Bryn Mawr Classical Review

Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2005.05.08

Hurka on Roggen on Hurka.   Response to 2005.03.18



Response by Florian Hurka

Due to the numerous factual errors and misunderstandings in the recension by Vibeke Roggen I feel compelled to reiterate the most significant results and conclusions of my book (F. Hurka, Textkritische Studien zu Valerius Flaccus, Hermes-Einzelschriften 90, Wiesbaden 2003).

The old debate on the significance of the testimony of C, a medieval manuscript seen only by its discoverer Carrion in the 16th century, was re-kindled 16 years ago following the discovery of a manuscript page (D). Specialists were certain they had found the last page of C. On the basis of Carrion's paleographic remarks I raised doubts concerning the identity of C and D, but I did not exclude the possibilty of their common identity or deny their close relation (p. 22; Roggen incorrectly paraphrases my arguments and conclusions, see 3rd paragraph). Roggen dismisses my discussion of Carrion's explicit remarks regarding the script in C (closest affinity between the letters T and F, which, however, cannot be reconciled with D); but she provides no justification for her opinion. She writes merely that my argument "does not convince".

For a long time the verity of Carrion's claims regarding his manuscript was doubted (on the history of research, cf. pp. 16-17). In 1989 Taylor studied the Humanist's notes in his working text to Manilius to strengthen the view that Carrion collated faithfully. In my study I emphatically approve this opinion of Carrion's credibility in view of the variant readings of D (p. 17, last line; Roggen seems to accuse me of the opposite [cf. the 2nd paragraph], though her phrasing is a little unclear). I merely note that there is factual difference between the commentary prepared by Carrion for his personal use (Manilius) and the work he published (Valerius Flaccus) (see p. 17 and note 41; Roggen, who consistently accuses me of methodical errors, finds Taylor's approach particularly interesting [see 2nd paragraph]; obviously she has failed to notice that Carrion's work on Valerius Flaccus is an edition, i.e. a publication, whereas the Manilius notes are a working text for private use). Carrion's reliability is not established methodologically by the reference to Manilius. In addition, we know in the case of Manilius that Carrion in a later publication falsely claims variants of the codex as his own emendations (p. 17 and note 41). In the assessment of C, then, all variants which Carrion knew from other editions should be disregarded (p. 18). I am referring, of course, to the testimony provided by Carrion himself in his Scholia and Castigationes. Heedless of the warning by the undisputed expert on the manuscript tradition, W.-W. Ehlers (1991, 34 [abbreviation as below according to my book]), scholars went into a state of euphoria after D's discovery and declared C, prematurely so it seems, to be an independent manuscript: in their speedy attempt to rehabilitate the codex Carrionis these scholars ignored that C had been emended by an uncommonly capable and learned redactor. Thus, all variants of the manuscript fall under the suspicion of being emendations.

I present the particular nature of the codex on pp.22-36, though Roggen claims the opposite: "H. ... takes the coniector doctus for granted, without arguing his view" (4th paragraph). I am also not sure how Roggen came to the conclusion that I fail to declare my method (see Roggen, end of the 1st paragraph). The entire second half of my introduction (pp. 16-38) is dedicated to laying the groundwork for an appropriate assessment of C, which project I justify on the basis of P.L. Schmidt's 1976 call for a "renewed exact study of the additional verses in C" (Schmidt 1976, 251, note 1: "erneute genauere Untersuchung der Zusatzverse in C"; cf. my book, p. 38).

Just as Ehlers subjected the additional verses of L to an extensive stylistic and metrical analysis, so I have analyzed the extra verses of C. In my book I declared my purpose as follows: if I should find evidence supporting, perhaps even proving, that at least one of these extra-verses is genuine, then I would have a substantial argument for considering C to be independent evidence. I have discovered such an indication in v. 7, 633: infectam dederat ususque armarat in illos (metrical lengthening). The redactor of C was not aware that Valerius occasionally took the liberty of lenthening short syllables before a caesura and therefore corrected many metrical irregularities and mistakes, as he saw them (obviously not all of them; otherwise we would have to ask with Roggen why the redactor chose to ignore 7, 633 of all verses: cf. p. 61, note 295. We could add vv. 4, 188; 4, 495 etc.). This observation led me to conclude in my study that 7, 633 does not originate from the redactor of C. It goes without saying that this verse could have been added either before or after C was emended (p. 62). But on the basis of the excellent variants and with a note on 6, 3, where it is pointless to seek an explanation for an emendation (tuentem / videntem) (p. 62), I conclude that we may disregard such methodological doubts. The sum of the arguments seems to support the thesis that C is independent (p. 63). Is it then appropriate to accuse me, as Roggen does, of "inconsistency and the lack of logical reasoning" (9th paragraph), because I include C in the stemma on p. 10?

[[For a response to this response by Vibeke Roggen, please see BMCR 2005.07.77.]]

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