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ftags are used against pain and tenfion of the nerves, and against the ague. Reduced to powder, they affift delivery. Infufed in oil, they relieve pain in the ears. The powder of the dung beetle, fpread on the vifcera, in a rupture, makes them go back. This infect, boiled in lintfeed oil, is good against the hæ morrhoids, and pains in the ear. Cotton is dipped in this oil, and applied warm to the part. Cockchafers are nearly of the fame nature with cantharides. Taken in powder, they promote the fecretion of urine and blood, cure the bite of a mad dog, and relieve the rheumatifm. Some perfons apply, externally, the juice of this infect to wounds. It is likewife put into plaifters, to be ufed againft carbuncles and tumours. By infufing this animal alive in common oil, the liquor ferves the fame purpose with oil of fcorpions.
Cantharides are rarely taken internally, but great ufe is made of them in external applications, in the form of blifters. They are ferviceable in head-achs and megrim; in difeafes of the eyes, and in blindnefs, occafioned by mercury, or other remedies, that repell the humours; in finging of the ears, they are applied as blifters behind the ear: in deafnefs, caufed by external violencé, in the falling ficknefs, in tooth-ach. Cantharides are allo a good remedy in the fciatica, when applied to the calf of the leg; in intermittent, as well as in malignant fevers, but they are a remedy to be used with the greatest caution. The smoke of locufts is good in retention of urine, particularly in women. Some hang them round the neck in agues. They provoke urine, diffolve the ftone, when eaten, or when taken in powder.
Ants likewife are much in ufe. They are warm, dry, and aphrodifiac, and their acid fmell wonderfully enlivens the vital fpirits. The large ants are a re
medy against the tænia, the itch, and the leprofy. To ufe them, they must be diffolved with a little falt, and the difeafed part anointed with the liquor. The fpirit of ants is an excellent remedy against diseases of the ear, fuch as deafnefs or ringing. Cotton dipt in this fpirit is put in the ears. It fits alfo eafy on the ftomach. It fortifies all the fenfes and the memory. It re-animates the ftrength, and gives vigour. It is preferable to all forts of apoplectic and strengthening waters, particularly in the cure of catarrhs It is externally of great use in sprains, in apoplexy and in atrophy, caufed by a wound. It is mixed with wa ters agreeable to the nerves, or with arthritic fpirits. The eggs of ants are efficacious in deafnefs. If the cheeks of children are rubbed with them, the down falls off. The quantity of wind they excite, when a fingle dram of them is taken, is very remarkable. If an ant neft is boiled in water, and one washes in it, it dries, warms, and fortifies the nerves. Accordingly, it is used in the gout, palfy, difeafes of the matrix, and cachexy. In the nefts of ants are found fmall bits of matter, having the fmell of amber or incense. These are formed by the infects from the refin of pines. In Norway and in Germany, they are ufed in perfumery.
OF THE USE OF INSECTS WITH RESPECT TO OTHER
I HAVE fufficiently proved, in the last chapter, that infects are useful to man. I fhall now fhew, that
they are no less beneficial to the other animals. They. ferve them for food and phyfic: one infect even is. ufed as food by others. Mr de Reaumur found, that fome caterpillars devoured one another. But, as he obferves, that they do not come to this extremity, till their proper food is withered, it is probable that these infects are driven to it by neceffity. Perhaps thofe infects were of a fpecies that require a deal of fluid for their fubfiftance. The minute pulices aquatici, which difcolour the furface of waters, ferve for food to the aquatic infects, which change into gnats. A moft admirable ordination of Providence! Small as they are, the Author of Nature has created animals, fmall enough to be swallowed whole by them. Of infects that live on land, fpiders devour flies, wafps deftroy bees, and grafshoppers ants. Serpents often make an excellent repaft of caterpillars, chafers, &c. There is a fpecies of fnail, which devours the entrails of certain infects.
The avidity which fishes discover for certain species of infects, does not permit us to doubt, that they are to them a defirable food. The monftrous whale feeds on fmall fea infects. How astonishing is it that fuch food can fatisfy an animal of fuch enormous fize! In rivers, gnats are almoft the only food of the had fish; and the pulices aquatici are the favourite food of the tench.
Infects it is well known are the most common food of a great number of birds which feed their young with them. This is therefore the reafon why the greater part breed only in the fpring, when there is plenty of caterpillars on the hedges and trees. Even thofe of them which when old eat grain or feeds, nevertheless nourish their young with infects, birds are naturally warm, therefore they must always have fomething to digeft. We cannot here ceafe to ad
mire the wisdom of the Creator who, that birds may not want nourishment, has created fuch a prodigious multitude of infects. This wifdom is particularly remarkable in this, that ants are of all infects the moft numerous, becaufe no fpecies is fo much preyed upon by birds. Infects therefore may be faid to be a fort of game after which birds are perpetually in chace. The wagtail and blackbird eat worms. Crows and ftarlings light upon fheep newly fhorn, to feed on a fort of blue lice which are then visible at fome diftance on their fkin. Ducks diving under water, devour the pulices aquatici. The little tit-mouse and red-throat very dextrously catch flies on the wing, and thin the air of them. The woodcock and the fnipe feck for small worms in the marfhes. The large tom-tit will kill from ten to twelve bees, and tearing out the entrails and honey bag, convey them to its young. The eggs of the ant are the food of the young nightingales. Swallows live entirely on bees, and other infects which they carry to their brood. Woodpeckers feize with their tongues, the infects which live in holes of trees and in clefts in the bark. This nourishment fattens many fpecies of birds. It is at leaft certain that poultry lay oftener, when they have an opportunity of feeding on beetles and earth worms,
I must here remark the wifdom and goodness of the Creator. While he has given to birds a defire for certain infects he has alfo bestowed on them the neceffary members and qualities for feizing them. Snipes, herons, and other water birds which are obe liged to feek for infects under water, have their bills long enough for this purpose. Ducks which are obliged for the fame purpose to remove the mud have their bills broad. The wood-peckers which penetrate the bark of trees, have their bill hard, fharp, and fit for boring. The upper part of it is the most
raised, and feems to be applied to the under to give more ftrength to the whole bill as well as to serve for ornament. When we view it, we cannot help admiring the art with which it is laboured. Befides this advantage, this bird has the tongue flender like an awl, and ufes it very adroitly in catching the infects the point of the tongue therefore is endowed with a certain hardness, and on both fides it is furnifhed with fmall curved hooks which prevent the infects from difengaging themselves when the bird draws its tongue into its mouth.
Infects likewife ferve as food for quadrupeds. In the Indies is found an animal which hunts for infects, and devours them with avidity. The young armadillos feed on a fpecies of locuft which, because they have on their neck a fort of hood, have been called Monks. Bears are fond of ants and honey, and they go in fearch with great eagerness of the refts of wild bees. The Chameleon, and fome other fpecies of lizards eat flies. The principal food of the badger is the dung beetle, worms, and other infects of that kind. If we may believe Eliar, foxes are not only greedy of poultry, but alfo fond of honey, and for this purpose feek the nefts of wafps. Frogs lie in wait to feize upon bees when they come to drink. Dogs dig up the Cicadas and eat them. The mole which lives in the earth, feeds on worms and millepieds.
The members of thofe quadrupeds that feed on infects, are provided with the neceffary qualities for feizing their prey. The tongue of that animal of the Indies, which lives on ants, is long and limber, He thrufts it out, far from his mouth, and darts it into an ant hill, whence, after the ants have got upon it, he withdraws it again into his mouth. The tongue of the chameleon is likewife long, pointed,