coloured, and ſituated near each other. The tail is prehenſile, naked below at the point, and very buſhy every where elſe. In ſome, the hair is black and brown, both round the face, and upon all the upper parts of the body. In others, the hair round the face is gray, and of a browniſh yellow on the body. The hands are always black and naked. From the point of the muzzle to the origin of the tail, they exceed not a foot in length. They walk on four feet. The females are not ſubject to the menſes.
1.24. The SAI*, or WEEPER.[Page]
WE have ſeen two varieties of this ſpecies; the firſt was of a blackiſh brown colour; and the ſecond, which I have called Sai with a white throat, has white hair on the breaſt, throat, and round the ears and cheeks. It differs from the firſt by having leſs hair on the face. But, in every other article, they perfectly reſemble each other. Their diſpoſitions, ſize, and figure, are the ſame. Travellers have mentioned theſe animals under the name of weepers †; becauſe they make a plaintive noiſe, and, when irritated, have the appearance of crying. Others have called them muſk monkeys, [Page 197] becauſe, like the maucauco, they have a muſky odour*. Others have given them the name of macaque †, which they borrowed from the macaque of Guiney. But the macaques are monkeys with flaccid tails; while the former belong to the ſapajous, becauſe their tails are prehenſile. The females have only two paps, and produce two young at a time. They are mild, docile, and ſo timid, that their common cry, which reſembles that of a rat, becomes a kind of groaning when they are threatened with danger. In this country, they eat May-bugs and ſnails‡ in preference to all other food. But, in Braſil, their native climate, they live chiefly on grains and wild fruits‖, which they gather from the trees, and rarely deſcend upon the earth.
The ſais have neither cheek-pouches nor calloſities on their buttocks. The partition of their noſtrils is very thick, and the apertures are placed at a ſide, and not under the noſe. The face is round and flat, and the ears are almoſt naked. The tail is prehenſile, and naked below toward its extremity. Upon the upper parts of the body, the hair is of a blackiſh brown colour, and, on the inferior parts, of a pale yellow or dirty white. Theſe animals exceed not fourteen inches in length; and their tail is longer than both body and head. They walk on four feet. The females are not ſubjected to the menſes.
1.25. The SAIMIRI*, or Orange Monkey.[Page]
THE Saïmiri is commonly known by the name of the golden, orange, or yellow ſapajou. It is common in Guiana; and therefore has received from ſome voyagers the appellation of the Cayenne Sapajou. From the gracefulneſs of its movements, the ſmallneſs of its ſize, the brilliant colour of its hair, the largeneſs and vivacity of its eyes, and its round viſage, the ſaïmiri has uniformly been preferred to all the other ſapajous: It is indeed the moſt beautiful of this tribe. But it is likewiſe the [Page 200] moſt delicate*, and the moſt difficult to tranſport and preſerve. From theſe characters, and particularly from that of the tail, which is only half-prehenſile, and, though not ſo muſcular as that of the ſapajous, is not abſolutely uſeleſs and flaccid, the ſaïmiri ſeems to form the ſhade between the ſapajous and the ſagoins.
The ſaïmiri has neither cheek-pouches nor calloſities on the buttocks. The partition of his noſtrils is thick, and their apertures are placed at a ſide, and not under the noſe. He may be ſaid to have no fore head. His hair is of a brilliant yellow colour; and he has two fleſhcoloured rings round his eyes. His noſe is elevated at the baſe, and flattened at the point. The mouth is ſmall, the face flat and naked; and the ears are garniſhed with hair, and a little pointed. The tail is half-prehenſile, and longer than the body. From the point of the muzzle to the origin of the tail, he exceeds not ten or eleven inches in length. He ſtands with eaſe on his two hind legs; but he commonly walks on four. The female is not ſubject to the menſes.
1.26. The SAKI*, or Fox-tailed Monkey.[Page]
THE Saki, which is commonly called the fox-tailed monkey, becauſe its tail is garniſhed with very long hair, is the largeſt of the ſagoins. When full grown, it is about ſeventeen inches long, while the largeſt of the other five ſpecies exceeds not nine or ten. The hair on the body of the ſaki is very long, and that on the tail is ſtill longer. His face is reddiſh, and covered with a whitiſh down. He is eaſily diſtinguiſhed from all the other ſagoins, ſapajous, and monkeys, by the following characters.
The ſaki has neither cheek-pouches nor calloſities on his buttocks. His tail is flaccid, not prehenſile, and one half longer than both head and body. The partition of the noſtrils is very thick, and the apertures placed at a ſide. The face is tawny, and covered with a fine, ſhort, whitiſh down. The hair on the upper parts of the body is blackiſh brown, and that on the belly and other inferior parts is reddiſh white. The hair on the body is ſtill longer than that on the tail, beyond the point of which it hangs near two inches. The hair on the tail is generally blackiſh brown, like that on the body. This ſpecies ſeems to vary in colour. Some ſakis have the hair both on the body and tail of a reddiſh yellow colour. This animal walks on four feet, and is near a foot and a half in length. The females are not ſubjected to the periodical evacuation.
1.27. The TAMARIN*, or Great-eared Monkey.[Page]
THIS ſpecies is much ſmaller than the preceding, and differs from it in ſeveral characters. The tail of the tamarin is covered with ſhort hair, while that of the ſaki is garniſhed with hair remarkably long. The tamarin has alſo large ears, and yellow feet. It is a beautiful animal†, very lively, and eaſily tamed, but [Page 204] ſo delicate that it cannot long reſiſt the inclemency of our climate.
The tamarin has neither cheek-pouches nor calloſities on the buttocks. The tail is flaccid, and twice the length of the body and head. The partition between the noſtrils is very thick, and the apertures are placed at a ſide. The face is of a duſky fleſh-colour. The ears are ſquare, large, naked, and of the ſame colour; and the eyes are cheſnut. The upper lip is divided nearly like that of the hare. The head, body, and tail, are covered with ſoft, blackiſh brown hair, and the hands and feet with ſhort orange coloured hair. The body and limbs are finely proportioned. This animal walks on four feet; and the head and body together exceed not ſeven or eight inches in length. The females are not ſubject to the menſes.
1.28. The OUISTITI*, or Striated Monkey.[Page]
THE Ouiſtiti is ſtill ſmaller than the tamarin, both the head and body not exceeding half a foot in length. His tail is more than a foot long, and, like that of the maucauco, marked with alternate rings of black and white; the hair on the tail is ſtill longer, and more buſhy than that of the maucauco. The face of the ouiſtiti is naked, and of a dark fleſh-colour. [Page 206] He has two tufts of long white hair before his ears, which conceal them when we look the animal in the face. Mr Parſons has given a good deſcription of this animal in the Philoſophical Tranſactions*; and Mr Edwards, in his Gleanings, has given an excellent figure of it. He remarks, that, of ſeveral he ſaw, the largeſt weighed not above ſix ounces, and the ſmalleſt only four and a half; and judiciouſly adds, That the ſuppoſition that the ſmall AEthiopian monkey mentioned by Ludolph, under the denomination of fonkes, or guereza, was the ſame animal with the ouiſtiti, is without any foundation†. It is certain, that neither the ouiſtiti, nor any other ſagoin, exiſts in AEthiopia; and the fonkes or guereza of Ludolph is probably the maucauco or loris, which are common in the ſouthern regions of the Old Continent. Mr Edwards farther remarks, that, when the ouiſtiti is in good health, its hair is very buſhy; that one of thoſe he ſaw, [Page 207] which was very vigorous, fed upon ſeveral things, as biſkets, fruits, pot-herbs, inſects, and ſnails; that, one day, being unchained, it darted upon a ſmall china golden fiſh that was in a baſin, which it killed and devoured with avidity; and that, afterward, ſmall eels were preſented to it, which, at firſt, frighted it, by twiſting round its neck; but that it ſoon overcame and ate them. Mr Edwards ſubjoins a fact, which proves that theſe ſmall animals might be multiplied in the ſouthern parts of Europe: He tells us that they produced young in Portugal, where the climate is favourable to them. They are at firſt very ugly, having hardly any hair on their bodies; and they adhere firmly to the teats of the mother. When they have become a little larger, they fix themſelves upon her back or ſhoulders; and, when ſhe is fatigued by carrying them, ſhe rubs them off againſt a wall, and the father inſtantly allows them to mount upon his back, in order to aſſiſt the mother*.
