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Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

Greek god of joy and revelry, from Latin, from Greek komos "revel, merrymaking" (see comedy).


In Greek mythology, Comus is the god of festivity, revels and nocturnal dalliances. He is a son and a cup-bearer of the god Bacchus. Comus represents anarchy and chaos. His mythology occurs in the later times of antiquity. During his festivals in Ancient Greece, men and women exchanged clothes. He was depicted as a young man on the point of unconsciousness from drink. He had a wreath of flowers on his head and carried a torch that was in the process of being dropped. Unlike the purely carnal Pan or purely intoxicated Dionysos, Comus was a god of excess.

Comus (band)

Comus are a British progressive folk band which had a brief career in the early 1970s; their first album, First Utterance, gave them a cult following which persists. They reunited in 2009 and have played several festivals and released a new album.

Comus (disambiguation)

In Greek mythology, Comus or Komus is the god of festivity, revels and nocturnal dalliances (the so-called Komastic rituals).

Comus or Komus may also refer to:

Comus (John Milton)

Comus'' (A Mask Presented at Ludlow Castle, 1634'') is a masque in honour of chastity, written by John Milton. It was first presented on Michaelmas, 1634, before John Egerton, 1st Earl of Bridgewater at Ludlow Castle in celebration of the Earl's new post as Lord President of Wales.

Known colloquially as Comus, the mask's actual full title is A Mask presented at Ludlow Castle, 1634: on Michelmas night, before the Rt Hon. Iohn Earl of Bridgewater, Viscount Brackly, Lord President of Wales, and one of His Maiesties most honorable privie councill. Comus was printed anonymously in 1637, in a quarto issued by bookseller Humphrey Robinson; Milton included the work in his Poems of 1645 and 1673. Milton's text was later used for a highly successful masque by the musician Thomas Arne in 1738, which then ran for more than seventy years in London.

Comus (Arne)

Comus is a masque in three acts by composer Thomas Arne. The work uses a libretto by John Dalton (1709-1763) that is based on John Milton's 1634 masque of the same name. The work premiered at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in London on 4 March 1738.

Comus (Handel)

The masque Comus, or There in the Blissful Shades (HWV * 44) is a short version of John Milton's Comus, based on a libretto earlier made by John Dalton for composer Thomas Arne's own Comus (Arne). The sixty-year-old Handel composed the setting in 1745 for the pleasure of other guests during his summer recuperation at the country seat of the Earl of Gainsborough. Some of the music was later recycled by Handel, for example as the tenor aria Then will I Jehovah's praise from the Occasional Oratorio.

Usage examples of "comus".

Scolding, she had long ago realised, was a useless waste of time and energy where Comus was concerned, but this evening she unloosed her tongue for the mere relief that it gave to her surcharged feelings.

Serena and Stephen Thorle were the last to leave, and Francesca stood alone for a moment at the head of the stairway watching Comus laughing and chatting as he escorted the departing guests to the door.

The droll lightheartedness which won Comus Bassington such measure of popularity as he enjoyed among his fellows did not materially help to endear him to the succession of masters with whom he came in contact during the course of his schooldays.

The bridge in question was her schoolboy son Comus, now being educated somewhere in the southern counties, or rather one should say the bridge consisted of the possibility of his eventual marriage with Emmeline, in which case Francesca saw herself still reigning, a trifle squeezed and incommoded perhaps, but still reigning in the house in Blue Street.

Only - it was an unfortunate circumstance that Comus should have been the span on which everything balanced.

Against this good service on the part of Fate in providing her with Henry for a brother, Francesca could well set the plaguy malice of the destiny that had given her Comus for a son.

House had the embarrassing distinction of numbering Comus among its inmates.

And Comus indicated the chair that stood in sinister isolation in the middle of the room.

He stayed there somehow or other while Comus made eight accurate and agonisingly effective shots at the chalk line.

It was for the purpose of reminding Sir Julian of his promise to meet Comus at lunch on the following day, and definitely settle the matter of the secretaryship that Francesca was now enduring the ordeal of a long harangue on the value of the West Indian group as an Imperial asset.

It was obviously the work of Courtenay Youghal, and Comus, for a palpable purpose of his own, had wheedled him into foregoing for once the pride of authorship in a clever piece of political raillery, and letting his young friend stand sponsor instead.

Francesca, forgetting the golden rule of strategy which enjoins a careful choosing of ground and opportunity before entering on hostilities, made straight for the bathroom door, behind which a lively din of splashing betokened that Comus had at least begun his toilet.

As regards Comus, whose doings and non-doings bulked largely in her thoughts at the present moment, she had mapped out in her mind so clearly what his outlook in life ought to be, that she was peculiarly unfitted to understand the drift of his feelings or the impulses that governed them.

As far as remunerative achievement was concerned, Comus copied the insouciance of the field lily with a dangerous fidelity.

Francesca snapped the remark out at lunch one day when she had been betrayed into a broader smile than she considered the circumstances of her attitude towards Comus warranted.