Take This Fish and Look at It

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"Take This Fish and Look at It" “Take this Fish and Look at it” is an essay about an aspiring entomologist, Samuel H. Scudder. He recalls what happens the first time he walks into his Professor’s laboratory. His professor is a famous Swiss naturalist named, Louis Agassiz. They briefly talk and Professor Agassiz asks him what branch he wants to study in. After, responding to his Professor that he wants to be an Entomologist, he challenges him with an unusual assignment. He presents him with a specimen jar that contains a fish. “Take this Fish”, he told Scudder, “and look at it.” He explains the care instructions of the specimen that he has given to him and leaves. He begins this task, thinking it is simple. He makes his observations within minutes and seeks out the professor. He is told the professor has left the museum and will not be returning for several hours. Scudder goes back to the specimen and continues to look at it. After a few hours, he returns the specimen to the jar and takes a break. On his return, he reluctantly begins to study the fish, observing it from all angles, noting all the exterior and interior details. Hours pass by before the professor returns to him. When he does, he finds Scudder drawing the fish. He is delighted to see this. “A pencil is one of the best eyes” says Professor Agassiz. However, after hearing the results of his observation, he insists that he looks deeper at the fish. Professor Agassiz returns a couple of times and asks him what he sees. Each time he leaves, dissatisfied at Scudder’s answer. He returns one last time and asks Scudder of his discoveries. The professor is still not satisfied with his answer. He tells Scudder to return the fish to the jar and go home, suggesting he may have a better answer in the morning. The next morning, the professor is pleased with his observations. When Scudder asks him what to do next,

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