The ouiſtiti has neither cheek-pouches nor calloſities on the buttocks. His tail is flaccid, very buſhy, annulated with alternate bars of black and white, or rather of brown and gray, and twice as long as the head and body. The [Page 208] partition of the noſtrils is very thick, and the apertures are placed at a ſide. The head is round. The top of the front is covered with black hair; and above the noſe there is a white ſpot without hair. The face is likewiſe almoſt naked, and of a deep fleſh-colour. On each ſide of the head, before the ears, is a tuft of long white hairs. The ears are roundiſh, flat, thin, and naked. The eyes are of a reddiſh cheſnut colour. The body is covered with gray aſhcoloured hair, interſperſed with a little yellow on the throat, breaſt, and belly. He walks on four feet; and often exceeds not half a foot in length. The females do not menſtruate.
1.29. The MARIKINA*, or Silky Monkey.[Page]
THE Marikina is commonly diſtinguiſhed by the name of the ſmall lion-ape. We reject this compound denomination, becauſe the markina is not an ape, but a ſagoin. Beſides, he has no more reſemblance to a lion than a lark has to an oſtrich, there being no other relation between them but a kind of mane round the face of the marikina, and a tuft of hair at the end of his tail. His hair is long, ſilky, and vivid. He has a round head, a brown face, red eyes, and round naked ears, concealed under the long hair which ſurround his facé: Theſe hairs are [Page] [...] [Page] [...] [Page] [...] [Page 210] of a bright red colour, and thoſe on the body and tail are pale yellow, almoſt white. This animal has the ſame manners, the ſame vivacity, and the ſame inclinations with the other ſagoins. Its conſtitution ſeems to be more robuſt; for we have ſeen one that lived five or ſix years in Paris, without anyother precaution than keeping in during the winter in a warm room.
The marikina has neither cheek-pouches nor calloſities on the buttocks. His tail is flaccid, or not prehenſile, and almoſt twice as long as both the head and body. He has round naked ears, long reddiſh hairs around the face, and bright yellowiſh white hairs, nearly of an equal length, on the reſt of the body, with a conſiderable tuft at the extremity of the tail. He walks upon four feet; and exceeds not eight or nine inches in length. The female is not ſubject to the menſes.
1.30. The PINCHE*, or Red-tailed Monkey.[Page]
THE Pinche, though very ſmall, is larger than either the ouiſtiti or the tamarin. Including head and body, it is about nine inches long, and the length of the tail is, at leaſt, eighteen inches. It is rendered remarkable by a kind of ſmooth white hair upon the top and ſides of the head, eſpecially as this colour is wonderfully contraſted by that of the face, which is black, and interſperſed with a gray down. The eyes are black, and the tail, from its origin to near the middle, is of a lively red, where it changes to a browniſh black, which continues [Page 212] to the point. The hair on the ſuperior parts of the body is of a yellowiſh brown colour; that on the breaſt, belly, hands, and feet, is white. The whole ſkin is black. The throat is naked and black, like the face. Though its figure be ſingular, it is a beautiful animal. Its voice is ſoft, and rather reſembles the chanting of a ſmall bird than the cry of a quadruped. It is extremely delicate, and requires great precautions to be tranſported from America to Europe*.
1.31. The MICO*, or fair MONKEY.[Page]
WE owe our knowledge of this animal to M. de la Condamine; and, therefore, we ſhall tranſcribe the account he has given of it: 'The monkey, of which the Governour of Para made me a preſent, is the only one of the kind that had been ſeen in this country. The hair on its body was of a beautiful ſilvery white colour; and that on its tail was a ſhining cheſnut approaching to black. Its ears, cheeks, and muzzle, were of ſo lively a vermilion colour, that it had the appearance of being the work of art. I kept it for twelve months; and, now that I am in ſight of the French coaſt, it is ſtill alive. But, notwithſtanding all my precautions to defend it againſt the cold, it fell a victim to the rigour of the ſeaſon before my arrival. . . . I have preſerved it in aquavitae, which will be ſufficient to ſhow that [Page 215] my deſcription is not exaggerated*.' From this narration it is obvious, that M. de la Condamine's deſcription will apply to no other animal than the Mico; and that it is a diſtinct, and probably a very rare ſpecies. Though remarkable for the beauty of its hair, and the lively red which adorns its face, it was never mentioned by any former author or traveller.
The mico has neither cheek-pouches nor calloſities on-the buttocks. The tail is about one half longer than the head and body, and is not prehenſile. The partition of the noſtrils is thinner than that of the other ſagoins; but their apertures are placed at a ſide. Its face and ears are naked, and of a vermilion colour. The muzzle is ſhort; the eyes are diſtant from each other; the ears are large; the hair is of a beautiful ſilvery white colour, and that of the tail of a gloſſy brown, approaching to black. It walks on four feet, and exceeds not ſeven or eight inches in length. The females are not ſubject to the menſes.
WE have now finiſhed, according to the extent of our ability, the hiſtory of quadrupeds. But, to render it ſtill more complete, thoſe of which we could not procure an exact knowledge muſt not be paſſed over in ſilence. Their number is ſmall; and, even of this ſmall number, ſeveral of them are only varieties of the ſpecies already deſcribed.
1.32.1. NOTICE I.
The White, or POLAR BEAR*.
Colour, ſize, and mode of living, being inſufficient, no other eſſential characters remain but thoſe which may be derived from figure. Now [Page 219] all that voyagers have ſaid of the ſea-bear, amounts only to this, that his head, body, and hair are longer than thoſe of our bear, and that his ſkull is much harder. If theſe differences were real and conſiderable, they would be ſufficient to conſtitute another ſpecies. But I am not certain that Marten has examined with accuracy, and that the other writers who copied him, have not exaggerated*. 'Theſe white bears,' he remarks, 'are quite otherwiſe ſhaped than thoſe that are ſeen in our country; they have a long head like unto a dog, and a long neck, and they bark like dogs that are hoarſe, and all their whole body is much otherwiſe ſhaped than ours. They are ſlenderer in the body, and a great deal ſwifter;' Marten's voyage to Spitzbergen, p. 100. This deſcription furniſhes the following remarks: 1. That the author does not make theſe bears larger than ours; and, conſequently, that we ought to ſuſpect the evidence of thoſe who tell us that the ſea-bear is ſometimes thirteen feet in length†. 2. That hair as ſoft as wool is not a ſpecific character; for, to render hair ſoft, and even more buſhy, it is only neceſſary that an animal be frequently in the water, as appears from the land [Page 220] and water beavers. The latter, who dwelt oftener in the water than on land, have coarſer and leſs buſhy hair: And, I am inclined to think, that the other differences are neither real nor ſo conſpicuous as Marten would have us to believe; for Dithmar Blefken, in his deſcription of Iceland, mentions theſe bears, and aſſures us that he ſaw one killed in Greenland, which raiſed itſelf on the two hind feet, like our bears; but he ſays not one word which indicates that the white bear of Greenland is not entirely ſimilar to ours*. Beſides, when theſe animals find prey on land, they never go to ſea in queſt of food. They devour rain-deer, and ſuch other animals as they can ſeize. They even attack men, and never fail to dig up dead bodies†. But hunger, which they often feel in theſe deſert and barren lands, obliges them to frequent the water, in queſt of ſeals, young walruſes, and [Page 221] whales. They take up their reſidence on iſlands of ice, on which they are often ſeen floating at a diſtance, and never abandon their ſtation as long as they can find abundance of food. When theſe boards of ice are detached in the ſpring, the bears allow themſelves to be carried along; and, as they cannot regain the land, or abandon the ice on which they are embarked, they often periſh in the open ſea. Thoſe who arrive with the ice on the coaſts of Iceland or Norway*, are ſtarved to ſuch a degree, that they devour every thing they meet, which may have given riſe to the prejudice, that theſe ſea-bears are more fierce and voracious than the common kind. Some authors tell us, that the ſea-bears are amphibious like the ſeals, and that they can live as long as they pleaſe under water. But the contrary is evident from the manner of hunting them: They are incapable of ſwimming long, and never accompliſh above a league at a time. They are followed by a ſmall boat, and are ſoon worn out with fatigue. If they could diſpenſe with reſpiration, they would dive to the bottom, in order to reſt themſelves. But, when they dive, it is only for a few ſeconds; and, for [Page 222] fear of drowning, they allow themſelves to be killed on the ſurface of the water*.
Seals are the common prey of the white bears†. But the walrus, from whom they ſometimes carry off the young, pierces them with its tuſks, and puts them to flight. The whale likewiſe overwhelms them by its weight, and baniſhes them from the places they frequent. They ſometimes, however, devour the young whales. All bears are naturally very fat; and the whitebears, who live upon animals loaded with greaſe, are fatter than the common kind. Their fat is very like that of the whale. The fleſh of theſe bears is not bad, and their ſkin makes a very warm and durable fur‡.
