Presentation of this planet and its moons, including ring and creatures

- Chapter 14 -
The Stick Snail. The Pyramid Snail. The Disk Snail that produces ointments and Garden Ornaments for the patriarchs' coats.

ollowing the great giant blue mussel, we will now deal with the snail; first with those which are in the waters, and then with those which, in accordance with their physique, are more developed and live on land.
In the waters there are thousands of different kinds of snails which are successively in such order that, in a biological relationship, one comes forth from the other, although it would be better expressed to say "in respect to the procreation of life."
As far as the preceding species of snail is concerned, they are of a lesser interest for your curious eye, although you could write volumes of books about these species. However, if you were to attempt to describe them in detail, you would never be able to list them all. Therefore we will only describe the species of these crustaceans which are on the highest step of development and which should be of special interest to you. We shall describe the five highest species because of their wonderful stature.
The first highly developed species of snail is the stick snail. It is a particularly peculiar kind of snail because the whorl of the shell resembles an elongated screw. It is similar to carving a 60foot long stick into a screw, or, in a better description, winding a long rope around this stick in such a way that another whorl could firmly mesh from the top to the bottom into the stick. Do not imagine this stick to be too thin; at the bottom, the thickest part has a diameter of 5 feet and from there it tapers off to a point, and the whorl also becomes proportionately thinner. On earth you would call a snail like that a kind of a serpentine obelisk. The reason why we called it a "stick snail" is because that is what the Saturnites call it.
The outer color of this snail is absolutely beautiful. The thickest part is completely rosy red, as if you would cover finely polished silver with this color. Towards the tip, the red becomes darker, with the same metallic glow, so that the rose coloration begins with the faintest red and end with the darkest red. But the color is not the splendor of this snail - there is the trim on the whorl. The long-winding abdominal belt of this snail is adorned in the most beautiful color throughout, with larger and smaller pearls. The furrow that runs between the whorls is adorned with a golden ribbon which contains beautiful arabesque figurations. That is how the house of this snail is structured.
The animal that lives inside this shell is less interesting; it is merely a polyp-like worm equipped with four proboscises. Its nourishment is made up of small snails and smaller mussels, which it grabs with its lowest tentacle, crushes, and then places the squashed food into its proboscis. With the other two proboscises, this animal feels its way around in order to find something to eat and to determine if some adversaries might close in. Should this be the case, then it withdraws into its beautiful house and closes off the exit with a whitish crust. But many times this precaution is to no avail, because its enemies are the sword lobsters, which I shall describe later on. The sword-tailed crustaceans (of the order of the xiphosura) have the ability to penetrate this crust; they enter this house by force and consume this defenseless animal little by little, until nothing remains. These lobsters then become victim to another larger snail, which we shall discuss later.
The inhabitants of Saturn gather the shells of these stick snails and adorn their gardens with them. At times they use the shells as water pipes in the following manner: wherever there are springs in the mountains, they catch the water with the muzzle of the shell and cut off the tip of the tapered part; this results in a build-up of pressure, and the water streams out with force at the smaller end. Below that they place another shell, catching the water with a large muzzle, and they continue this sometimes for many miles downhill. That such a water pipe makes a very interesting impression you can very well imagine.
The next species of snail is the pyramid snail. The color is uniformly a golden grass green, the abdominal girth is proportionately adorned with large snow-white elliptic shapes, and the edges ire trimmed in such a way as if you were to frame an alabaster plate In a smoothly polished golden frame. This snail is very large; if you compare its size to something here on earth and measure its width, it would be considerably higher than your Stadtschlossberg. The color of the animal that lives in this house is dark gray, and it has a protruding trunk the size of an immensely large elephant's. This trunk is far-reaching and extremely strong. On both sides of the trunk are two more trunks which are weaker, and on the very ends of each of these trunks there is a sharp-sighted eye. On the under-side of the snail there is a strong pair of whitish flippers which enable the snail to move fairly quickly over the ice whenever the surface of the ocean freezes. When this snail travels on the ocean its house is turned upwards, and when you view this traveling snail from a distance it looks like a swimming pyramid.
This snail has a very vicious nature and attacks human beings by winding its trunk around its victims, crushing them and putting them in its large mouth. But the Saturnites are well aware of this and are therefore well-equipped when they want to catch this snail. They put a noose around its big trunk and close it fast, and the snail is as good as caught. Since the snail is an air-breathing animal and draws the air through its protruding trunk, it dies quickly when it can no longer inhale air through its trunk. The Saturnites know when the snail has died by the white liquid which escapes its mouth, because the liquid is already an initial sign of its internal decomposition.
