London, Nov. 1828.
The Asiatic Elephant was until very lately considered as forming one species with the African, the clear and obvious distinctions which exist between them never having been noticed until pointed out by M. Cuvier, notwithstanding that both have been familiarly known for more than two thousand years to the nations of Europe, the former having formed an important part of the armament with which Porus withstood the conquering arms of Alexander, and having been subsequently introduced even into Italy by Pyrrhus; and the latter, as we may fairly presume, furnishing those individuals which were employed in the warlike array of the Carthaginians. The Asiatic animal appears when fully grown to attain a larger size than the African, the females commonly measuring from seven to eight, and the males from eight to ten feet in height, and sometimes weighing six or seven thousand pounds. His head is more oblong, and his forehead presents in the centre a deep concavity between two lateral and rounded elevations; that of the African being round and convex in all its parts. The teeth of the former are composed of transverse vertical lamin? of equal breadth, while those of the latter form rhomboidal or lozenge-shaped divisions. The ears of the Asiatic are also smaller and descend no lower than his neck, and he exhibits four distinct toes on his hind feet: the African on the contrary is furnished with ears of much greater size, descending to his legs, and no more than three toes are visible on his posterior extremities. These differences are so striking and important, and indeed, so far as regards the form of the head and the structure of the teeth, so essential, that it is impossible not to adopt the division which has been founded upon them, and to consider the natives of the two continents as originally and specifically distinct.
THE ASIATIC ELEPHANT.