The Geoponica is a twenty-book collection of agricultural lore, compiled during the 10th century in Constantinople for the Byzantine emperor Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus. The Greek word Geoponica signifies "agricultural pursuits" in its widest sense.
The 10th century collection is sometimes (wrongly) ascribed to the 7th century author Cassianus Bassus, whose collection, also titled Geoponica, was integrated into the extant work. Bassus drew heavily on the work on another agricultural compiler, Vindonius Anatolius (4th century). The ultimate sources of the Geoponica include Pliny, various lost Hellenistic and Roman-period Greek agriculture and veterinary authors, the Carthaginian agronomist Mago, and even works passing under the name of the Persian prophet Zoroaster. (The names of the principal sources for each section are attached to the text, although the age and correctness of these attributions remains in doubt.) The Greek manuscript tradition is extremely complex and not fully understood. Syriac, Pahlavi, Arabic and Armenian translations attest to its worldwide popularity and complicate the manuscript tradition still further.
The Geoponica embraces all manner of "agricultural" information, including celestial and terrestrial omina, viticulture, oleoculture, apiculture, veterinary medicine, the construction of fishponds and much more.
Taken from Charles Anthon's Manual of Greek Literature (1853).