Snout sharp, slender, moderately elongated, the lateral margins nearly parallel at the tip: skin smooth: three rows of spines on the tail: colour beneath white, with a broad dusky border.

R. marginata, Lacep. Hist. Nat. des Poiss. torn. v. p. 663. pl. 20. f. 2. Blainv. Faun. Franc, p. 19. pl. 3. f. 2. Flem. Brit. An. p. 172.

Dimensions

The following are those of an English specimen. Total length fifteen inches six lines: length of the head (measured from the end of the snout to the spiracles behind the eyes) three inches six lines; of the tail (from the vent to its extremity) seven inches nine lines: greatest breadth (across the pectorals) eleven inches three lines. Obs. The total length of Blainville's specimen was two feet.

Description

{Form). Rhomboidal; the transverse diameter rather more than one-third greater than the length from the end of the snout to the vent: snout elongated, projecting considerably from between the pectorals, terminating in a sharp point, with the lateral margins nearly parallel for the last quarter of their length: mouth moderately wide; jaws transverse; teeth numerous, closely set, in several rows, roundish, or somewhat quadrilateral, at the base, each terminating in a sharp point: nostrils in a line with the corners of the mouth, and rather more than half-way between them and the upper margins of the pectorals; a channel from the nostrils to the mouth, covered by a membranous flap: eyes and spiracles both large: skin perfectly smooth above; also beneath, excepting along the anterior margins of the pectorals and the surface of the snout, which are set with very minute spines and denticles: one large sharp spine above each eye, inclining backwards, and another smaller one behind each eye: no spines on any part of the back, but three rows on the tail, one occupying the middle ridge, the two others the sides; the spines on these rows strong and sharp, and mostly inclining backwards: tail scarcely longer than the body, depressed, rather stout, with two moderately-sized finlets, of equal size and form, nearly contiguous; scarcely the rudiment of a caudal: pectorals broad, with the anterior margin hollowed out, and not prolonged beyond the basal half of the snout: ventrals moderate, deeply notched or bilobated. {Colours). General colour of the upper parts reddish brown, somewhat paler on the pectorals, with a faint indication of round whitish spots: beneath white, with a broad border all round, especially beneath the angles of the pectorals, of dark reddish brown, approaching to dusky: tail entirely black.

* Hist. Pise. p. 71- tab. C. 4. ‡ Faun. Frang. p. 18. pl. 3. f. 1.

† Ichth, pl. 80.

First described by Lacepede from specimens sent him by M. Noel from Dieppe, Liverpool and Brighton. The individual described above was obtained at Weymouth by Professor Henslow, and is now in the Museum of the Cambridge Philosophical Society. In the same collection is a young one, extracted from the purse, which is very large, compared with those of other species. Blainville states that he has seen several from the Channel, the Ocean, and the Mediterranean. He thinks that it never attains to a very large size.