The Power Or Poor Cod And The Torsk are the only two other members of the Cod family which need be mentioned in a work of this kind. Torsk, by the way, is a name which in Norway is applied to several varieties of codfish ; in fact, it is the Norwegian for cod. Being once saddled with a man whom I wished to abuse politely at intervals, with the object of keeping him up to his work, I made inquiries locally for the most suitable Norwegian expression. I was told that 'gammel torsk,' i.e. old codfish, would probably answer my purpose ; and I may say that I used it with great success. When the old fellow's thoughts went woolgathering and he began to place the boat where my fly ought to be, or let it down on to rocks, a gentle application of ' gammel torsk' always stimulated him to fresh and more careful exertions on behalf of the creel. The incident is mentioned not as a fisherman's yarn or to raise a smile or to excite wonder, but as a piece of valuable practical information for the benefit of the Englishman in Norway.
English naturalists apply the name torsk to Brosmius brosme, the tusk of the Shetlands. Off the American coast I believe the same fish is sometimes called cusk. It is not common in English waters, but is very plentiful on the coast of Shetland. In shape these fish somewhat resemble ling, but are blunter in the head and have only one back fin, which extends from the root of the tail to a point level with the edge of the gill covers. It also has the barbule which is common to most of the Cod family.
The Power Cod (Gadus minutus) is very common on some parts of our coasts, particularly off Cornwall. It possesses various local names, such as white eyes, power, ribben-pout, pouting, and giligant. It is an exceedingly small fish, closely resembling whiting pout, but somewhat longer in body. It is common on the coast of Devonshire and Cornwall, will take the same baits as the whiting pout, and is found in the same localities. It is reckoned of no great value as food, but if eaten the day it is caught is sweet and pleasant to the palate. It is by no means a bad bait for conger.