BMCR 2001.06.21

Homeri Ilias

, Homeri Ilias. Vol. 1. Rhapsodias I-XII continens, vol. 2. Rhapsodias XIII-XXIV et indicem nominum continens.. Bibliotheca scriptorum Graecorum et Romanorum Teubneriana. Munich/Leipzig: B.G. Teubner, 1998-2000. 2 vols.. DM 69.00 (pb).

1 Responses


1. Even though ‘Homer’ must be called fortunate to have been handed down to us in one thousand and a half ancient manuscripts and at least two hundred medieval ones, together with the most extensive and learned collection of scholia a Greek author ever knew, not to speak of the highly untidy evidence of the quotations and imitations, this state of affairs confronts the editor of the Iliad with an unusually difficult problem. Whereas, for most classical authors, it is well known that the absence of any assessment of the history of the text has not prevented the textual tradition from being surveyed and satisfactory critical editions equipped with adequate apparatus from being produced, since it was possible either to classify the manuscripts or, pending the elaboration of a stemma, to determine roughly which lines of tradition are likely to have preserved the better readings (save perhaps for ‘open traditions’), in the case of the Iliad it is impossible to divorce the work on the text from the work on its history and the history of its interpretation. Actually, we have too extensive information on the ancient, mainly Hellenistic, states of the text to reduce its editing to the application of the method put forward by Paul Maas: first the establishment of what can be regarded as transmitted ( recensio), then the analysis of this material in order to prove or disprove its faithfulness to the original ( examinatio) and the reconstruction of this original by conjecture ( diuinatio).1

Things cannot be theoretically and practically simple when a text is in so good a state of preservation as that of the Iliad and, at the same time, so historically determined by the human element in its preservation and propagation; we are not dealing, as is the case for Plato or the tragic poets,2 with Byzantine recensions whose sources admit of no obvious reconstruction and may be but are not proved to be Alexandrian given the presence of an overwhelming random element in the preservation, but with Alexandrian scholarship at its peak with no random element at all, only deliberate choice, combination of earlier materials and refined elaboration. To us, the Homeric original is both very remote in time, at a date on which no agreement seems possible but which may well be the first middle of the eighth century, and in condition, since as a ‘monumental epic’3 and an orally dictated text it experienced a certain volatility before it was transmitted through the writing process, and this original could be definitely obscured by subsequent critical work, mainly by Zenodotus and Aristarchus, the achievement of which our medieval manuscripts are the last, but not the least trustworthy, remnants. Furthermore, ‘Homer’ having been the basis of Athenian education from the classical period onwards, the only national poet learned by heart and read through the cities, it is quite difficult, in the oralist framework, to imagine something very different from a handful of early exemplars, each of them exhibiting dialectal and compositional variations, written in the local orthography, and descending in a flexible way from ancestors, the condition (unity or plurality?), date and geographical origin of which one can only guess (Pisistratid Athens being the favourite, as the Panathenaic text of ‘Homer’ is the oldest whose existence is attested by external evidence). After the epics were copied down, ‘Homer’, who was formerly, in the truncated form (songs like the Ὅρκοι, the Τειχοσκοπία…) favoured by the performance, the shared property of every rhapsode able to recite it, became the common treasure of the Greeks, both the learned and the illiterate.

Two more facts then seem incontrovertible. Despite the deceptive clue of the orthography we have no evidence for a kind of mainstream in pre-Alexandrian texts, even for an Athenian one. What we have are superfical Attic traits which can be accounted for as the result, in an Attic-speaking area, either of a process of redaction (textual point of view) or of a performative phase (evolutionary point of view). The question is not well settled, since the phonology of these Atticisms often bears witness to a post-classical date (a useful but seldom cited book is Sven-Tage Teodorsson, The Phonemic System of the Attic Dialect, “Studia Graeca et Latina Gothoburgensia 22”, Lund, Berlingska Boktryckeriet, 1974, especially the synopsis of orthographic changes on pp. 75-162) and since the production of Atticisms may also involve the one of artifical Ionic traits or hyperionisms, which are very poorly attested as variants and seldom, if ever, entered the vulgate.

Secondly, early in the transmission, before the generalisation of the habit of possessing and handing books4 came to create the need for a specific trade with demands of its own, one should not place too great a confidence in the postulation of a widespread scholarly interest in ‘Homer’. The first recorded individual to have dealt with Homeric matters is Theagenes of Rhegium, whose floruit coincides with the reign of Cambyses II (5305-522),6 and he should have been moved by an antiquarian concern in γλῶσσαι or realia, that led him to doctor the wording; so may have behaved his many successors, faced with a plurality of texts which were far from easy to understand, in the absence of living performance, but which hardly called for textual criticism in the sense the Alexandrians took it. It is debatable whether, in trying to restore a pre-Alexandrian state of the text, the vast majority of the editors are not running after a ghost, the ghost of a single archetype or some closely related ones. Though I am aware of the fixity of the transmission,7 the picture of a maze of ancient versions is not inconsiderably corroborated (among other conclusions) by scholia, whose exploration alone enables the critic to draw a line between vertical material and secondary material in manuscript variants.8 And, provided we do not question the reliability of Didymus in his handing of Aristarchean evidence, reliability documented by the occasional verbatim quotations he makes of fragments of textual criticism, such is the situation with which Aristarchus is said to have coped when he prepared his two editions and his related sets of notes. This is not to say that there is no possibility to establish a sound text, as we shall see below (IV. 1).

I. 2. Once it is recognised that the pre-Alexandrian archetype as a whole is a moving target in need of serious qualification,9 Martin West’s edition appears as what it claims to be: another effort towards a reconstruction of the poet’s own text. The reason is plain from the opening phrase of the Praefatio :10 if ‘Homer’ wrote down something that became the transmitted Iliad, it is the critic’s duty to approach this source and nothing else. This is a daring ambition. Up to now no scholar has succeeded in producing single-handed a completely new critical edition of the Iliad adequately supplied with textual apparatus. Pending the appearance of an account of the ancient and medieval propagation of the text that would improve on T. W. Allen’s Prolegomena to his editio maior, what one most urgently needs is an edition that would remedy Allen’s major flaws: his lack of discrimination as regards the numerous weakly-attested Wolfian lines, proved by Bolling to be vulgar interpolations that ought to be removed to the apparatus, and his lack of text-critical acumen in determining which transmitted readings are sound enough to be edited. Thanks to Pierre Chantraine’s unrivalled knowledge in matters orthographic and dialectal, the latter process was (partly successfully) undertaken in the Budé edition, from which Helmut van Thiel’s Weidmann text is something of a regression. But the former process was never really attempted, all the more since Van Thiel was prevented by his faith in the reliability of the medieval ‘vulgate’ from contemplating such a discrimination. That West, on top of his explanation of the transmission, has successfully dealt with both of them is plain and need not be questioned. Nonetheless the casual reader of the Teubner Iliad must be advised that, despite its impressive layout, this edition remains the tentative account of an opinionated author whose bibliographical covering suppresses any counter-argument one may raise against his points and whose handling of material is idiosyncratic. For all West’s virtues as a critic and an editor, he lacks a spirit of charity for the solutions he did not bother to adopt, the consequence being that his whole approach to the history of the text as it is given in the Praefatio sometimes sounds disagreeably dogmatic.11 In this review I shall first examine how West accounts for the conditions of the transmission, then lay out in detail the establishing of the line-number and the text itself for books XIII-XXIV. Then I shall offer some comments on issues textual and exegetical.


II. 1. “De traditione primitiua” (vol. I, Praefatio, pp. V-VI).

Some time between the seventh and the sixth centuries BC in Ionia a genial bard called Homer composed, amended and expanded through the years both the Iliad and the Odyssey, the text of which he finally left to his fellow rhapsodes, the corporation of so-called Homeridae of Chios.12 In the course of generations this autograph being a common professional treasure was extensively performed, revised, filled with additional verses and modified so as to agree with the prejudices and tastes of its different audiences until it reached Athens at the beginning of the sixth century. Then it was further expanded in a strategic point (the Catalogue of Ships). Book-division crept in with Hipparchus, who is said to have imported the poems into Attica and to have organised their recitation in formal competitions held during the Great Panathenaia ([Plato], Hipparch, 228 b 9 ἐξ ὑπολήψεως ἐφεξῆς αὐτὰ διιέναι : each rhapsode took up the poem where the last left off. Afterwards the process of Atticization holds the ground, as ‘Homer’ becomes the paramount classical author, the basis of education from whose verses the child learned how to spell, before the Sophistic movement tried, if not to go beyond him, at the very least to tamper with him.13 His triumph is complete by the years 403/402, when Euclides’ reform causes his texts to be transcribed in the twenty-four letters alphabet.

This picture is unobjectionable save for three details, none of them minor. The less crucial one is the adoption of an early chronology for the introduction of book-division;14 since the attribution to Hipparchus, evidently as a by-product of his reorganisation of recitation contests, is no more than a personal opinion of West and so offered in footnote 3 at the back of page VI, and since it is influenced by West’s opinion (prejudice?) that we are able to recover with a fair degree of certainty an early text very near ‘Homer’,15 I hesitate to call it a blatant misunderstanding of the tradition first represented by Cicero16 (who credits Pisistratus with the innovation)17 but I cannot help regarding such a view as entirely eccentric. A late Hellenistic, perhaps Pergamene, manipulation of the evidence designed to cast doubt on the Athenian text Aristarchus is said, in polemical terms, to have revived18 cannot be ruled out, but a far more satisfactory explanation is that the whole story is a garbled variant of Hipparchus’s reorganisation.19 It follows that, if the Hellenistic attribution of the book-division to Aristarchus himself is impossible,20 and if the alternative solution put forward by Paul Collart and revived by S. R. West in her youth (an innovation of the book-trade caused by the material conditions of handling scrolls) is merely possible, though attractive,21 West should not endorse without hesitation the confusion, and perhaps doctoring, of the source of Cicero.

The second controversial issue confidently adopted by West regards Hipparchus’ responsibility for the entry of ‘Homer’ in Attica. Something clearly went wrong with this story: on the one hand I agree with Haslam, 82 that the date is too late; on the other hand, its rests on the authority of [Plato], Hipparchus, 228 b 4-9,22 a very uncertain one, to say the least. What is more, an alternative version does exist, whose central figure for the introduction of the poems is, beyond Pisistratus as the responsible for the interpolation of II, 546-556 in the Catalogue of Ships, Solon (Dieuchidas of Megara, FGrH 485 F 6 apud Diogenem Laertium I, 57),23 and another one, involving Sparta in the person of Lycurgus (Aristotle, Resp. Lac., fr. 611, 10, 52-56 Λυκοῦργος ἐν Σάμωι ἐτελεύτησε. καὶ τὴν Ὁμήρου ποίησιν παρὰ τῶν ἀπογόνων Κρεοφύλου λαβὼν πρῶτος διεκόμισεν εἰς Πελοπόννησον). Unless we make the pseudo-Plato and Dieuchidas agree by conjecturing ἐξ ὑπολαβῆς in the text of the former (which would be harsh), the three versions can readily and satisfactorily be seen as worthless nationalistic efforts to seize on ‘Homer’. An editor who fails to make such a reservation in his preface should not necessarily be laughed out of court; but by choosing to ignore altogether the conflicting versions and their critical sifting by modern scholarship West is guilty of gross oversimplification of the evidence.

The last controversial issue in his picture of the proto-historic transmission is the way it represents the manuscript’s descent as being subjected to no further process than an accretive one. This generalisation of G. M. Bolling’s standpoint (without his idiosyncratic terminology),24 suffers from two severe drawbacks. It does not work on the basis of variant readings; its sole purpose is to allow the editor, as did Bolling in 1950, to cancel lines which can be demonstrated to have been added since the (Athenian sixth century BC) archetype. If one adds that it is only through the testimonium of Aristarchus as mediated by the scholia that Bolling (and West) are able to guess the number of lines the archetypal text presented though both of them scorn the great Alexandrian’s labours, I am afraid I cannot pronounce about this idea differently than Gregory Nagy: “the fundamental problem with the methodology of Bolling is that he allows only for expansion, never for compression, in the evolution of Homeric poetry.”25

What for a conclusion, then? Pages V-VI of the Teubner Praefatio provide us with a striking if very broad picture of the first two centuries of the transmission, whose details are far less agreed upon than West chooses to say and which fails to make it clear that historical points have been cast by him in an idiosyncratic way. It does not signify the entire collapse of his construction; but by indulging here in speculation and there in uncontrolled acceptation of conflicting evidence it is plain that West leads us to know less than what we should know. And the casual reader may find the elaboration of the materials better done elsewhere.

II. 2. “De traditione historica” (vol. I, Praefatio, pp. VI-XVI).

West rounds off this picture by accounting for the scholarly tradition (VI-VIII); the ancient manuscripts (papyri and uncials: VIII-IX); the quotations preserved in subsequent writers (ιχ and the medieval manuscripts (X-XVI). His bibliographical abstinence is as conspicuous as before, but only in the section on the scholarly tradition does this appear to be a major inconvenience: the intricate nature of the arguments, explicit and implicit, is such there that one is hard put to discover the source, or even the material basis, of what he says. II. 2. 1. The chapter on Alexandrian scholarship mixes well-documented observations with unwarranted speculations in a style filled with rhetorical questions, flourishes and asides. West begins with a general criticism of those scholars who viewed editorial work in Alexandria as the comparison of previous exemplars and the collecting of variant readings. and so cannot understand the true nature of the three Alexandrians’ contributions, mainly those by Zenodotus. It is questionable whether West’s mocking tone is justified; and his protest is, to my mind, both unnecessary and unfair since it takes the place of proper acknowledgement of scholarly debts. It deprives Marchinus van der Valk and Klaus Nickau of the merit of having provided us with a balanced account of Zenodotus and Aristarchus.

Unsurprisingly enough, the better part of what West holds here is a mere adaptation of Van der Valk’s conclusions.26 Zenodotus was arbitrary in his treatment of the text, he did not seek as if it were a rule earlier exemplars27 but lavished his judgement on those which were at his disposal ( non exemplaria contulit, non nouum exscripsit, uerum ueterem librum usurpauit q u e m h a b e b a t, p. VII) and he marked with the obelus every passage he deemed unworthy of his conception of ‘Homer’. Such is the main core of his ‘recension’; his textual ambitions were limited to a number of conjectures which found their way in Aristarchus’ sets of notes.28 Aristarchus, although he agreed with Aristophanes’ more rational aims and methods (save that he produced two successive sets of notes keyed to his texts: ArA, Arβ was as arbitrary as Zenodotus in his singular readings, at least those that found no hospitality in the ‘vulgate’ (Van der Valk, Researches…, II, 90: “so far as Aristarchus’ activities with regard to the Homeric text are concerned, we can say that he was no less prolific than Zenodotus in offering conjectures. Since, however, his emendations are less arbitrary, more scholarly and cautious, they have been less easily unmasked”).

The risk of endorsing these views without qualification is patent: Van der Valk’s conviction29 that the Alexandrian critics were no less arbitrary in their establishing of the numerus uersuum 30 than they are in their constitutio textus, has not gone unchallenged.31 West himself felt bound to accept the arguments for the validity of Aristarchus’ criteria in establishing the number of verses deemed authentic in the text of the Homeric poems, as devised by Bolling, External Evidence…, and recast by M. J. Apthorp in a magisterial way ( The Manuscript Evidence for Interpolation in Homer, Heidelberg, Winter, 1980). Actually, the reason West partially endorses Van der Valk in the field of constitutio textus may well be that he himself has a revolutionary theory to offer: contrary to the evidence of the A scholia, the quotations of textual criticism by Didymus do not show any first-hand collation of earlier exemplars by Aristarchus, whose riches Didymus was able to extract from different versions of the Aristarchean notes he had access to. No one besides Didymus sought variant readings; he collated as much textual evidence as was accessible to him, in an unsystematic way. To him should therefore be assigned the whole body of evidence relevant to the pre-Alexandrian state of the text. No more than Gregory Nagy in his review of West’s vol. 1 ( BMCR 00.09.12) am I able to agree with this theory.32 That Didymus nouit the thousands of readings he is credited with remains mere speculation. It would have been had West first given his proofs in a separate paper or monograph. It is unfortunate that he has weighted with his authority and the one of a Teubner edition such a highly debatable novelty.

II. 2. 2. The chapter devoted to the ancient manuscripts is very cursory indeed but not vitiated by West’s idiosyncrasy. Practically speaking, its most valuable device is the continuation of the numerical series initiated by Allen in his editio maior and followed since then by Collard, Mette and D. F. Sutton. The floppy disks produced by the latter formed the basis of the Teubner apparatus up to P (papyrus of text) #665, H (Homerica) #115 and W (witness) #40. One misses a reference to the more up-to-date (Homer in the Papyri dates from 1992) lists available in Sutton’s website (Homer and the Papyri at; last update 06/01/2001), and, perhaps, a concordance with the forthcoming repertory of Pack-Mertens, but this is a more tidy and informative procedure than that of Van Thiel in his Weidmann text.

Materially speaking, the major innovation of West is the investigation of about 840 unpublished scraps of papyrus from Oxyrhynchus now in the Ashmolean Museum of Oxford. Even though no indication of date, origin and material condition are given in the Sigla breuiata for this new material (which is to be regretted, since a Ptolemaic papyrus, that can be eccentric in his text or conform, and even a Roman one, have simply not the same weight that a much later, Byzantine papyrus), this is of paramount importance for the establishing of the numerus uersuum : West’s documentation throws new light on the problem of weakly-attested lines, for whose inauthenticity the papyrological evidence was proved by Bolling and confirmed by Apthorp to be the main external criterion when corroborated by internal evidence. Accordingly, the Teubner apparatus will remain for long a major tool, even if its text and collation of medieval manuscripts are superseded.

The presentation of papyrological readings in each lemma has not been encumbered with the customary system of dotted letters and brackets, save for the new Oxyrhynchus papyri and only where it has been deemed necessary; the lectional signs in the papyri are generally not exhibited. Such a policy is unobjectionable, since it saves space with a minimum loss of information; but students interested in selected passages may wish to check the actual placing of lacunae and lectional signs in the original publications. For what I was able to check in the editiones principes in my possession,33 the report is highly reliable. The nature of the text provided by papyri is hastily summed up in six lines. What is said is not untrue, but hardly adequate, since it makes no distinction between eccentric Ptolemaic papyri and conforming later ones, the watershed for this radical change in the state of the text being the middle of the second century BC, and since it amalgamates without qualification matters relevant to the numerus uersuum and to the constitutio textus. Nothing is said on how the ‘vulgate’ came to be what it is; the issue itself is hardly mentioned.34 These lacunae are much to be regretted.