I here give a figure of the white ſea bear, from a drawing ſent me by the late Mr Colinſon. If this drawing be exact, it is certain that the ſea bear is a different ſpecies from the land bear. The head is ſo long, when compared with that of the common bear, that this character alone is ſufficient to conſtitute a diſtinct ſpecies: And thoſe voyagers adhere to truth when they tell us, that the figure of the ſea bear is totally different from ours, and that its head and neck are much longer. From the drawing it likewiſe appears, that the feet, inſtead of reſembling the human hand, like thoſe of the land bear, are formed nearly like the feet of a large dog, and other carnivorous animals of this kind. Beſides, from ſeveral relations, it appears, that ſome of theſe bears are much larger than the land bear. [Page] [...] [Page] [...] [Page 222] [...] [Page 223] [...] [Page 224] Gerard de Veira aſſerts, that, after killing one of theſe bears, he meaſured the ſkin, and found it to be twenty-three feet long, which is more than triple the length of the common bear*. We likewiſe find, from the Collection of Voyages to the North, that theſe ſea bears are larger and more ferocious than ours. But, in the ſame Collection, it is ſaid, that, though theſe bears are differently formed, and have the head and neck much longer, and the body more ſlender and agile, they are nearly of the ſame ſize with the common kind†.
The COW of TARTARY*.
M. GMELIN, in the New Memoirs of the Academy of Peterſburg, has given a deſcription of a Tartarian cow, which, at firſt ſight, appears to differ from all thoſe we have enumerated under the article buffalo. ‘'This cow,' ſays he, 'which I ſaw alive, and had a drawing made of it is Siberia, came from Calmuck. It was about two and a half Ruſſian ells in length. [Page 226] By this ſtandard we may judge of its other dimenſions, the proportions of which have been accurately obſerved by the painter. The body reſembles that of a common cow. The horns are bended inward. The hair on the body and head is back, except on the front and ridge of the back, where it is white. It has a mane on the neck; and the whole body, like that of a buck, is covered with very long hair, which deſcends as far as the knees, and makes the legs appear ſhort. It has a bunch on the back. The tail reſembles that of a horſe, and is white and very buſhy. The fore legs are black, the hind ones white, and the whole reſemble thoſe of the ox. Upon the heels of the hind feet, there are two tufts of long hair, the one before and the other behind; and, on the fore feet, there is but one tuft placed behind. The excrements are more ſolid than thoſe of cows; and, when the animal diſcharges urine, it draws its body backward. It lows not like an ox, but grunts like a hog. It is wild, and even ferocious; for, except the man from whom it receives its food, it gives blows with its head to every perſon who comes near it. It hardly ſuffers the preſence of domeſtic cows: Whenever it perceives one of them, it grunts, which it ſeldom does on any other occaſion.' To this deſcription M. Gmelin adds, 'That it is the ſame animal mentioned by Rubruquis in his travels into Tartary: [Page 227] That there are two ſpecies of it among the Calmucks, the firſt called Sarluk, which I have already deſcribed, and the ſecond Chainuk, which differs from the other by the largeneſs of its head and horns, and alſo by the tail, which at its origin reſembles that of the horſe, and terminates like that of a cow. But they both have the ſame natural diſpoſitions.'’
In the whole of this deſcription, there is only a ſingle character which indicates the Calmuck cows to be a particular ſpecies, and that is their grunting inſtead of a lowing. It every other article, they have ſo ſtrong a reſemblance to the biſon, that they muſt belong to the ſame ſpecies, or rathe the ſame race. Beſides, though the author ſays, that theſe cows do not low, but grunt, he acknowledges that they very rarely utter that kind of ſound. Perhaps it was an affection peculiar to the individual he ſaw; for Rubruquis, and the other writers whom he quotes, mention not this grunting. Perhaps the biſons, when enraged, likewiſe make a grunting noiſe. Even our bulls, particularly in the rutting ſeaſon, have a hollow, interrupted voice, which has a greater reſemblance to grunting than to lowing. I am perſuaded, therefore, that this grunting cow of Gmelin is nothing elſe but the biſon, and does not conſtitute a particular ſpecies.
The TOLAI, or BAIKAL HARE*.
THIS animal is very common in the neighbourhood of Lake Baikal in Tartary. It is ſomewhat larger than the rabbit, which it reſembles in the figure of the body, the fur, the gait, the colour, the taſte of the fleſh, and the habit of digging a retreat in the earth. Their internal ſtructure is likewiſe the ſame†; and there is no difference but in the length of the tail, that of the tolai being conſiderably longer. [Page 229] Hence it is extremely probable that this animal is only a variety in the ſpecies of the rabbit. Rubruquis, when treating of the animals in Tartary, ſays, 'There are rabbits with a long tail, and black and white hairs at the point. . . . There are no ſtags, few hares, a vaſt number of gazelles,' &c. This paſſage ſeems to inſinuate, that our ſhort-tailed rabbit is not found in Tartary*, or rather, that it has undergone ſome variations in that climate, and particularly in the length of the tail; for, as the tolai reſembles the rabbit in every other reſpect, it is unneceſſary to conſider them as belonging to different ſpecies.
The ZISEL†, or EARLESS MARMOT.
SOME authors, and among others Linnaeus, [Page 230] have doubted whether the Ziſel or Zieſel *, (citellus) be a different animal from the hamſter (cricetus). They have, indeed, a great reſemblance to each other, and inhabit nearly the ſame countries†. They differ, however, in ſo many characters, that I am convinced they conſtitute two diſtinct ſpecies. The ziſel is ſmaller than the hamſter. Its body is long and ſlender, like the weaſel; but that of the hamſter is thick like the rat. It has no external ears, but two auditory paſſages concealed under the hair. The ears of the hamſter are ſhort; but they are broad, and very conſpicuous. The ziſel is of a uniform cinereous gray colour; but the hamſter has three large white ſpots on each ſide of the breaſt. Theſe differences, when joined to this circumſtance, that the two animals, though they inhabit the ſame regions, never intermix, are ſufficient [Page 231] to remove every doubt with regard to the diverſity of their ſpecies, though they reſemble one another in the ſhortneſs of the tail and legs, in having teeth like thoſe of the rat, and even in natural habits, ſuch as digging retreats in the earth, laying up magazines of proviſions, deſtroying the corn, &c. Beſides, what muſt remove every doubt on this ſubject, Agricola, an exact and judicious writer, in his treatiſe on ſubterraneous animals, gives a deſcription of both animals, and diſtinguiſhes them ſo clearly, that it is impoſſible to confound them*. Hence we may conclude, that the hamſter and ziſel are very different ſpecies, and perhaps as remote from each other as the weaſel from the rat.
The ZEMNI, or PODOLIAN MARMOT*.
IN Poland and Ruſſia there is another animal called ziemni or zemni, which is of the ſame genus with the ziſel, but larger, ſtronger, and more miſchievous. The head is pretty thick, the body ſlender, and the ears ſhort and rounded. It has four large cutting teeth, which project out of the mouth, the two in the under jaw being thrice as long as the two in the upper. The feet are very ſhort, covered with hair, divided into five toes, and armed with crooked claws. The hair is ſoft, ſhort, and of a mouſe-gray colour. The tail is of a moderate ſize. The eyes are as ſmall, and equally concealed as thoſe of the mole. Rzaczinſki gives it the denomination of the little earth dog. This author ſeems to be the only one who mentions the zemni, though [Page 233] it be very common in ſome of the Northern provinces*. Its natural diſpoſitions and habits are nearly the ſame with thoſe of the hamſter and ziſel. It bites cruelly, eats voraciouſly, and lays waſte the corn fields and gardens. It digs a habitation in the earth, and feeds upon grains, fruits, and pot-herbs, of which it lays up magazines in its retreat, where it paſſes the winter.
RZACZINSKI mentions another animal which is larger than the domeſtic rat, and called pouch by the Ruſſians. It digs a retreat in the earth, and lays waſte the gardens. This animal was ſo numerous near Suraz in Volhinia, that the inhabitants were obliged to abandon the culture of their gardens. It is perhaps the ſame with Seba's Norwegian rat, of which he gives a figure and deſcription†.
RUSSIA and Poland furniſh another animal: In the language of the former country it is called perewiazka, and in that of the latter przewiaſka *, or gridled weaſel. It is ſmaller than the polecat, and covered with whitiſh hair, rayed tranſverſely with ſeveral bands of yellowiſh red. It lives in the woods, and burrows in the ground. Its ſkin is a beautiful fur.
The SOUSLIK, or CASAN MARMOT†.
