Tuesday, October 31, 2017


Critical Apparatus

Tom Keeline, "The Apparatus Criticus in the Digital Age," Classical Journal 112.3 (2017) 342–363 (at 342):
It is a truth universally acknowledged that no one except textual critics and pedants actually reads an apparatus criticus. Why should they? Consider how few "general readers" read footnotes. Now picture those footnotes festooned with cryptic symbols, cloaked in the obscurity of a learned language, and provided without any superscript signaling in the main text that there might be something relevant at the bottom of the page—then add in the pervasive notion that the apparatus is merely a repository for what the editor thinks does not belong in the text.
Id. (at 349-350, footnote omitted):
In my experience, undergraduates and graduate students rarely look at the "crapparatus," as I once heard it disparagingly called, unless a commentary or a professor draws attention to a particular point.
Related post: Kitchen-Refuse?

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