The Aberdeen Bestiary

Folio 86r - the nature of man, continued.


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Commentary, Translation and Transcription

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It is not part of the project to provide a definitive edition of the text of the Bestiary, but to help readers by providing a transcription and translation of the text. Currently the following editorial conventions obtain:

Text

  1. The original capitalisation is retained, but capitals have been added for personal and place names, excluding deus and diabolus.
  2. The original punctuation, including a point and inverted semi-colon (both serving as commas), and a point (serving as a full stop), is represented by comma, full stop and question-mark; a colon has been inserted before quotations.
  3. Suggested readings are in [ ].
  4. Variants from other Bestiary texts (eg Ashmole 1511 and Patrologia Latina 176) are added where they indicate a corruption, elucidate a meaning and replace excised text. They are represented as [A: PL:]

Translation

  1. Direct quotations from the Bible, where identified, are cited from the Authorised Version in ( ).
  2. Paraphrased quotations are identified where possible and indicated as: (see Job, 18:22).
  3. Suggested translations of corrupt words are in [ ].
  4. Capitalisation is sparing; additional punctuation has been used where necessary to give the sense. Paragraphs have been created to break up the text.
it is called the fist, pugnus. The word comes from pugillus, a handful, just as the word for the palm, palma, comes from the outspread branches of the the palm tree. Fingers are called digiti, either because there are ten, decem, of them, or because they are joined together in a proper fashion, decenter. For they amount in themselves to a perfect number and are ranged in a most regular order, The first, the thumb, pollex, is so called because it surpasses, pollere, the others in strength and power. The second finger, index, is also known as salutaris or demonstratorius, the greeting or indicating finger, because we generally use it in greeting, showing or pointing. The third finger is called impudicus, lewd; it is frequently used to express the pursuit of something shameful. The fourth is the ring finger, anularis, because it is the on which a ring is worn. It is also called medicinalis, the medical finger, because it used by physicians to smear on ground-up salves. The fifth finger is called auricularis, because we scrape our ear, auris, with it. Our word for nails, ungule, comes from the Greek, for they call them onices. The trunk, truncus, is the middle part of the body, from the neck to the groin. Nigidius says of it: 'The head is carried by the neck, the trunk is supported by the hips, knees and legs' (Opera, 108). Thorax is the Greek word for the front part of the trunk from the neck to the stomach; we call it the ark, archa, because what is there is arcanus, hidden, that is, secret; others are kept out by it. For this reason both arca, a chest, and ara, an altar, have names implying secrecy. The soft mounds on this part of the body are called breasts, mamille. Between them is a bony part called the breast bone, pectus. To the right and left are the ribs, coste. The breast bone, pectus, is so called because there is a nap, pexus, between the protruding parts of the breasts. In the same way, a comb is called pecten, because it makes hairs smooth. The breasts, mamille, are so called because they are round, as if the word were a diminutive of mala, apple. The nipples, papille, are the tips of the breast; suckling infants take hold of them. They are called papille because babies seem to stroke them, palpare, while they suck milk from them. Accordingly, the word mamilla refers to the whole mound of the breast; uber, the part from which the baby is suckled. But the nipple is the short bit that conveys the milk. Uber is so called either because it is filled, uberta, with milk, or because it is moist, uvida, with fluid, namely, full of milk, as a grape, uva, moist with juice. Milk, lac, gets the force of its name from its colour

Text

Isidore on the fingers and the chest.

