AntWiki: The Ants --- Online
Temporal range: 55–37 Ma Early Eocene to Bartonian, Middle Eocene
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formiciinae
Genus: Formicium
Westwood, 1854
Type species
Formicium brodiei
3 fossil species
(Species Checklist)

This name has been considered both an available name and a collective group name. This should be taken into consideration when using this name.



This taxon is known from Bournemouth, Dorset, U.K. (Bartonian, Middle Eocene); Isle of Purbeck (Durlston Bay), Dorset, U.K. (Middle Eocene) and Puryear, Tennessee, United States (Early Eocene).



The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's Online Catalogue of the Ants of the World.

  • FORMICIUM [†Formiciinae: collective group name]
    • Formicium Westwood, 1854: 393.
    • Formicium junior synonym of †Pseudosirex (family †Pseudosiricidae): Handlirsch, 1906: 577.
    • Formicium revived from synonymy as genus of Formicidae: Cockerell, 1920: 279
    • [†Formicium incorrectly as senior synonym of †Pseudosirex: Hölldobler & Wilson, 1990: 17; incorrectly retained in †Pseudosiricidae: Abe & Smith, 1991: 34.]
    • Formicium senior synonym of †Eoponera: Lutz, 1986: 182.
    • Formicium senior synonym of †Megapterites: Lutz, 1990: 61.
    • Formicium collective group name in †Formiciinae: Archibald, et al. 2011: 3681.
  • EOPONERA [junior synonym of †Formicium]
    • Eoponera Carpenter, 1929: 301. Type-species: †Eoponera berryi, by original designation.
    • Eoponera junior synonym of †Formicium: Lutz, 1986: 189.
  • MEGAPTERITES [junior synonym of †Formicium]
    • Megapterites Cockerell, 1920: 278. Type-species: †Megapterites mirabilis, by monotypy.
    • Megapterites junior synonym of †Formicium: Lutz, 1990: 61.


  • Abe, M. & Smith, D.R. 1991. The genus-group names of Symphyta and their type species. Esakia 31: 1-115. PDF (page 34, Formicium in Pseudosiricidae (in error))
  • Barden, P. 2017. Fossil ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae): ancient diversity and the rise of modern lineages. Myrmecological News 24: 1-30.
  • Bolton, B. 1994. Identification guide to the ant genera of the world. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 222 pp. (page 187, Formicium in Formicidae, Formiciinae)
  • Bolton, B. 2003. Synopsis and Classification of Formicidae. Mem. Am. Entomol. Inst. 71: 370pp (page 262, Formicium as genus; in Formiciinae, Formiciini)
  • Cantone, S., Von Zuben, C.J. 2019. The hindwings of ants: A phylogenetic analysis. Psyche: A Journal of Entomology 2019, 1–11 (doi:10.1155/2019/7929717).
  • Cockerell, T. D. A. 1920. Fossil arthropods in the British Museum. - I. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. 9(5): 273-279 (page 279, Formicium as genus; Formicium in Formicidae)
  • Handlirsch, A. 1906. Die fossilen Insekten und die Phylogenie der rezenten Formen. Ein Handbuch für Paläontologen und Zoologen. Lieferung 4. Leipzig: Wilhelm Engelmann, pp. 481-640. (page 577, Formicium in Pseudosiricidae; Formicium as junior synonym of Pseudosirex (in error))
  • Hölldobler, B.; Wilson, E. O. 1990. The ants. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, xii + 732 pp. (page 17, Formicium as genus; Formicium as senior synonym of Pseudosirex (in error))
  • Lutz, H. 1986. Eine neue Unterfamilie der Formicidae (Insecta: Hymenoptera) aus dem mittel-eozänen Olschiefer der "Grube Messel" bei Darmstadt (Deutschland, S-Hessen). Senckenb. Leth. 67: 177-218 (page 181, 182, Formicium in Formicidae, Formiciinae; Formicium as genus)
  • Lutz, H. 1990. Systematische und palökologische Untersuchungen an Insekten aus dem Mittel-Eozän der Grube Messel bei Darmstadt. Cour. Forschungsinst. Senckenb. 124: 1-165 (page 61, Formicium in Formicidae, Formiciinae;Formicium as genus)
  • Westwood, J. O. 1854. Contributions to fossil entomology. Q. J. Geol. Soc. Lond. 10: 378-396 (page 393, Type-species: Formicium brodiei, by monotypy)