Saturday, December 09, 2006


Picky, Picky

Classics Majors Embark on Groundbreaking Scholarly Research in Homeric Poetry:
"What we are doing is using the apparati critici of the text — that is, the very small, dense and exhaustive system of abbreviated footnotes on the sources and variants of different words and phrases that appear in the different papyri and codices."
There are 23,700 Google hits for apparati critici versus 338 for apparatus critici. Nevertheless, the latter is correct. Apparatus is a fourth declension noun in Latin. See e.g. Carolus Hude in the preface to the Oxford Classical Text edition of Herodotus:
Restat ut breviter exponam quas in apparatu critico constituendo secutus sim rationes.
Its nominative plural is therefore apparatūs, not apparati.

Loeb Classical Library edition of Ovid's Heroides (4.156, Phaedra speaking):
Da veniam fasse duraque corda doma.
In a medieval manuscript the spelling fasse would not be unusual; it is out of place in a modern text. Read fassae, as the Loeb translation makes clear:
Forgive me my confession, and soften your hard heart!
The same phrase da veniam fassae occurs also at 17.225 and 19.4 in the Heroides.

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