II. 2. 3. The chapter on the quotations has benefited from fresh examination, in order to update previous collections (La Roche’s 1872 apparatus; Ludwich, Die Homervulgata als Voralexandrinische Erwiesen, Leipzig, Teubner, 1898, 71-115) and to cover all authors down to the ninth century AD. This was a daring ambition, since most works dated from the early Byzantine period are inadequately published at best (mainly codices A and B of the Etymologicum Genuinum); the result is hardly worthwhile in itself, and West reminds us of what little critical moment these quotations are to the editor, being made from memory and often containing supplementary verses. Only very occasionally do the quotations preserve a better text than the direct tradition. Parodies, imitations and centos are also mentioned, but have not been studied afresh,35 though West was able to use M. D. Usher’s work on so-called Homerocentones, before it appeared in the Bibliotheca Teubneriana ( Eudociae Homerocentones, Leipzig & Stuttgart, 1999).

The apparatus of the testimonia in both volumes of the Teubner Iliad is very heavily abbreviated and compact, and the form can be said to lack both elegance and clarity. Since the huge majority of authors of quotations are of no help in the editing of the text, it would have been profitable to retain in the critical apparatus only those who actually do make a contribution (as did Ludwich). But this is not essential. My only serious reservation is that the references for quotations collected by La Roche and Ludwich were not updated; as a consequence, the text may be sometimes at variance with the one West took into account. For a striking illustration, see my note (below, under heading V) on XXII, 31.

Last but not least, vast as it is, the collection is still far from being exhaustive. Without attempting a systematic verification, I am able to add a few more items, often trivial enough: II, 24 (or 61) = Fronto, Epistulae, p. 7, 13 Van den Hout; II, 53 = Diogenes of Oinoanda, fr. 142, II, 15-18 Smith ( Diogenes of Oinoanda. The Epicurean Inscription, La Scuola di Epicuro. Supplemento 1, Naples, Bibliopolis, 1993, 331); IV, 223 = Fronto, Epistulae, p. 7, 11 Van den Hout; V, 4 = Libanios, Epistulae, 1238, 1 (XI, 319, 1-2 Förster); V, 340 = Seneca the Elder, Suasoriae, I, 5 (p. 5, 4 Kiessling); VI, 407 = the same, Controuersiae, I, 8, 15 (pp. 137, 29-138, 1 Kiessling); IX, 97 = the same, Controuersiae, VII, 7, 19 (p. 360, 18-19 Kiessling); IX, 203 ζωρότερον… κέραιε = Fronto, Epistulae, p. 189, 7-8 Van den Hout, with κέραιρε like Plutarch, Athenaeus and Et. Magn.; IX, 204 οἱ… ἄνδρες = the same, Epistulae, p. 189, 6 Van den Hout; XV, 187-193 are extant with original variants in Ptolemagrios’ monument in Panopolis, I. Milne 9267 (p. 48) = SEG, VIII, 363 + 638 = Inscriptions métriques 114 (contemporary of August’s reign?), face I, lines 1-736; XVI, 21 can be found in Heliodorus, IV, 7, 4 (II, p. 11 Rattenbury-Lumb) with a fault— Ἀχιλεῦ instead of Ἀχιλλεῦ —and the reading Πηλέως [ Πιλέως cod. Z] like the majority of Homeric ueteres (hereafter ω 250 is quoted by Jerome, Contra Rufinum, III, 42, 21 Lardet ( “Corpus Christianorum” 79, Turnhout, Brepols, 1982, 112) with a slightly different text for the second hemistich, ὁπποῖόν κ’ εἴπηισθα ἔπος, dedit Lardet: πος τοιον codd.] κ’ἐπακούσαις, that comes from Jerome’s carelessness in quoting poets (Lardet, note 228, p. 235); and XXIII, 72 can be found in Porphyry’s fr. 378F Smith (p. 457, from the Περὶ Στυγός), with the temporal augment εἴργουσι like W ( ἐέργουσι Bentley).

II. 2. 4. The chapter on the minuscule manuscript tradition is the longest and the sole to argue in some detail for the theses held by West. I may begin by assigning at least some of the prototypes of this tradition to the beginning of the tenth century AD, the period to which belong the work of Kephalas on the Palatine Anthology and the Byzantine translitteration of Aristophanes, in the light of the epigrams by Kometas ( Anth. Pal. XV, 36-38), who says that he has “discovered, rejuvenated and written down the age-old books of Homer” (for his phraseology see especially 38, 1-3 and 4-5 εὑρὼν Κομητᾶς τὰς Ὁμηρείους βίβλους ἐφθαρμένας τε κοὐδαμῶς ἐστιγμένας, στίξας διεσμίλευσα ταύτας ἐντέχνως… Ἐντεῦθεν οἱ γράφοντες οὐκ ἐσφαλμένως μαθητιῶσιν, ὡς ἔοικε μανθάνειν). As this man, far from being a mere grammarian in whose mouth such a language may be pedantic joke, seems identical with the first Professor of Greek in the reopened University at Constantinople (from AD 863 onward), the guess of the Budé editor of the Anth. Pal., Robert Aubreton, that he has edited, that is translitterated, Homer is possible and ought not to be ignored (cf. Alan Cameron, The Greek Anthology from Meleager to Planudes, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1993, 308-311).

The medieval evidence presents the critic with an arduous task: on the one hand, manuscripts ranging from the ninth century AD to the late sixteenth are to be counted in the hundreds. A mere up-to-date catalogue does not even exist, in the absence of which one has still to work through the tidy but generally second-hand information collected by Allen, sometimes many years before the date of the final release (1931: Homeri Ilias, I, 11-55). On the other hand, relationships between manuscripts both individually and collectively resist analysis. We have not, for the Homeric poems, the situation found in many classical works, where the transmission offers a distinct family-tree and where each descendant manuscript perpetuates the distinctive ‘errors’ of its ancestors and adds fresh distinctive ‘errors’, without ever (or very seldom) returning to the ‘truth’ except by conjecture.

In the case of the Iliad, proper evaluation is hampered by the considerable degree of textual uniformity the 188 manuscripts known to Allen show (number of lines, rough appearance of the text), as a consequence of their reflecting of the post-Alexandrian stabilisation which came to be the ‘vulgate’. The variant readings, a very considerable galaxy, cannot easily be pressed into a recognisable path with disjunctive ‘errors’ and conjunctive ‘errors’ so as to produce a stemma owing to the absence of clear, unequivocal instances of graphical faults (those in the oldest manuscripts seldom point to a definite type of script and thus the uncial or minuscule status of their prototype) and to the extensive horizontal transmission conspicuous in the innumerable interventions of later ‘hands’ in all the minuscule manuscripts. This process of correcting the copy in linea by entering the readings of other manuscript(s) than the direct prototype was no doubt helped by the presence of scholia rich in alternative readings and suggestion of emendation. From the scholia an exchange of readings is very likely to have taken place, but in itself this is insufficient to account for so extensive a contamination. The instability of the constellations of variants and the extreme diffusion (that is, inconsistency) of each group of manuscripts that can be affiliated on the basis of generally no more than a handful of common significant readings, is sufficient to disprove any attempt at classification and to bar the way for proper eliminatio codicum descriptorum.

Therefore, Allen’s ‘families’ and ‘independent manuscripts’ ( Homeri Ilias, I, 93-193)37 show incontrovertibly that the majority of manuscripts have good claims to appear under several ‘families’ and so are not liable to be assigned to a fixed place in a stemma. One may dislike Allen’s methods and question the text and apparatus he eventually produced, but his collations, for all their selectivity and incorporation of previous material in an uncontrolled way (from La Roche and Ludwich), remain an invaluable tool without which nearly nine tenths of the medieval tradition would remain terra incognita. Pending their (hardly feasible) replacement, subsequent editors have been faced with an uncomfortable choice: either to ignore them and make a fresh start by concentrating on the systematic exploration of the oldest manuscripts at the risk of missing much of value outside this restricted path or to incorporate them and try to prove the degree of contamination by working out their affiliations.

The most influential modern fashion appears to be the first. Such is Van Thiel’s standpoint: his criteria of selection are the intrinsic age of manuscripts (this led him to retain 19 codices, in rough chronological order ZADBEFTYCRWNGMHVOLI, of which 15 are representative of the ten ‘families’ of Allen x v o s i b e h t r—respectively A, BCE [this last added by Van Thiel], DG, F, H, I, L, MNP, O, R—and one—T—was recognised by Allen as ‘independent’ ) and their covering of both text and ancient scholia where some of the preceding are deficient (P z Ath). Only one of these manuscripts escaped Allen’s notice, viz. Y, a Parisian torso which contains excerpta of two-thirds of the Iliad and which is interesting for its comparatively early date (eleventh century). Surprisingly, Van Thiel does not report Y fully: his apparatus furnishes the readings of the manuscripts only in the few cases where the printed text is different from their consensus or their majority (expressed by the siglum W, a device of Ludwich), or where the authenticity of the medieval tradition is doubtful. Based as the Weidmann text is on the exclusive authority of the ‘vulgate’ as preserved by the medieval tradition,38 its meagre apparatus does not report adequately the evidence for ancient scholarship, save for the marginal signs of Aristarchus, and is extremely selective in its treatment of the ancient manuscripts’ readings.

West was then wholly justified in his plan of giving more attention to these two matters. Now, as far as the medieval tradition is concerned, he virtually reproduces Van Thiel’s selection, apart from the retrieval of the comparatively late LI z Ath and the addition of X, codex Sinaiticus (850-870?), the readings of which he gives after the first publication for only IV, 367-376. Of the remaining 19 manuscripts, he constantly reports 12: Z and Omega (I write W only when there is no risk of confusion with the manuscript ὠ plus Y where it is extant. NHMOVP are reported selectively where they appear to have independent readings; only for the local manuscript O (Bodleianus 298) did West make an exception to his rule of the non-collating of secondary manuscripts.

The main advances of West in matter of recensio are the extensive report of W (which now appears as one of the most interesting and individually characterised Homeric uett.), Z (which was insufficiently collated and reported by Allen and now easily recognised as stemming from a different tradition than Omega) and of Y (a manuscript whose score of unique omitted lines and verbal variants cannot be divined from the report of Van Thiel: it omits e.g. XXIV, 116; 125 with Gac; 128 ἐμόν -131 μίσγεθ’; 141-142; 206; 208-216, which it sums up with a line of its own; 220-227 ibid.; 311-312; 321; and it reads ηϋς instead of τοῖος in 182, ταμίη φέρε instead of πρόχοόν θ’ ἅμα in 304, αγγελον αισιον αμμι for ἄγγελον ὅς τέ σοὶ αὐτῶι in 310, αστεος εξεφαανθη for δὶα ἄστεος. οἳ δὲ ἰδόντες in 320, ὅτε δὴ for οἳ δ’ ἐπεὶ in 349).

Affiliations between the twelve basic manuscripts are accounted for on pages XIII-XVI in a manner which reintroduces the problem of contamination, as none of them appears to be exclusive in his agreements with others. The task has been well performed and the results are seldom exciting but carry the conviction. West is generally content to revive points previously made, like the case for the close agreement of BCE inside Omega, and MNP outside it, already noticed by Allen, and to illustrate them with a few significant readings.39 The intrinsic importance of YW seems to have been underrated: Y, being a manuscript of extracts and fragments, is sometimes very eccentric, and, not always through carelessness, more eccentric in fact than West chooses to say, who tacitly restores many accents and breathings (I rely on my examination of the original in May-June 2000); while W, which has fewer individual readings but is still very characterised, often exhibits peculiarities of orthography which can ultimately be tracked down to certain antique conventions of writing.40

Although not on the same scale as those by Ludwich and Allen, the Teubner apparatus is far more extensive than the one by Van Thiel and furnishes minute exhibition of the significant peculiarities of the twelve basic manuscripts. We may pass over the silence maintained by West on the physical nature and extent of his collations (for A the black-and-white reproduction by Comparetti, for O the original, I suppose; but what of the others? For all his defects Allen was able to study nearly all his manuscripts in situ, a not unimportant bonus in the discrimination of hands), but a conspicuous reservation is that, no less than Van Thiel (and Ludwich), West’s use of the collective siglum W is the occasion for indulging in a one-sided negative redaction of the apparatus.41 Occasional minor variations of spelling (movable nu for manuscripts other than A, for instance, or final dative in iota) are tacite concealed by the parenthesis; this is not a great loss, but a loss indeed.

A second, potentially more dangerous, objection would be that the Van Thiel-West limitation to the early path of medieval tradition does not account at all for the contamination and may appear arbitrary. It remains a possibility that ancient variants lie unnoticed in the great mass of the recentiores, either buried in the hardly accessible apparatus of Allen or having escaped his selected reading of the originals. Such a probability has every chance to be low; for contamination in manuscripts later than, say, the fourteenth century is as likely to proceed from early medieval manuscripts like the W ones as from much older manuscripts. But Pasquali’s defence of the recentiores, non deteriores principle is hard to bypass in the case of the Iliad, and I regret that West did not deem it necessary, if not to take into account this state of affairs (this was indeed bewildering after he had chosen the fermeture stemmatique at the very least to introduce a random element in his equation by checking some of the late manuscripts. Instead, when the opportunity presents itself (that is, totally unsystematically), he merely gives support to some variant readings provided by a few of his uestustiores with the testimony of Ludwich’s or Allen’s selections of recentiores, represented by the quite confusing heading ‘rr’, ‘r’. Now, given the severe limitations of the similar standpoint of Van Thiel, unsupported as it is by a far too abridged apparatus, and the various deficiencies of previous editions, West has put every reader of the Iliad greatly in his debt. Only with the tidy evidence of his apparatus does the identity of the medieval and the post-Aristarchean vulgate becomes incontrovertible. For a bonus this is not inconsiderable. But the foremost advance of the apparatus in its report and classification of the evidence is to make possible something very like the approach of the authentic numerus uersuum.


III. 1. Until Jean-Baptiste Gaspard d’Ansse de Villoison had published, with a rich, if somewhat verbose, introduction, the text and scholia of the Venetus 454, discovered by him at the very end of 1778 or the beginning of 1779 ( Homeri Ilias ad ueteri codicis Veneti fidem recensita, Venice, 1788, a book by now very scarce and of which I am fortunate to possess a copy), there was no way of establishing the numerus uersuum other than from the printed tradition. Although the editorial vulgate of the text itself goes back to the celebrated Poetae Graeci Principes heroici carminis of Henri Estienne (Geneva, 1566), that is to say, to the Genauensis 44 (Ge Allen, G Van Thiel West), line numbering was inherited from the 1488 Florentine princeps of Demetrius Chalcondylas.42 The availability of Villoison’s 532 closely printed pages of A scholia stirred things up, after the announcement of their riches in learned journals had produced an extraordinary expectation of the Homerus Variorum totius antiquitatis Criticorum soon to be revealed:43 it was made clear that the text from the then known manuscripts and current editions was not roughly Homer’s ipsissima uerba. Only after Villoison’s publication could an adequate edition be prepared.44 A major, if pedestrian, improvement on the French scholar’s faithful but hastily publication came from the detailed Indices nominum to the newly published scholia as well as to the corpus of all those previously known ( Scholia Minora, scholia of C. Horneius and Wassenberg, Leipzig and Cambridge scholia) and to Eustathius that appeared in Harles’ revision of Fabricius’ great Bibliotheca Graeca (I, 440-501; followed by a 25-page repertory of ancient critics named by all these scholia).

The method followed by F. A. Wolf in establishing his numerus uersuum at 15693 lines was nowhere clearly stated by him; when one reads the introductory material of his second edition (1804-1807) as well as the relevant part of the famous Prolegomena ad Homerum (1795) that rounded off his 1794 edition, one is faced either (in 1795) with hopelessly vague formulae of historical character filled with rhetoric or (in 1804) with reassessment of these results that culminate in considerations borrowed from others. The 1794 text had no apparatus; the proof-reading was done before the writing of the Prolegomena, where Wolf pays lip-service to Villoison before going on to relate how he himself, as long ago as his adulescentia (1779 or 1780), had lived for making a recension of Homer ( Homerum numquam diu exanimo et conspectu amisi). But, despite his self-stated Herculean labors,45 Wolf merely duplicated Villoison’s conclusions as to the corrections the printed vulgate was in need of, conclusions which a single glance at the Venetus might have saved him.46 This narrative must not be accepted at face value;47 and it is strange that such a long process eventually led to an edition which, though markedly different from Villoison’s (1788, pp. 1-120) in its critical pretense (contrast Wolf’s own claim subtilitas sine qua historica disputatio persuadet, non fidem facit), is similar to his in nearly every respect save for a few lines culled from quotations, like the one adjusted between the first word of XVIII, 604 τερπόμενοι and the first one of 605 δοιώ (= iv, 17, after Athenaeus, V, 180 c) with the indispensable transformation in 606 of ἐξάρχοντες to ἐξάρχοντος ( Prolegomena ad Homerum, chapter XLIX, note 49 p. 263; cf. ed. 1804, praef., p. lxxx, and save for numerous minute differences or peculiarities of orthography and dialect (their tendency being towards the archaizing of the text).

Therefore one can take for granted that the basis of the Wolfian text of 1794 is the Venetus, both its text and scholia, with some admixture of the indirect tradition; since the disregard for the vulgar manuscripts was then fashionable,48 it is not surprising that they were of little, if any, use. In determining his numerus uersuum, it looks as if Wolf was interested in bypassing Villoison only by a more systematic use of his material. Since he has a good feeling for Homeric Greek and is sometimes successful in his orthographic novelties (for instance he consistently wrote ὕπο, ἔπι for ὑπό, ἐπί, but did not see that ἔγωγε was to be separated), I hesitate to pronounce concerning him the gross word ‘plagiarism’; but I can see no other term that would describe the fallacy of an editor who in his career never published an edition without having the ancilla of a previous, major brick-and-mortar work and who never fulfilled his promises of giving his complete philological justifications. The true epoch-making editions of the Iliad were Villoison’s, for his often uncritical but undeniably accurate report of the Venetus, and Heyne’s (1802), for his sifting of the text and his extensive collations of many manuscripts; both of them did occasionally produce excellent conjectures.

