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Misch arabice muscus.


Misch ABC e | Misc f

muscus (-cus f) AC ef | mustus B {'c' misread as 't'}


Misch is Arabic for Latin muscus {"musk"}.


Wehr (1976): ﻣﺳﻚ /misk/ "musk". Siggel (1950: 68): ﻣﺳﻚ /musk, misk/ Moschus v.d. Vorhautdrüse v. Moschus moschiferus. {i.e. "musk taken from the foreskin gland of the musk deer"}.

The small heavy-limbed musk deer [[1]] lives in the uplands of central Asia. Musk is a secretion from the musk gland of male animals. The gland exudes a penetrating odoriferous substance, which has been used medicinally and in perfumery.

The word is etymologically a typical "Wanderwort", i.e. a word found in many languages, often passing from one language to another along trade routes. The Arabic and Latin words are likely to have been borrowed from Persian mušk, which in turn comes from Sankrit muṣkáḥ "testicle". Whether Greek μόσχος /móskhos/ was the transmitter language for late Latin muscus is disputed.

WilfGunther 25/12/13

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