I shall describe briefly how hunters catch ermines and to what use they put them (in Italy they are called ermellini, and indeed we Götar give them much the same name). 1 In particular there is the method I mentioned of laying blocks of wood crosswise and connecting them by a very thin cord. 2 Three, four, or even up to eight ermines at a time walk into the trap, the cord is disturbed, and they are suddenly pinned under the pressure of the beams. Such snares are spread everywhere, because of the vast numbers of these small beasts. Again there are pits, or rectangular trenches, over which very thin sticks are laid and on top of these snow to make everything look like firm, unbroken ground. A large company of the creatures plunge into these pits, and, after being taken by the landowner or his deputy, are killed. 3 Then there are dogs, so swift and alert that having seized the ermines they bite them to death and subsequently carry them back, or collect a pile of them at their master’s feet. There are also archers among the young men, so expert that their arrow never misses the mark nor do they fail to catch their prey. This animal’s flesh is worthless because of the wretched food it eats. Only the skin is valuable, for its brilliant white hue makes it an object of esteem among men no less than women in the most exalted courts of princes. Although this tiny animal is extremely lecherous, as I have already indicated, it must be admired in one respect, that up to the end of May it only devotes itself to breeding on certain days, and is content to abide by Nature’s laws in this way. 4