The Aberdeen Bestiary

Folio 90r - the parts of man's body, 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.
the food of life. The bowel is the part that receives the food and is regularly purged. Sallust: 'Pretending that he purged his bowels' (History, 1, 52). It is also called the bowel, alvus, because it is washed out, abluere, that is, purged. For from it flows out excremental filth. Only women have a womb; in it they conceive as in a small cup; but there are writers who assign a womb to either sex, often calling it venter, belly - and not just poets, but others also. The womb is called uterus because it is double and divides itself into two parts which bend in different and opposing directions like a ram's horn; or because it is filled inside with a fetus. For this reason it is called uter, a bag, because it has something inside it, such as limbs and intestines. Paunch, aqualiculus, is properly the word for a pig's belly. For this reason it is translated as venter, belly. It is called the matrix because the baby is generated in it. It fosters the semen it has received, and by cherishing it, turns it into flesh; and what it has turned into flesh, it separates into parts of the body. The vulva is so called as if it were a folding-door, that is, the door of the belly; either because it receives the semen or because the fetus goes forth from it. The bladder, vesica, is so called as if it were a water-container; thus it is filled with urine collected from the kidneys, and is distended by the fluid. There is no need for this in birds. Urine is so called either because it burns, urere, or because it comes from the kidneys. Its appearance reveals future health or sickness. The fluid is commonly called lotium, because you use it to wash clothes clean, lotus. Semen, seed, is so called because once scattered it is consumed either by the earth or by the womb, to produce either fruits or a fetus. For it is a liquor concocted from food and the body, which is spread through the veins and spinal cord. From there it is sweated out like bilgewater; it thickens in the kidneys and is ejaculated during intercourse, and taken up into the woman's womb, by a sort of intestinal heat and the flow of menstrual

Text

Isidore on the abdomen.

Transcription

vite alimenta transmittat. Alvus est que cibum re\cipit et purgari solet. Sallustius: Simulans sibi alvum\ purgari. Et vocata alvus quod abluatur, id est, purgetur.\ Ex ipsa enim sordes stercorum defluunt. Uterum\ sole mulieres habent, in quo concipiunt ad similitudinem\ caliculi, tamen, auctores uterum pro utroquelibet sexu ventrem\ plerumque ponunt, nec poete tantummodo sed et ceteri. Vocatus\ autem uterus quod duplex sit, et ab utraque in duas se di\vidat partes que in diversis diffuse ac reflexe circumpli\cantur in modum cornu arietis vel quod impleatur fetu\ interius. Hinc est uter quod aliquid intrinsecus habuerit ut mem\bra et viscera. Aqualiculus autem proprie porci est. Hinc ad\ ventrem translatio. Matrix dicitur, quod in eo generetur. Semen\ enim receptum confovet, confovendo corporat, corporatum\ in membra distinguit. Vulva vocata quasi valva, id est, ianua\ ventris, quod vel semen recipiat, vel quod ex ea\ fetus procedat.\ Vesica dicta, quia sicut vas aque ita de renibus urina collecta\ completur, et humore distenditur. Cuius usus in volucri\bus non habetur. Urina autem dicta sive quod urat,\ sive quia ex renibus egreditur. Cuius indicio et salus et egritudo futura monstratur. Qui humor vulgo locium [lotium]\ dicitur, quod eo lota, id est munda vestimenta afficiantur.\ Semen est quod iactum sumitur, aut a terra aut ab utero,\ ad gignendum vel fructus vel fetus. Est enim liquor ex\ cibi et corporis decoctione factus, ac diffusus per venas atque\ medullas. Qui inde desudatur in modum sentine, concres\cit in renibus eiectusque per coitus, et in utero mulieris suscep[tus]\ calore quodammodo viscerum et menstrualis irrigatione\

Translation

the food of life. The bowel is the part that receives the food and is regularly purged. Sallust: 'Pretending that he purged his bowels' (History, 1, 52). It is also called the bowel, alvus, because it is washed out, abluere, that is, purged. For from it flows out excremental filth. Only women have a womb; in it they conceive as in a small cup; but there are writers who assign a womb to either sex, often calling it venter, belly - and not just poets, but others also. The womb is called uterus because it is double and divides itself into two parts which bend in different and opposing directions like a ram's horn; or because it is filled inside with a fetus. For this reason it is called uter, a bag, because it has something inside it, such as limbs and intestines. Paunch, aqualiculus, is properly the word for a pig's belly. For this reason it is translated as venter, belly. It is called the matrix because the baby is generated in it. It fosters the semen it has received, and by cherishing it, turns it into flesh; and what it has turned into flesh, it separates into parts of the body. The vulva is so called as if it were a folding-door, that is, the door of the belly; either because it receives the semen or because the fetus goes forth from it. The bladder, vesica, is so called as if it were a water-container; thus it is filled with urine collected from the kidneys, and is distended by the fluid. There is no need for this in birds. Urine is so called either because it burns, urere, or because it comes from the kidneys. Its appearance reveals future health or sickness. The fluid is commonly called lotium, because you use it to wash clothes clean, lotus. Semen, seed, is so called because once scattered it is consumed either by the earth or by the womb, to produce either fruits or a fetus. For it is a liquor concocted from food and the body, which is spread through the veins and spinal cord. From there it is sweated out like bilgewater; it thickens in the kidneys and is ejaculated during intercourse, and taken up into the woman's womb, by a sort of intestinal heat and the flow of menstrual
  • Commentary