IN Caſan, and the provinces watered by the Wolga, as far as Auſtria, there is a ſmall animal [Page 235] called ſouſlik in the Ruſſian language, which furniſhes a beautiful fur. In figure and ſhortneſs of tail, it has a great reſemblance to the ſhort-tailed field mouſe. But it is diſtinguiſhed from the mouſe or rat kind by its fur, which is every where interſperſed with ſmall ſpots of a bright and ſhining white. Theſe ſpots exceed not a line in diameter, and are placed at the diſtance of two or three lines from each other. They are more conſpicuous and better defined upon the loins than on the ſhoulders and head. Mr Pennant, a well known and very able Naturaliſt, favoured me with one of theſe ſouſliks, which had been tranſmitted to him from Auſtria, as an animal unknown to the Naturaliſts. I recogniſed it to be the ſame animal with that of which I had a ſkin in my poſſeſſion, and of which M. Sanchez* ſent me the following notice: 'Great numbers of the rats called Souſliks are taken in the barks loaded with ſalt in the river Kama, which deſend from Solikamſki, where there are ſalt pits, and fall into the Wolga, above the town of Caſan, at the confluence [Page 236] of the Teluſchin. The Wolga, from Simbuſki to Somtof, is covered with theſe ſalt barks; and it is in the lands adjacent to theſe rivers, as well as in the barks, where the ſouſliks are taken. They have obtained the denomination of ſouſlik, which ſignifies nice-taſed, becauſe they are extremely fond of ſalt.'.
I now give a figure of this animal, which is not in the original work. Prince Galitzin, at the deſire of M. de Buffon, was ſo obliging as to ſend eight ſouſliks, with the neceſſary precautions for preſerving them alive, till they ſhould arrive in France. Theſe eight animals arrived in Peterſburg, after a long journey from Siberia. But, notwithſtanding all the attention paid to them, they died in paſſing from Peterſburg to France. The inſtructions from Siberia were, to feed them only with grain or hempſeed; to give them as much air as poſſible; to put a conſiderable quantity of ſand in their cage, becauſe, in their natural ſtate, they burrow in light ſoils.
[Page 237] Theſe animals generally dwell in the deſerts, and dig holes in the declivities of mountains, provided the earth be blackiſh. Their holes are not of equal depths, and are ſeven or eight feet long, never ſtraight, but winding, and have from two to five entries, the diſtances of which are unequal, being from two to ſeven feet aſunder. In theſe holes they make different apartments, and amaſs in them their winter proviſions during the ſummer. In the cultivated fields, they collect ears of corn, peaſe, lint, and hemp ſeeds, and place them ſeparately in different departments of their holes. In uncultivated lands, they collect the ſeeds of various herbs. During ſummer, they feed upon grains, herbs, roots, and young mice; for, when the mice are large, the ſouſlik is unable to kill them. Beſide their magazines of proviſions, theſe animals dig ſeparate holes ſome feet diſtant from the former, in which they repoſe. They throw all their ordure out of their retreats. The females bring forth from two to five young at a litter, which are blind and naked, and begin not to ſee till after the hair appears. The time of geſtation is not exactly known.
The SIBERIAN, or GILDED MOLE*.
IN Siberia, there is a mole called the gilded mole, whoſe ſpecies is probably different from the common kind; becauſe it wants the tail, has a very ſhort muzzle, the hair mixed with green and a gold-colour, and only three toes on the fore feet, and four on thoſe behind, while the common mole has five toes on all the feet. We are ignorant of the proper name of this animal.
THE water rat of Europe is found in Canada; but its colours are different. It is brown on the [Page 239] back; and the reſt of the body is white, and in ſome places yellow. The head, muzzle, and end of the tail are white. The hair is ſofter and more gloſſy than that of our water-rat. But, in every other article, theſe animals are perfectly ſimilar, and undoubtedly belong to the ſame ſpecies. The white hair is an effect of cold; and it is probable, that white water-rats may be found in the North of Europe, as well as in Canada.
THE GUINEY HOG*.
THOUGH this animal differs from the common hog in ſome characters, I preſume that it [Page 240] is the ſame ſpecies, and that theſe differences are only varieties produced by the influence of climate. Of this we have an example in the Siam hog, which likewiſe differs from that of Europe; and yet it is unqueſtionably the ſame ſpecies, ſince they intermix and produce together. The Guiney hog is nearly of the ſame figure with ours, and of the ſame ſize with the Siam hog, that is, ſmaller than the wild boar, or the domeſtic hog. It is an original native of Guiney, and has been tranſported to Braſil, where it has multiplied prodigiouſly. It is domeſtic, and perfectly tame. It has ſhort, red, ſhining hair, and no briſtles, even on the back. The neck and crupper, near the origin of the tail, are covered with longer hairs than thoſe on the reſt of the body. Its head is not ſo large as that of the European hog, from which it differs in the figure of the ears, which are very long, ſharp-pointed, and lie back upon the neck. Its tail is alſo much longer, reaching near the ground, and entirely deſtitute of hair. This race, which, according to Marcgrave, is peculiar to Guiney, is found likewiſe in Aſia, and particularly in the iſland of Java*, from whence [Page 241] they ſeem to have been tranſported by the Dutch to the Cape of Good Hope*.
The ETHIOPIAN, or CAPE VERD BOAR†.
IN the neighbourhood of Cape Verd, there is another hog or boar, which, from the number [Page 242] of his teeth, and the enormous ſize of the tuſks in his upper-jaw, appears to be a peculiar race, if not a different ſpecies from that of all the other hogs, and approaches toward the babirouſſa. Theſe tuſks have a greater reſemblance to ivory horns than to teeth. They are half a foot long, five inches in circumference at the baſe, and bended nearly like the horns of a bull. This character alone is not ſufficient to conſtitute a difference in ſpecies. But, what ſupports this preſumption, he likewiſe differs from all other hogs in the length of the aperture of his noſtrils, in the great breadth and figure of his jaws, and in the number and form of his grinders. However, we have ſeen the tuſks of a wild boar, which was killed in the woods of Burgundy, and made an approach to the Cape Verd boar: Its tuſks were about three inches and a half long, and four inches in circumference at the baſe. They had alſo a double bend, like the horns of a bull. They appeared likewiſe to conſiſt of ſolid ivory; and, it is certain, that this boar muſt have had larger jaws than the common kind. [Page 243] Hence we may preſume, that the Cape Verd boar is only a ſimple variety, a particular race, in the ſpecies of the common hog.
We formerly ſuggeſted, that the wild boar of Cape Verd appeared to be a different race, and perhaps a different ſpecies from all the other hogs. The celebrated M. Allamand, profeſſor of Natural Hiſtory at Leyden, was kind enough to ſend us an engraving of this animal, and afterwards wrote M. Daubenton in the following terms:‘I believe, Sir, that the wild boar repreſented in the plate which I ſent you, is the ſame with that pointed out by you under the denomination of the Wild Boar of Cape Verd. This animal is ſtill living (May 5. 1767) in the menagerie of the Prince of Orange. I viſit him occaſionally, and always with freſh pleaſure. I cannot help admiring the ſingular form of his head. I have written to the Governour of the Cape of Good Hope, begging him, if poſſible, to tranſmit me another. But of this I have little hope; becauſe, even at the Cape, it was regarded as a monſter, which had never hitherto been ſeen by any perſon. If, however, I ſucceed in my requeſt, I ſhall ſend the animal to France, that you and M. de Buffon [Page 244] may have an opportunity of examining it. We tried to make the one in our poſſeſſion copulate with a ſow; but, as ſoon as ſhe was preſented to him, he darted upon her with fury, and tore her to pieces.’
We have copied the engraving tranſmitted to us by M. Allamand. M. Pallas, and M. Voſmaër have uſed the ſame figure, and each of them have given a deſcription of this animal. M. Allamand, in his letter to M. Daubenton, dated at Leyden, October 31. 1766, remarks, that the head is the moſt ſingular part of this boar, which chiefly differs from that of our hogs by two uncommon appendixes, in the form of ears, at the ſide of each eye.
We ſhall here remark, that the diſdain and cruelty, mentioned by M. Allamand, of this wild boar to the ſow when in ſeaſon, ſeems to prove it to be a different ſpecies from our hogs. A farther proof ariſes from the difference in the form of the head, both external and internal. However, as it approaches the hog much nearer than any other animal, and as it is found not only in the neighbourhood of Cape Verd, but not very diſtant from the Cape of Good Hope, we ſhall call it the African boar, and give the hiſtory and deſcription of it from the writings of Pallas and Voſmaër.
Voſmaër calls it the wild African boar, or the boar with a large ſnout, and diſtinguiſhes it, with propriety, from the Guiney hog with long [Page 245] pointed ears, from the American pecari, and from the Indian babirouſſa.‘'M. de Buffon,' he remarks, 'ſpeaking of a part of the jaws, the tail and feet of a ſingular wild boar of Cape Verd, preſerved in the royal cabinet, ſays, that it has cutting teeth: But no ſuch teeth appear in our ſubject.'’