Transcription

pugnus. Pugnus autem a pugillo dictus, sicut palma ab\ spansis palme ramis. Digiti nuncupati vel quod decem sunt,\ vel quia decenter iuncti existunt. Nam habent in se nume\rum perfectum et ordinem decentissimum. Primus pollex\ vocatus quod inter ceteros polleat virtute et potestate. Secundus\ index et salutaris sive demonstratorius, quia fere eo salu\tamus, vel ostendimus vel indicamus. Tercius impudi\ cus, quod plerumque per eum obprobrii insectatio exprimitur.\ Quartus anularis eo quod in ipso anulus geritur. Idem et\ medicinalis, quod eo trita colluria a medicis colliguntur [PL, collinuntur].\ Quintus auricularis pro eo quod eo aurem scalpimus. Un\gulas ex Greco vocamus, illi enim has onices dicunt. Trun\cus media pars corporis a collo ad inguinem. De quo Ni\gidius: Caput collo vehitur, truncus sustinetur coxis et genibus\ cruribusque. Torax a Grecis dicitur anterior pars trunci a collo usque\ ad stomachum, quam nos dicimus archam eo quod ibi\ archanum sit, id est secretum quo ceteri arcentur. Unde et area [PL, arca] \ et ara dicta quasi res secrete. Cuius eminentes pulpe ma\mille. Inter quas pars illa osse aspectus [PL, ossea pectus] dicitur, dextra levaque\ coste. Pectus vocatum quod sit pexum, inter eminentes ma\millarum partes. Unde et pectinem dici, quod pexos ca\pillos faciat. Mamille vocate quia rotunde quasi male per\ diminutionem sunt. Papille capita mammarum quas su\gentes comprehendunt. Et dicte papille quod eas infantes\ quasi palpant dum lac sugunt. Proinde mamille om\nis eminentia uberis. Papilla vero breve illud lac trahit.\ Ubera vero dicta vel quia lacte uberta, vel quia humida [PL, uvida] humore scilicet lactis in modum uvarum plena. Lac vim nominis a colore\

Translation

it is called the fist, pugnus. The word comes from pugillus, a handful, just as the word for the palm, palma, comes from the outspread branches of the the palm tree. Fingers are called digiti, either because there are ten, decem, of them, or because they are joined together in a proper fashion, decenter. For they amount in themselves to a perfect number and are ranged in a most regular order, The first, the thumb, pollex, is so called because it surpasses, pollere, the others in strength and power. The second finger, index, is also known as salutaris or demonstratorius, the greeting or indicating finger, because we generally use it in greeting, showing or pointing. The third finger is called impudicus, lewd; it is frequently used to express the pursuit of something shameful. The fourth is the ring finger, anularis, because it is the on which a ring is worn. It is also called medicinalis, the medical finger, because it used by physicians to smear on ground-up salves. The fifth finger is called auricularis, because we scrape our ear, auris, with it. Our word for nails, ungule, comes from the Greek, for they call them onices. The trunk, truncus, is the middle part of the body, from the neck to the groin. Nigidius says of it: 'The head is carried by the neck, the trunk is supported by the hips, knees and legs' (Opera, 108). Thorax is the Greek word for the front part of the trunk from the neck to the stomach; we call it the ark, archa, because what is there is arcanus, hidden, that is, secret; others are kept out by it. For this reason both arca, a chest, and ara, an altar, have names implying secrecy. The soft mounds on this part of the body are called breasts, mamille. Between them is a bony part called the breast bone, pectus. To the right and left are the ribs, coste. The breast bone, pectus, is so called because there is a nap, pexus, between the protruding parts of the breasts. In the same way, a comb is called pecten, because it makes hairs smooth. The breasts, mamille, are so called because they are round, as if the word were a diminutive of mala, apple. The nipples, papille, are the tips of the breast; suckling infants take hold of them. They are called papille because babies seem to stroke them, palpare, while they suck milk from them. Accordingly, the word mamilla refers to the whole mound of the breast; uber, the part from which the baby is suckled. But the nipple is the short bit that conveys the milk. Uber is so called either because it is filled, uberta, with milk, or because it is moist, uvida, with fluid, namely, full of milk, as a grape, uva, moist with juice. Milk, lac, gets the force of its name from its colour
  • Commentary

    Text

    Isidore on the fingers and the chest.

