Beast

Sources : Centipede

Pliny the Elder [1st century CE] (Natural History, Book 11, 3): No other kind of creature has a greater number of feet, and of this species the ones that have more feet live longer when torn asunder, as we see in the case of the multipede. - [Rackham translation]

Isidore of Seville [7th century CE] (Etymologies, Book 12, 4:33): The centipede (centupeda) is so named for the great number of its feet (pes, pedis). - [Barney, Lewis, et. al. translation]

Thomas of Cantimpré [circa 1200-1272 CE] (Liber de natura rerum, Serpents 8.11; worm 9.28): [Thomas describes the centipede or multipede as both a serpent and a worm.] [Serpents 8.11] A centipede is a serpent, as Isidore says, having many feet. [Worms 9.28] The multipede, or centipede, as some say, is a worm rather than a beast, though the form exceeds that of worms. This animal lacks blood. It seems to have a name from its nature: for it is different from many other worms because of its almost innumerable feet. Of this animal the blessed Augustine, in his book Contra Achademicos, says that a centipede was brought before him, and while he was present and looking on, the animal was cut into many parts, and yet each part lived by itself separate from the others. On this occasion it was taken to question, with good reason, if the soul is simple and uncompounded, or composed, separated into parts. It is clear, however, that it is simple. - [Badke translation/paraphrase]

Albertus Magnus [ca. 1200-1280 CE] (De animalibus, Book 26, 25): Multipes is an insect called by some the centipede or "hundred-footed insect", not because it has so many feet, but by hyperbole, for in real life the insect has only forty-four feet, twenty-two on each side. While still small, this animal belongs to the group of insects capable of penetrating the ear. Sometimes, however, it grows as long as a palm’s breadth, especially in hot climates. Usually it walks in a forward direction, but on occasion it reverses itself and walks backward. Its bite contains very little venom and causes slight pain, though a bite on the lip may cause considerable swelling. It is known to bite a man while he is asleep. The centipede continues to live for some time after being cut into sections. - [Scanlan]