Pliny the Elder, Natural History

LCL 371: 460-461

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Pliny: Natural History

misceri, areis distingui easque resupinis pulvinorum toris, ambiri singulas tramitum sulcis qua detur accessus homini scatebrisque decursus.

XXI. In hortis nascentium alia bulbo commendantur, alia capite, alia caule, alia folio, alia utroque, alia semine, alia cartilagine, alia carne, aut1 utroque, alia cortice aut cute et cartilagine, alia tunicis carnosis.

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XXII. Aliorum fructus in terra est, aliorum et extra, aliorum non nisi extra. quaedam iacent crescuntque, ut cucurbita et cucumis; eadem pendent, quamquam graviora multo etiam iis quae in arboribus gignuntur, sed cucumis cartilagine et carne constat, cucurbita cortice et cartilagine; cortex huic 62uni maturitate transit in lignum. terra conduntur raphani napique et rapa, atque alio modo inulae, siser, pastinacae. quaedam vocabimus ferulacea, ut anetum, malvas; namque tradunt auctores in Arabia2 malvas septumo mense arborescere baculorumque 63usum praebere. exemplo est arbor malvae in Mauretania Lixi oppidi aestuario, ubi Hesperidum horti fuisse produntur, cc passibus ab oceano iuxta delubrum Herculis antiquius Gaditano, ut ferunt: ipsa altitudinis pedum xx, crassitudinis quam circumplecti nemo possit. in simili genere habebitur et cannabis. nec non et carnosa aliqua appellabimus,

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Book XIX

depth of three feet, mark it out in plots and border these with sloping rounded banks, and surround each plot with a furrowed path to afford access for a man and a channel for irrigation.

XXI. Some plants growing in gardens are valuedGarden plants, their various values. for their bulb, others for their head, others for their stalk, others for their leaf, others for both, others for their seed, others for their cartilage, others for their flesh, or for both, others for their husk or skin and cartilage, others for their fleshy outer coats.

XXII. Some plants produce their fruits in theTheir various structures and habits. earth, others outside as well, others only outside. Some grow lying on the ground, for instance gourds and cucumbers; these also grow in a hanging position, though they are much heavier even than fruits that grow on trees, but the cucumber is composed of cartilage and flesh and the gourd of rind and cartilage; the gourd is the only fruit whose rind when ripe changes into a woody substance. Radishes, navews and turnips are hidden in the earth, and so in a different way are elecampane, skirret and parsnipsa. Some plants we shall call of the fennel class, for instance dill and mallowb; for authorities report that in Arabia mallows grow into trees in seven months, and serve as walking-sticks. There is an instance of a mallow-tree on the estuary of the town of Lixus in Mauretania, the place where the Gardens of the Hesperids are said to have been situated; it grows 200 yards from the ocean, near a shrine of Hercules which is said to be older than the one at Cadiz; the tree itself is 20 ft. high, and so large round that nobody could span it with his arms. Hemp will also be placed in a similar class. Moreover there are also some plants to which we shall give the name

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DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.pliny_elder-natural_history.1938