In this respect it was an important factor in the rise of that middle-class literature which found its most virile expression in the period of the Reformation.
Though he discharged his civic duties in spite of a frail physique, he emphasized the sorrows of life; and yet he advocated no hopeless resignation, but rather the remedy of work, and took as his model Heracles, the embodiment of virile activity.
The presence or absence of useful minerals, plants and animals rendered some congenial, others unfriendly; some areas were the patrons of virile occupations, others of feminine pursuits.
The taste is mucilaginous, sweetish and slightly bitter and aromatic. The root is frequently forked, and it is probably owing to this circumstance that medicinal properties were in the first place attributed to it, its resemblance to the body of a man being supposed to indicate that it could restore virile power to the aged and impotent.
Power seems to have somewhat spoilt this virile race, but such authorities as Sir Frederick Lugard believe them still capable of a great future.