His De Re Rustica in twelve volumes has been completely preserved and forms an important source on Roman agriculture, together with the works of Cato the Elder and Varro, both of which he occasionally cites. A smaller book on trees, De arboribus, is usually attributed to him.
In 1794 the Spanish botanists Jose Antonio Pavón y Jimenez and Hipólito Ruiz López named a genus of Peruvian asterid Columellia in his honour.
Lucius Junius Moderatus Columella
Gades, Hispania Baetica
|Died||c. 70 AD|
|Notable works||De Re Rustica|
Little is known of Columella's life. He was probably born in Gades, Hispania Baetica (modern Cádiz), possibly to Roman parents. After a career in the army (he was tribune in Syria in 35), he turned to farming his estates at Ardea, Carseoli, and Alba in Latium.
In ancient times, Columella's work "appears to have been but little read", cited only by Pliny the Elder, Servius, Cassiodorus, and Isidorus, and having fallen "into almost complete neglect" after Palladius published an abridgement of it.
This book is presented as advice to a certain Publius Silvinus. Previously known only in fragments, the complete book was among those discovered in monastery libraries in Switzerland and France by Poggio Bracciolini and his assistant Bartolomeo di Montepulciano during the Council of Constance, between 1414 and 1418.
Structure of De Re Rustica ("On Rural Affairs"):
Book 10 is written entirely in dactylic hexameter verse, in imitation of or homage to, Virgil. It may initially have been intended to be the concluding volume, books 11 and 12 being perhaps an addition to the original scheme.
The short work De arboribus, "On Trees", is in manuscripts and early editions of Columella considered as book 3 of De Re Rustica. However it is clear from the opening sentences that it is part of a separate and possibly earlier work. As the anonymous translator of the Millar edition notes (p. 571), there is in De arboribus no mention of the Publius Silvinus to whom the De Re Rustica is addressed. A recent critical edition of the Latin text of the De Re Rustica of Columella includes it, but as incerti auctoris, by an unknown hand. Cassiodorus mentions sixteen books of Columella, which has led to the suggestion that De arboribus formed part of a work in four volumes.
In addition to Cato the Elder and Varro, Columella used many sources that are no longer extant and for which he is one of the few references. These include works by Aulus Cornelius Celsus, the Carthaginian writer Mago, Tremellius Scrofa, and many Greek sources. His uncle Marcus Columella, "a clever man and an exceptional farmer" (VII.2.30), had conducted experiments in sheep breeding, crossing colourful wild rams, introduced from Africa for gladiatorial games, with domestic sheep, and may have influenced his nephew's interests. Columella owned farms in Italy; he refers specifically to estates at Ardea, Carseoli, and Alba, and speaks repeatedly of his own practical experience in agriculture.
The earliest editions of Columella group his works with those on agriculture of Cato the Elder, Varro Reatinus and Palladius. Some modern library catalogues follow Brunet in listing these under "Rei rusticae scriptores" or "Scriptores rei rusticae".
The clausilium is a calcareous anatomical structure which is found in one group of air-breathing land snails: terrestrial pulmonate gastropod mollusks in the family Clausiliidae, the door snails. The clausilium is one part of the clausilial apparatus.
The presence of a clausilium is the reason for the common name "door snails", because all the snails in this family have a roughly spoon-shaped "door" or clausilium, which can slide down to close the aperture of the shell. However, this structure is emphatically not the same thing as an operculum, which is virtually non-existent in pulmonate snails, only occurring in the Amphibolidae.
The exact shape of the clausilium varies from genus to genus: it can be tongue-shaped, spoon-shaped or spatula-shaped. The wide flat end of the clausilium can close the aperture of the snail shell, and thus protect the soft parts against predation by animals such as carnivorous beetle larvae. The narrow end of the clausilium slides in a groove, which is formed by spiral folds on the inside of the shell around the columella. Because the groove is long, and the muscles that control the clausilium are also long, the whole structure can be retracted into the shell. The mechanism is totally different, but the clausilium is vaguely reminiscent of an automated garage door opener.Columella (gastropod)
The columella (meaning "little column") or (in older texts) pillar is a central anatomical feature of a coiled snail shell, a gastropod shell. The columella is often only clearly visible as a structure when the shell is broken, sliced in half vertically, or viewed as an X-ray image.
The columella runs from the apex of the shell to the midpoint of the undersurface of the shell, or the tip of the siphonal canal in those shells which have a siphonal canal. If a snail shell is visualized as a cone of shelly material which is wrapped around a central axis, then the columella more or less coincides spatially with the central axis of the shell. In the case of shells that have an umbilicus, the columella is a hollow structure.
The columella of some groups of gastropod shells can have a number of plications or folds (the columellar fold, plaits or plicae), which are usually visible when looking to the inner lip into the aperture of the shell. These folds can be wide or narrow, prominent or subtle. These features of the columella are often useful in identifying the family, genus, or species of the gastropod.
