J)epth one-third of the whole length: number of scales in the lateral line fifty-seven: anal with twenty-eight or twenty-nine rays.
C. Brama, Linn. Syst. Nat. torn. i. p. 531. Bloch, Ichth. pl. 13. Don. Brit. Fish. vol. iv. pl. 93. Turt. Brit. Faun. p. 108. Abramis Brama, Mem. Brit. An. p. 187. Bream, Will. Hist. Pise. p. 248. tab. Q. 10. f. 4. Penn. Brit. Zool. vol. iii. p. 362. pl. 70. no. 169. Id. (Edit. 1812). vol. iii. p. 478. pl. 81. Bowd. Brit. fr. wat. Fish. Draw. no. 18. Yarr. Brit. Fish. vol. i. p. 335. Breme commune, Cuv. Reg. An. torn. II. p. 274.
From one to two feet, or upwards.
(Form). Body very deep in proportion to its length; the depth increasing suddenly at the shoulder; greatest above the ventrals, where it equals one-third of the entire length: sides much compressed; the greatest thickness contained three times and one-third in the depth: back sharp: dorsal line forming a salient angle at the commencement of the dorsal fin, thence falling very obliquely to the nape, from which point the profile falls less obliquely, causing a depression at the nape: ventral line less convex than the dorsal: head small, about one-fifth of the entire length: mouth remarkably small in proportion: jaws nearly equal: distance from the eye to the end of the snout rather greater than the diameter of the eye; distance between the eyes nearly equal to twice their diameter: scales smaller than in the next species, of a broad oblong form, the basal portion with the margin somewhat sinuous, without radii, the free portion with ten or twelve diverging radii: lateral line sloping downwards from the upper part of the opercle, and curved throughout; midway, its course is at two-thirds of the entire depth: number of scales in the lateral line about fifty-seven; in the depth eighteen, twelve and a half being above, and five and a half below, the lateral line: the whole of the dorsal behind the middle, as well as behind the ventrals; first ray only half the length of the second; both these simple; the rest branched; last two from one root: anal twice the length of the dorsal; first ray very small and easily overlooked; second half the length of the third; third and fourth longest; the succeeding ones decreasing to the twelfth, beyond which they remain even: caudal crescent-shaped; the lower lobe longer than the upper: pectorals reaching to the ventrals: these last extending to the vent:
B. 3; D. 12 or 13; A. 28 or 29; C. 19, etc.; P. 17; V. 9.
(Colours). Back dusky, passing into bluish green; sides yellowish white, with a slight golden lustre; belly almost plain white: irides yellowish white: all the fins dusky, the pectorals alone faintly tinged with red.
Found in large lakes and slow rivers; generally in shoals. Keeps near the bottom. Food, worms and aquatic vegetables. Attains to a large size: weight sometimes exceeding twelve pounds. Spawns in May.