III. 2. That the attested text of ‘Homer’, even of the Venetus, was riddled with interpolations of all kinds apart from the occasional plus-verses Wolf incorporated into his texts, German erudition of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries was quick to discover. When we discount the wild Nauck, Köchly and Fick and the undistinguished Rzach and Cauer, there are three editors whose work still repays careful attention, Ludwich, Leaf, and Van Leeuwen, who were bold enough to handle the least tolerable lines on the basis of the internal, ‘literary’, evidence. But there was still no sounder criterion than each critic’s Sprachgefühl. It was left to Bolling to give incontrovertible proof of two facts of paramount importance: working with an eye constantly on the papyrological evidence, he showed that all lines for which the external evidence of the manuscripts is not unanimous and which can be seen on internal grounds to have been taken over from a similar, longer context to harmonize them (concordance-interpolation) are likely to be post-Aristarchean accretions for which he coined the term ‘vulgar interpolations’. As a rule, they are likely to be absent from newly discovered Ptolemaic and Roman papyri.

Bolling showed also that the transmitted numerus uersuum, once deprived of these additional lines, is virtually the same as Aristarchus’. It may be contested whether Aristarchus’ successive ‘editions’ are the pre-archetype of the transmission, what Bolling called the Alpha-text, contrasting with the archetypal Pi-text; and his view of Aristarchus (and Zenodotus) as never canceling a line without very strong manuscript evidence against it has been repeatedly and justly assailed by Van der Valk. But even if it were true that the Alexandrian’s methods were seldom based on manuscript evidence and more ill-judged than sensitive, as Van der Valk strongly argued, the great increase in papyrological evidence since Bolling published his Ilias Atheniensium, which sought to establish a sixth-century Athenian text, allowed Michael Apthorp in his in-depth 1982 reassessment of Bolling’s model to undermine seriously these counter-arguments. Apthorp proved that Aristarchus was cautious enough to omit no genuine, unanimously attested line and that his atheteses were meant to signpost weakly attested lines in the pre-Alexandrian material he did handle. The first point has been endorsed by the great majority of scholars while the second is still the matter of some dispute, wrongly to my mind. In the following discussion, I shall discard plus-verses, which do not make great a difference whatever recent texts one consults and which are listed in West’s apparatus in the most convenient and up-to-date way, and concentrate on proper interpolations.

III. 3. West removes from the text 21 of what Bolling ( External Evidence… 16-23) called ‘vulgar interpolations’ amounting to 23 lines in books XIII-XXIV. No further comment is needed than the transcription of the critical notes which show the absence of these lines both in the papyri (at least a majority of them) and in a substantial portion (or the majority) of the W-mss. in linea; accordingly I append here a mere list: XIII, 255 (see Apthorp, Manuscript Evidence…, 38, 78); XIV, 70; XIV, 269 (Apthorp, 100); XVI, 381 (Apthorp, “Some Neglected Papyrus Evidence against the Authenticity of Iliad 16 381”, ZPE 81, 1990, 1-7); XVI, 614-615; XVII, 219 (Apthorp, Manuscript Evidence…, 150); XVII, 455; XVII, 585; XVIII, 604-605 (Apthorp, 160-165); XIX, 177 (Apthorp, 100 b); XX, 312; XX, 447; XXI, 434; XXI, 480 (Apthorp, note 69 on 183-184); XXI, 510; XXII, 121; XXIII, 565; XXIII, 864; XXIV, 558; XXIV, 693; XXIV, 790. Hereafter I take for granted that, although lines presented as vulgar interpolations can theoretically nearly always be accounted for by oral poetics (even up to the point of producing sophistic arguments), they should not whenever external evidence against them is overwhelming.

III. 4. Further vulgar interpolations were recognized by Bolling (External Evidence… and Athetized Lines… / Ilias Atheniensium), which are not removed by West but retained in his text between a special kind of brackets (braces). These may be but cannot be proved to be post-Aristarchean accretions, since the decisive criterion of external evidence (manuscript attestation in papyri) is either ambiguous or insufficient, so that West was justified not to delete them. In books XIII-XXIV I have counted 21 occurrences amounting to 25 lines.

In 10 cases West may well be overcautious and this reviewer would have wished to see the following lines properly removed: XIII, 480 (= 94; hab. P 9 P 60 P 481 W: def. P 10 P 497 ἐν πολλοῖς οὐ φέρεται; “almost certainly a post-Aristarchean interpolation” Apthorp, 151, 2); XIII, 731 (add. Aim D2 Rim, hab. Zenodotus P 435 P 481 FG: def. P 60 p 1288 ω “surely spurious” Janko, A Commentary…, IV, 138); XIII, 749 (= XII, 81; add. Aim Him, hab. ω: def. P 60 α η ο “clearly a concordance-interpolation” Janko, 140); XIV, 120 (add. Aim Wim, hab. ω: def. P 1 P 60 P 1297 P 1306 T Rpc; given that no less than four papyri now omit the line together with A T W, it was possible to relegate it to the apparatus); XV, 481 (= III, 337, XI, 42, XVI, 138; hab. Db R: def. P 48 P 60 P 1139 ω that D R and the consensus of B C E read the line is of little weight against the omission by three papyri and the rest of the ueteres); XV, 578 (= XIII, 187 ; hab. P 48 ω, post 570 hab. P 60, i. m. add.W3 manus secunda : def. P 224 P 343 γ η ο “its absence in three of four papyri and some codices, like the existence of a variant ‘darkness covered his eyes’, prove it a concordance-interpolation like V, 42, to make clear that the bow is fatal”, Janko, 290); XVII, 326 (hab. P 692 W: def. P 43 P 230; “it is virtually certain that it is a post-Aristarchean interpolation” Apthorp, 152); XVIII, 200-201 (= XI, 800-801, XVI, 42-43; hab. A b, 200 hab. ω: def. P 9 P 11 P 86? P 647? P 1429 ν the absence in so many papyri is quite overwhelming); XVIII, 441 (= 60; hab. P 9 A ω: def. P 11 P 86? P 239 G, ἔν τισιν οὐ κεῖται; Apthorp, 145 “not only is the line dispensable, but, once again, there is a good case for the aesthetic superiority of the shorter text; and once again we see that there would have been a strong temptation to concordance interpolation of that text. For these reasons, and also because there is no real homoiographic temptation to omission, I regard it as almost certain that…the line is an interpolation which was absent from the edition of Aristarchus”); XXI, 73 (hab. Didymus P 9 P 507 W: def. Aristarchus ἐν ταῖς Ἀριστάρχου; cf. Apthorp, 147-150 and 152).

In 6 cases West’s refusal to delete is probably sound: XIII, 316 (add. D2 Tim, hab. P 435 F G R W: def. P 10 P 36 P 60 P 481 P 1254 P 1265 ω despite Janko, 87, Apthorp, 145-146 made a good case for an accidental omission); XVI, 689-690 (add. Fim Rim Wim, hab. b T G: def. P 9 P 486a ω 135 (hab. 9 A Dim F G: def. P 435 ω the athetesis is approved by Edwards, 307, without mentioning van Leeuwen’s demonstration that the line was inscribed in the margin of A’s exemplar); XX, 316-317 (= XXII, 375-376; om. P 9, 317 om. V); XXII, 316 (= XIX, 383; add. Aim D2, hab. P 9 P 12 ω: def. αδη; despite Apthorp, 39 and, given the contamination of our tradition, I hesitate to valorize the omission in A D, aetate qua, up to the point of counterbalancing the attestation in two papyri and in the vast majority of the manuscripts); XXII, 363 (= XVI, 857; add. D2, hab. P 9 ω: def. P 255 P 1507 δ but it must be said that the new papyrological evidence of West favors the athetesis).

One more case admits of an indifferent choice, the medieval attestation being scanty but with no strong papyrological evidence against the line: XXI, 158 (add. Gim, hab. b F: def. P 9 ω).49

There remain three cases in which no certainty could be reached: XVIII, 381 (add. Aim Rim W2, hab. ω: def. P 11 P 86? P 239 P 647 α ρ γ ω; Apthorp, 140 “in the light of the line’s dispensability and the ἐγγύθεν difficulty, I think it is far more likely to be a post-Aristarchean interpolation… The ultimate verdict must remain non liquet…”); XVIII, 427 (= XIV, 196; hab. P 86 ω: def. P 9 P 11 P 239 γ η ρ; despite the evidence of the Bt scholia[[50] Apthorp, 141 is to my mind on the right track: “this would give the hypothesis that 427 was accidentally omitted from an influential transcript of Aristarchus’ edition a certain degree of plausibility, but my own assessment of the internal evidence leads me to regard the prima facie interpretation—that 427 is a post-Aristarchean interpolation—as far more likely”); and XXIII, 92 (hab. P 9 P 257 P 511 H 142 W: def. P 12, ἐν πάσαις οὐκ ἦν; here Bolling’s criterion of attestation in papyri is balanced by the statement of Didymus, and the decision on which of these conflicting authorities has the better ground remains a matter of personal appreciation from the modern critic).

It is time for less advanced students of the text to learn that in this total of 47 lines none can be genuine and that they ought not to be quoted as Homer’s any longer. Those relegated to the apparatus raise no problem. But those retained in the text with braces are no less certainly spurious than the deleted ones, but West was not confident enough (or did not dare) to delete them. Now, the very typographical device of the braces is misleading. No difference is made between the lines against whose authenticity there is manuscript ground (‘vulgar interpolations’) and those that are mere guesses, suspected by modern critics followed by West. A more satisfactory solution would have been the use of square brackets for these 20 possible vulgar interpolations and the use of braces for speculative suggestion of interpolated lines.

III. 5. One more line is bracketed, which is present in the manuscripts but against whose authenticity its absence in nearly all our papyri is a serious ground: XV, 551 (hab. P 60 W: def. P 9 P 48 P 131; could be a concordance-interpolation from XIII, 176 [Janko, 289], but Allen well explains the omission in P 48 by homoioteleuton, so that we are faced with an attestation in one papyri and a significant omission in two, and the decision to remove the line was daring). In one case West’s apparatus seems to be erroneous: XV, 562 is added by Dpc and read by ω whereas P 48 and the unpublished P 1341 lack it; but it is absent in P 60 according to Allen and Mazon, and even in O 8 [O Van Thiel West] and a dozen late manuscripts according to Allen solus 51 and has every chance to be a concordance-interpolation from V, 530 [Janko, 289-290; contra, Van der Valk, Reasearches…, II, 517-519 is special pleading]). Accordingly the reader should be prepared to regard XV, 551 and XV, 562 as post-Aristarchean interpolations.

III. 6. In his final view of the transmission, epitomized in Ilias Atheniensium Bolling went on to edit, in his own words, “the earliest stage of the tradition from which one can go on recensione aperta” in conformity with his rule that “in a reconstruction of Pi the shorter text is to be preferred” ( The Athetized Lines of the Iliad, 25 = postulate VI; the preceding quotation is from p. 25, note 4). In so doing, he indulged in three excessive novelties which, justly, found very little hospitality in West’s edition. Not content with removing first all lines absent in any papyri without regard for the nature of this absence and second those lines athetized by Aristarchus, Bolling also deleted any line for whose suspicion by some ancient critic the scholia bear witness, because “neither Zenodotus, nor Aristophanes, nor Aristarchus would athetize a line unless its attestation seemed to him seriously defective.52

The first device he applied (in Ilias Atheniensium unless otherwise noted) in XIII, 46 (om. P 10, hab. P 65 P 85 P 1427 W sec. West: om. P 60, F 21 sec. Bolling; that the omission was caused by homoioarcton was seen by the Budé editors); XIV, 12 (om. P 60 Px: hab. P 9 P 1285 P 1294 ω; West’s new papyri prove Bolling’s suspicion to be wrong); XXI, 402 and 405 (om. P 12; both lines can be seen as dispensable, but their absence in one papyrus is precarious ground against their unanimous attestation; Bolling is misguided); XXII, 133-135 (om. P12, sed post u. 316 rest.; the omission is accidental and repaired in the wrong place; Bolling is perverse); XXIII, 359-361 (“om. (P 13 [ 1a]); hab. P 254 ( 5/6 p), cf. ad 757 a-c”, Bolling; there is no such indications in West and the Budé edition, but as 359-361= 757a-c, which are extant in the P 13im, Bolling’s suspicion that both groups of lines are interpolated is worth noticing).

The second device he applied in XIII, 350 ( Athetized Lines… [hereafter A.L. ], 133); XIII, 658-659 (ath. Aristophanes, haesitabat Aristarchus: A.L., 134-136); XIV, 95 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristophanes); XIV, 114 (om. Zenodotus, ath. Aristophanes); XIV, 213 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus); XIV, 304-306 (ath. Zenodotus, Aristarchus); XIV, 317-327 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus 53); XIV, 376-377 (ath. uel om. Zenodotus, ath. Aristophanes Aristarchus: A.L., 139-140); XV, 56-77 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus); XV, 147-148 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus: A.L., 144); XV, 166-167 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 144-145); XV, 212-217 (ath. Aristarchus, cf. A.L., 146-147; West suspects only 214); XV, 231-235 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus: A.L., 147); XV, 449-451 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 148-149); XV, 668-673 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 149-150); XV, 712 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 150); XVI, 97-100 (ath. Zenodotus, Aristarchus; Aristarchus s o l u s sec. Bolling: A.L., 150-152); XVI, 237 (om. Zenodotus, ath. Aristophanes Aristarchus); XVI, 261 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus: A.L., 153); XVI, 613 (‘om. Aristarchus 1, ath. Aristarchus 2’ Bolling, or better West ‘om ArA, ἄλογον siglum appinxit Arβ’ 420 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 157); XVIII, 39-49 (the Catalog of the Nereids is omitted by the editio Argolica, athetized by Zenodotus and Aristarchus, cf. External evidence…, 177-178); XVIII, 444-456 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 159-160); XVIII, 597-598 (om. Aristophanes—plus P 239ac—, ath. Aristarchus); XIX, 94 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 162-163); XIX, 388-391 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L.,165); XIX, 407 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 165-166); XIX, 416-417 (ath. Aristarchus); XX, 125-128 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 167); XX, 180-186 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L.,167-168); XX, 195-198 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L.,168); XX, 205-209 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 168-169); XX, 251-255 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 169-170); XX, 322-324 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 170); XXI, 290-292 (om. editio Cretica, ath. Seleucus; 290 ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 171-172); XXI, 475-477 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 173-174); XXI, 570 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 174-175); XXII, 199-201 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 175-176); XXII, 329 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 176); XXII, 393-394 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 177); XXII, 487-499 (ath. Aristarchus, cf. External Evidence…, 189-190 and A.L., 172); XXIII, 259-261 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus: A.L., 180-181); XXIII, 405-406 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 181); XXIII, 471 (ibid.); XXIII, 479 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 181-182); XXIII, 581 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 182); XXIII, 757 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 182-183); XXIII, 772 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 183); XXIII, 810 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L.); XXIII, 824-825 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus); XXIII, 843 (ath. Aristarchus?: A.L., 183-184); XXIV, 6-9 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus: A.L., 184); XXIV, 20-21 (ath. Aristarchus: A. L., 186-187); XXIV, 23-30 (ath. Aristarchus sec. Bolling, cf. A.L., 188-189, at uide West, 334); XXIV, 45 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 189); XXIV, 71-73 (ath. Aristarchus, obelos appinxit P 656: A.L., 189-190); XXIV, 86; (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 190); XXIV, 130-132 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 191-192); XXIV, 304 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 192); XXIV, 476 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 193); XXIV, 514 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 193-194); XXIV, 556-557 (ath. Aristarchus: A.L., 194); XXIV, 594-595 (ibid.); XXIV, 614-617 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus, “fortasse recte” West; cf. A.L., 195).54

The third device he applied in XIII, 637 ( τινές apud schol. bτ 657 (ath. aliquis apud scholia bT: A.L., 134-136); XIV, 142 (ath. aliquis apud scholia T: A.L., 137); XV, 18-31 (om. Zenodotus) + XV, 33 (om. Zenodotus Aristophanes 55); XV, 206 (ath. Zenodotus: A.L., 145); XVI, 89-94 (“sic ω; ut in textu Zen.” Bolling; 89-91 med. om. Zenodotus); XVI, 140 (ath. Zenodotus) + XVI, 141-144 (om. Zenodotus), cf. A.L., 152; XVI, 432-458 (om. Zenodotus); XVI, 467-470 (“sic Aristarchus apud scholia T legisse dicitur” Bolling); XVI, 666-683 (“ath. Zenodotus, u. 677 omisso” Bolling, cf. A.L., 154-156); XVII, 134-136 (134-135 Bolling; om. Zenodotus, Chian edition); XVII, 260-261 (ath. Zenodotus, defendit Aristarchus: A.L., 156); XVII, 364-365 (ath. Zenodotus: A.L., 156-157); XVII, 404-425 (om. Zenodotus: A.L., 157-158); XVII, 545-546 (ath. Zenodotus, τινὲς οὐδὲ γράφουσιν scholia T: A.L., 158); XVIII, 10-11 (om. Rhianus, Aristophanes); XVIII, 176-177 (om. Zenodotus); XVIII, 483-608 or 609 (ath. Zenodotus, 479-609 om. Fick; cf. A.L., 160-162); XIX, 327 (ath. Aristophanes, Aristarchus; Didymus has the alternative text εἵ που ἔτι ζώει γε πυρῆς ἐμὸς ὃν κατέλειπον; cf. A.L., 163-164); XXI, 195 om. Megaclides Zenodotus Rac, hab. Aristarchus; XXI, 287 (“fortasse non habuit Seleucus” Bolling, cf. External Evidence…, 189-190 and A.L., 171-172; West’s apparatus is silent and records only the athetesis of Payne Knight); XXI, 538-539 (ath. Zenodotus: A.L., 174); XXIII, 332-333 (pro his uu. legit Aristarchus ἠὲ σκῖρος ἔν. νῦν αὖ θέτο τέρματ’ Ἀχιλλεύς);56 XXIV, 269 (om. Zenodotus).