Hence M. Voſmaër inſinuates, that it is not the ſame animal. We have ſeen, however, that M. Allamand and I agree, that this Cape de Verd boar, of which I have had an opportunity of examining a part of the head only, is found, notwithſtanding, to be the ſame large ſnouted hog which M. Voſmaër ſaid was unknown to all the naturaliſts.
M. Tulbagh, Governour of the Cape of Good Hope, who tranſmitted this wild boar to Europe, writes, that it was taken between Caffraria and the country of the great Namaquas, about two hundred leagues from the Cape, and that it was the only one of the ſpecies which had been there ſeen alive. M. Voſmaër likewiſe received the ſkin of an animal of the ſame ſpecies, which appeared to differ in ſome particulars, from the live animal.
and, as I was informed,' M. Voſmaër remarks, 'that he was not miſchievous, I opened the door of his cage. He came out, without ſhowing any marks of rage. He gaily friſked about in queſt of food, and greedily devoured whatever was given him. [Page 246] Having left him alone for a few moments, I found him, on my return, buſy in digging the earth, where, notwithſtanding the pavement was made of ſmall bricks well cemented, he had already made a hole of an incredible ſize, with a view, as we afterwards diſcovered, to reach a common ſewer which paſſed below at a great depth. I cauſed his labour to be interrupted; and it was not without much trouble, and the aſſiſtance of ſeveral men, that we could overcome his reſiſtance, and make him return to his cage. His reſentment was expreſſed by ſharp and mournful cries. He ſeems to have been taken in the African woods when he was very young; for he has grown conſiderably ſince his arrival in Europe, and is ſtill alive (1767). He paſſed the laſt winter very well, though the froſt was ſevere, and he was confined during the greateſt part of that ſeaſon.
In agility, he exceeds the hogs of this country. He freely allows himſelf to be ſtroaked with the hand, and even with a ſtick. He ſeems to be pleaſed with rough friction; for it was by this means that we made him remain quiet when the painter drew his picture. When provoked or rudely puſhed, he retires backward, always facing the aſſailant, and ſhaking or ſtriking forcibly with his head. When let looſe after long confinement, he is very gay, leaps, and purſues fallow-deer, and other animals. On theſe occaſions, he erects his tail, [Page 247] which is commonly pendulous. He emits a ſtrong odour, which is not diſagreeable; but I cannot compare it to any other ſmell. When I ſtroaked him with the hand, this odour approached to that of new cheeſe. He eats all kinds of grains. His food, when on ſhip-board, was maize, and as much freſh herbage as could be procured. But, after he had taſted barely and European wheat, with which other animals in our menagerie are fed, he preferred this kind of food, and roots dug out of the earth. He was ſo fond of rye-bread, that he followed any perſon who had a piece of it. When he eats or drinks, he ſupports himſelf on the knees of his fore feet; and he often reſts in this poſition. His ſenſes of hearing and ſmelling are very acute; but his ſight is limited by the ſmallneſs and ſituation of his eyes, which prevent his ſeeing objects around him, becauſe they are placed higher and nearer each other than in other hogs, and there are two large excreſcences at the ſides and below the eyes. He has more ſagacity than the common hog.
The figure of the head is terrible. The flatneſs and breadth of the noſe, joined to the length of the ſnout, the ſingular excreſcences riſing from the ſides of the eyes, and the ſtrong tuſks, give to the animal a monſtrous aſpect. The length of the body is about four Rheniſh feet.
When compared with other hogs, his head is deformed both in figure and dimenſions. The muzzle is large, flat, and very hard. The noſe is moveable, a little bended laterally toward the baſe, and terminates obliquely. The noſtrils are large, diſtant from each other, and appear only when the head is raiſed. The upper lip is hard, and thick at the ſide. Round the tuſks it is prominent and pendulous, forming behind them a kind of oval cartilaginous protuberance, which covers the corners of the muzzle.
The tuſks of the upper jaw are an inch thick at the baſe, crooked, and project out of the mouth five inches and a half, and terminate in an obtuſe point. On the ſide of each of them there is a kind of furrow. Thoſe of the under jaw are much ſmaller, leſs crooked, and almoſt triangular. By continual friction againſt the upper tuſks, they appear to be cut obliquely. We were prevented from examining the grinders by the furious reſiſtance of the animal.
In proportion to the head, the eyes are ſmall, placed higher, and nearer each other and the' [Page 249] ears, than in the common hog. The iris is of a deep brown colour, and the cornea white. The upper eye-lids are garniſhed with brown, ſtiff, erect, and very cloſe ciliae, which are longer in the middle than at the two ſides. There are no ciliae on the under eye-lids.
The ears are pretty large, more round than pointed, covered in the inſide with cloſe yellow hair, and bend back toward the animal's body. Under the eyes there is a kind of bulbous or glandular fac; and immediately below that, appear two round, flat, thick, and horizontal excreſcences, about two inches and a quarter in diameter. . . . . . In a ſtraight line between theſe excreſcences and the muzzle, there is, on each ſide of the head, a hard, round, ſharp protuberance.
The ſkin ſeems to be very thick, filled with lard in the ordinary places, but flaccid on the neck, groin, and dewlap. In ſome places it appears to be ſlightly furrowed, unequal, and as if the upper part of it fell off by intervals. Thinly diſperſed over the body are ſome tufts of hairs, conſiſting of three, four, or five, longer and ſhorter, and placed in a ſtraight line near one another. The front, and between the ears, ſeem to be wrinkled, and are adorned with very cloſe, white, and brown hairs. From thence, toward the baſe of the muzzle, deſcends a narrow band of black and gray hairs, which, ſeparating in the middle, fall upon each [Page 250] ſide of the head. On the nap of the neck, and the anterior part of the back, the briſtles are the longeſt and moſt cloſe: Their colour is a duſky brown and gray. Some of them are ſeven or eight inches long: In thickneſs they exceed not thoſe of the common hog, and they ſplit in the ſame manner. Theſe briſtles are not ſtraight, but ſlightly inclined. Upon the back, their number is ſo ſmall, that the ſkin appears to be naked. The flanks, breaſt, belly, ſides of the head and neck, are garniſhed with ſmall white briſtles.
Notwithſtanding theſe differences pointed out by M. Voſmaër, and the repugnance which this boar diſcovered to the ſow that was preſented to it, I am uncertain whether it is not a variety only of our European hog. This ſpecies varies greatly in Aſia, Siam, and China. My uncertainty is increaſed by having found, about thirty years ago, an enormous head of a wild boar that was killed in my own woods, the tuſks of which were nearly as large as thoſe of the Cape boar.
[Page 251] Beſides, M. Comerſon informs me, that there are wild boars in Madagaſcar, whoſe head, from the ears to the eyes, is of the ordinary form; but that below the eyes is a protuberance which gradually tapers to the end of the ſnout, ſo that the animal appears to have two heads, the half of the one ſunk into the other. The fleſh of this hog is ſlimy and inſipid. This information made me ſuſpect, that the animal I had firſt mentioned under the denomination of the Wild Boar of Cape Verd, becauſe its head was brought from the neighbourhood of that Cape, and afterwards called it the Wild African Boar, becauſe it exiſts in the neighbourhood of the Cape of Good Hope, is likewiſe found in the iſland of Madagaſcar.‘
M. de Buffon, in his hiſtory of the hog, has ſhown, that the hog eludes all thoſe methodical diſtributions into claſſes and genera, the diſtinguiſhing characters of which are derived from particular parts of the body. Though his reaſons are not to be anſwered, they would have acquired additional force, if he had been acquainted with the animal under conſideration. It is a wild boar ſent from the Cape of Good [Page 252] Hope, in the year 1765, to the menagerie of the Prince of Orange, which has hitherto been unknown to the Naturaliſts. Beſide the many ſingularities which make the European hog a detached ſpecies, this animal exhibits freſh anomalies, which diſtinguiſh him from all the other varieties of the ſame genus; for the figure of his head is not only different, but he has no cutting teeth, from which moſt of our Nomenclators have drawn their diſtinctive characters, though the number of the teeth is by no means uniform, even in our domeſtic hogs.
To M. Tulbagh, Governour of the Cape of Good Hope, who miſſes no opportunity of tranſmitting to Europe the curious productions of that country, we are indebted for this wild boar. In his letter, he remarks, that this animal was taken about two hundred leagues from the Cape, and that it was the firſt which had ever been ſeen there alive. The laſt year, however, he ſent another, which is ſtill living; and, in 1767, he tranſmitted a ſkin, of which we have only been able to preſerve the head. Theſe circumſtances ſeem to indicate, that this animal is not rare in its native country. I know not whether Kolbe means to ſpeak of theſe boars in the following paſſage. 'In the country occupied by the Dutch, we rarely meet with wild hogs: As there are few woods, which are their common retreats, they have no motive to frequent theſe territories. Beſides, the lions, tigers, and other rapacious [Page 253] pacious animals, prevent the multiplication of the hogs, by devouring great numbers of them*.' He adds no deſcription; and, therefore, no concluſion can be drawn. Beſides, he ranks among the number of Cape hogs the large ant-eater, which is an American animal, and has no reſemblance to the hog. What credit is due to an author ſo ill informed?
