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Headword: Μοσχίδια σύκων
Adler number: mu,1276
Translated headword: young shootlets of figs
Vetting Status: high
Translation:
Thus young fig trees are called. The young growths [are called] moschidia. Also the tender and young withy[1] [is called a] shoot.[2] Homer [writes]: "with withy shoots."[3]
Greek Original:
Μοσχίδια σύκων: οὕτω καλοῦνται αἱ νέαι συκαῖ. μοσχίδια δὲ τὰ νέα βλαστήματα. καὶ ἡ ἁπαλὴ καὶ νέα λύγος μόσχος. Ὅμηρος: μόσχοισι λύγοισι.
Notes:
The headword, a diminutive of μόσχος later in the entry (see LSJ s.v., and cognates at mu 1273, mu 1274, mu 1275, and mu 1277) is a neuter noun in the nominative/vocative/ plural; see LSJ s.v. μοσχίδιον . The headword phrase itself is an approximation of one in Aristophanes, Acharnians 996 (web address 1): the chorus-leader promises νέα μοσχίδια συκίδων (young shootlets of fig trees), after the chorus has invoked the name of Διαλλαγή (Reconciliation), from Aphrodite's divine retinue; cf. delta 613 and chi 120.
[1] According to LSJ, the λύγος (also ἄγνος at alpha 279, but cf. alpha 280) is Vitex agnus-castus (Polunin no. 1087), a shrub native to the Mediterranean region whose fruit was used to season food. It was believed that Vitex had medicinal properties affecting fertility and libido; it is commonly known as the chaste tree, chasteberry, or monk's pepper. Although not a willow (Salix spp., see Polunin pp. 43-6), λύγος is sometimes so rendered into English (Hainsworth, p. 237), and the pliant branches of both plants were used to weave baskets.
[2] The prior glosses are from the scholia to Aristophanes, Acharnians 995 (web address 1).
[3] Homer, Iliad 11.105 (web address 2), on Achilles tying up two of the sons of Priam; cf. already lambda 771 and lambda 780.
References:
O. Polunin, Flowers of Europe, London: Oxford University Press, 1969
J.B. Hainsworth, The Iliad: A Commentary, vol. III, gen. ed. G.S. Kirk, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2
Keywords: agriculture; botany; comedy; definition; epic; food; gender and sexuality; imagery; medicine; mythology; religion
Translated by: Ronald Allen on 28 July 2009@03:00:29.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (tweaks and cosmetics) on 28 July 2009@03:37:31.
David Whitehead (typo (mine)) on 29 July 2009@03:22:20.
David Whitehead (tweaking) on 27 May 2013@07:05:48.

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