The Lion

Of the great Cat, the Lion, the ancients give many wonderful stories,

some of them not altogether redounding to his character for bravery:--"A

serpent, or snake doth easily kill a lion, where of Ambrosius writeth

very elegantly. Eximia leonis pulchritudo, per comantes cervicis toros

excutitur, cum subito a serpente os pectore tenus attolitur, itaque

Coluber cervum fugit sed Leonem interficit. The splendant beautie of a

lion in his long curled mane is quickly abated, and allayed, when the

serpent doth but lift up his head to his brest. For such is the

ordinance of God, that the Snake, which runneth from a fearefull Hart,

should without all feare kill a courageous Lyon; and the writer of Saint

Marcellus life, How much more will he feare a great Dragon, against

whom he hath not power to lift up his taile. And Aristotle writeth

that the Lyon is afraid of the Swine, and Rasis affirmeth as much of

the mouse.

"The Cocke also both seene and heard for his voice and combe, is a

terror to the Lion and Basiliske, and the Lyon runneth from him when he

seeth him, especially from a white cocke, and the reason hereof, is

because they are both partakers of the Sunnes qualities in a high

degree, and therefore the greater body feareth the lesser, because there

is a more eminent and predominant sunny propertie in the Cocke, than in

the Lion. Lucretius describes this terrour notably, affirming that, in

the morning, when the Cocke croweth, the lions betake themselves to

flight, because there are certain seedes in the body of Cockes, which

when they are sent, and appeare to the eyes of Lions, they vexe their

pupils and apples, and make them, against Nature, become gentle and