The body of our African boar reſembles that of the European kind: But it differs widely in the form of the head, which is of an enormous ſize. The moſt conſpicuous objects are the large tuſks which ſpring from each ſide of the upper jaw, and are directed almoſt perpendicularly upward. They are near ſeven inches long, and terminate in a blunt point. Two ſimilar tuſks, but ſmaller and thinner, riſe from the under jaw, and apply themſelves exactly to the external ſide of the ſuperior tuſks when the mouth is ſhut. Theſe are powerful arms, which he may uſe to advantage in his native country, where he muſt be often expoſed to the attacks of carnivorous animals.
His head, which is large and flat before, terminates in an ample ſnout, nearly equal in diameter to the breadth of the head, and of a hardneſs which approaches to that of horn. He uſes it, like our hogs, in digging the earth. His eyes are ſmall, and ſituated ſo far forward in the head, that he can only ſee ſtraight before him. They [Page 254] are nearer each other and the ears, than in our European boars. Below the eyes, there is a depreſſion in the ſkin, which forms a kind of wrinkled ſac. The inſide of his ears are cloſely covered with hair. A little lower, and near the ſide of the eyes, the ſkin riſes and forms two excreſcences, which, when viewed at a certain diſtance, have a perfect reſemblance to a couple of ears, being of the ſame figure and ſize, and, though not moveable, they lie nearly in the ſame plane with the fore-head. Still lower, between theſe excreſcences and the tuſks, there is a large wart on each ſide of the head. It is eaſy to perceive, that a configuration of this kind muſt give a very ſingular aſpect to the animal. When viewed in front, we think we ſee four ears upon a head which has no reſemblance to that of any known animal, and inſpires terror by the largeneſs of its tuſks.
Pallas* and Voſmaër, who have given good deſcriptions of this boar, tell us, that, when he arrived in Holland, he was very mild and tame; that, as he had been ſeveral months on board the veſſel, and had been taken young, he was become almoſt domeſtic; but that, when purſued by ſtrangers, he retired ſlowly backward, and preſented his front with a menacing air; and even thoſe who were daily near him were not without apprehenſions of danger. One day he conceived [Page 255] a reſentment againſt his keeper, whom he wounded ſo deſperately in the thigh with his tuſks, that the poor man died next day. To prevent ſimilar accidents, he was taken out of the menagerie, and ſo cloſely impriſoned that no body could approach him. He died in about twelve months, and his ſkin is preſerved in the Prince of Orange's cabinet. The other one, which is now in the ſame menagerie, is ſtill very young, and his tuſks exceed not two inches in length. When allowed to come out of the place where he is confined, he teſtifies his joy by leaping, bounding, and running with much more agility than our hogs. On theſe occaſions he carries his tail perfectly erect. The inhabitants of the Cape, on account of his ſwiftneſs, give him the denomination of hartlooper, or courſer.
This animal unqueſtionably forms a genus diſtinct from all the other known races of hogs. Though he reſembles them in the body, the want of cutting teeth, and the ſingular ſtructure of the head, are characters too marked to be aſcribed to the influence of climate, eſpecially as there are hogs in Africa which differ from ours only by being ſmaller. Beſides, it would appear that he cannot produce with our hogs. A Guiney ſow was preſented to him. After ſmelling her for ſome time, he purſued her into a narrow place from which ſhe could not eſcape, and tore her to pieces with his tuſks. He afterwards abuſed a common ſow to ſuch a degree, that ſhe was [Page 256] carried off, in order to ſave her from deſtruction.
But in Africa there is, perhaps, another ſpecies of wild boar, with which we are ſtill unacquainted, and was the animal ſeen by M. Adanſon. This conjecture is ſupported by the deſcription which M. Daubenton has given of a part of the jaws of a Cape Verd wild boar. His remarks clearly prove, that it differs from our boars, and would apply directly to the one under conſideration, if there had not been cutting teeth in each of theſe jaws.
I willingly aſſent to moſt of M. Allamand's reflections. But I perſiſt in believing, as he himſelf at firſt believed, that the Cape Verd boar which I mentioned, and the jaws deſcribed by M. Daubenton, belong to the ſame ſpecies, tho' [Page 258] the former had no cutting teeth; for in no animal is the number and order of the teeth ſo various as in the hog kind. This difference alone ſeems not ſufficient to conſtitute two ſpecies of the African wild boar and that of Cape Verd, eſpecially as all the other characters of the head appear to be the ſame.
THE MEXICAN WOLF*.
AS the wolf is a native of cold climates, he muſt have paſſed by the northern lands, as he is [Page 259] found equally in both Continents. We have mentioned black and gray wolves in North America. It appears that this ſpecies is diffuſed as far as New Spain and Mexico; and that, in this warm climate, it has undergone ſome alterations, without having his nature or diſpoſitions changed; for the Mexican wolf has the ſame figure, appetites, and habits as the European or North American wolf; and all of them appear to be the ſame ſpecies. The Mexican wolf, or rather the wolf of New Spain, where he is more common than in Mexico, has five toes on the fore feet, and four on thoſe behind. The ears are long and erect; and the eyes ſparkle like thoſe of our wolf. But the head is twice as large, the neck thicker, and the tail leſs buſhy. Above the mouth, there are ſome briſtles as large, but not ſo ſtiff, as thoſe of the hedge-hog. Upon an aſh-coloured ground, the body is marked with ſome yellow ſpots. The head is of the ſame colour with the body, and marked with tranſverſe browniſh lines, and the front is ſpotted with yellow. The ears are gray, like the head and body. There is a long yellow ſpot on the neck, another on the breaſt, and a [Page 260] third on the belly. On the flanks are tranſverſe bands from the back to the belly. The tail is gray, with a yellow ſpot in the middle. The legs are barred with gray and brown. This is the moſt beautiful of all wolves, and its ſkin ſhould be eſteemed for its variety of colours*. But nothing indicates it to be a different ſpecies from the common kind, which varies from gray to white, from white to black, and a mixture of both, without changing its ſpecies: And we learn from Fernandes, that thoſe wolves of New Spain vary like the European wolf; for, even in this country, they are not all marked according to our deſcription, ſome of them being of a uniform colour, and even totally white†.
WE formerly remarked, that, in Peru and Mexico, before the arrival of the Europeans, there were domeſtic animals called alco, which were nearly of the ſame ſize and diſpoſitions with our ſmall dogs; and that, from this conformity, and becauſe they were equally faithful and attached to their maſters, the Spaniards gave them the name of Mexican or Peruvian dogs. The ſpecies of theſe animals, indeed, ſeems not to differ eſſentially from that of the dog. Beſides, the word alco might, perhaps, be a generic and not a ſpecific term. Recchi has left us a figure of one of theſe alcos, which, in the Mexican language, was called Ytzcuinte Porzotli. It was prodigiouſly fat, and probably degraded by its domeſtic ſtate, and by too much nouriſhment. The head is repreſented to be ſo ſmall, that it has no proportion to the ſize of the body. Its ears are pendulous, which is another mark of ſlavery. The muzzle reſembles that of a dog; the fore part of the head is white, and the ears are pretty yellow. The neck is ſo ſhort, that there is no interval between the head [Page 262] and ſhoulders. The back is arched, and covered with yellow hair. The tail is white, ſhort, and pendulous, and deſcends no lower than the thighs. The belly is large, tenſe, and marked with black ſpots. It has ſix conſpicuous paps. The legs and feet are white; and the toes, like thoſe of the dog, are armed with long ſharp claws*. Fabri, who gives this deſcription, concludes, after a long diſſertation, that this animal is the ſame with the alco; and I believe his concluſion is well founded. But this appellation muſt not be regarded as excluſive; for there is another race of dogs in America to which it applies with equal propriety. Beſide the dogs, Fernandes remarks, which the Spaniards tranſported from Europe to America, there are three other ſpecies, which are pretty ſimilar to ours, both in their nature and diſpoſitions; neither is their figure altogether different. The firſt and largeſt of theſe American dogs is called Xoloiztcuintli. He is often three cubits long; and, what is remarkable, he is totally deſtitute of hair, and only covered with a ſoft cloſe ſkin, marked with yellow and blue ſpots. The ſecond is covered with hair, and of the ſize of our ſmall Malteſe dogs. He is marked with [Page 263] white, black, and yellow. His deformity, though ſingular, is not diſagreeable: His back is arched; and his neck ſo ſhort, that it ſeems to proceed immediately from the ſhoulders. He is named in his own country michuacanens. The third, which likewiſe reſembles our ſmall dogs, is called techichi. But he has a wild and melancholy aſpect. The Americans eat his fleſh*.
