Who can open the doors of his face?
&c.] Of his mouth, the jaws thereof, which are like a pair of folding doors: the jaws of a crocodile have a prodigious opening. Peter Martyr F21 speaks of one, whose jaws opened seven feet broad; and Leo Africanus F23 affirms he saw some, whose jaws, when opened, would hold a whole cow. To the wideness of the jaws of this creature Martial F24 alludes; and that the doors or jaws of the mouth of the whale are of a vast extent will be easily believed by those who suppose that was the fish which swallowed Jonah;
his teeth are terrible round about;
this may seem to make against the whale, the common whale having none; though the "ceti dentati" are a sort of whales that have many teeth in the lower jaw, white, large, solid, and terrible F25. Olaus Magnus F26 speaks of some that have jaws twelve or fourteen feet long; and teeth of six, eight, and twelve feet; and there is a sort called "trumpo", having teeth resembling those of a mill F1. In the spermaceti whale are rows of fine ivory teeth in each jaw, about five or six inches long F2. But of the crocodile there is no doubt; which has two rows of teeth, very sharp and terrible, and to the number of sixty F3.
F21 Decad. 5. c. 9.
F23 Descript. Africae, l. 9. p. 763. So Sandys's Travels, l. 2. p. 78. Edit. 5.
F24 Epigram. l. 3. cp. 64.
F25 Vid. Plin. l. 9. c. 5, 6. and Philosoph. Transact. vol. 3. p. 544. Scheuchzer. Physic. Sacr. vol. 4. p. 848.
F26 De Ritu Gent. Septent. l. 21. c. 8.
F1 Philosoph. Transact. abridged, vol. 2. p. 847, 848.
F2 Philosoph. Transact. abridged, vol. 7. part 3. p. 425.
F3 Aelian. l. 10. c. 21.