More often than not, the linguist or anthropologist just throws up his hands and resorts to giving a list — a list that one would not be surprised to find in the writings of Borges.
Those that belong to the Emperor,
those that are trained,
those that are included in this classification,
those that tremble as if they were mad,
those drawn with a very fine camel’s hair brush,
those that have just broken a flower vase,
those that resemble flies from a distance.
From ‘Other Inquisitions’ in which Borges writes of a strange way of classifying animals in an ancient Chinese encyclopaedia. Via Futility Closet. Submitted by Gabriel Smy.