The genus is restricted in its habitat to the western parts of the Palaearctic region and represented by four species only: the spotted salamander, S.
Maculosa, the well-known black and yellow creature inhabiting Central and Southern Europe, North-West Africa and SouthWestern Asia; the black salamander, S.
In fact, among the remaining land vertebrates, only the black salamander (Salamandra atra) is exclusively alpine.
In the remarkable salamander Autodax, the teeth in the jaws are compressed, sharp-edged, lancet shaped.
Many cases are known in which the young batrachian enters the world in the perfect condition, as in the black salamander of the Alps (Salamandra atra), the cave salamander (Spelerpes fuscus), the caecilian Typhlonectes, and a number of frogs, such as Pipa, Rhinoderma, Hylodes, some Nototrema, Rana opisthodon, &c. A fairly complete bibliographical index to these cases and the most remarkable instances of parental care in tailless batrachians will be found in the interesting articles by Lilian V.
Within them was found the Fountain of Youth; the pebbles which give light, restore sight, and render the possessor invisible; the Sea of Sand was there, stored with fish of wondrous savour; and the River of Stones was there also; besides a subterranean stream whose sands were of gems. His territory produced the worm called "salamander," which lived in fire, and which wrought itself an incombustible envelope from which were manufactured robes for the presbyter, which were washed in flaming fire.
The outline of one of these districts, which was thought to resemble a salamander, gave rise in 1812, through a popular application of the governor's name, to the term Gerrymander ".
Among the Arabs the story of the phoenix was confused with that of the salamander; and the samand or samandal (Damiri, ii.
Petroleum (" burning water ") was known in Japan in the 7th century, whilst in Europe the gas springs of the north of Italy led to the adoption in 1226 by the municipality of Salsomaggiore of a salamander surrounded by flames as its emblem.
And yet subsequent discoveries, which followed in rapid succession, have established that Siredon is but the larval form of the salamander Amblystoma, a genus long known from various parts of North America; and Cuvier's conclusions now read much better than they did half a century after they were published.