There remain the unclassifiable passages XXIII, 626 (add. P 13pc: om. P 13ac V, ignorasse uidetur Aristarchus: Bolling’s claim that the line was added by a second hand is wrong, but its ignorance by Aristarchus is significant) and XXIV, 528 (Plato has a text of his own— δώρων οἷα δίδωσι κακῶν, ἕτερος δὲ ἑάων the ‘vulgate’, κηρῶν ἔμπλειοι, ὁ μὲν ἐσθλῶν, αὐτὰρ ὁ δειλῶν Plato—, both being quoted by Plutarch).

Two passages are exemplary of the degeneration of Bolling’s critical faculties:57 XIV, 278-279 where I simply cannot understand the reason for the deletion (that an alternative version of these two lines is extant in the T scholia and Eustathius does not prove that the vulgar text is inauthentic), and XVII, 74 which is omitted only by T (as if this bare fact were sufficient to prove the line to be badly-attested!). Finally two more cases are exemplary of Bolling’s biased standpoint: for the vulgar text in XVIII, 155-156 Zenodotus reads something very different, together with the plus-verse 156a, which need not bear witness to the authenticity of the ‘vulgate’ here but nonetheless cannot be used as evidence for the spuriousness of 155-156 themselves in both versions. And on the authority of Aristonicus he rejects XVIII, 444-456 (429-456 Fick), with no justification ( Athetized Lines…, 159). I should add that if Bolling were to be wholly in agreement with his system he should have deleted XVIII, 356-368, condemned by Zenodotus and himself ( Athetized Lines…, 158-159). III. 7. A further 41 passages (105 lines) are marked as spurious in the Teubner edition on partly external,58 partly internal grounds. In this respect, West is more suspicious than any previous editor in this century, Bolling excepted; this very suspicion of lines which, in their great majority, are easily accounted for in the oralist framework, is nothing more than guesswork and has the flavor of an a priori refusal. By so doing West is coherent with himself since he refuses the critical consequences of the Parry-Lord theory,59 but one may surmise that he treats the evidence one-sidedly to support his vision of the transmission, instead of reporting what may be archetypal.

First I list the lines the authenticity of which has been questioned in antiquity; these, and only these, have a chance to be spurious and were deleted as such by Bolling, Ilias Atheniensium : XIV, 40 (ath. Aristarchus; the internal ground is very strong: πτῆξε is quite out of place here, as is ἀχαιῶν applied to only three chiefs; and why should Nestor’s appearance cause alarm? Perhaps the line was interpolated so as to introduce the name of Nestor; the solution can hardly consist in emending πτῆξε and Ἀχαιῶν); XV, 214 (damnauit Heyne, post Aristarchum qui ath. 212-217; for sure Hera, Hermes and Hephaistos do not count among Troy’s most active divine enemies; and, though well-attested, Ἑρμείω seems alien to the Kunstsprache [so Leaf]; but, as the whole athetesis of Aristarchus here can be proved to be subjective, without manuscript grounds against 214 it is unsound to discard the external evidence); XV, 265-268 (ath. Aristarchus, 266-268 om. Zenodotus; it is a pity to cut short the major simile, giving as a pretext that it already occurs in VI, 506-511; these lines are at least as cogent here, where Hector, aided by two gods, has some motives to exult; 266-268 are not repetition, but oral amplification—Janko, A Commentary…, IV, 256 -); XV, 610-614 (om. Zenodotus, ath. Aristarchus; “the athetesis spoils the ring-structure of 592-614” Janko, 295; see also Van der Valk, Researches…, II, 408 “Aristarchus cancelled the lines among other reasons…because he preferred a concise diction…and accordingly considered the lines to be superfluous”60 and Oliver Taplin, Homeric Soundings. The Shaping of the Iliad, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1992, 186 note 8); XVI, 689-690 (= XVII, 177-178; add. Fim Rim Wim, hab. b G T: def. P 9 P 486ac ω “omitted in papyri and some good codices, are a concordance-interpolation …, unless the omission arose from error (both 689 and 694 opens ὅς…καὶ)” Janko, 398); XIX, 365-368 (ath. Aristarchus; but things are not so simple—he later came to admit the ‘poetical’ character of lines which he first found ‘absurd’—, and on the internal ground they are unobjectionable; see M. W. Edwards, A Commentary…, V, Cambridge, C.U.P., 1991, 278, and, for a sensible account of Achilles’ behavior, Taplin, 220); XX, 269-272 ( ἐν ἐνίοις non erant, ath. Aristarchus; whatever authority one is ready to entrust to many ancients’ perplexity – the most outstanding being Aristotle, Poetics, 25, 1461 a 33—,61 Edwards ad loc. is right to speak of the whole passage 268-272 as an “improbable and impractical artifact” and I cannot but agree with his conclusion: “whether this undesirable elaboration should be attributed to the monumental composer or some other remains a matter of taste”); XXI, 128-135 (damn. Payne Knight, 130-135 ath. Aristophanes Aristarchus; the neglect of the digamma in 128 κιχείομεν Ἰλίου is the sole incontrovertible clue for a condemnation that seems to rest on subjective impressions—that we miss a reason for the river’s anger, that the expression is morally shocking—; contra, see Bolling, External Evidence…, 23); XXI, 471 (ath. Aristarchus, as unnecessary and for that reason probably an excellent illustration of the logic of the superflua demere; pace Bolling in his last period, it does not automatically follow that, because a line can be excised without injuring the sense, it is intrusive: what seems a gloss in his final view is for Parry a mark of oral-formulaic composition); XXIII, 806 (ath. Aristarchus; formulaic verse, liable to be taken as a gloss but no more offensive in the context than the preceding one); XXIV, 29-30 (ath. quidam apud [Plut.] De Homero, 1, 6 et scholia in Euripid. Troad. 975, damn. Bekker; the external evidence against the authenticity is not what I would call overwhelming, and one should go to Taplin, 261-262, for a justification on internal grounds).

The remaining suspicions are modern critics’ idiosyncratic findings, save for the more ‘conservative’ of them (Ludwich, Allen, the Budé editors). I append comments on the first ones, in order to show the mixture of good, bad and indifferent in West’s selection: XIII, 114-115 (del. Bekker, 115 Christ Fäsi; the suspicion of 114 I do not understand; as for 115, it is clearly misguided in my view and the more so with οὐκέτι in 116—better οὐκ ἔτι Janko, A Commentary…, V, 58—; ἀκεστός, though an hapax, is unobjectionable since it goes with φρένες); XIII, 832 (‘seclusi’ West, = VIII, 380 and, for the expression, XVII, 241; could be a case of concordance-interpolation; a spurious expansion of Hector’s plea at the close of his reply to Aias may have remained undetected—only, one imagines, if it was pre-Aristarchean and well-attested—; yet a formulaic variation on XVIII, 241 is at least as good an explanation for the unanimous manuscript attestation of the line); XIV, 49-51 (del. Hentze; the unusual position of ὦ πόποι is paralleled—Janko, 56 ad XIII, 99-101—, the similes being not, as Leaf claimed, “mostly of a doubtful character”; it can however be argued that these lines were added so as to smooth the uneasiness produced by XIV, 40; since those who excise 40 generally do the same with 49-51, though in my view the athetesis of 49-51 resorts to a misguided systematizing); XV, 64-71 (del. Hentze, “absolutio erat puto τῆς Διὸς ἀπάτης” West; see Leaf ad loc; actually, neither the prophecy of the close of the war nor its self-styled factual errors are unHomeric; Homeric summaries are often imprecise, and it is one of the poet’s favorite devices to present important events in more than one focus, in prospect and retrospect); XV, 291-293 (ath. Fick, 291 Leaf; at first sight looks like an amplification: why repeat Hector’s name and recall his exploits and Zeus’ favor? as Leaf remarks, W(S…ἔσσεσθαι in 291 is not clear; but it was worth insisting on the very fact that Hector would not be easy to defeat, and, on the whole, it would be safer to excise only 291); XVI, 158-164 (susp. Leaf, del. Wilamowitz) plus 165 (del. West); XVI, 242-245 (damn. Hentze); XVI, 591 (damn. Leaf); XVI, 661-662 (damn. Paley); XVII, 244 (damn. Payne Knight); XVII, 273 (damn. Köchly); XVIII, 26-27 (damn. Düntzer); XVIII, 34 (damn. Bothe); XVIII, 272 (damn. Bekker, 272-276 susp. Leaf); XVIII, 461 (damn. Düntzer); XVIII, 535-538 (+/- = pseudo-Hesiod. Scutum, 156-159; damn. Düntzer); XIX, 326-337 (damn. Payne Knight); XIX, 374 (damn. Heyne); XX, 82 (damn. Payne Knight); XX, 316-317 (damn. Bekker, post 317 Bentley); XXII, 81 (damn. Bekker); XXI, 436 (‘seclusi’ West); XXIII, 628 (susp. Franke); XXIII, 878 (susp. Nauck); XXIV, 54 (ath. Köchly); XXIV, 232 (damn. Christ); XXIV, 466-467 (damn. Kammer, 465-467 iam Düntzer cume 464); XXIV, 519-521 (damn. Köchly); XXIV, 586 (damn. Leaf, 584-586 iam Payne Knight); XXIV, 763-764 (‘seclusi’ West).62


By incorporating in his apparatus the evidence for ancient scholarship, indirect tradition and antique manuscripts and by establishing his text throughout by methodical comparison of what the medieval manuscripts and these three sources of information offer, West rightly escapes the conspicuous pitfall of Van Thiel, whose undocumented textual ambition is to restore the ‘vulgate’ in its early medieval form, the good one according to him. Independently of its material realization, Van Thiel’s seems a procedure which could pass muster only if the aim were to produce a readable rather than an authentic text. Now, it is naturally impossible for any review, even of unprecedented compass as the present one, to sketch in detail the variety and complexity of matters relevant to the textual criticism of books XIII-XXIV of the Iliad. Instead what I propose to do is to set out roughly what West considered to be important in the questions of editing, dialect and orthography.

IV. 1. In his preface West is hardly less pessimistic than was Van Thiel about the archetypal character of Alexandrian readings in general, and Aristarchus’ ones in particular. However his criteria in deciding which individual scholarly readings could stem from an earlier tradition, whatever it may be, and which ones are more likely to result from what he considers, after Van der Valk, to be bold rewriting, have no coherence and are left unsaid in the preface (where we only learn, p. VII, note 9, that, occasionally, apropos of them “de bona traditione agitur, non de coniecturis”). It is not sufficient to remark, like Nagy in his review, that as far as the printing of the text is concerned, all the toil embodied in the making of the apparatus came to nothing since the external evidence is nearly always discarded in favor of the internal. I am sympathetic with his view that for West there is hardly any difference between a reading found by Aristarchus in a previous source and a conjecture of so irresponsible an emender as Payne Knight, and I cannot but reproduce here Nagy’s statement that “underneath the surface, however, the criteria differ: for Ludwich, the ‘Aristarchus’ component of the ‘Aristarchus + Omega’ formula has special status, but for West it has merely equal status. Correspondingly, whenever the ‘Omega’ drops out, that is, whenever the manuscript support is lacking or weak, the Aristarchean variant tends to be kept by Ludwich but dropped by West” (an instance like XXI, 611 ” σαώσαι Ar: σάωσαν (nou. Did.) 9 ω Rsl…” is very rare indeed in vol. II). But all this apparently powerful argumentation is misleading, biased as it is by Nagy’s faith in what he calls an ‘Hypertext’.

What actually concerns West less the origin and putative vertical character of each reading in the tradition than their congruence, dialectal, morphological or orthographic, to his own idea of what the Kunstsprache tolerates in each case and of what the context of each passage allows. This promulgates the taste of the modern editor, the liberty of which is limited only by his freely consented obedience to some established principles, applied in a pro et contra consideration each reading. But the counterpart would be Bolling’s mechanical application of manuscript evidence, which led to an impossibly fanciful text. West’s exceptionally lucid assessment of the tradition in his apparatus is not completed by the mastery of the only tools that would have enabled him to pick out the wheat from the chaff in the ποικίλια of transmitted readings: he has a keen feeling for Homeric Greek but no sound command in oral linguistics. He cannot be well acquainted with Parry’s principle that rhapsodes would modernize their diction wherever meter does not prevent it since it is his contention that ‘Homer’ wrote.

This stance leads him to postulate an important degree of fixity early in the textual transmission, the very nature of which is seldom reconcilable with what Parry pronounced. The consequence is clear: for the dialect, it is the restoration of forms known to be early (preferably Aeolic); for the composition, it is the tendency towards the regularization of verbal echoes in the similes. This attitude shows up on almost every page of vol. II.

IV. 1. 1. Passages where West is prejudiced in adopting a scholarly reading: XIV, 400-401 ὅσση ἄρα Τρώων καὶ Ἀχαιῶν ἔπλετο φωνή A)U+σάντων where ὅσση is read by Zenodotus, Aristophanes, Aristarchus in his two texts and A b G, meanwhile τόσση is Nicanor’s reading, extant in P 9 P 60 P 438 P 1306 Bgr and ω: the epic form of the pronominal adjective ὅσος which West adopts in the relative clause, ὅσσος (with Aeolic and Western Greek duplication), is to be found in the simile XVII, 23 ὅσσον πανθόου υἷες ἐϋμμελίαι φορέουσιν without alternative in the tradition. As ὅσσος would regularize the construction in XIV, 400-401 and make the two similes agree, it does not matter for West whether its origin is vertical or secondary. That it may well be a refined conjecture of Zenodotus, designed to clear up a slight, oral anacoluthon, is positive ground for preferring τόσσος (so Janko, A Commentary…, IV, 211). See also XIII, 107 ” δὲ ἑκὰς Zen Arph 60: δ’ ἕκαθεν Ar 1253 Z W. Cf. ad E 791″; there δὲ ἕκας is given by Z W (save for D which has δ’ ἕκας) with P 400 P 908 and t, meanwhile H reads δ’ ἕκαθεν. That the variation has oral shape and that the latter reading is to be preferred here is clearly stated by Janko, 57: early in the transmission the diction of our passage was not modernized while in V, 791 it was (save for an ancestor of H). XVI, 21 (cf. XIX, 216) ” Πηλῆος ‘οἱ ὑπομνηματισάμενοι’: —λέως Ptol 60 t ω: — λέος Plut. C R W Gs. V. Praef. XXXIV”. Πηλέως υἱέ after the first dactyl ὦ Ἀχιλεῦ should be accepted, not only since Πηλῆος is either badly attested (in XIX, 216 by P7corr. V4 V27) or likely to be a scholarly conjecture (XVI, 21; also in Bm8 L18 Mo1 O7 P7 U3 V4 V25 Vi1, what West does not say), but since the word group can be paralleled six times at the same metrical place (Janko, 318, cf. his discussion of the simile Μηκιστέως υἱός ad XV, 339, p. 264). XIX, 107 is no less exemplary: ” ψεύστης εἰς quidam ante Hdn—ἐσσ’ λ. Meyer, cf. Chantr. I 286—: ψευστήσεις Ar Hdn t schD W. Cf. Soph. Ant. 1195; Eur. Or. 1609; Wack. KS 1604″. It does not follow that, since ψευστέω is not attested elsewhere, the future tense here is liable to be a conjecture of Aristarchus; actually, its familiar shape and oral congruence are fit uneasily with a more literary idiom construed with the substantive. ψεύστης εἰς could possibly be an early alternative word-division (see XXI, 261), but, given West’s parallels, it has more chance to be the fancy of some critic familiar with later poetic idiom and eager to make the text agree with it. Finally XIV, 474 ” κεφαλὴν 10 (cf. a 208): γενεὴν Ar ? 60 1312 W: ῤα φυὴν Arph (cf. B 58)” with Janko, 219. I hope these passages will be sufficient to prove that West in his acceptance of scholarly readings is a great deal more generous than oral poetics would have allowed him to be and than his own presentation of the general nature of this textual source seems to warrant.

IV. 1. 2. Passages where West restores an early orthography, either unlikely (contradicted by Parry’s principle) or likely but harsh (he introduces reconstructed forms without asterisking them in the apparatus). To the second class belong examples such as XIII, 358 ” ὁμοιΐοο Ahrens:63 — ΐου 9 10 60 274 tt Z W. V. Praef. XXXIII sq.”: the diversity of derivations proposed for the uox homerica ὁμοίος (sanscr. amiva, aerumna according to Fick; = ὁμό f ιος for Christ; better written ὀλοίιος = ὀλοός for Nauck) together with the lack of attestation for its ‘regular’ genitive – οο (on which more below and under IV. 2) do not render it difficult to accept its restoration by Ahrens but make the absence of asterisk the more regrettable. See II, 325 ” ὅο Buttmann…: ὅου Hdn 3 851 h136 w12 Hsch. W”. One may remark here that by analogy with ὅου and ἑός, ὅς so intriguing a form as ἕης was produced out of ἧς. Cf. XV, 554 ἀνεψιόο Payne Knight Ahrens for ἀνεψιοῦ which was Herodianus’ preference; XV, 670 ὁμοιΐοο Ahrens: ὁμοιίου P 60 W (after the transmitted πτολέμοιο) with XXI, 294…No wonder that this tendency to archaize the epic diction eventually lead West to commend inadequate emendations: in XVI, 208 the feminine relative ἕης can indeed be artificial and late but is better explained, according to Parry’s principle, as improvised since it nears ἐράασθε, a form of imperfect undeniably later than the usual ἔρασθε (so Janko, 346). Save perhaps for Van Leeuwen and Mendes da Costa’s FE/RGON MEGA/LHS, TOU= PRI/N PER ἔρασθε, all the proposed emendations are far too violent to carry any conviction ( ὅ long ο τὸ πρίν γ’ ἐράεσθε Payne Knight, ὅο πρίν γ’ ἠράσσασθε Nauck, ὅο πρόσθεν γ’ ἐράασθε Christ…). Instead of ὅου the regular derivation should have been ἧς (Janko). Similarly, in IX, 189 and 524, for κλέα ἀνδρῶν, West suggests κλεῖ’ ), which is more complicated than κλέε’ ἀνδρῶν first guessed at by Payne Knight, which entails an error of transcription from an original sequence ΚΛΕΑΝΔΡΩΝ.