The surface of the columella is called the columellar wall. The columellar callus is a smooth, calcareous thickening, secreted by the mantle, extending over the columellar area. The columellar lip, the visible part of the columella, is the lower part of the inner lip and is situated near the axis of coiling. A columellar tooth is a raised projection on the inner lip of a columella in the direction of the aperture.Columella edentula
Columella edentula, common name the "toothless column snail", is a species of very small, air-breathing land snail, a terrestrial pulmonate gastropod mollusk or micromollusk in the family Vertiginidae.Geastrum
Geastrum (orthographical variant Geaster) is a genus of mushroom in the family Geastraceae. Many species are known commonly as earthstars.
The name, which comes from geo meaning earth and aster meaning star, refers to the behavior of the outer peridium. At maturity, the outer layer of the fruiting body splits into segments which turn outward creating a star-like pattern on the ground. The inner peridium is a spore sac. In some species, the outer peridium splits from a middle layer, causing the spore sac to arch off the ground. If the outer peridium opens when wet and closes when dry, it is described as hygroscopic.
In some species, the inner peridium is borne on a stalk or pedicel. The columella is a column-like clump of sterile tissue to be found inside the inner peridium. The network of fertile tissue inside the inner peridium, the capillitium, arises from the columella. The mouth in most species of "earth-stars" is quite prominent, often arising as a small cone at the apex of the inner peridium. It may be even or sulcate (grooved).They are generally not toxic but considered non-edible due to their fibrous texture in the mature stage at which they are generally found.Hyomandibula
The hyomandibula, commonly referred to as hyomandibular [bone] (Latin: os hyomandibulare, from Greek: hyoeides, "upsilon-shaped" (υ), and Latin: mandibula, "jawbone") is a set of bones that is found in the hyoid region in most fishes. It usually plays a role in suspending the jaws and/or operculum (teleostomi only). It is commonly suggested that in tetrapods (land animals), the hyomandibula evolved into the columella (stapes).Libocedrus chevalieri
Libocedrus chevalieri is a species of conifer in the cypress family, Cupressaceae. It is endemic to New Caledonia, occurring in three small, isolated populations on low mountain summits at 650–1,620 m altitude in cloud forest scrub on serpentine soils. It is threatened by habitat loss.It is an evergreen coniferous shrub (rarely a small tree) growing to 5 m tall, often multi-stemmed, with trunks up to 10 cm diameter. The foliage is arranged in flattened sprays; the leaves are scale-like, 2.5–5 mm long and 2–2.5 mm broad, arranged in opposite decussate pairs on the shoots. The seed cones are cylindrical, 12–16 mm long, with four scales each with a prominent curved spine-like bract; they are arranged in two opposite decussate pairs around a small central columella; the outer pair of scales is small and sterile, the inner pair large, each bearing two winged seeds. They are mature about six to eight months after pollination. The pollen cones are 8–10 mm long.Mago (agricultural writer)
Mago (Punic: 𐤌𐤂𐤍, MGN) was a Carthaginian writer, author of an agricultural manual in Punic which was a record of the farming knowledge of North Africans, namely Berbers. The Punic text has been lost, but some fragments of Greek and Latin translations survive.Modiolus (cochlea)
The modiolus is a conical shaped central axis in the cochlea. The modiolus consists of spongy bone and the cochlea turns approximately 2.75 times around the central axis in humans. The cochlear nerve, as well as spiral ganglion is situated inside it. The cochlear nerve conducts impulses from the receptors located within the cochlea.
The picture shows the osseous labyrinth. The modiolus is not labeled; it's at the axis of the spiral of the cochlea.Moretum
Moretum is a type of herb cheese spread that the Ancient Romans ate with bread. A typical moretum was made of herbs, fresh cheese, salt, oil and some vinegar. Optionally, different kinds of nuts could be added. The contents were crushed together in a mortar, hence the name.Nasal septum
The nasal septum (Latin: septum nasi) separates the left and right airways in the nose, dividing the two nostrils.
It is depressed by the depressor septi nasi muscle.Neptis columella
Neptis columella, the short banded sailer, is a species of nymphalid butterfly found in South and Southeast Asia.Nostril
A nostril (or naris , plural nares ) is one of the two channels of the nose, from the point where they bifurcate to the external opening. In birds and mammals, they contain branched bones or cartilages called turbinates, whose function is to warm air on inhalation and remove moisture on exhalation. Fish do not breathe through their noses, but they do have two small holes used for smelling, which may, indeed, be called nostrils.
In humans, the nasal cycle is the normal ultradian cycle of each nostril's blood vessels becoming engorged in swelling, then shrinking.
The nostrils are separated by the septum. The nostrils are a premature set of wings; those who are still able to flair said nostrils are known to be slightly less mature in the process of evolution. The septum can sometimes be deviated, causing one nostril to appear larger than the other. With extreme damage to the septum and columella, the two nostrils are no longer separated and form a single larger external opening.
