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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Mytilus \Myt"i*lus\, n. [L., a sea mussel, Gr. ?.] (Zo["o]l.) A genus of marine bivalve shells, including the common mussel. See Illust. under Byssus.


Byssus \Bys"sus\, n.; pl. E. Byssuses; L. Byssi.[L. byssus fine flax, fine linen or cotton, Gr. by`ssos .]

  1. A cloth of exceedingly fine texture, used by the ancients. It is disputed whether it was of cotton, linen, or silk.

  2. (Zo["o]l.) A tuft of long, tough filaments which are formed in a groove of the foot, and issue from between the valves of certain bivalve mollusks, as the Pinna and Mytilus, by which they attach themselves to rocks, etc.

  3. (Bot.) An obsolete name for certain fungi composed of slender threads.

  4. Asbestus.


n. Any of the genus ''Mytilus'' of marine bivalve shells, including the common mussel.

Mytilus (Dardania)

Mytilus or Mytilius ( Ancient Greek Μύτιλος; ruled c. 270 – 231 BC) was an Illyrian king who was seated in Epidamnos (Durrës). It is possible that Mytilus was the successor of Monunius I, as king of the Dardani, and not a king of Dyrrachium.

Mytilus is the second Illyrian monarch to have struck in 270 BC coins bearing his name after Monunius. the coins of Durrës bore the city's symbols and the kings name which stressed his sovereignty over the city as his predecessor had done. Coinage of Appoloniain the same period bore only his monogram, as well as symbols similar to those of the Aetolian Laeague, an adversary of Epirus. Copies of the Illyrian coins are kept at the Archaeological Museum in Zagreb, Croatia. The bronze coins had the head of Hercules on the obverse and on the reverse, Heracles attributes: quiver, bow and mace with the words BAΣIΛEΩΣ MITYΛOY (of King Mytilus).

Mytilus is known from a brief historical note which tells of a war he waged around 270 BC against the successor of Pyrrhus, Alexander II as well as his bronze coinage. Mytilus, presumably, retained his authority in Durrës after Alexander II invaded his territory in or around 270 BC. On one occasion, some Epirotes were dressed with Illyrian clothes and were put them to plunder their own sites. Unsuspecting, the Illyrians relaxed their defenses and rushed themselves to emulate them, believing that men in front of them were just their own probes. So they were easy victims of Epirus. The control of Durrës and Appolonia means that at the time of Mytilus, the Illyrians had regained the extent and authority it enjoyed in the time of Glaucias. Mytilus had even taken an excursion into the depth of Epirus. It is during this time that Rome was first invited to intervene against the Illyrians, Epirotes and the Aetolians in the Balkans. Mytilus was probably succeeded by Longarus in 231 BC.

Mytilus (genus)

Mytilus is a cosmopolitan genus of medium to large-sized edible, mainly saltwater mussels, marine bivalve molluscs in the family Mytilidae.


Mytilus may refer to:

  • Mytilus of Illyria, an ancient Illyrian king
  • Mytilus (genus), a mollusc genus