To the first class can be assigned instances like XXII, 322 τεύχεα cett. (Allen, whose critical note, III, 283, is far too elliptical to be informative): τεύχεη P 9 Z W, τεύχη old editions. That in XXIV, 7 most W manuscripts and two papyri agree with Aristarchus in reading ἄλγεα codd. R W) is no evidence for preferring τεύχεη : in one case the termination has been modernized to Ionic-Attic η after ε, ι, ρ, in the other it has not and so conserved Aeolic long α. The philological temptation to restore elided finals long α (= long αο) in the genitive of masculine nouns in long α ought accordingly to be resisted. See also VIII, 139 δὴ αὖτε Bekker: δ’ αὖτε P 1099 ω; χιιι, 448 ἵστα’ West: ἵστασ’ P 1280 W, cf. XVII, 31; XIII, 818 ἀρήσεαι West: ἀρήσῃ aut -SH P 9 P 481 ω; χ 178 ἵσταο Wackernagel: ἵστασο P 48 W (but in XVIII, 178 West rejects κεῖο of the same critic for κεῖσο of P 9 P 239 P 1432 and ω; cf. also XX, 389 κεῖσαι] κεῖαι Wackernagel; XXI, 122 κεῖσο] κεῖο id.; XXII, 85 ἵσταο id.: ἵστασο P 9 ὠ; χχιι, 336 ἀικέως West: A)I+κῶς tt* W*, A)EIκῶς P 9 Z R. I refrain from quoting more instances where his quest for consistency in composition joined with the refusal to apply Parry’s principle led West astray. The Aeolic color of the Kunstsprache, in whose conjectural restoration West has indulged in many places, following the guideline of Payne Knight and Fick, would be another instance of what may well be artificial archaizing of the text; yet it cannot be condemned, since his practice seldom degenerates into wholesale a priori rewriting and in a handful of cases has some probability to near the original: West restores passim ἠ’ or ἦ’ instead of ἢ and Πανθόου, for Πάνθου, in XVII, 9, XVII, 23, XVII, 40 (after the recentiores in XV, 522), but he justly maintains, against Van Leeuwen, Enchiridium Dictionis Epicae, paragraph 73, Πατροκ against Πατρόκλεες, Πατροκλέεος ( Praefatio, p. XXV).

IV. 2. Save for this drawback West’s account of Homeric Greek as presented on pages XVI-XXXVII of the Praefatio and applied in his editorial policy represent a major improvement, which shows Van Thiel’s conservatism in this area for what it is: the attribution to ‘Homer’ of the ποικίλια transmitted by medieval manuscripts. For the first time since the arbitrary attempts of Fick, Christ and Nauck towards a restitution of the original spelling and dialect a text is presented with hardly any late form which cannot be justified on internal grounds or by Parry’s principle. Of course the average contemporary reader knows that metrical study combined with linguistic analysis has shown that many forms preserved in the ‘vulgate’ must be regarded as either modernisation or corruption of an earlier text. For instance the optative plural μαχέοιντο in I, 344, being Attic and comparatively late for original – οιατο, is easily emended to μαχεοίατ’ (West) or μαχεόνται (Ludwich); a surface corruption is equally possible. Allen bis and the Budé editors, who maintain— οιντο, are not confident about this spelling. The reader is also aware that two forms of the genitive of ο -nouns are transmitted, – οιο and – ου; but a third, – οο resolved from – ου, can be restored in some passages with a fair degree of certainty since the line scans only if we restore – οο from which – ου was contracted. Consequently, unless one is ready to make a special pleading by appealing to Parry’s principle, West is justified to read κακομηχάνοο κρυοέσσης in VI, 344 and ἐπιδημίοο κρυόεντος in IX, 64 (both Payne Knight for respectively κακομηχάνου ὀκρυοέσσης and ἐπιδημίου ὀκρυόεντος). It does not follow that, because genitives in – οιο, – οο and – ου constitute a chronological series, one of the first two ought to be restored where the last one is attested and does not raise any internal difficulty (contrast pp. XXXIII-XXXIV). And many more forms, less easily recognized, may still delude a casual reader, or even a trained Homerist, knowing what should be tolerable Homeric Greek only from what they read in standard editions. Both categories of readers will learn from West’s presentation of the evidence, as this reviewer did.

Now, for all the progress of linguistics embodied in this admirably lucid chapter, it does not completely replace the sensible summary by Chantraine (“Note sur l’Orthographe et l’Accentuation adopteés dans cette Édition”, in Paul Mazon (dir.), Introduction à l’Iliade, Paris, Belles Lettres, 1943, 124-136). If one is in need of a rough estimation of the merits and limitations of each of these two doctrines, I would say that Chantraine is more the historian, drawing essentially on La Roche and his own Grammaire Homérique in order to establish some principles which can hardly be proved to be wrong but which to some extent are conventional, while West, who has had the benefit of Leslie Threatte’s splendid Attic Grammar, is more the philologist and seems to be too preoccupied with the promulgation of consistent rules to adopt an orthographic system other than one of his own device (that is quite an idiosyncratic one).

The reader should be told that the doctrine of both West and Chantraine is rooted in Parry’s explanation of the striking dialectal mixture of the transmitted text ( Les Formules et la Métrique d’Homère, Paris, Belles Lettres, 1928 : an Achaean original state of the epic diction suceeded, through modernization, by an Aeolic phase than by the Ionic phase), which is roughly in agreement with the findings of Paul Wathelet, Les Traits Éoliens dans la Langue de l’Épopée grecque, “Incunabula graeca 37”, Rome, Ateneo, 1970, 63-362, and the not-unchallenged, but still standard, theory about the relationship of the Achaean with the linguistic evidence from Linear B. On the contrary, many earlier editors did draw either on the reaction against the pan-Aeolic conception of Fick (excessive indeed, and not only because he was not afraid to incorporate elements from Arcado-Cypriot) which was initiated by Monro and Van Leeuwen,whose Homeric grammars reconstruct the epic diction as a series of Ionic facts of different ages where the so-called Aeolisms are nothing but very archaic Ionisms, or the affirmation that there have been an Attic phase, postulating uneliminable Atticisms and finally discarding the Aeolic phase, the remnants of which were to be viewed as Achaean traces or preserved archaisms. On must go to Chantraine for this kind of contextual information, or, for more recent trends, to Wathelet’s account of the status quaestionis, pp. 44-60 of his book, not to West’s preface, whose information seriously lacks background.

With many principles adopted by him I have no quarrel: it is perfectly right e.g. to write with Blass μέζον in XIII, 120 ( μεῖζον P 60 ὠ, cf. XV, 121, XXIII, 551 and 593…, and κρέσσων in XIX, 217 ( κρείσσων P 9 tt ὠ, cf. XX, 334, XXI, 190-191, XXIII, 578…, since both transmitted readings show the fourth-century Attic spelling for Κρέζων, Μέζων (but compare Sappho fr. 90 b Voigt, line 20] κρέσσον γὰ[ρ); to restore the accusative τρῖς against Ionic-Attic τρεῖς (*treyes > τρέες (Cretic) > Doric and Aeolic τρῆς, Old Ionic τρε), even though P 1461 reads τρισχειλ[ιαι in XX, 221); to prefer τέσσερες over τέσσαρες (e.g. XXIII, 705 τεσσεράβοισιν Bolling: τεσσαράβοισιν P 9 P 13 ὠ; or to deal with the temporal augment as exposed on p. XXVII (but to restore ηὐ -, εἰ – everywhere, whatever the form in the ‘vulgate’, is perhaps a trifle heavy-handed). Some devices are of indifferent quality,64 like the suppression of tmesis in composed adverbs and prepositions ( ἀποπρο, διάπρο, πάρεκ and so forth, which are less archaic than what one may estimate:65 pp. χ differently Chantraine, 132, 4) and many peculiarities of accentuation. And some are in my view unconvincing. West’s long-standing attempts (since his Studies in Greek Elegy and Iambus, 80) to show that -EU for abridged εο is not earlier than the Attic transcription are not made more convincing from being reiterated: systematic change is somewhat too bold a procedure to contemplate without reservation (the more so since, unlike the IEG, the Teubner Iliad has no synizesis mark) and the epigraphic argument, being e silentio ( ευ is not attested before the beginning of the fourth century BC: pp. χχιι is not incontrovertible. See S. R. Slings, first in J. M. Bremer et alii, Some Recently Found Greek Poems, “Mnemosyne Suppl.” 99, Leiden, Brill, 1987, 33-34, and lastly in his BMCR review of Most, Editing Texts / Texte Edieren (Göttingen, Vandenhöck & Ruprecht, 1998: see BMCR 99.05.27). Schulze, Quaestiones Epicae, note 4, pp. 144-145, collects many references, to which add forms unanimously attested in the medieval tradition of Herodotus like βασιλεός, κοπρεόων, φεόγει, φεογέτω, εὀργέτην, λεοκοῖς, Εὀνομίδης and the tendency of these manuscripts to preserve ευ instead of εο, εου after ι, η, ο and οι. Insecure though it may be, this material apparently points the way to a more satisfactory solution of the debate: around the sixth century, and possibly before, the difference between ευ and εο would have been not so much of spelling than of orthography. Anyway the phonological case for the suppression of ευ in early poetry ought not to be ignored, no more than the one for restoring ει out of εε, εει, forms which are markedly favored by the papyri of Ionian lyricists. West’s drastic policy in both cases could be excessive and misguided, but must be called courageous insofar as it does not conceal the difficulty of retaining ευ.

In so vexed a field as the editing of the Iliad, where nearly every professional reader of any modern edition, working only with La Roche in one hand, Bernhard Laum in the other, would find in these works much to agree with and much more to disagree with, it would be unfair to assess the value of the Teubner text on the basis of its orthography and dialect. Suffice it to say that, on the whole, West’s contentions are more logical and scientific that those of any previous editor. That they are more convincing (or, not necessarily the same thing, more archetypal), only the course of time and everyday experience will teach us.

IV. 3. In the apparatus West hazards further conjectures, apart from the changes in orthography and dialect he directly printed in the text. As he admits too few, and proposes too many, an overwhelming impression of competence and intelligence abides. Most of them are clever but unnecessary, not being diagnostic of a true, insufferable difficulty but being only possible, p u r e r Homeric Greek guessed at either by fancy or by instinct (those which I deem diagnostic are marked with the glyph @): XIII, 264 δούρατ’ ἔασι for δούρατά τ’ ἐστι; XIV, 482 μὴ μοι ( ἵνα μή P 60 P 1310 ὠ; χ 43 αὐτοῦ ὠ; χ 72 πρόσθεν P 60 ὠ; χ 297 αἴ ( εἴ P 60 Agr Aim ω 86 ἀποδώωσιν ( ἀπονάσσωσιν); XVI, 208@ γε ἔρασθε ( γ’ ἐράασθε P 9 P 435 ζ ὠ; χ 589 τ’ ( δ’ P 1376 Alem ὠ; χ 202 τείνεται ( γίνεται P 11 ὠ; χ 231 < γ’ > ἐν βελέεσσι Zenodotus (u.l.); XX, 172 ἤ ( ἤν P 9 ὠ; χχ, 254 νεικέωσ’ ( νεικέουσ’ West for νεικεῦσ’); XXI, 8 εἴλοντο ( εἰλέοντο West for εἰλεῦντο); XXI, 95 οὔ τοι ὀμογάστριος ( οὐχ ὁμογάστριος Aristarchus P 9 P 14741477 ζ ὠ; χχι, 122 Τιμαχίδας καὶ Ἀριστοφάνης (T scholia cit. Τίμαρχος καὶ Ἀριστοτέλης); XXI, 122 τ’ ( σ’ ὠ; χχι, 126 ἔνθα δέ ( θρώισκων); XXI, 131 πολὺς ( πολεῖς P 9 ζ ὠ; χχι, 345 ἐξηυράνθη ( ἐξηράνθη Aristarchus P 9 Alem ὠ, cf. 348; XXI, 362 ζέηι ( ζέει recc.); XXI, 459 πειρᾶ’ aut πειρᾶαι ( πειρᾶι ω 524 ἐφῆψεν ( ἐφῆκεν); XXII, 104 ἔμπεδοί εἰσιν (u.l.); XXIII, 863@ ” OU)D’—ἄνακτι post 872 conceptum; fort. primitus K αί ῤ’ ὄρνιθος μὲν ἅμαρτεν, / αὐτὰρ ὃ μήριντον κτλ”; XXIII, 880 ὦκα δ’ ἀπὸ ( ὠκὺς δ’ ἐκ Aristarchus P 9 ὠ; χχι 17 εἴασκεν ( ἔασκεν P 9 P 13 ὠ; χχι 406 δή < εἰς > θεράπων; XXIV, 474 ἠδ’ ( τε καὶ P 9 P 13 P 14 ὠ; χχι 574 ἥρω’ ( ἥρως); XXIV, 762 δαιρῶν ( δαέρων P 14 ὠ; χχι 788 δ’ ἑνδεκάτη ἐφάνη ( ἦμος δ’ ἠριγένεια φάνη). The remaining ones are trivial changes: XIII, 336@ ἵστασιν ( ἱστᾶσιν); XIII, 626 μοι ( μεο Fick West, μευ P 10 ὠ; χι 115 Πορθῆι ( Πορθεῖ P 437 ὠ; χι 199 δάμνααι ( δάμναι Aristarchus ἀ; χ 49 βοώπις ( βοῶπις Aristarchus A B E Fac γ cf. XVIII, 357; XV, 241 ἀμφὶς Chrysippus (u.l.); XV, 520 ὔπαιθα ( ὕπαιθα), cf. XVIII, 421, XXI, 255, 493 ; XVI, 117 κολὸν ( κόλον Ptolemaeus Herodianus, P 632 ζ ὠ; χ 231@ ἔπειτ’ ἀστὰς ( ἔπειτα στὰς P 60 ὠ; χ 262 τίθεισι ( τιθεῖσι Herodianus P 9 P 60 ζ ὠ; χ 382 κέκλιτο ( κέκλετο P 9 P 370 ὠ; χ 755 κολωιῶων ( κολοιῶν P 230 ὠ; χ 315 γόοντες ( γοῶντες P 9 P 11 ὠ; χ 358@ ἄνστησας ( ἀνστήσασ’ P 9 P 11 ὠ; χχ, 259 δίνωι Aristarchus (u.l. δινῶι); XX, 274 Αἰνείωο Zenodotus (u.l. Αἰνείαο); XXI, 106 θανὲ ( θανέ); XXI, 219 οὐδ’ ἔτι ( οὐδέ τί); XXII, 310 ἠ’ ἄρν’ ( ἢ ἄρν’); XXII, 358@ φράζεό νυν, ( φράζεο νῦν).

IV. 4. I cannot close this very sketchy account of West’s constitutio textus without mentioning a novelty which I find wholly justified: the diagnostic obelization of some passages where the transmitted text is seriously in doubt and where the tradition does not offer to the modern critic a likely alternative. There is, so to speak, no real locus corruptus in the Iliad, but some words marked with daggers in the Teubner text still await for a remedy.

