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For the 6th-century Syrian writer, see Joannes Moschus. Moschus is also the genus of the musk deer.

Moschus (Greek: Μόσχος), ancient Greek bucolic poet and student of the Alexandrian grammarian Aristarchus of Samothrace, was born at Syracuse and flourished about 150 BC. Aside from his poetry, he was known for his grammatical work, nothing of which survives.

His few surviving works consist of a short poem in epic hexameters, Europa, on the myth of Europa, three bucolic fragments and a whole short bucolic poem Runaway Love, and an epigram in elegiac couplets. His surviving bucolic material (composed in the traditional dactylic hexameters and Doric dialect) is short on pastoral themes and is largely erotic and mythological; although this impression may be distorted by the paucity of evidence, it is also seen in the surviving bucolic of the generations after Moschus, including the work of Bion of Smyrna. Moschus' poetry is typically edited along with other bucolic poets, as in the commonly used Oxford text by A. S. F. Gow (1952), but the "Europa" has often received separate scholarly editions, as by Winfried Bühler (Wiesbaden 1960) and Malcolm Campbell (Hildesheim 1991). The epigram is also normally published with the edition by Maximos Planoudes of the Greek Anthology.

The Europa, along with Callimachus' Hecale and such Latin examples as Catullus 64, is a major example of the Hellenistic phenomenon of the miniature epic. Although it is hard to tell because of the fragmentary nature of the evidence, Moschus' influence on Greek bucolic poetry is likely to have been significant; the influence of Runaway Love is felt in Bion and other later bucolic poets. In later European literature his work was imitated or translated by such authors as Torquato Tasso and Ben Jonson.

Two other poems, attributed to him at one time or another but no longer thought to be his, are also commonly edited with his work. The best known is the Epitaph on Bion (i.e. Bion of Smyrna), which had a long history of influence on the pastoral lament for a poet (compare Milton's Lycidas). The other is a miniature epic on Megara (the wife of Heracles), consisting of an epic dialogue between Heracles' mother and his wife on his absence.


  • For a recent overview of Moschus see A. Porro in Eikasmos 10 (1999) 125-25.
  • See also Franz Susemihl, Geschichte der griechischen Litteratur in der Alexandrinerzeit. i. 231 (1891).

External links


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

MOSCHUS, Greek bucolic poet and friend of the Alexandrian grammarian Aristarchus,was born at Syracuse and flourished about 150 B.C. He was the author of a short epic poem, Europa, and a pretty little epigram, Love, the Runaway, imitated by Torquato Tasso and Ben Jonson. The epitaph on Bion of Smyrna, wrongly supposed to have been his tutor, was in all probability written about the time of Sulla (see F. Biicheler in Rheinisches Museum, xxx., 1875). The poem on Megara (the wife of Heracles) is probably not his, but a few other pieces, undoubtedly genuine, have been preserved. His poems are nearly all in hexameters. They are usually printed in editions of Bion and Theocritus, and have been translated into many European languages.

The text has been edited by U. von Wilamowitz-Mollendorff, in the Oxford Scriptorum classicorum bibliotheca (1905); there are English translations by J. Banks in Bohn's Classical Library (1853), and by Andrew Lang (1889), together with Bion and Theocritus. See F. Susemihl, Geschichte der griechischen Litteratur in der Alexandrinerzeit. i. 231 (1891), and article B10N.

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Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikispecies

Moschus sp. (musk deer)


Main Page
Cladus: Eukaryota
Supergroup: Unikonta
Cladus: Opisthokonta
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Cladus: Deuterostomia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Infraphylum: Gnathostomata
Superclassis: Tetrapoda
Classis: Mammalia
Subclassis: Theria
Infraclassis: Placentalia
Superordo: Cetartiodactyla
Ordo: Artiodactyla
Subordo: Ruminantia
Familia: Moschidae
Genus: Moschus
Species: M. anhuiensis - M. berezovskii - M. chrysogaster - M. cupreus - M. fuscus - M. leucogaster - M. moschiferus


Moschus Linnaeus 1758

Vernacular names

Deutsch: Moschushirsche
English: Musk Deer
Français: Cerfs Porte-musc
한국어: 사향노루속
Português: Cervo-almiscarado
Türkçe: Misk geyiğigiller


  • Moschus on Mammal Species of the World.
    Don E. Wilson & DeeAnn M. Reeder (editors). 2005. Mammal Species of the World. A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference (3rd ed).


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