The people of Saturn gather this liquid because of its extraordinary fragrance, which by far surpasses your ambergris on earth. As soon as the dead snail ceases to produce this liquid, they turn it over to nature. Soon the vermin of the ocean take over and within a few days they completely consume the snail, that is, only the snail itself, not its hard and firm shell; at the wide opening the thickness of the shell is quite often anywhere from 24 to 30 feet. Once the shell has been cleansed in this manner, the Saturnites remove the shell from the ocean at the time of ebb, and it is taken to its destination in the same manner as the giant mussel.
This snail's main source of nourishment is the kind of swordtail crustaceans that were mentioned earlier, which exist in various sizes and in great number. None are larger than the socalled ocean crab (macrocheira), but most of them are much smaller, often no larger than a grasshopper on earth. But how does this second species of snail, this pyramid snail, make a major catch of the swordtail crustaceans? This snail catches its prey when these crustaceans are the busiest, namely when their attention is directed towards their own consumption of the stick snail. When the pyramid snail comes across a stick-snail shell filled with these crustaceans, it winds its large trunk around it and takes it to the shore and places the snail house in such way that its wide side is exposed. As soon as the crustaceans are out of the water, they begin to move out, one after the other; this is the pyramid snail's opportunity to eat them. These crustaceans are therefore at the same time a life-gathering middle animal class through which the life of one snail passes over potentized into the life of another. Between two larger animal classes there is always a smaller animal class which is ill-disposed towards the previous larger class, but which is soon consumed as tasty nourishment by the larger class that follows.
The third kind of ocean snail on Saturn is the disk snail. This snail resembles to some extent the nautilus snail on earth, but with the difference that your nautilus snail is of course considerably smaller, but much thicker in proportion to its platforms on both sides than the disk snail on Saturn to its platform. The disk of this snail often has a diameter of 600 to 720 feet, but the entire thickness from top to bottom is rarely much over 18 feet. At the time of the tide this snail is on the ocean floor, whereas at the time of the ebb it always swims on the surface.
When the snail is on the ocean floor, it pushes its long trunk far above the surface of the water in order to inhale. Its position can be very easily determined through this, and it is usually caught while in that position. It is of course understood that this is done during medium tide, because during high tide none of Saturn's inhabitants would dare to be on the ocean. You may question why the disk snail is not captured at the time of ebb while it swims on the surface of the ocean. This animal cannot be caught while on the surface, for it can travel there at a great speed and cannot be captured without great effort. And even if someone could catch up, no one would be able to hold onto the disk, because this otherwise gentle creature will, at the slightest touch, retract all its extremities immediately and, by means of one of its flippers that extends into the water, begin to turn at such speed that no one would dare to touch this large fastturning disk.
What does this extremely peculiar snail actually look like? Indeed, I will tell you: you may immerse yourself in all kinds of wonderful fantasies, but you will not succeed in properly imagining the beauty of this snail. And this is the reason why the Saturnites seek to possess such a wondrous snail, often under severe circumstances and at great danger to themselves.
As far as its house is concerned, this snail forms a complete circle, the opening bordering extensively along the flat prewhorl and taking about a third of the total circle. The opening through which the disk snail arbitrarily projects its body and its wonderful extremities is not much wider than 3 feet, and the funnel-shaped rim of the elongated opening is so well and finely rounded that it tremendously enhances the entire splendor of the house, rather than giving it the appearance of something disorganized and incomplete.
What does this house look like? Look and be astonished in your imagination! As far as the exterior of this house is concerned, it has a wonderful appearance. It can be compared to a house where a most artful and competent jeweler has trimmed it in a most multifarious, well-ordered fashion with all different kinds of precious gems. There is one row of diamond-like gems all around, with a weight of one pound each. Another row which follows is a row of rubies of the same weight, another one of emeralds, and so on, with all twelve kinds of the main precious gems. And in between each row is a stone border a free space that has the appearance of a wide gold ribbon. This band contains in an exalted form the most wonderful drawings that faithfully depict the previous group of animal species whose life is unified in this snail.
The end of this snail house is finished off with a gallery of upright little golden columns about 6 feet in height; this has an appearance as if a skillful sculptor had sculptured a railing around such a disk, wheel or rondel, and, where the rods are artfully sculptured, little stick snails which are connected at the top with finely wound arches. These rods are in accordance with its kind; they are gold colored, like the gold of the stick snail itself. The winding arches have a more beautiful finish than the finest shiniest polished gold. Above each arch in an artful form you will find the pyramid snail in miniature with its very own peculiar color. The railing becomes lower at the beginning of the opening of the shell and eventually ceases completely where the animal projects its main extremities for a distance of about 30 feet.