The obelization of some passages may not command assent: these are XIII, 134-135 ἔγχεα δ’ * ἐπτύσσοντο * θρασειάων ἀπὸ χειρῶν ( D’ ἐπτύσσοντο P 9 tt ω Van Thiel West: δὲ πτύσσοντο N Z A, Ludwich Allen bis Budé editors; despite Leaf’s too long note, II, 13, the meaning of the vulgar reading ἐπτύσσοντο is unexceptionable in light of what report the B scholia and Eustathius and well adapted in the context where ‘Homer’ adapts verses from the start of the battle—so Janko, 62; δ’ἐπλίσσοντο of West’s is mere rewriting); XVII, 368 ἠέρι γὰρ κατέχοντο * μάχης ἐπί θ’ * ὅσσοι ἄριστοι (sic ω edd.: μάχηι ἔνι ὅσσοι Aristophanes, μάχηι ἔπι h, μάχη ἐπεί ω; West suggests ὀμίχληι, for which he compares 649 αὐτίκα δ’ ἠέρα μὲν σκέδασεν καὶ ἀπῶσεν ὀμίχλην; Ludwich blends the vulgar reading with Aristophanes by printing μάχης ὅσσοι ἔπι with a comma before ἔπι, which is not convincing; but Leaf is convincing in his demonstration—II, 241—that Aristophanes’ reading is on the whole superior to any other and in need of no further improvement; if it is not authentic, it is at the very least unobjectionable); XVIII, 458 αἴ κ’ ἐθέληισθα * υἱεῖ ἐμῶι ὠκυμόροι * δόμεν ἀσπίδα (this is the accepted text of Ludwich Allen Van Thiel, given by the consensus of the W manuscripts minus η; ι hardly understand West’s obeli, the synecphonesis – ῶι ω) —his text requires being perfectly tolerable—Edwards, A Commentary…, V, 198—and υἱεῖ may be allowed to stand, pace Chantraine in the Budé edition, III, 184 ” υἱεῖ * A; sed contractio suspecta”: the Homeric declension of υἱός is a mixture of old and recent, which admits no less than three singular datives, Aeolic υἷι —but υἷι/ Nauck apud West—and υἱέϊ, υἱεῖ); XXI, 252 αἰετοῦ οἴματ’ ἔχων * μέλανος τοῦ * θηρητῆρος (edd., save for Allen, print the vulgar reading with a comma after μέλανος; this punctuation helps to account for the use of the article— τοῦ is late for the Homeric form τευ, pace Aristarchus who reads του enclitic = τινος —, cf. Richardson, A Commentary…, VI, 74, and the text, with its oral syntax—”he has the impetus of the eagle, the dark one, the hunter”—could be right; once one has admitted that it is not possible to identify the species of the eagle here involved the variety of competitors μέλανος has gained from antiquity onwards may be discarded, since all of them involve insufferable difficulties [see Van Leeuwen and Mendes da Costa, 572]— μελανόσσου with ὄμματ’ for οἴματ’ in 252 [Philetas] agrees with the eagle-simile of XVII, 674 where the sharp sight of the eagle is praised, but is far too conspicuously secondary to be adopted; μελανόστου attributed to Aristotle entails both faulty zoology and fanciful diction; and Ahrens’ μελανόρσου, though it is clever and has the advantage of suppressing the article, is an unlikely attempt at harmonizing ‘Homer’ and Archilochus fr.174 West); XXIV, 241 ἦ * οὔνεσθ’ * (to be explained either as a second person plural indicative of ὄνομαι with epic lengthening or a misspelling of the imperfect ὤνεσθε; nonetheless I remain unconvinced and shall agree with West that we expect something else, which cannot be the Aristarchean ὀνόσασθ’ accepted by Nauck and Christ; possibly τι ὄνοσθ’ West, ὤνεσθ’ Fick—after Bergk, ed. 4 ad Theogn. 1190, cf. Schulze, Quaestiones Epicae 421). Those instances that point to a difficulty in the transmitted forms are XIV, 173 τοῦ καὶ * κινυμένοιο * Διὸς (so the consensus of editors, = French “même remué”; but the analogical Homeric participle of κινεῖσθαι is difficult idiom, so that West’s κινυμένης may well be right—but not his replacement of Διὸς by Ζηνὸς); XIV, 249 ἤδη γάρ με καὶ * ἄλλο τεὴ ἐπίνυσσεν ἐφετμή * (so most editors, surprisingly enough; ἄλλοτε is to be expected and so contemplated by West, but seems excluded by meter so that ἄλλοτ’ ἐή would be a good replacement; and as for the verb πινύσσω its very existence is dubious and ἐπένυσσεν of P 9 P 26 Dac Wac may appeal to subsequent critics—see Janko, 190-191—unless they prefer Nauck’s ἐπίνυσσας; Van Leeuwen and Mendas da Costa, pp. 380-381, have a good note); XIV, 396-397 οὔτε πυρὸς τόσσος γε * ποτὶ * βρόμος αἰθομένοιο ( πόθι P 438 H, Van Thiel; πέλει EtMagn., Ludwich Leaf Budé edd.: both readings are secondary, worthless attempts to go beyond the meaningless ποτί, and an elegant solution, far superior to Bentley’s ποτὶ δρυμόν and Van Leeuwen’s πέλεται, would be Janko’s πότι = πρόσεστι); XVI, 507 ἐπεὶ * λίπον [ita Zenodotus, C R h: λίπεν Aristarchus ω ἅρματ’ ἀνάκτων * (a notorious crux, whose solution has been found by Van der Valk, Researches…, II, 74-75: “in π 371 the same expression…is found. In this passage it is appropriate, because the text speaks of horses that have broken the pole and so abandoned the chariot. We see that π 507 occurs shortly afterwards. We also know that Homer likes to use formulary expressions. So I think that he repeated the same formula and unwittingly committed an inadvertence”; to retain Aristarchus’ very unlikely emendation λίπεν (= ἐλείφθησαν ?), as did Van Thiel, is a fault against both textual criticism and linguistics); XVI, 736 οὐδὲ * δὴν ἅζετο * φωτός (Allen’s retaining of the badly attested χάζετο, which has been severely criticized, is defended by Janko, 403 on the ground that χάζομαι is construed with a genitive like the transmitted φωτός while ἅζομαι takes the accusative, the form of which here, φῶτα, is metrically acceptable; the reading ἅζετο may stand in the text, provided it is obelized); XXIII, 791-792 ἀργαλέον δέ * ἐριδήσασθαι * Ἀχαιοῖς, εἰ μὴ Ἀχιλλεῖ (both the derivation of ἐριδήσασθαι and the quantity of the first iota in it are insufferable, cf. Schulze, Quaestiones Epicae, 469 and Richardson, 257-258, but not the contracted termination of the dative Ἀχιλλεῖ which one must not emend away to Ἀχιλῆι; West commends Naber’s ποσσὶν δηρίσασθαι, and he himself suggests, faute de mieux, πόσσ’ ἔριδα στήσασθαι; previous editors all print ἐριδήσασθαι without addressing its gross impossibility [but πόσσ’ ἐριδαινέμεναι ἄλλοις Van Leeuwen and Mendes da Costa]); XXIII, 871 * ὡς ἴθυνεν ( ὧ ρ’ ἴθυνεν West; the difficulties of the lectio tradita need no further comment than a reference to the acute observations of Leaf, II, 533, and to their qualification by Richardson, 268-269; further discussions, like V. J. Matthews, Antimachus of Colophon. “Mnemosyne Suppl.” 155. Leiden, Brill, 1994, fr. 177 = 139 Wyss, pp. 386-387, did not contribute anything of value).

Finally, in only one passage West’s verdict is of indifferent value: XVI, 382 ἐπὶ δ’ Ἕκτορι * κέκλετο θυμός * Κέκλιτο. West is excellent indeed, but not very attractive in a passage—380-383—whose signs of clumsiness are conspicuous and which consequently may be excised; as there are further incongruities ( ἐπί…θυμός usually requires the infinitive to be expressed and the meaning is further obscured by the omission of the object) which are not easily removed, the daggers are less suitable than a mere bracketing of 380-383.


XIV, 499 ὃ δὲ φὴ κώδειαν ἀνασχών (cf. II, 144 κινήθη δ’ ἀγορὴ φὴ κύματα μακρὰ θαλάσσης): the acceptance of Zenotodus’ text with the rare instrumental φή (‘as’) is now agreed among critics (Kirk, A Commentary…, I, 132; Janko, ibid., IV, 222; Van Thiel; to disagree with them on the ground that though ancient it may be too sophisticated for an expressive replacement of ὡς, is not convincing). West shall have reminded us, however, what is not made clear enough by Janko, viz. that the reading cannot have originated with Zenodotus, not only because it is in Hesiod, fr. 204, 138 Merkelbach-West ( κῆλα Διὸς δαμνᾶι φὴ λυ. [) and Antimachus inserted it in his own verses (possibly as an Homeric γλῶσσα; fr. 121 Wyss = 156 Matthews φὴ γέρων * οἶσιν *, with the last editor’s commentary, 360-361), but also since Homeric scholia at XIV, 299 ascribe the form to οἱ περὶ Καλλίμαχον. As a matter of fact φή appears in Callimachus’ Hecale, fr. 74, 17 Hollis, lines 14-22 of which are rich in Homeric similes; see Hollis, 12 and 251.

XVI, 428 ὥς τ’ αἰγυπιοὶ γαμψώνυχες ἀγκυλοχεῖλαι : ἀγκυλοχεῖλαι tt, scholia δτ, ω edd.; ἀγκυλοχῆλαι (Cac Rpc). In support of the latter reading West well refers to Wackernagel (imprecisely enough: “Miszellen zur griechischen Grammatik”, KZ 29 [1888], 124-152, on 124-125 = Kleine Schriften, 627-628) and other loci similes. His refusal of the scarcely attested reading is logical and has impressive warrants (Janko, A Commentary…, IV, 370), but I would be more impressed by the phonological objections raised against Bechtel’s conception of — χεῖλαι as being misread for — χῆλαι if the Aristophanic passage adduced really hit the mark, which is not the case. The explanation Aristophanes’ Knights, 205 ὅτι ἀγκύλαις ταῖς χερσὶν ἁρπάζων φέρει gives of the lines 197-198 ἀλλ’ ὁπόταν μάρψηι βυρσαίετος ἀγκυλοχείλης [ita Venetus Rauennas et plerique] / γαμφηλῆσι δράκοντα κοάλεμον αἱματοπώτην and 203-204 — Οικ. ‘Υρσαίετοσ’ μὲν ὁ παφλαγών ἐσθ’ οὑτοσί. / — Αλλαντ. Τί δ’ ‘ἀγκυλοχήλησ’ ἐστίν;, compared with the Scholia in Aristophanem I 2, p. 51, 15 Jones-Wilson ὁ ἐπικαμπεῖς τὰς χηλὰς ἔχων 66 point out that — χῆλεις, “with hooked claws”, is to be preferred in 197, as actually did the great majority of modern editors of Aristophanes.67 That Aristophanes found — χεῖλης in his Homeric exemplar is no more than a guess of Janko’s, and his last argument, that Aristophanes had deformed it so as to make his pun, is possible but rests on no authority but the LfgrE. For a reservation about the familiarity with books Aristophanes is likely to have had, see note 4.

XVI, 433-434 ὤι μοι ἐγών, ὅ τέ μοι Σαρπηδόνα φίλτατον ἀνδρῶν . ὏ τέ West post ὅ τε edd. fere omnes: ὅτι O8 (= O West Van Thiel) W3, ὅτε ceteri codices et Van Thiel. The transmitted readings seem either erroneous ( ὅτι, like τί, τι, never elides: Maas, Griechische Metrik, 1929, 27; Kühner-Gerth, I, 191; Chantraine, Grammaire Homérique, I, 86) or inappropriate ( ὅτε is temporal where the sense apparently requires here the conjunction to be causal or to govern the noun clause). Faced with this difficulty, editors since Bekker deemed it satisfactory to isolate the completive / causal value of ὅτε by writing it ὅ τε, to which West adds an enclitic accent. But as this view contradicts the general value of epic TE put forward by C. J. Ruijgh with excellent arguments (Autour de ‘ τε Épique’, Amsterdam, Hakkert, 1971, passim; here 663-673, pp. 810-823), the Dutch scholar was led to consider that ὅ τε”est une chimère, due à des grammairiens qui n’ont pas tenu compte de la valeur fondamentale de ὅς τε et qui n’ont pas vu que le relatif autonome ὅ et τε digressif-permanent sont incompatibles” (663 , p. 811). “Naturellement, l’idée d’une conjonction ὅ τε synonyme de ὅ et de ὅτι a pu s’établir parce que, dans un certain nombre d’exemples, ὅτε pouvait être remplacé par ὅ ou ὅτι sans que le sens pratique de la phrase en soit changé. Il est difficile de déterminer exactement par quelle nuance l’emploi causal de ὅτε se distingue de celui de ὅ ou de ὅτι, mais en gros on pourrait dire que ὅ, ὅτι est la conjonction banale (‘parce que’) tandis que ὅτε a une valeur plus spéciale qui consiste à suggérer le caractère évident du rapport causal en question (‘maintenant que, puisque’)” (673, p. 822). Of the twenty instances where ὅ τε crept in the Homeric text, Ruijgh successfully explains the great majority by his notion of causal enlargement of the value of ὅτε; the few which remain hard to explain, like VIII, 251 εἴδονθ’ ὅτ’ ἄρ’ ἐκ Διὸς ἤλυθεν ὄρνις (despite Ruijgh, 669, p. 818), could possibly be a decisive objection to the whole thesis, but unless we agree with Ruijgh and maintain ὅτε instead of ὅ τε in ‘Homer’, we must admit that sometimes ὅτι elides. In 1982, West contemplated two possibilities, one of which must be right ( Greek Metre, 10): “at any rate there are cases where we must either say that ὅτι is elided or that ὅτε can be used in the sense of ὅτι before a vowel”. That by the times he made his edition of ‘Homer’ he has changed his mind is to be regretted; the ghost conjunction ὅ τε gains no more support from being repeated from edition to edition, and could well be no less arbitrary than its counterparts, viz. ὅτι elided (that would be exceedingly rare indeed)68 or ὅτε = ὅτι (convincing though not always self-evident; in the Homeric poems it is my preference).

XVIII, 576 παρὰ ῤαδαλὸν δονακῆα. Ῥαδαλὸν —cum διὰ —Zenodotus teste A Et.Gen. (cod. A: Zenodorus quidam cod. B): * ῤαδηλὸν * Aristophanes (teste A) aut Aristarchus (teste Et. Gen.): ῤοδανὸν P 11 P 234 P 239 Z W, gr. Et. Gen.: ρο[ uel ρα[ π 98. The most profitable discussion (Van der Valk, Researches, II, 44-46) contends that “the word ῤαδαλός is not attested in Greek” (45-46), as is the vulgar reading ῤοδανός, which is untrue, as Van Thiel points out in his apparatus. Ῥαδαλός appears in hexametric context in Nicainetos fr. 1, 4 Powell (from a Λύρκος, apud Parthenios of Nicaia, Ἐρωτικὰ Παθήματα, XI, 2 [p. 330 Lightfoot, Oxford, 1999]) γείνατο δὲ ῤαδαλῆις ἐναλίγκιον ἀρκεύθοισι ,69 where it means something like ‘slender’. Given the diction of his poem (see line 3 ἥ οι(; 10 ἀποπρὸ) and his utilization of Homeric idiolect (line 8 ἔνθ’ ἤτοι; line 9), Nicainetos no doubt reproduces as Homeric a peculiarity of Zenodotus’ recension; that ῤαδαλός, taken as an adjective, was apparently unobjectionable to him explodes Van der Valk’s intention to prove Zenototus’ incorrect in his coining of γλῶσσαι. Yet the remainder of the Dutch critic’s demonstration still holds good; ῤοδανόν, though unparalleled, is to be accepted and West might not have retained ῤαδαλόν. The more so since in my view παρὰ…δονακῆα construed with ρἁαδαλός in the Teubner text is not easy to understand (unless one clears up the sense by translating as if there were ῤοδανός…).70

XXII, 31, and not 30-31, is quoted by Philodemus, On the Good King According to Homer, XXXVIII 12-13 Dorandi. West’s reference has not been modernized here, where the PHerc. 1507 is badly mutilated, and needs to take account of Olivieri’s 1907 good Teubner edition, the more so here since Olivieri tried to integrate Iliad, V, 5-6 with the remains of lines 8-11. His reason was that Philodemus confused the hero of V, 5-6 (Diomedes) with the one of XXII, 30-31 (Achilles), either as a mnemonic shift or as the reproduction of an error he found in a commentary (see Tiziano Dorandi, Il Buon Re Secondo Homero, “La Scuola di Epicuro” 3, Naples, Bibliopolis, 1982, 201). Also, the report of Philodemus’ reading for XXII, 31 δειλοῖσι in the Teubner apparatus is badly out of date: παν]τ[ες]σι according to West, but, according to Dorandi, line 12 ends with a lacuna after πυρετὸν which can hardly have contained more than four letters and line 13 begins with SI. The last editor, who was able to use appropriate means of magnifying the papyrus, is clearly a far better authority.

XXIII, 66-67 πάντ’ αὐτῶι μέγεθός τε καὶ ὄμματα κάλ’ εἰκυῖα . Apropos of the very exceptional impossibility of accounting for the digamma in εἰκυῖα = f ε f ικυῖα (with first I short) everywhere but here (unnoticed by Richardson in the Cambridge commentary), cf. Schulze, Quaestiones Epicae, 266. Van Leeuwen and Mendes da Costa print Fick’s ἐ f έ f ικτο, which is not appealing. The lectio tradita looks like a blunder resulting from improvisation (mnemonic shift encouraged by the analogy of f ιδυῖα > εἰδυῖα put forward by Leaf it may then stand for f ικυῖα). XXIII, 123-124 ὣς γὰρ ἀνώγει . Οτρ]η[[τ]]ρος P 12, West: Μηριόνης P 9 W, edd. With the medieval vulgate confirmed by the sixth century AD uncial P 9, line 123 would be an iteration of 113. The reading of the much older, eccentric papyrus P 12 (first middle of the third century BC) is not obvious (S. R. West, The Ptolemaic Papyri of Homer, “Papyrologica Coloniensia” 3, Köln & Opladen, Westdeutscher, 174): the hard-to-decipher mark above the T, a triangular shaped one according to the (quite unreliable) plates of ed. pr., can hardly be N ( ]ιτ’ν’ρος Gerhard, would be for Jachmann abbreviated from Μηριόνης, which is most unlikely), and is taken by Allen followed by S. R. West as a deletion dot. Mrs. West rightly commends Allen’s hypothesis that the scribe was willing to write ὀτρηρός ( ορ]ητρος would be spatio breuius), and points the way to the replacement of the vulgar reading: “in view of the diasceuastic tendency to insert proper names where there might otherwise be some difficulty in understanding who or what was denoted by a descriptive phrase, ὀτρηρός might well be the original reading here”. This temptation is to be resisted: as evidence for the text read by Aristarchus is absent here, one cannot be sure of the origin of the vulgar reading. That the lectio difficilior of P 12, one of the most ‘wild’ papyri of the Iliad, is really archetypal and does not result from doctoring, must be assumed. As is often the case, oral poetics provides the decisive clue: lines 113 and 124 being repeated in ring-composition, they hardly admit of any variation, save minor verbal ones. To replace the main agent’s name at the closing of the device would spoil it.

XXIV, 88: add the following critical note ” ὀρσο 656 ( ορ]σο) W: ὄρσεο rr “. PKöln I, 37 reads ορσο like W ( e silentio, but cf. A B N W Ludwich; Allen’s apparatus is here negative), and not ὄρσεο like Dc P C Y Z Ludwich, Ca1 E4 L12 L18 M4 M8 M9 M10 M11 P13pc P21 S V14uv Allen. For the reading of P 656, see Bärbel Kramer & Robert Hübner in “Papyrologica Coloniensia” VII 1, Köln & Opladen, Westdeutscher, 1976, 85 and 87. CONCLUSION

The Teubner Iliad is by far the most elaborate and tidy critical edition ever produced of an Homeric text, and, together with Allen’s editio maior for the collations of late manuscripts, probably the only one which will have a lasting value. The chief merit of West is twofold. It lies first in his painstaking report of the position of the diverse streams of evidence (ancient tradition, both scholarly and papyrological; indirect tradition; earlier part of the medieval tradition) available for each textual issue, and secondly in his producing a text radically more archetypal than what the ‘Wolfian vulgate’ in its numerous avatars has been, viz. a text unencumbered with demonstrably post-Aristarchean interpolations (Bolling’s vulgar interpolations) and free from the great majority of verbal forms against whose attribution to an early, presumably more ‘primitive’, state of the text doubts can be raised on linguistic grounds.

Once and for all, one hopes, West has proved two points of paramount importance: that the variety of (generally superficial) variations in dialect, orthography and wording the Alexandrians, in their reworking of earlier materials, and the manuscripts, ancient and medieval, provide cannot be attributed to ‘Homer’ without severe qualification; and that there is nearly total identity between the medieval ‘vulgate’ and the post-Alexandrian one. A complementary point is made clear with admirable lucidity: even though one may disagree with West’s vindication of an Iliad shaped by writing and literary composition, his way of editing, by weighing the evidence, external and internal, for each textual issue, convincingly refutes the attempts of those who claim that, given the great extent of rhapsodic variation, the quest for the recovery of the one authentic reading in each case is misleading and deprives us of the possibility of reconstructing a polyphonic ‘Hypertext’ on the basis of pre-Alexandrian materials. This reviewer is deeply in agreement with the bypassing of both Van Thiel and Nagy (also, to a certain extent, Rengakos) in which West has indulged. However, a daunting amount of textual work remains to be done, so that the Teubner text is only provisionally ‘definitive’: of no more than twenty or so medieval manuscripts out of at least two hundred do we possess detailed collations; nearly half of the papyri used by West lie unedited in the Ashmolean Museum; of the readings which may lurk unnoticed in some Byzantine texts, we know nothing save for the little part that is by now critically published; and the horizontal transmission from the Greco-Roman era onwards cannot be escaped.