  • Translation
    it is called the fist, pugnus. The word comes from pugillus, a handful, just as the word for the palm, palma, comes from the outspread branches of the the palm tree. Fingers are called digiti, either because there are ten, decem, of them, or because they are joined together in a proper fashion, decenter. For they amount in themselves to a perfect number and are ranged in a most regular order, The first, the thumb, pollex, is so called because it surpasses, pollere, the others in strength and power. The second finger, index, is also known as salutaris or demonstratorius, the greeting or indicating finger, because we generally use it in greeting, showing or pointing. The third finger is called impudicus, lewd; it is frequently used to express the pursuit of something shameful. The fourth is the ring finger, anularis, because it is the on which a ring is worn. It is also called medicinalis, the medical finger, because it used by physicians to smear on ground-up salves. The fifth finger is called auricularis, because we scrape our ear, auris, with it. Our word for nails, ungule, comes from the Greek, for they call them onices. The trunk, truncus, is the middle part of the body, from the neck to the groin. Nigidius says of it: 'The head is carried by the neck, the trunk is supported by the hips, knees and legs' (Opera, 108). Thorax is the Greek word for the front part of the trunk from the neck to the stomach; we call it the ark, archa, because what is there is arcanus, hidden, that is, secret; others are kept out by it. For this reason both arca, a chest, and ara, an altar, have names implying secrecy. The soft mounds on this part of the body are called breasts, mamille. Between them is a bony part called the breast bone, pectus. To the right and left are the ribs, coste. The breast bone, pectus, is so called because there is a nap, pexus, between the protruding parts of the breasts. In the same way, a comb is called pecten, because it makes hairs smooth. The breasts, mamille, are so called because they are round, as if the word were a diminutive of mala, apple. The nipples, papille, are the tips of the breast; suckling infants take hold of them. They are called papille because babies seem to stroke them, palpare, while they suck milk from them. Accordingly, the word mamilla refers to the whole mound of the breast; uber, the part from which the baby is suckled. But the nipple is the short bit that conveys the milk. Uber is so called either because it is filled, uberta, with milk, or because it is moist, uvida, with fluid, namely, full of milk, as a grape, uva, moist with juice. Milk, lac, gets the force of its name from its colour
  • Transcription
    pugnus. Pugnus autem a pugillo dictus, sicut palma ab\ spansis palme ramis. Digiti nuncupati vel quod decem sunt,\ vel quia decenter iuncti existunt. Nam habent in se nume\rum perfectum et ordinem decentissimum. Primus pollex\ vocatus quod inter ceteros polleat virtute et potestate. Secundus\ index et salutaris sive demonstratorius, quia fere eo salu\tamus, vel ostendimus vel indicamus. Tercius impudi\ cus, quod plerumque per eum obprobrii insectatio exprimitur.\ Quartus anularis eo quod in ipso anulus geritur. Idem et\ medicinalis, quod eo trita colluria a medicis colliguntur [PL, collinuntur].\ Quintus auricularis pro eo quod eo aurem scalpimus. Un\gulas ex Greco vocamus, illi enim has onices dicunt. Trun\cus media pars corporis a collo ad inguinem. De quo Ni\gidius: Caput collo vehitur, truncus sustinetur coxis et genibus\ cruribusque. Torax a Grecis dicitur anterior pars trunci a collo usque\ ad stomachum, quam nos dicimus archam eo quod ibi\ archanum sit, id est secretum quo ceteri arcentur. Unde et area [PL, arca] \ et ara dicta quasi res secrete. Cuius eminentes pulpe ma\mille. Inter quas pars illa osse aspectus [PL, ossea pectus] dicitur, dextra levaque\ coste. Pectus vocatum quod sit pexum, inter eminentes ma\millarum partes. Unde et pectinem dici, quod pexos ca\pillos faciat. Mamille vocate quia rotunde quasi male per\ diminutionem sunt. Papille capita mammarum quas su\gentes comprehendunt. Et dicte papille quod eas infantes\ quasi palpant dum lac sugunt. Proinde mamille om\nis eminentia uberis. Papilla vero breve illud lac trahit.\ Ubera vero dicta vel quia lacte uberta, vel quia humida [PL, uvida] humore scilicet lactis in modum uvarum plena. Lac vim nominis a colore\
Folio 86r - the nature of man, continued. | The Aberdeen Bestiary | The University of Aberdeen