That is what the upper part of this snail looks like. As mentioned before, the sidewalls are not any higher, wider or thicker than 18 feet, and it looks like a colonnade of columns of 12 feet in height. The columns are white throughout and do not have a base or a capital; instead, they rise from the lower protruding surface to the upper ceiling. The background behind the columns is also lightly colored and resembles a rainbow. The elongated canal or rather the elongated opening of the snail shell is completely red, as sometimes on earth the clouds at sunset glow, and it has at the same time its own phosphorous luminosity which, especially at night, is not less illuminated and it appears like a cloud illuminated by the evening sun.
What do the extremities of the snail look like? This snail extends a kind of round sail like a peacock with its long erectile ocelated tail coverts. When there is wind on the surface of the ocean, the sail serves the purpose of propelling the snail at exceedingly fast speeds on the surface. During a calm wind the snail fans the air with this large wheel-like sail so quickly that it moves rapidly over the surface of the ocean; this motion is accelerated by the lower extremities which are in the water.
When this wheel-like sail is spread out it is very beautiful. Its color is pale violet. The border all around is a radiant red and self-illuminating, like clouds in the sunset glow. The entire wheel is divided into compartments at regular intervals, each of which is adorned with an excellent drawing of a stick snail, with the tapered end pointing downward. These compartments are adorned on the backside with swordtail crustaceans in perfect order from the smallest to the largest, and these drawings are a most beautiful gold-carmine color. Every compartment forms its own arch at the edge. In the front, this arch is adorned with a true reproduction of the disk snail itself and on the backside on a light blue background with the pyramid snail. The outer edge of the arch on the backside is a dazzling white, and it also has its own evening-cloud red luminosity, just like in the front.
The long trunk which the snail uses to inhale is also completely white, but with a winding red ribbon; all along the center of this ribbon are little pale greenish-gold stars. This trunk also serves the snail as an arm to procure its nourishment. The snail's nourishment consists of a kind of ocean grass which grows on the shores. In this grass there are countless little gold worms which serve the snail as supplemental nutrients. Through this supplementary nourishment the snail acquires the life of all preceding species of animals.
This snail already possesses its own strong instinct and sometimes produces enough intelligence so that, in certain countries, some human beings bestow upon this snail a divine reverence this was caused by the fact that this snail, when not provoked or pursued, will rescue an object which accidentally falls into the ocean, whether that object be animal or human. Whatever this snail finds helpless on the surface of the ocean, it seizes with its strong trunk and places upon its beautiful and spacious disk and sails therewith to the shore and deposits it with its trunk on dry land. This is also why this extremely beautiful water animal has been given so many different names by the Saturnites in the different countries. Some call it the "ocean-sweeper, because it cannot bear to have anything float on the surface of the ocean; others call it the "life-saver"; others again call it the "ocean-light," and others the "living ship" or the "miracle wheel"; and there are many more such designations for this animal.
Except for human beings, this animal has almost no enemies. Once it reaches a certain age it dies. But when it dies, the beautiful house loses much of its splendor. That is why the Saturnites attempt to apprehend this animal alive and then kill it, so that the splendor of this beautiful house remains. When this animal is killed it floats on the surface of the ocean. The inhabitants take it quickly with their ships on one of the rivers towards their home. Once they have reached their destination, they carefully and skillfully remove the meat, so that the compartments of the big fan or sail are not damaged. The sail is then carefully removed from the firm body of the snail and carefully stretched out. And when it has properly dried, it is treated with extremely fragrant oils through which it becomes soft and pliable.
From this snail-fan they tailor a type of coat. But these coats are worn only by those Saturnites, especially in Herrifa, who are held in high esteem as patriarchs. Such a fan maintains all its colors and drawings, but it loses its own luminosity.
The remaining flesh of this snail is almost all grease; therefore they boil it out. This fat is then mixed with fragrant herbs, and the Saturnites prepare an extraordinarily exquisite ointment which is used only by the patriarchs.
But what happens to the beautiful house? It is carefully pulled on land by the Saturnites and securely placed in a horizontal manner on an earth-wall built especially for the purpose, and mostly in one of the gardens of the patriarchs. This is a very pleasing sight. Many Saturnites enjoy looking at it, and on special occasions they even walk on it. However, walking on the house of the snail is done very rarely, because most patriarchs hold such garden adornment in high esteem, since on Saturn wealth is determined only by the splendor of one's garden. In order to increase the splendor of a garden, a shell of the pyramid snail is placed on one side of the shell of the disk snail. It is not unusual for one patriarch to have up to a hundred of these adornments in a straight line in his garden, that is of both species the same amount.
It should suffice to say that all you have to do is to awaken the power of your imagination and you will be astonished at the magnificence and splendor of such a garden. Because one row of those diamonds with which the surface of a snail house is adorned is more valuable than the treasury of an emperor on earth, not even counting the other precious gems and radiant gold as well as all the other splendor which is contained in these gardens of the patriarchs.
We will discuss the other two snails in the chapters that follow. For today, however, I say Amen!