Musa hortensis

Musa hortensis G. E. Rumphius, Herbarium Amboinense 5: 130 (1750).

Accepted name not determined, a group of cultivated bananas.
References Baker 1893 : 211, Champion 1967 : 42, Kurz 1877 : 134.
Comments Rumphius is a pre-Linnean author who gave the first detailed description of bananas in volume 5 of Herbarium Amboinense (1747) pages 125 - 140 which is available online at Botanicus at to

Under the general heading Musa domestica (sativa or domestica or hortensis) (domesticated bananas) Rumphius lists 16 types most of which he identifies only by a local name but three of which are given Latin names:

no. 1 Musa corniculata or Pissang Tando, Pissang Carbou, Pissang Ocky Ocky
no. 2 Pissang Gabba Gabba
no. 3 Pissang Crobo or Cro (further subdivided)
no. 4 Pissang Djernang
no. 5 Pissang Culit Tabal, Pissang Baratsjo
no. 6 Musa mensaria or Pissang Medji
no. 7 Musa regia or Pissang Radja
no. 8 Pissang Mera, Pissang Cutsjupau
no. 9 Pissang Salpicado
no. 10 Pissang Swangi
no. 11 Pissang Batu, Pissang Bidji
no. 12 Pissang Abu, Pissang Soldado, Pissang Alphuru
no. 13 Pissang Bombor
no. 14 Pissang Canaya Puti
no. 15 Pissang Canaya Kitsjil
no. 16 Pissang Bulang

A 17th type, Musa uranoscopos is described separately.

It seems to me that Rumphius did not mean Musa domestica to define a single species but a category of bananas.

home     next

last updated 14/05/2008