From comparing the teſtimonies of Fabri and Fernandes, it is obvious, that the ſecond dog, which this laſt author calls michuacanens, is the ſame with the ytzcuinte porzotli, and that this ſpecies of animal exiſted in America before the arrival of the Europeans; and the ſame muſt have been the caſe with the techichi. I am perſuaded, therefore, that the word alco was a generic name, which applied equally to both, and perhaps to other races or varieties that we are unacquainted with. But, as to the firſt, Fernandes ſeems to have been deceived both with regard to the name and the animal. No author mentions naked dogs in New Spain. This race, commonly called Turkiſh dogs, come from India, and other warm climates of the Old Continent; and, it is probable, that thoſe ſeen in America by Fernandes, had been tranſported thither, eſpecially as he mentions his having ſeen this kind in Spain, before his departure for America. The proof is ſtill farther corroborated [Page 264] by the circumſtance of this animal's having no American name: Fernandes gives it the borrowed one of Xoloitzcuintli, which is the name of the Mexican wolf. Thus, of theſe three ſpecies or varieties of American dogs, there remain only two, which are called indiſcriminately alco; for, independent of the far alco, which ſerved as a lap-dog to the Peruvian ladies, there was a meagre and melancholy alco, which was employed in the chace; and, it is by no means impoſſible, that the three races, apparently different from thoſe of our dogs, ſpring from the ſame ſtock. The dogs of Lapland, Siberia, Iceland, &c. muſt have paſſed, like the foxes and wolves, from the one Continent to the other, and degenerated by the influence of the climate and a domeſtic ſtate. The firſt alco, with the ſhort neck, approaches the Iceland dog; and the techichi of New Spain is, perhaps, the ſame animal with the koupara *, or crab-dog of Guiana, which in figure reſembles the fox, and in hair the jackal. He has been called the crab-dog, becauſe he chiefly lives upon crabs and other cruſtaceous animals. I have ſeen only one ſkin of this Guiana animal; and I am unable to determine whether it is a particular ſpecies, or whether it ſhould be referred to thoſe of the dog, fox, or jackal.
THE TAYRA, GALERA, OR GUINEY WEASEL*.
THIS animal, of which Mr Brown has given a figure and deſcription, is of the ſize of a ſmall rabbit, and has a conſiderable reſemblance to the weaſel or martin. He digs an habitation in the earth, and has great ſtrength in his fore-feet, which are much ſhorter than thoſe behind. His muzzle is long, a little ſharp, and garniſhed with whiſkers. The under jaw is much ſhorter than the upper. He has ſix cutting and two canine teeth in each jaw, without reckoning the grinders. His tongue is rough, like that of the cat. His head is oblong, as well as the eyes, which laſt are placed at an equal diſtance between the ears and the point of the muzzle. His ears [Page 266] are flat, and reſemble thoſe of man. His feet are ſtrong, and adapted for digging. The metatarſal bones are long; and he has five toes on all his feet. His tail is long, and tapers to a point. His body is oblong, and has a great reſemblance to that of a large rat. He is covered with brown hairs, ſome of which are longer than others. This animal appears to be a ſmall ſpecies of martin or polecat. Linnaeus imagined, that the black weaſel of Braſil might be the galera of Mr Brown; and, indeed, the two deſcriptions afford ſome reaſon for the conjecture*. Beſides, this black weaſel of Braſil is likewiſe found in Guiana, where it is called tayra †; and I ſuſpect that the word galera is a [Page 267] corruption derived from tayra, which is the true name of this animal.
THE MERIAN OPOSSUM*.
THIS animal is a native of the ſame climate, and belongs to a neighbouring ſpecies with the other opoſſums. Sibilla Merian is the firſt writer who has given a figure and a ſhort [Page 268] account of it*. Seba afterwards gave Merian's figure for the female, and added a new figure for the male, with a kind of deſcription. This animal, ſays he, has very brilliant eyes, which are ſurrounded with a circle of deep brown hair. The body is covered with ſoft hair, or rather wool of a reddiſh yellow colour, but of a bright red on the back. The front, muzzle, belly, and feet, are whitiſh yellow. The ears are naked, and pretty hard. On the upper lip, and alſo above the eyes, there are long hairs in the form of whiſkers. Its teeth, like thoſe of the dormouſe, are very ſharp. Upon the tail of the male, which is naked, and of a pale red colour, there are duſky red ſpots, which appear not on the tail of the female. The feet reſemble the hands of an ape; thoſe before have the four toes, and the thumb garniſhed with ſhort, blunt, nails; but on the hind feet the thumb alone has a flat, blunt nail, the other four toes being armed with ſmall ſharp claws. The young of theſe animals grunt nearly in the ſame manner as a pig. The paps of the female reſemble thoſe of the murine opoſſum. Seba properly remarks, [Page 269] that, in the figure given by Merian, the feet and toes are ill repreſented*. The females produce five or ſix at a litter. The tail is very long, and prehenſile, like that of the ſapajous. The young mount upon the back of the mother, and adhere firmly with their tails twiſted round hers. In this ſituation ſhe carries them about with great nimbleneſs and ſecurity.
THE akouchi is pretty common in Guiana and other parts of South America. It differs from the agouti by having a tail, which is wanting in the agouti. The akouchi is generally ſmaller than the agouti, and its hair is not red, but of an olive colour†.
In the original work we remarked, that the akouchi was a different ſpecies from the agouti; becauſe the former had a tail, and the latter had no tail. The akouchi differs from the agouti ſtill more in magnitude, being no larger than a young rabbit of ſix months old. The akouchi is found only in extenſive woods. He feeds on the ſame fruits, and has nearly the ſame manners with the agouti. In the iſlands of Saint Lucia and Grenada he is called agouti. His fleſh is white, and has the flavour of a young rabbit; and he is ranked amongſt the fineſt game in South America. When the akouchis are purſued by dogs, rather than take the water, they allow themſelves to be taken. M. de la Borde informs us, though I doubt the fact, that the females produce only one, or at moſt two young at a litter. They are eaſily tamed, and have a ſmall cry like that of the Guiney pig; but it is ſeldom heard.
The TUCAN, or MEXICAN SHREW*.
FERNANDES has given the name of Tucan to a ſmall quadruped of New Spain, whoſe ſize, figure, and natural habits, make it approach nearer to the mole than to any other ſpecies. It appears to be the ſame animal deſcribed by Seba under the denomination of the red mole of America†; at leaſt, the deſcriptions of the two [Page 272] authors correſpond ſufficiently to juſtify this conjecture. The tucan is perhaps ſomewhat larger than our mole. It is equally fat and fleſhy, and its legs are ſo ſhort that the belly touches the ground. The tail is ſhort; the ears are ſmall and round; and the eyes are ſo minute that they can ſcarcely be of any uſe to the animal. But it differs from the mole in the colour of the hair, which is reddiſh yellow, and in the number of toes, having only three before and four behind, while the mole has five toes on all the feet. It ſeems to differ from the mole in other articles: Its fleſh is good eating, and it poſſeſſes not the inſtinct of diſcovering its retreat after having once left it, but, at every time, is obliged to dig a new hole; ſo that, in certain ſoils, which are agreeable to theſe animals*, the holes are ſo numerous, and ſo near each other, that circumſpection is neceſſary to walk there with ſafety.
The BRASILIAN SHREW*.
WE mention this animal under the denomination of the Braſilian ſhrew; becauſe we are ignorant of its proper name, and it has a greater reſemblance to the ſhrew than to any other animal. It is, however, conſiderably larger, being about five inches long from the extremity of the muzzle to the origin of the tail, which is not two inches, and, conſequently, is proportionally ſhorter than that of the common ſhrew. It has a pointed muzzle, and very ſharp teeth. Upon a brown ground-colour, three pretty large black bands extend longitudinally from the head to the tail, under which the ſcrotum appears hanging between the hind feet. This animal, ſays Marcgrave, ſports with the cats, who diſcover no inclination to eat it. In the ſame manner the cats kill the European ſhrews, but never eat them.
THE ROCK CAVY*.