As a tool for producing subsequent editions and as the foundation of a new editorial vulgate, the Teubner edition is better than Allen’s O.C.T. and far less chimerical than Van Thiel’s Weidmann text and has set a new standard. Whatever reservations one may have apropos of some of its guidelines (conjectural preference for archaic, generally Aeolic, at any rate Old Ionic, forms; tendency towards the standardization of similes by equating their capacity to variation with a certain, ‘fixist’, medium; emphatic denial of the oral character of the original Homeric text), and whatever criticisms the accuracy of every compartment of its material realization may provoke, these are details which ought not to obscure the epoch-making character of West’s achievement. The length and degree of detail of the present review are nothing but a tribute to his acumen.71


1. Textkritik (third ed.), Leipzig, Teubner, 1957, 1 ff., together with the demolition of it by George Thomson, The Oresteia of Aeschylus… (second ed.), I, Amsterdam & Prague, Hakkert & Academia, 1966, 64-69. The method is of paramount value mainly for Latin texts; it has been applied with tremendous results, e.g., by L. D. Reynolds, The Medieval Tradition of Seneca’s Letters, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1965, 17-65, and S. P. Oakley, A Commentary on Livy. Books VI-X, I, ibid., 1997, 152-327.

2. Giorgio Pasquali ( Storia della Tradizione e Critica del Testo, ed. 2., Florence, Le Monnier, 1952, 247) gave a sharp expression to this belief: “per Platone il lavoro critico, che nella secondà metà del secolo XIX aveva imboccato una via troppo facile, ma sbagliata, ho dovuto ricominciar di bel nuovo negli ultimi anni prima della guerra, ed è ancora ai principi”. And recent editors of tragedy, in the course of superseding Turyn’s fundamental labors, did not reach any agreement as to the openness of the tradition and the consequences for its early history, a good instance being the protests of Kjeld Mathiessen ( Studien zur Textüberlieferung der Hekabe des Euripides, Heidelberg, Winter, 1974, 77-88) against André Tuilier’s unsound stemma ( Recherches Critiques sur la Tradition du Texte d’Euripide, Paris, Klincksieck, 1968, 137-209).

3. For a useful brief summary of how I take this term, see Simon R. Slings, Plato. Clitopho, “Cambridge Classical Texts & Commentaries” 37, Cambridge, C.U.P., 1999, 18-20.

4. Attestations such as Aristophanes, Frogs, 1114 βιβλίον τ’ ἔχων ἕκαστος μανθάνει τὰ; δεξιά, and his fr. 506 Kassel-Austin τοῦτον τὸν ἄνδρ’ ἢ βιβλίον διέφθορεν , suggest that, in the Athens of the last thirty years of the fifth century, the possession of a book though not really a novelty for the audience in the theater of Dionysos was something worth mentioning (by way of apology or satire). The association with “Prodicos or some gabbler” puts it in the Sophistic ambiance.

5. Not 529, as is sometimes reported; for the correct date, see A. A. Mosshammer, The Chronicle of Eusebius and Greek Chronographic Tradition, Lewisburg & London, Bucknell University Press & Associated University Presses, 1979, 290-291 (synchronism with the insurrection of Polycrates and his brothers at Samos) and Pierre Briant, Histoire de l’Empire Perse de Cyrus à Alexandre, Paris, Fayard, 1996, 60 and 104 (though virtually nothing is known of Cyrus’s last ten years of kingship, he was killed in 530 during his expedition against the Massagetes of Queen Tomyris and was succeeded by his elder son Cambyses II, who from 537 onwards was sâr Bâbili, “King of Babylon”).

6. Scholia A on I, 381; to the manuscript reading ἐπεὶ μάλα οἱ φίλος ἦεν, he is said to have preferred ἐπεί ῤά νύ οἱ φίλος ἦεν : clearly a secondary variant.

7. This is not quite the same thing as Richard Janko’s assumption that “all our mss. somehow go back to a single origin, and have passed through a single channel; it is improbable that more than one ‘original’ of the Iliad ever existed, even if different rhapsodic performances and editorial interventions have led to the addition and (rarely) omission of verses here and there. This basic fixity needs to be explained” (The Iliad. A Commentary, IV, Cambridge, C.U.P., 1992, 29). This is true in the sense that the epics do not exhibit such wide discrepancies in the plot, economy of the text and actual wording as is the case for Romance epics (not so much the Chanson de Roland, for which the Oxford version is agreed to be the best, as the Nibelungen or the Tristan et Iseut, with their highly untidy transmission), but it is a trifle confusing. Janko is, rightly, mainly concerned with the ancient and early medieval traditions, so that he leaves out of consideration the numerous variant readings, not all of them secondary, which are now only extant in late medieval manuscripts and which make the text far more volatile (on the surface) than he allows. And I take the use of the word ‘original’ to be an oversimplification: if an autographon auctoris ever existed (which is unwarranted but possible, in this I am inclined to follow West), several copies, derived from performance, must have been in use in the primitive circulation of the poems, the modification of which was possibly independent owing to the local conditions of the performance. The existence of a plurality of very early related copies is a possibility that is not easily disposed of. But it depends on the quantity of vertical variants one is ready to recognize in the whole transmission.

8. Actually, the most cogent way of thinking would be that, unless one can adduce positive evidence in favor of more than one line of tradition (that is, more than one written archetype going back to the transcription of different performances), it is reasonable to postulate only one line of tradition.

9. This qualification I have tried to give (with many others) in my forthcoming paper “Éditer l’ Iliad e I. La Transmission et ses Débats: Perspectives critiques”, Gaia 5 (2001), 41-123, passim, especially sections 1-10. There, to the best of my endeavors, I made a case for an equitable evaluation of each stream of tradition, especially Aristarchus, whose unreliability as an editor judged by modern standards does not render him so frigid a critic as has been said (but he ought not to be called a reliable authority in the editing of the text). Now, for all my critiques of West’s methods, conceptions and results, it does not follow that the opposite standpoint, that of Van Thiel, who edits the ‘vulgate’ in its early medieval form, is more adequate.

10. “Ilias materiam continet iamdiu per ora cantorum diffusam, formam autem contextumque qualem nos nouimus tum primum attinuit, cum conscripta est; quod ut fieret, unius munus fuit maximi poetae” (vol. I, p. VI). That ‘Homer’ (= the alleged author of both the Iliad and the Odyssey) wrote is a mere guess depending on another unconventional belief of West’s, that ‘Homer’ is postHesiodic. Suffice it to say that this assumption, being not corroborated by the results of Janko’s glottochronology, has very little material ground and is no argument in the present context. See note 15 below.

11. The impression that it is not West’s concern to record alternative views even when they seem better attested than his own, stems from the extreme paucity of scholarly references in the first two parts of the Praefatio (pp. V-XVI) and from the compression of his bibliographical conspectus (pp. LXI-LXII). The latter was clearly designed to be ancillary, being mere elucidation of the abbreviations used throughout the apparatus; nonetheless the very choice is far too arbitrary, both in what it includes (Andrew Sihler’s and Leo Meyer’s comparative grammars of Greek and Latin are either too rudimentary to be of utility or very antiquated) and what it excludes (Meister is there, but not Parry; Lehrs, but not Ludwich; Threatte, but not Mayser and Gignac; Wathelet, but not Ruijgh, τε Éepique and L’Élément Achéen; La Roche’s Homerische Untersuchungen are cited, but neither his far more important Homerische Textkritik, nor Bernhard Laum’s Das alexandrinische Akzentuationssystem…) to offer proper guidance, and many references in the apparatus can be found which are not listed there.

12. Apropos of these rhapsodes I am far less confident than West and the current standard opinion, in the light of Detlev Fehling, “Zwei Lehrstücke über Pseudo-Nachrichten (Homeriden, Lelantischer Krieg)”, Rheinisches Museum 122 (1979), 193-210. It is reassuring to see this paper commended by P. H. J. Lloyd-Jones ( Greek Comedy, Hellenistic Literature, Greek Religion and Miscellanea. The Academic Papers of sir Hugh Lloyd-Jones, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1990, 392), since it has found very little hospitality in subsequent Homeric scholarship.

13. A striking parody is Aristophanes’ Δαιταλῆς, fr. 233 K.-A., where the desperate father forces his son corrupted by the new education to answer (traditional?) questions on Homeric γλῶσσαι (1-2 πρὸς ταύτας δ’αὖ λέξον Ὁμήρου γλώττας. τί καλοῦσι κόρυμβα; / < > τί καλοῦσ’ ἀμενηνὰ κάρηνα). The son’s answers are no doubt so tricky, he is so insolent that the father soon proclaims (fr. 237) his intention to fly immediately to the ναυτοδίκαι and pronounce the son’s foreign birth.

14. The following remarks are not designed to review the question, even roughly; the reader is urged to consult the rich polyphonic documentation of M. S. Jensen et alii, “Dividing Homer: When and How were the Iliad and the Odyssey divided into Songs?”, Symbolae Osloenses 74 (1999), 5-91.

15. Martin and S. R. West, in their reply to Jensen (pp. 68-73), imagine the process of creation as a succession of written drafts. Even though, as they recall, no doubt justly, both the term ῤαψωιδία and its use are unlikely to be Alexandrian, and, though the epigraphic ground for thinking that the poems were written down before the Pisistratids is plain, I am not shaken by their argumentation and cannot consider very seriously that it is fatal to the oralist approach.

16. De Oratore, III, (34), 137 “quis doctior isdem temporibus (sc. of the Seven Sages) illis aut cuius eloquentia litteris instructior fuisse traditur quam Pisistrati? Qui primus Homeri libros confusos antea sic disposuisse dicitur ut nunc habemus?”.

17. Janko, A Commentary…, IV, 29-32, has a full treatment of the evidence for Pisistratid recension which surveys ancient texts and modern conclusions in the most useful way.

18. So J. A. Davison, “The Transmission of the Text”, in A. J. B. Wace & F. H. Stubbings (ed)., A Companion to Homer, London, Macmillan, 1963, 240. On p. 220, he rightly recalls this story as a clue for the prejudiced nature of the belief in the Pisistratid recension (or first reduction to writing) of ‘Homer’. This penetrating insight seems to have been forgotten.

19. So M. W. Haslam, “Homeric Papyri and Transmission of the Text”, in Ian Morris & Barry Powell (ed.), A New Companion to Homer. “Mnemosyne Supp. 163” (Leiden, Brill, 1997) 82.

20. [Plutarch], De Homero, II, 4 εἰσὶ δὲ αὐτοῦ ποιήσεις δύο, Ἰλιὰς καὶ Ὀδύσσεια, διηιρημένη ἑκατέρα εἰς τὸν ἀριθμὸν τῶν στοιχείων, οὐχ ὑπὸ αὐτοῦ τοῦ ποιητοῦ ἀλλ’ ὑπὸ τῶν γραμματικῶν τῶν περὶ Ἀρίσταρχον; Eustathius, I, p. 9, 4-5 Van der Valk. Like Aristophanes of Byzantium Aristarchus seems to have regarded xxiii, 296 as the end of the Odyssey and simply could not be the author of the separation between xxiii, 371 and xxiv, 1. See further Rudolf Pfeiffer, A History of Classical Scholarship…, I, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1968, 116 and 175-177.

21. More references in my Éditer l’ Iliade I, note 12. Haslam, 84-85 has some cogent objections against placing too much a confidence in the book-trade’s impact on the constitution of the ‘vulgate’. But as he gives no proof and suggests no alternative explanation this can be no argument.

22. Πολίτηι μὲν ἐμῶι τε καὶ σῶι, Πεισιστράτου δὲ ὑεῖ τοῦ ἐκ Φιλαιδῶν, Ἱππάρχωι, ὃς τῶν Πεισιστράτου παίδων ἦν πρεσβύτατος καὶ σοφώτατος, ὃς ἄλλα τε πολλὰ καὶ καλὰ ἔργα σοφίας ἀπεδείξατο, καὶ τὰ Ὁμήρου ἔπη πρῶτος ἐκόμισεν εἰς τὴν γῆν ταυτηνί, καὶ ἠνάγκασε τοὺς ῤαψωιδοὺς ἐξ ὑπολήψεως ἐφεχῆς αὐτὰ διιέναι…

23. Τά τε Ὁμήρου ἐξ ὑποβολῆς γέγραφε [sc. Solon] ῤαψωιδεῖσθαι, οἷον ὅπου ὁ πρῶτος ἔληξεν, ἐκεῖθεν ἄρχεσθαι τὸν ἐχόμενον. Μᾶλλον οὖν Σόλων ὏μηρον ἐφώτισεν ἢ Πεισίστρατος, ὥς φησι Διευχίδας ἐν πέμπτωι Μεγαρικῶν. Ἦν δὲ μάλιστα τὰ ἔπη ταυτί. “οἳ δ’ ἄρ’ Ἀθήνας εἶχον” καὶ τὰ ἑχῆς (text as in Jacoby, except that I have excised his exempli gratia supplement ὃς ἔπη τινὰ ἐνέβαλεν εἰς τὴν ποίησιν αὐτοῦ after Πεισίστρατος; following Miroslav Marcovich in his recent Teubner edition [1999, I, p. 39], it is possible, by adding ἐμβολαῖς between ὏μηρον and ἐφώτισεν, to dispense with the hypothesis of the lacuna). The text is well explained by Jacoby (FGrH, vol. III b. Kommentar zu nr. 297-607 [Text], 392, 12-36).

24. The Athetized Lines of the Iliad, Linguistic Society of America, Baltimore, Waverly Press, 1944, Part One, 7-42, especially 10-24 (on the Alpha text) and 24-25, 30-41 (on the Pi text), cf. the useful summary of pages 41-42; Ilias Atheniensium. The Athenian Iliad of the Sixth Century B.C., Lancaster & Oxford, Lancaster Press & Blackwell, 1950, 6-7 (“the procedure in continuing Pi was like that in the handing down of the Alpha text and the Mahabharata: additions but no subtractions”, p. 6).

25. “Homeric Scholia”, in Morris & Powell, A New Companion to Homer, 101-122, on 116 note 48. The quotation continues as follows: “if we apply the perspective of diachronic studies in oral poetics, Bolling’s assumption about a tradition that can only add, never subtract, are unjustified”.

26. Researches on The Text and Scholia of the Iliad, II, Leiden…, Brill, 1964, 1-83 (Zenodotus) and 84-263 (Aristarchus). These studies had been called, with some reason, “astute if sometimes arcane” by G. S. Kirk, The Iliad. A Commentary, I, Cambridge, C.U.P., 1985, 43. See note 29.

27. This seems to be directed against two contentions of Bolling, Athetized Lines…, 32-33: First, “Zenodotus’ chief problem was the problem of the lines. He solved it I believe not eclectically (so Wolf and many others), but by deciding to include in his text the lines upon which his manuscripts agreed; and also—but with a mark (obelus) in front of them—a selection from the lines about which the testimony of his manuscripts fluctuated” (p. 32, last paragraph). Secondly, “What then did Zenodotus’ obelus mean?…For his obeli I can find no reasonable meaning except ‘Here the tradition is not a unit’. At least such must have been their primary meaning. For in the absence of a commentary it must have been something true of all marked passages, something that could be stated once for all; and—the only alternative—a meaning ‘These verses are to be judged spurious for various unstated reasons’ would have offered to his readers nothing but a series of placita” (p. 33).

28. My use of ὑπόμνημα (and my translation of it) are explained in Éditer l’Iliade I, note 132.

29. This is made explicit by Pfeiffer in the Addenda to his History of Classical Scholarship…, I, 287: “…his opinion that ‘the Alexandrian critics had no correct idea of the significance of a diplomatic text’, which is now openly expressed (pp. 565 ff.), was the unspoken assumption behind his Textual Criticism of the Odyssey (1949) and the first volume of his Researches on the Text and Scholia of the Iliad (1963), and must unfortunately be regarded as a preconceived idea, not the result of historical inquiries”. A similar observation was implicit as soon as 1950 in Bolling’s presentation of the Alexandrian’s methods ( AJPh. 71, 306-311). See note 30 below and my Éditer l’Iliade, note 133.

30. Researches…, II, 370-477 (“Atheteses of Aristarchus”) and 477-530 (“so-called Additional Lines”). These chapters are rashly, but not unfairly, assessed by Apthorp, Manuscript Evidence…, XV when he goes on to explain that Van der Valk refused to accept that the evidence put forward by Ludwich and Bolling, External Evidence… “shows conclusively that omitted only lines which were absent in the vast majority of his manuscripts”. Such a negation of the case which can be made in favor of Aristarchus’ conservatism in this area stems from the ardent oralist faith of the Dutch critic. In this precise sense his book is misleading.

31. Antonios Rengakos, Der Homertext und die hellenistischen Dichter, “Hermes Einzelschriften” 64, Stuttgart, Steiner, 1993, argues at some length (197 pages) for systematically validating the editorial standards of the Alexandrians. His position holds good on a few points of detail, generally referred to in West’s apparatus, but the uncertainty of such an approach remains a major deterrent (it can fairly be said that it does little more than make a system out of Erbse’s demonstration of Apollonius Rhodius’ incontrovertible dependence on Homeric scholarship: “Homerscholien und hellenistische Glossare bei Apollonios Rhodios”, Hermes 81 [1953], 163-196). This wild element of speculation is compounded by the somewhat too large focus of Rengakos’ approach (it applies to Zenodotus and Aristophanes as well as Aristarchus, and to their choice of variant readings no less than to their counting of the lines).

