The ostrich. It has wings but does not fly and has feet like a camel. It looks for the Pleiades in the sky before laying its eggs in a hole in the sand. The eggs hatch while covered by warm sand.
One ostrich looks at a star in the margin while the other buries eggs in the sand with its beak.
There is an attempt to make the claws look like camels' feet but otherwise the birds are not very realistic. They were common in north Africa until the nineteenth century. Two quire marks, a 'g' in pencil and another in ink at bottom centre. Chevron folio mark at top right corner. Initial type 2.
- Transcription and Translation
Transcriptionoccupant, et tamen officium divine legis ignorant. Sedent et ta\ cent, seipsos pascunt, nec gregem [mark] sibi commissum ad pascua\ eterne viriditatis ducunt. Et hic igitur cui intelligentia datur nec\ populo verbum dei predicat, et hic qui tacet quia nescit quid dicat\ uterque caveat, ne quasi gallus de pertica cadat, filios suos Heli\ sepe corripuit, sed quia manum correctioni non adhibuit, fractis\ cervicibus de sella cecidit. Antequam moreretur mortem filiorum vidit,\ et archam domini ab allophilis captam fuisse cognovit.\ De strucione Est animal quod dicitur\ assida, quod Greci strato\ camelon vocant, Lati\ ni vero strucion. Habet\ quidem pennas, sed non\ volat, pedes autem cameli\ similes. Cum vero venerit\ tempus ut ova sua pa\ riat, elevat oculos suos\ ad celum et intendit\ si illa stella que dicitur Virgilia appareat, non enim ponit ova\ sua, nisi quando oritur illa stella. Quando enim viderit circa mensem iu\ nium ipsam stellam fodit in terram ubi ponat ova sua et coo\ perit sabulo, cum ascenderit de loco illo statim obliviscitur eorum\ et nunquam redit ad ova sua. Tranquillitas quidem aeris et temperies\ hoc prestare videtur ut estate calefacta arena excoquat ova sua\ et educat pullos. Si ergo assida cognoscit tempus suum et obli\ viscitur posteritatis suo[e] ac terrena postponens sequitur celestia, quanto\ magis o homo tibi ad bravium superne vocationis tendendum est,\ propter quem deus homo factus est, ut eriperet te de potestate tenebrarum,\
Translationyet they are ignorant of their duties under the law of God. They sit and say nothing; they attend to their own spiritual nourishment, but they do not lead the flock committed to them to the green pastures of eternity. Let them take care, therefore, those who are endowed with understanding and do not use it to preach the word of God, and those who say nothing because they do not know what to say, lest like the cock they fall from their perch. Eli often reprimanded his sons, but because he did not reinforce his rebukes with his hand, he fell from his seat and broke his neck. Before he died he witnessed the death of his sons and learned that the ark of the Lord had been captured by another tribe (see Samuel 1, 2:22-25; 4:18). Of the ostrich There is an animal called assida which the Greeks call stratocamelon, but Latin-speakers strucio, the ostrich. It has wings but does not fly, and its feet are like those of the camel. When the time comes for it to lay eggs, it raises its eyes to the sky and looks to see if the star called Vergiliae, the Pleiades, has appeared, for it will not lay its eggs until that star has risen. When the ostrich sees the star, around the month of June, it digs in the ground, deposits its eggs in the hole it has made and covers them with sand. When it gets up from the hole, it immediately forgets the eggs and never returns to them. The effect of the calm, mild air seems to be that the sand in the summer heat hatches the eggs, bringing forth the chicks. If, therefore, the ostrich knows its time and forgets its young, and pursues heavenly things to the exclusion of earthly ones, how much more, O man, should you strive for the prize of the summons from on high, you for whom God was made man, to deliver you from the power of darkness