THIS animal, which is a native of Braſil, is neither a rabbit nor rat, but ſeems to partake of both. It is about a foot long, by ſeven inches in circumference. Its general colour is the ſame with that of our hares; and its belly is white: Its upper lipe is divided in the ſame manner, and it has the ſame large cutting teeth, and whiſkers round the mouth and on the ſides of the eyes. But its ears are rounded like thoſe of the rat, and ſo ſhort that they exceed not the height of a finger's breadth. The fore legs are not above three inches in length, and thoſe behind are a little longer. The fore feet have four toes covered with a black ſkin, and armed with ſmall ſhort claws. The hind feet have only three toes, and the middle one is the longeſt. [Page 275] It has no tail. Its head is ſomewhat longer than that of the hare, and its fleſh is like that of the rabbit, which it reſembles in its manner of living* It likewiſe retires into holes: It does not, however, dig the earth, like the rabbit, but conceals itſelf in the clefts of rocks. Hence it is eaſily ſeized in its retreat. It is hunted as game, and its fleſh is preferable to that of our beſt rabbits†. The animal mentioned by Oviedo, and afterwards by Charlevoix‡ and du Perrier de Montfraiſier, under the denomination of cori, appears to be the ſame with the aperea or rock cavy‖. In ſome parts of the Weſt Indies, theſe animals may, perhaps, be reared in warrens, or in houſes, like our rabbits; and this may be the reaſon why ſome of them are red, white, black, and variegated. This conjecture is not without foundation; for Garcilaſſo informs us, that, in Peru, [Page 276] there are wild and domeſtic rabbits which have no reſemblance to thoſe of Spain*.
THE TAPETI, or BRASILIAN HARE†.
THE tapeti‡ ſeems to make a near approach to the ſpecies of the hare or rabbit. It is found in Braſil, and many other parts of America. In figure, it reſembles the European rabbit; and it reſembles the hare in ſize and colour, only it is a little browner. Its ears are very long, and ſhaped like thoſe of the hare. Its hair is red on the fore head, and whitiſh on the throat. Some of them have a white circle [Page 277] round the neck; but others have a white throat, breaſt, and belly. They have black eyes, and whiſkers like our rabbits; but they want the tail*. The tapeti reſembles the hare in its manner of living, in fecundity, and in the quality of its fleſh, which is extremely good. Like the hare, it dwells in the fields or in the woods, and burrows not, like the rabbit† The animal of New Spain, mentioned by Fernandes, under the name of citli, appears to be the ſame with the tapeti ‡ of Braſil; and both are perhaps only varieties of the European hares, who have paſſed by the northern lands from the one Continent to the other.
Some other ſpecies of animals might be added to the preceding liſt; but the accounts given of them are ſo vague, that I chooſe rather to confine myſelf to what is known with ſome degree of certainty, than to give way to conjecture, or to exhibit creatures of imagination as real ſpecies. But, notwithſtanding this limitation, intelligent men will eaſily perceive, that my hiſtory of quadrupeds is as complete as they could poſſibly expect. It comprehends a great number of new animals, and none of thoſe who were formerly known are omitted.
[Page 278] The preceding notices, though compoſed of twenty-one articles, contain not above nine or ten diſtinct ſpecies; for all the others are only varieties. The white bear is only a variety of the common kind; the Tartarian cow, of the biſon; the Guinea and Cape-Verd hogs, of the common hog, &c. Hence, by adding theſe ten ſpecies to about one hundred and eighty, whoſe hiſtory we have given, the total number of quadrupeds, the exiſtence of which is properly aſcertained, exceeds not two hundred ſpecies upon the ſurface of the whole known world.
1.33.1. THE CRAB-EATER*.
THE name crab-eater, or crab-dog, has been given to this animal, becauſe crabs are his principal food. He has a very little relation to the dog or fox, to which ſome travellers have compared him. He ſeems to be more nearly allied to the opoſſums; but he is much larger, and the female crab-eater carries not her young, like the female opoſſum, in a pouch under her belly. Hence the crab-eater appears to be a detached ſpecies, and different from all thoſe we have formerly deſcribed.
In the figure, the long naked, ſcaly tail, the large thumbs without claws on the hind feet, [Page 280] and the flat claws on the fore feet, are remarkable. This animal, whoſe ſkin is preſerved in the royal cabinet, was young when it was tranſmitted to us. It is a male; and the following is a deſcription of it.
The length of the whole body, from the noſe to the origin of the tail, is about ſeventeen inches. Before, it is ſix inches three lines high, and ſix inches and a half behind. The tail, which is grayiſh, ſcaly, and naked, is fifteen inches and a half long, ten lines in circumference at the origin, and gradually tapers to a point.
As the legs of this animal are very ſhort, he has, at a diſtance, ſome reſemblance to a terrier. The head is not very different from that of a dog, and exceeds not four inches one line in length, from the point of the noſe to the occiput. The eye is not large; the edges of the eye-brows are black; and, above the eye, there are hairs of an inch and a quarter in length. There are ſimilar hairs on the ſide of the cheek near the ear. The whiſkers are black, and about an inch and a half long. The opening of the mouth is near two inches. The upper jaw is armed, on each ſide, with a crooked canine tooth, which reaches beyond the under jaw. The ear is brown, naked, broad, and round at the extremity.
The hair on the body is woolly, and interſperſed with other long ſtiff black hairs. Theſe [Page 281] long hairs increaſe upon the thighs and the ſpine of the back, which is totally covered with them, and form a kind of mane from the middle of the back to the origin of the tail: They are three inches long, of a dirty white colour from the baſe to the middle, and afterwards of a dark brown as far as the point. The hair on the ſides, as well as on the belly, is yellowiſh white; but it approaches more to yellow toward the ſhoulders, and on the thighs, neck, breaſt, and head, where this yellow tincture is mixed in ſome places with brown. The ſides of the neck are yellow; and the legs and feet are of a blackiſh brown colour. There are five toes on each foot. The fore foot is an inch and three quarters long, the largeſt toe nine lines, and the furrowed claw two lines. The toes are a little bended, like thoſe of the rat, the thumb alone being ſtraight. The hind feet are an inch and eight lines long, the largeſt toe nine lines, and the thumb half an inch. The thumb is thick, broad, and at a diſtance from the toes, as in the apes. The nail of the thumb is flat; but thoſe of the other toes are crooked, and reach beyond their points. The thumb of the fore foot is ſtraight, and not removed from the other toe.[Page 282] 'It climbs trees,' he remarks, 'with great dexterity, and continues oftener upon them than on the ground, eſpecially during the day. It has fine teeth, and defends itſelf againſt the dogs. Crabs are its principal nouriſhment, and it is always fat. When unable to draw the crabs from their holes with its foot, it introduces the tail, which it uſes as a hook. The crab ſometimes lays hold of the tail, and makes the animal cry. This cry has ſome reſemblance to that of a man, and is heard at a great diſtance. But its ordinary voice is a kind of grunting like pigs. The female produces four or five young at a litter, and depoſits them in the hollows of old trees. The natives of the country eat its fleſh, which reſembles that of a hare. Theſe animals are eaſily tamed, and they are fed in the houſes, like dogs and cats, with all kinds of victuals. Hence their taſte for crabs is by no means excluſive.'’
It is alledged, that there are two ſpecies of crab-eaters in Cayenne. The firſt is the animal we have already deſcribed: The other is not only a different ſpecies, but belongs to a different genus. Its tail is totally covered with hair, and it ſeizes crabs with its paws only. Theſe two animals reſemble each other in the head alone; and they differ in the figure and proportions of the body, as well as in the ſtructure of the feet and claws.
WE here give the figure of an undeſcribed animal, the drawing of which was made by the Chevalier Bruce, who permitted me to copy it. This animal, which we ſhall call anonymous, till we learn its real name, has ſome ſimilarities to the hare, and others to the ſquirrel. Mr Bruce gave the following account of it in writing.‘In Lybia, on the ſouth ſide of the lake formerly called Palus Tritonides, there is a very ſingular animal, from nine to ten inches long, with ears nearly as long as the half of the body, and proportionally broad, a circumſtance which takes place in no other quadruped, except the long-eared bat. Its muzzle reſembles that of the fox; and yet it ſeems to approach nearer to that of the ſquirrel. It lives on the palm-trees, of which it eats the fruit. It has ſhort retractile claws, and is a very beautiful creature. Its colour is white mixed with a little gray and a bright yellow. The inſide of the ears is naked in the middle only. They are covered with brown hair mingled with yellow, and garniſhed within with large white hairs. The end of the noſe is black, the tail yellow, and black at the point. The tail is pretty [Page 284] long, but of a different form from that of the ſquirrel; and all the hair, both on the body and tail, is very ſoft.’
It lived ſeveral years with the Counteſs of Marſan. Its movements were extremely briſk, and its cry was nearly ſimilar, though much weaker, than that of the ſquirrel. Like the ſquirrels, it carried its food to its mouth with the fore paws, erected its tail, and leaped about. It bit deſperately, and could not be tamed. It was fed with almonds and fruits. It never came out of its cage, except in the night; and it endured the winters very well in an apartment where the cold was moderated by a ſmall fire.