Like other tetrapods, humans have two external nostrils (anterior nares) and two additional nostrils at the back of the nasal cavity, inside the head (posterior nares, posterior nasal apertures or choanae). Each choana contains approximately 1000 strands of nasal hair. They also connect the nose to the throat (the nasopharynx), aiding in respiration. Though all four nostrils were on the outside the head of our fish ancestors, the nostrils for outgoing water (excurrent nostrils) migrated to the inside of the mouth, as evidenced by the discovery of Kenichthys campbelli, a 395-million-year-old fossilized fish which shows this migration in progress. It has two nostrils between its front teeth, similar to human embryos at an early stage. If these fail to join up, the result is a cleft palate.It is possible for humans to smell different olfactory inputs in the two nostrils and experience a perceptual rivalry akin to that of binocular rivalry when there are two different inputs to the two eyes.The Procellariiformes are distinguished from other birds by having tubular extensions of their nostrils.Plait (gastropod)
A plait is an anatomical feature which is present the shells of some snails, or gastropods. This sculpture occurs often in the shells of marine gastropod mollusks in the clade Neogastropoda, but it is also found in some pulmonate land snails.
Plaits are folds on the columella (also known as the pillar or axis) at the center of the shell. The columella (meaning little column) is the central structure around which the whorls of a coiled gastropod shell are coiled.
The presence or absence of plaits, and the number of plaits, are characteristics used in the description of many gastropod molluscs, often enabling similar species to be separated and identified correctly.Pseudosuccinea columella
Pseudosuccinea columella , the American ribbed fluke snail, is a species of air-breathing freshwater snail, an aquatic pulmonate gastropod mollusk in the family Lymnaeidae, the pond snails.
This snail is an intermediate host for Fasciola hepatica, the liver fluke, a parasite of livestock, especially sheep.Spire (mollusc)
A spire is a part of the coiled shell of molluscs. The spire consists of all of the whorls except for the body whorl. Each spire whorl represents a rotation of 360°. A spire is part of the shell of a snail, a gastropod mollusc, a gastropod shell, and also the whorls of the shell in ammonites, which are fossil shelled cephalopods.
In textbook illustrations of gastropod shells, the tradition (with a few exceptions) is to show the majority of shells with the spire uppermost on the page.
The spire, when it is not damaged or eroded, includes the protoconch (also called the nuclear whorls or the larval shell), and most of the subsequent teleoconch whorls (also called the postnuclear whorls), which gradually increase in area as they are formed. Thus the spire in most gastropods is pointed, the tip being known as the "apex". The word "spire" is used, in an analogy to a church spire or rock spire, a high, thin, pinnacle.
The "spire angle" is the angle, as seen from the apex, at which a spire increases in area. It is an angle formed by imaginary lines tangent to the spire.
Some gastropod shells have very high spires (the shell is much higher than wide), some have low spires (the shell is much wider than high), and there are all possible grades between. In a few gastropod families the shells are not helical in their coiling, but instead are planispiral, flat-coiled. In these shells, the spire does not have a raised point, but instead is sunken.
Gastropod shells that are not spirally coiled (for example shells of limpets) have no columella.Sporangium
A sporangium (pl., sporangia) (modern Latin, from Greek σπόρος (sporos) ‘spore’ + αγγείον (angeion) ‘vessel’) is an enclosure in which spores are formed. It can be composed of a single cell or can be multicellular. All plants, fungi, and many other lineages form sporangia at some point in their life cycle. Sporangia can produce spores by mitosis, but in nearly all land plants and many fungi, sporangia are the site of meiosis and produce genetically distinct haploid spores.Ulmus 'Columella'
Ulmus 'Columella' is a Dutch elm cultivar raised by the Dorschkamp Research Institute for Forestry & Landscape Planning, Wageningen, from a selfed or openly pollinated seedling of the hybrid clone 'Plantyn' sown in 1967. It was released for sale in 1989 after proving extremely resistant to Dutch elm disease following inoculation with unnaturally high doses of the pathogen, Ophiostoma novo-ulmi. However, propagated by grafting onto Wych Elm rootstocks, graft failure owing to incompatibility has become a common occurrence in the Netherlands.Ulmus 'Plantyn'
Ulmus 'Plantyn' (Anglicized form of 'Plantijn') was one of three Dutch hybrid elms released by the Dorschkamp Research Institute for Forestry & Landscape Planning, Wageningen, in 1973. Derived from a crossing of the Dutch hybrids '202' (U. 'Exoniensis' × U. wallichiana) and '302' (U. minor '1' × U. minor '28'), it was to prove of great significance in later developments. A selfed seedling was to become the first Dutch clone to prove effectively immune to disease, released in 1989 as 'Columella'. 'Plantyn' was also destined to be the female parent of Lutèce released in 2002. In Italy, 'Plantyn' was used again as female parent in hybridizations with the Siberian Elm Ulmus pumila by the Istituto per la Protezione delle Piante (IPP), to create three new cultivars better adapted to the Mediterranean climate (see Hybrid cultivars).Umbilicus (mollusc)
The umbilicus of a shell is the axially aligned, hollow cone-shaped space within the whorls of a coiled mollusc shell. The term umbilicus is often used in descriptions of gastropod shells, i.e. it is a feature present on the ventral (or under) side of many (but not all) snail shells, including some species of sea snails, land snails, and freshwater snails.
The word is also applied to the depressed central area on the planispiral coiled shells of Nautilus species and fossil ammonites. (These are not gastropods, but shelled cephalopods.)