Ox, a general name for bovine animals of all kinds, though primarily signifying only the male. The family bovinm contains the genera bos, ovibos (musk ox), biibahts (buffalo), bibos, bison, and poėphagus (yak). The general characters of the family are given under Cattle and Ruminantia, and many of the species are treated in the articles Aurochs, Bison, Buffalo, Yak, and Zebu. The old genus bos has been variously subdivided by authors, according to the structure of the hoofs, muzzle, direction and structure of the horns, the position of the knee, and the beard in the males. The domestic ox has been so modified by man, that it is impossible to draw any distinction between the permanent varieties and species. There is no animal more useful to mankind than the ox, its flesh and milk serving for food, its living strength being utilized in agriculture and transportation, and almost every part of the dead body employed for some important purpose in the arts. The principal characters are: horns curving outward and upward, broad and naked muzzle, wide space between the nostrils, large ears, long tufted tail, and broad hoofs. They are. found all the world over, except in Australia, in a wild state.

Fossil oxen have been found as early as the middle tertiary epoch both in America and the old world. It is probable that the aurochs, a contemporary of the extinct elephas primigenitts, would long ago have been exterminated but for the protection of man; the bos primigenius of the post-tertiary, according to Dana, is supposed to be the same as the ure ox B. urus described by Ca?sar, and said to abound in the forests of Gaul - a distinct species from the aurochs, now extinct, but living in Switzerland into the 16th century. Extinct members of the genus bos and other allied genera have been described by Profs. Leidy, Cope, Marsh, and others in the "Smithsonian Contributions," the " Proceedings and Journal of the Academy of Natural Sciences," and the "American Journal of Science".

Skull of the Ox.

Skull of the Ox.