Bucephalus (brand)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Bucephalus (Ancient Greek: Βουκέφαλος "ox-headed", from βους, "ox", and κεφαλή, "head") was a type of branding mark anciently used on horses. It was one of the three most common, besides Ϻ, San, and Ϙ, Koppa. Those horses marked with a San were called Σαμφόραι, Samphórai; those with a Koppa, Κοππατίαι, Koppatíai; and those with an ox's head, Βουκέφαλοι, Bucéphaloi.

This mark was stamped on the horse's buttocks, and his harnesses, as appears from the scholiast on Aristophanes's The Clouds, Hesychius, etc.

Alexander the Great's horse was named Bucephalus after this brand on its haunch.[1]


  1. ^ Hammond, N. G. L. (1998). "Chapter One: The boyhood of Alexander". The Genius of Alexander the Great. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press. ISBN 0-8078-4744-5. Retrieved 15 February 2016. Bucephalus, meaning 'Oxhead', so named from the brand-mark on his haunch, was a stallion some four years old. 

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChambers, Ephraim, ed. (1728). "article name needed". Cyclopædia, or an Universal Dictionary of Arts and Sciences (first ed.). James and John Knapton, et al.