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    But even this limited degree of amiability, which, in an animal of less formidable powers, would be considered as indicating no peculiar mildness of temper, is modified by the calls of hunger, by the feelings of revenge, which he frequently cherishes for a considerable length of time, and by various other circumstances which render it dangerous[6] to approach him unguardedly, even in his tamest and most domesticated state, without previously ascertaining his immediate state of mind. On such occasions no keeper possessed of common prudence would be rash enough to venture upon confronting him: he knows too well that it is no boy’s play to


    1.Although the division of the true Carnivora into digitigrade and plantigrade is in many respects objectionable, we feel compelled, in conformity with established rules, to remove the animal before us from its most obvious affinities, to arrange it among the latter; placing it, however, at the commencement of that division and nearly in contact with the viverrine groups, to which it is so intimately allied, as to have been actually confounded by Buffon with the common Genette; a mistake, which was first clearly pointed out by M. F. Cuvier, but which has obtained so generally among naturalists, that the Paradoxurus is still commonly exhibited under that erroneous name. From the Genettes and Civets it differs[108] little in its general form and habits; its teeth are nearly similar; and its toes and nails closely correspond in number and in their degree of retractility. But it is entirely destitute of the secretory pouch; and, in addition to its plantigrade walk, it exhibits a very peculiar structure in the tail. This organ is as long as the body, and flattened above and below; when extended, the further half is turned over so as to place its lower side uppermost, and the animal has it in its power to roll it up into a spire, commencing from above downwards, to the very base.
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