BMCR 2004.01.30

Cicero. Gespräche in Tusculum

, , Gespräche in Tusculum. Bibliothek der alten Welt. Düsselforf/Zürich: Artemis & Winkler, 2003. 394 pages ; 18 cm.. ISBN 3760841074 EUR 25.60.

One of the best and most useful editions of Cicero’s Tusculanae is the one by Olof Gigon, published in the German Tusculum series, that is likewise named after Cicero’s estate. All Tusculum volumes contain the original texts and facing translations, with all relevant extra information (afterword, notes, bibliography, index). Gigon’s edition has been reprinted several times (the fifth edition appeared in 1984), a clear proof of its success.

Contrary to what one might expect, the present volume does not contain a new version of Gigon’s text or translation. It is simply a partial reprint of the Tusculum edition. The volume contains the German translation, notes, and index exactly as they are printed in the latest editions of the Tusculum volume. Only the bibliography (p.387-388) has been adapted for the present purpose and now contains some titles of more general interest. Paragraph numbers have been added, whereas all page numbers have, of course, been changed.

Surprisingly, nowhere in the book do we find any reference to the history and origin of the translation: the publication in the Tusculum series is never mentioned. This is careless, and the publisher should have included this information.

The new volume has been published in a series Bibliothek der alten Welt, which is obviously intended for the reader who has not mastered Greek or Latin. The design of the book is fairly modest (a simple hardback, not sewn). The relatively cheap volume (about 25 EUR) will be useful for a general German readership, but classicists will be served better by Gigon’s Tusculum volume, since that contains the Latin text as well.