category:Leisure puzzle


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    In almost every other point they are subject to infinite variations of form and structure. The shape of the head, which, in one or two species, offers a close approximation to the human form, passes through numerous intermediate gradations, until it reaches a point at which it can only be compared with that of the hound. The body, which is in general slight and well made, is in some few instances remarkably short and thickset, and in others drawn out to a surprising degree of tenuity. Their limbs vary greatly in their proportions; but in most of them the anterior are longer than the posterior: in all they are admirably adapted to the purposes to which they[140] are applied, in climbing and leaping, by the slenderness of their form, the flexibility of their joints, and the muscular activity with which these qualities are so strikingly combined. But of all their organs there is perhaps none which exhibits so remarkable a discrepancy in every particular as the tail; which is entirely wanting in some, forms a mere tubercle in others, in a third group is short and tapering, in a fourth of moderate length and cylindrical, in a fifth extremely long but uniformly covered with hair; in others, again, of equal length, divested of hair beneath and near the tip, and capable of being twisted round the branch of a tree or any other similar substance in such a manner as to support the whole weight of the animal, even without the assistance of his hands.


    1.Our figure was taken from the stuffed skin which is preserved in the Museum of the Zoological Society.
    3.Ursus Ferox. Lewis and Clarke.
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