32. I am sanguine enough to consider that, given the evidence both external and internal, the reasons for my skepticism ( Éditer l’Iliade I, 8 and 28) and Nagy’s will not be easily refuted. The systematic device of the apparatus “nou(it) Did(ymum)”, being undocumented, throws no light at all on the transmission and deprives Aristarchus of one of his main merits. Now, if really he did not use manuscripts as the basis of his recensions, why on earth did he undertake his successive sets of notes explaining his texts and why did he produce polemical treatises on particular points? Such a reductio ad absurdum is probably mere surmise, but I cannot help suspecting that West has been led astray by the anti-Aristarchean current prejudice, of which Van der Valk and Hartmut Erbse are the main supporters. The burden of the proof lies with him. Finally, for Didymus as a collator, Nagy argues a not unimportant point: “this is not to say that Didymus did not collate Homer manuscripts in his own right or that Aristarchus was the only collator…It is only to say that the primary collator of Homer manuscripts was Aristarchus himself and that Didymus may not have had access to all the sources still available to Aristarchus” (his note 21).

33. See Éditer l’Iliade I, 19.

34. As W. S. Barrett remarked (Euripides. Hippolytos, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1964, p. 56 note 1), “we are dealing with different versions of what once was an oral poem, so enormously discrepant that once commentaries were keyed to one version other versions became unusable”. To profit from the great storehouse of learning available in Aristarchus’ sets of notes, it was necessary to follow the layout of his versions of the text. Hence the post-Alexandrian numerus uersuum. But popular texts may not have felt much immediate effect, and they seem to have compromised in following him, by way of a selection, competent and incompetent.

35. It would have been possible to mention here at least the genre of Homeric arguments in Greek or Latin ( Periochae), like those attributed (wrongly) to Ausonius, each of which begins with the quotation of the first verse(s) of the Greek book and a metrical Latin translation. They are conveniently edited (without commentary) by R. P. H. Green, The Works of Ausonius, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1991, 677-695, and for what they reveal of the text out of which lemmata and analyses were taken they may deserve closer attention.

36. For improvements on the text of the inscriptions métriques, see W. Peek, “Griechische Vers-Inschriften aus Ägypten”, ZPE 10 (1973), 230-248, on 239-245.

37. I summarize here the reconstruction of the aims and methods of Allen I have proposed in my review of the Sandpiper reprint of his editio maior (2000), that is to appear in Gaia 5. Unfair judgments are quoted with approval by Bolling, Athetized Lines…, p. 8 note 4, and the current prejudice colored even the obituary notice of Allen by such an expert as Nigel Wilson.

38. It is interesting to see how he himself describes the basis of his edition ( Homeri Ilias Recognouit Helmut van Thiel, Bibliotheca Weidmanniana 2, Hildesheim, Zürich & New York, Olms, 1996, VIII): “von den p. XIV [sc. the Conspectus siglorum ] verzeichneten Handschriften habe ich folgende neun durchgehend benutzt: ADTEFHM (und ν. Sie sind nach den Kriterien des Alters, der Vollständigkeit und der Unabhändgigkeit des Textes ausgewählt”.

39. I have to refer once more to my Éditer l’Iliade I, 23-26, where I have illustrated some important points for the grouping of the manuscripts (b = BCE, h = MNP, and the independent line of tradition represented by Z). Here I refrain from discussing West’s presentation of the evidence; yet the reader should know that many details of his account are still controversial (for instance, the palaeographical date of Z and A; see Éditer l’Iliade, note 76), and in need of further reexamination.

40. Apropos of the assimilation of initial consonants the reader is urged not to rely on heading III. 6 of the Praefatio. For an exhaustive palaeographical and phonological account of this phenomenon, see my treatment ( Éditer l’Iliade I, 25) of what I judge to be the most important separative error of our tradition: III, 207 ἐνιμμεγάροις Z, ἐν μεγάροισι W.

41. Against the dangers of which Albert Severyns powerfully warned ( Texte et Apparat. Histoire Critique d’une Tradition Imprimée, “Mémoires de l’Académie Royale de Belgique. Classe des Lettres et des Sciences Morales et Politiques” LXI fasc. 2, Bruxelles, 1962, 245-248). Variants or readings assigned to W are a great source of trouble in Ludwich and Van Thiel, the manuscript covering of the siglum being subject to change; the same is less true for West, who gives neat equivalents for W both in his preface and at the end of his Sigla breuiata (indications not repeated at the beginning of vol. ιἰ, but whose W manuscripts are occasionally not extant (lacunae, parts written by very late copyists). Let us listen to Severyns (p. 246): ? le lecteur, comme avant lui l’auteur, doit effectuer de continuelles et périlleuses ‘remises à l’endroit’: du bloc des manuscrits dépouillés il soustrait ceux que mentionne l’unité critique avant de savoir ou se trouve attestée la graphie admise in textu. Supposé que l’éditeur n’ait commis aucune erreur de soustraction…, il est certain qu’un lecteur même attentif bronchera plus d’une fois. Il le ferait certainement moins si, au lieu d’avoir à chercher la réponse dans une lointaine préface, il trouvait à chaque page, en tête de l’apparat critique, un relevé des sigles symbolisant les manuscrits dépouillés pour la partie du texte en cause: mais bien peu d’éditeurs ont cette bonne habitude”. When you work, as is the case for the Teubner Iliad, with 12 to 19 manuscripts the absent portions of which one is forced to remember each time one wants to consult the apparatus, it is very easy indeed to err in the subtraction of the divergent components of W. An indication printed on the top of the apparatus (def. A, def. E, and the like) would have been welcome, instead of mentions buried in the apparatus like “post h.v. def. A”.

42. A remark on the badness of its apograph ( τῶν ἀντιγράφων διαφθοράν) by Demetrius himself, who claims elsewhere to have made use of Eustathius ( προσχρησαμένοις καὶ τοῖς τοῦ Εὐσταθίου ὑπομνήμασι), bears witness to the inferior character of this source. A closer analysis of the textual agreements of the princeps shows a clear affinity with Allen’s families e and t, but disproves any debt to Eustathius’ παρεκβολαί. I have not seen the princeps and take these indications from Allen; but for all books cited in this section my information is at first-hand, based on actual reading of these titles (in the original, save for the Olms reprint of Harles-Fabricius).

43. See Wolf in the preface to his 1785 Halle school edition (= Kleine Schriften, I, 178): “Homerus is auctor est, in cuius contextu multis adhuc modis a genuina formula nos abesse constat et in quo ad maiorem integritatem ut perueniri possit, uaria restant magno doctrinae apparatu mouenda; egregie nuper in summa breuitate hoc argumentum tractauit is, cuius manibus utinam tandem poeta ornatior prodeat. Homeri rectius legendi praestantissimus auctor, Heynius, in epistola ad Tyschenium…”.

44. As is more than implied by G. C. Heyne, sternly rebuking Wolf’s negation of his lifelong interest in the editing of Homer (Göttingische Anzeigen, 1795, II, 1858): “da der Rec(ensor), wie H(er)r Prof. W(olf) selbst weiss, sich seit mehrern zwanzig Jahren, freylich sehr unterbrochen und nur erst seit der Erscheinung von Villoisons Homer mit Ernst, mit einer neuen Recension Homers beschäftiget und manche bessere Begriffe von Homer erst in Umlauf zu bringen das Seinige beygetragen hat: so ist er im Stande das was geleistet ist zu schätzen”.

45. After having collected the grammatical evidence and variant readings extant in Eustathius, he had worked through the published scholia, adding some notes obtained by two unnamed friends on the Leipzig codex Paullinus, the reliability of whose collation by Ernesti was questionable. On top of his other commitments, Wolf had acquainted himself with what the whole Greco-Roman antiquity was able to contribute to the knowledge of both the Iliad and the Odyssey, lexicographers, scholiasts, grammarians, authors and sources of quotations, without forgetting the Hellenistic poets with their keen feeling for erudition, when the Venice Iliad reached him and compelled him to reassess afresh his collections. He read two more times (!) Eustathius, the scholiasts and the others, together with new researches on the printed secondary sources from Stephanus down to Ernesti.

46. Prolegomena, 21: “qua in re saepe mihi usu uenit ut longo circuitu peruenirem ad eas correctiones quas eximii libri primus adspectus frustra obtulerat; nam quae magna est huius mei ac Veneti textus conuenientia, eam sponte natam habui, non quaesiui”. I take this occasion to warn the reader against the unreliability of the 1985 translation by Grafton, Most and Zetzel: although by no means undistinguished, to judge by current standards, the editors’ command of Latin is insufficient to deal adequately with an author whom Heyne rightly called a rhetorician (contrast his own Latin or Villoison’s); often Grafton et alii do not translate what Wolf actually says, which is often far from being clear and straightforward, but convey the meaning of what he s h o u l d have said.

47. It was shown to be fake, with good arguments but scurrilously enough to render its demonstration untrustworthy to subsequent critics, by Victor Bérard in his pamphlet Un Mensonge de la Science Allemande. Les Prolégomènes à Homère de Frédéric Auguste Wolf, Paris, Hachette, 1917, 239-259. I hope to prove Bérard right in a subsequent publication.

48. Cf. Harles-Fabricius, Bibliotheca Graeca…, I, 413: “quanquam immensa fere uis est codicum manuscriptorum homericorum, hi tamen parum ualent ad poetam ipsi reddendum; nam neque Iliada, neque Odysseam, prouti ex ingenuo oreque aut a manu Homeri profectae sint, ex illis codd. accipere possumus; neque secundum prima exempla quomodo primum, litteris nondum perfectis, necdum plenis, fuerunt aratae, possunt restitui…”.

49. Bolling, Ilias Atheniensium, ad loc.: “om. Scholia, A S N G1 H1 T Px Yg; hab. s<cholia>B (ex Eudoxo), B M G2 H2 J Yb L2 Hb P2 X Y Z”

50. Ad 424-427 ἐπαινετὸς ὁ ἄρχων τοῦ λόγου καὶ μὴ περιμείνας τὴν αἴτησιν, καὶ τὸ σύντομον τοῦ ἐπειγομένου ἀποδοῦναι καὶ τὸ σῶφρον τῆς ἐπαγγελίας ὡς δυνατὰ ἐ παγγελλομένου.

51. They are contradicted by Bolling, Ilias Atheniensium, ad loc.: “om. P 48 ( 5p.), S1 N T Ub1 P C1 υ ψ ζ; hab. (sed post vm. 530) P 6O ( 3/4p.) A Zp W, et im. S3 Ub2 C2”.

52. Athetized Lines…, 30 (= postulate VII). The justification for many of his verdicts can be found in Athetized Lines…, 43-195, where the reader will also found the position of the major editors previous to Bolling, making this the more useful of his books. One deterrent to the use of Ilias Atheniensium is that the decision to relegate lines whose a n o n y m o u s athetesis was recorded in Athetized Lines… is now silently attributed to Aristarchus (e.g. XXI, 471; XXI, 475-477; XXI, 570). The possibility that wherever the A scholia report an anonymous athetesis they are speaking of Aristarchus is a very serious possibility, but not one which ought to be transformed without qualification into a consistent rule.

53. “Pro his uersibus Plato (Rep. 390 c): οὐδ’ ὅτε τὸ πρῶτόν περ ἐμισγόμεθ’ ἐν φιλότητι ” (Bolling, ad loc.). Cf. also External Evidence…, 187, and A.L., 139 (which concludes: “the passage is a clear example of an interpolation that had not gained a secure foothold in the tradition”).

54. I have not included under this heading XXIII, 804 where Bolling’s “om. Aristarchus” is erroneous. From the very redaction of the critical note (“om. Ar., P 13 ( 1a.), A1 S G1 T1 Px U Ud; hab. B M N W, et im. A2 G2 T2”) it is conspicuous here that Bolling’s preference for Ludwich instead of Allen leads him to weaken his case (see Homeri Ilias, III, 329 where many more manuscripts which omit the line are cited).

55. “Suspexit Aristarchus” West; possible, but a trifle excessive for what Didymus actually reads: οὔτε παρὰ Ζηνοδότωι οὔτε παρ’ Ἀριστοφάνει ἦν. Καὶ μήποτε περιττός ἐστιν. I am better acquainted with A.L., 142-144.

56. “Sic aliquis, nunc male dictus Aristarchus” (Bolling, who quotes the reading of T absent in Erbse’s apparatus; see the Budé edition, IV, 111 ἄνθετο). Although ἠὲ seems better (Allen, the Budé editors, Bolling, West read it), Erbse, V, 422, edits the text of Eustathius ἢ τό γε.

57. One should not place on the same footing his adoption of some of Zenodotus’ individual readings (occasional but still more than would command assent; e.g. XXIV, 550 ἑοῖο: ἑῆος Aristarchus W). This was vindicated by Rengakos (cited note 31), whose arguments are not always more convincing than Bolling’s absence of justification (see West ad XIX, 76-78). The less unhappy justification of this belief is Bolling, Athetized Lines…, 32-34.

58. These grounds are generally weak. I take the occasion to mention XIII, 131 which is omitted by P 1255 and therefore bracketed by West. The line can seem tautological (outside an oralist framework), since ἀσπὶς ἄρ’ ἀσπίδ’ ἔρειδε adds little but vivid expression to φράξαντες…σάκος SA/KEI+ in 130. Yet the omission in only one papyrus of unknown date, which is not available for checking, is precarious external evidence and weakens the case for bracketing.

59. See note 15, together with Janko’s noble comment ( BMCR 2000.01.25). The fanciful accusation that anyone who believes that Parry opened a new approach for the text would be ‘imprisoned’ by it need not be taken seriously.

60. The Dutch critic rightly compares XXII, 214-223, where Achilles, even though his superiority over Hector is conspicuous, nonetheless has the further benefit of Athena’s help.

61. Not 1461 a 31 (pace M. W. Edwards, A Commentary…, V, Cambridge, C.U.P., 1991, 323): in its context the text runs δεῖ δὲ καὶ ὅταν ὄνομά τι ὑπεναντίωμά τι δοκῆι σημαίνειν, ἐπισκοπεῖν ποσαχῶς ἂν σημήνειε τοῦτο ἐν τῶι εἰρημένωι, οἷον τὸ ‘τῆι ῤ’ ἔσχετο χάλκεον ἔγχοσ’ τὸ ταύτηι κωλυθῆναι ποσαχῶς ἐνδέχεται ὡδὶ ἢ ὡδί, ὡς μάλιστ’ ἄν τις ὑπολάβοι (1461 a 31-35). Ingram Bywater, Aristotle. On the Art of Poetry, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1909, 342-343, has much illustrative material; further elaboration in, e.g., D. W. Lucas, Aristotle. Poetics, ibid., 1968, 245-247, and Jean Lallot & Roselyne Dupont-Roc, Aristote. La Poétique, Paris, Seuil, 1980, 397-398.

62. Add XXIII, 670-671 (damn. Franke, retinuit West, sed ” ἦ οὐχ ἅλις non aptum uidetur “).

63. Confirmed, I may add, by Wilhelm Schulze, Quaestiones Epicae, Gütersloh, Bertelsman, 1892, 21-22, here on 22.

64. For what it is worth, I shall mention another arbitrary unessential change: West refuses the metaphorical use of Ἄρης for ‘war, violence’. Thus he prints without capitalization a score of relevant occurrences (XIII, 630; XIV, 149; XVI, 42; XVI, 245; XVIII, 134; XVIII, 264; XVIII, 304; XIX, 142; XIX, 189; XIX, 237; XIX, 275; XIX, 318; XXIV, 260).

65. This use may not be very ancient for Euripides has seven instances of ἀποπρό : cf. J. T. Allen & Gabriel Italie, A Concordance to Euripides, Groningen, Bouma, 1970 (second ed.), p. 70 col. 2. For a further score of conjectural restorations, see James Diggle, Euripidea, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1994, 184-185.

66. All these materials were already put forward by R. A. Neil, Aristophanes. The Knights, Cambridge, C.U.P., 1901, 33. On p. 34, ad 205, he refers to Athenaeus, XV, 667 B ἀγκυλοῦντα δεῖ σφόδρα τὴν χεῖρα πέμπειν τὸν κότταβον.

67. I shall quote Van Leeuwen’s critical note ad Knights, 197 ( Aristophanis Equites cum Prolegomenis et Commentariis edidit J. V. L., Leiden, Sijthoff, 1900, p. 40): ” ἀγκυλοχείλης…Quae apud Homerum quidem (P 428 = x 302) uera uidetur esse forma, ‘curuirostrum’ igitur significans; sed Batrachomachiae poeta, qui cancros dixit ἀγχυλοχήλας vs. 296, eorum ‘crura’ hoc epitheto pinxit, et nostrum idem uoluisse clare docent vs. 205 et Aves 1180″.

68. The only instances one may cite are Theocritus XI, 54 ὤμοι, ὅτ’ οὐκ ἔτεκέν μ’ ἁ μάτηρ βράγχι’ ἔχοντα and 79 δῆλον ὅτ’ ἐν τᾶι γᾶι κἠγὼν τις φαίνομαι ἧμεν, where the elision of ὅτι is refused by Gow (II, 217 ad 54 ) and similarly by P. E. Legrand in the section on prosody of his Étude sur Théocrite (Paris, De Boccard, 1898, reissued 1968, 314-329, on 326 with the note 3) but is admitted by K. J. Dover ( Theocritus. Select Poems, London, Macmillan, 1971, 178) as the lectio difficilior.

69. Δὲ ῤαδαλῆις is a palmary emendation by Isaac Voss ( δ’ ἐραδαλῆις Palatinus 398, an evident instance of a wrong word-division during the μεταχαρακτηρισμός of uncial script).

70. This point I do not intend to be a naughty critique. West is not guilty of printing here what could well be a uox nihili. I think I have demonstrated, in this review, that I am well aware of the difference between a readable text and an authentic text: despite Van Thiel, the ‘vulgate’ may often not be archetypal. But nonetheless I can see no reason why the very text an editor deems authentic would resist translation; it should be his duty to provide brief annotations wherever what he prints has serious chances to puzzle the reader (this has be done, in the O.C.T. series, by Murray for his Aeschylus—textual comments, rare notes on the exegesis—and by Henry and Schwyzer for their joint editio minor of Plotinus—mainly notes on the meaning of vexed passages).

71. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Professors Richard Janko, who was instrumental in the making of this review and who saved me from blunders too numerous to remember, and Michael Apthorp, for our friendly correspondence and his willingness to decrypt some features of West’s apparatus which otherwise may have escaped my notice. Ἀλλ’, ὦγάθ’, ἔτι καὶ νῦν πιθοῦ πάσηι τέχνη…Readers interested in checking my French paper are welcome to contact me for offprints.