    Text

    Isidore on the abdomen.

  • Translation
    the food of life. The bowel is the part that receives the food and is regularly purged. Sallust: 'Pretending that he purged his bowels' (History, 1, 52). It is also called the bowel, alvus, because it is washed out, abluere, that is, purged. For from it flows out excremental filth. Only women have a womb; in it they conceive as in a small cup; but there are writers who assign a womb to either sex, often calling it venter, belly - and not just poets, but others also. The womb is called uterus because it is double and divides itself into two parts which bend in different and opposing directions like a ram's horn; or because it is filled inside with a fetus. For this reason it is called uter, a bag, because it has something inside it, such as limbs and intestines. Paunch, aqualiculus, is properly the word for a pig's belly. For this reason it is translated as venter, belly. It is called the matrix because the baby is generated in it. It fosters the semen it has received, and by cherishing it, turns it into flesh; and what it has turned into flesh, it separates into parts of the body. The vulva is so called as if it were a folding-door, that is, the door of the belly; either because it receives the semen or because the fetus goes forth from it. The bladder, vesica, is so called as if it were a water-container; thus it is filled with urine collected from the kidneys, and is distended by the fluid. There is no need for this in birds. Urine is so called either because it burns, urere, or because it comes from the kidneys. Its appearance reveals future health or sickness. The fluid is commonly called lotium, because you use it to wash clothes clean, lotus. Semen, seed, is so called because once scattered it is consumed either by the earth or by the womb, to produce either fruits or a fetus. For it is a liquor concocted from food and the body, which is spread through the veins and spinal cord. From there it is sweated out like bilgewater; it thickens in the kidneys and is ejaculated during intercourse, and taken up into the woman's womb, by a sort of intestinal heat and the flow of menstrual
  • Transcription
    vite alimenta transmittat. Alvus est que cibum re\cipit et purgari solet. Sallustius: Simulans sibi alvum\ purgari. Et vocata alvus quod abluatur, id est, purgetur.\ Ex ipsa enim sordes stercorum defluunt. Uterum\ sole mulieres habent, in quo concipiunt ad similitudinem\ caliculi, tamen, auctores uterum pro utroquelibet sexu ventrem\ plerumque ponunt, nec poete tantummodo sed et ceteri. Vocatus\ autem uterus quod duplex sit, et ab utraque in duas se di\vidat partes que in diversis diffuse ac reflexe circumpli\cantur in modum cornu arietis vel quod impleatur fetu\ interius. Hinc est uter quod aliquid intrinsecus habuerit ut mem\bra et viscera. Aqualiculus autem proprie porci est. Hinc ad\ ventrem translatio. Matrix dicitur, quod in eo generetur. Semen\ enim receptum confovet, confovendo corporat, corporatum\ in membra distinguit. Vulva vocata quasi valva, id est, ianua\ ventris, quod vel semen recipiat, vel quod ex ea\ fetus procedat.\ Vesica dicta, quia sicut vas aque ita de renibus urina collecta\ completur, et humore distenditur. Cuius usus in volucri\bus non habetur. Urina autem dicta sive quod urat,\ sive quia ex renibus egreditur. Cuius indicio et salus et egritudo futura monstratur. Qui humor vulgo locium [lotium]\ dicitur, quod eo lota, id est munda vestimenta afficiantur.\ Semen est quod iactum sumitur, aut a terra aut ab utero,\ ad gignendum vel fructus vel fetus. Est enim liquor ex\ cibi et corporis decoctione factus, ac diffusus per venas atque\ medullas. Qui inde desudatur in modum sentine, concres\cit in renibus eiectusque per coitus, et in utero mulieris suscep[tus]\ calore quodammodo viscerum et menstrualis irrigatione\
Folio 90r - the parts of man's body, continued. | The Aberdeen Bestiary | The University of Aberdeen