BMCR 2020.05.03

Antiphontis et Andocidis: orationes

, , Antiphontis et Andocidis: orationes. Scriptorum Classicorum Bibliotheca Oxoniensis . Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2018. xxxii, 212 p.. ISBN9780199605477 $45.00.

Let me start this review by warmly welcoming the new OCT of Antiphon and Andocides. The volume is needed for two main reasons: there was no OCT of these orators, who certainly count among the ‘principal classical authors’ whom the series aims to include (see the back cover); and there has been a great deal of work done on the text of both authors since the Teubner, Budé and Loeb editions of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. One of the editors (Dilts) has, of course, been responsible recently for the new OCT of Demosthenes, while the other (Murphy) is an experienced classicist who has brought the project to completion with great expertise. It is my duty as a reviewer to highlight some areas where I feel disquiet, but my criticisms should not be taken to detract from the overall quality of the edition.

The volume follows a recent format for OCTs with a Preface written in English by Murphy, followed by a Conspectus Editionum Potiorum, Conspectus Studiorum, list of Sigla, the text and apparatus of the speeches, and separate Indices Nominum for each of the ancient authors (with Andocides strangely, if alphabetically, preceding Antiphon).

The Preface contains two pages of introductory material, and is then divided into three sections: I. Textual Tradition; II. Editions; III. Principles of This Edition.

The first footnote in the Preface (p. v n. 1) indicates, without fully explaining, the division of labour: Dilts drafted the apparatus, which was then revised by Murphy. Murphy uses the pronoun ‘we’ when referring to this process, but ‘I’ to work he did subsequently, which includes writing the Preface in which ‘I’ features prominently (and Murphy’s name appears at the end as the sole signatory). This leaves Dilts, doubtless unintentionally, somewhat in the background, and it is not clear how much of the text and apparatus was prepared by him and how much was revised by Murphy. It is, therefore, only my assumption that Dilts took the original decision not to include the fragments of the speeches, which I find unfortunate given that this is the editio princeps in the OCT series; the omission of the fragments of Antiphon the Sophist is more understandable (if still regrettable) in light of the continuing division between separatists and unitarians on this issue. A brief discussion of authenticity indicates the editors’ position (with which I concur) that Andocides 4 is spurious; they sit on the fence as to whether Andocides 3 is also spurious, but find that arguments against the authenticity of the Tetralogies and Antiphon 6 are inconclusive. Presumably the reason for the ordering of this discussion Andocides/Antiphon is alphabetical, as with the Indices.

In section I, Murphy gives a short but informative history of the manuscripts, beginning with A (Burney 95), which contains both Antiphon and Andocides. He cites Lamberz 2008 for the identification of the scribe as Michael Klostomalles, but misses two earlier publications by Lamberz in 2000 and 2006.[1] As regards the apographs, I would doubt the (fairly common) statement that ‘it is highly probable that M was the model of P’: although there is clearly contamination between the two, P has a large enough number of distinguishing errors to make it more probable, in my opinion, that P was copied directly from L.[2] I have to add that Murphy omits one other apograph, V (Vat. Chig. R.VI.42, erroneously cited as R.IV.42 by Wyse), which contains Andocides and the beginning of Antiphon (to 1.8).[3] But more worryingly, even though I am reassured by Murphy’s statement on p. viii with respect to the corrections in A that he has ‘worked in detail’ on the British Library’s digitized version of the manuscript, apparently neither he nor Dilts has actually collated it. Rather, on p. vii (with n. 10) Murphy thanks James Zetzel for his collation, shared with him by Michael Gagarin. Zetzel’s collation was made in situ, but the ‘high-quality digitization’ should have facilitated the editors’ own collation. Indeed, on p. xi Murphy declares that he has collated B (which was copied from A) and Q (which contains Andocides 3 and 4 and is independent from A) from digitizations, examining ‘thousands of readings in A and hundreds in N’: it seems very strange to me that an editor would collate an apograph (B) and one of the main (part-)manuscripts (Q), but only examine readings, however many, from the other two main (and more important) manuscripts (AN).

That said, I have no doubt that Murphy’s inspections were conducted meticulously. This is confirmed by my extensive random examinations of the three main manuscripts undertaken for the purposes of this review, and it is also indicated by his approach to the corrections in A. Here, Murphy distinguishes between A, A1 (the scribe correcting, ‘when identification can be made with confidence’), Ac (when it cannot), Aa (ante correctionem) to distinguish that reading from the reading of A1 or Ac. There is then A2, a later corrector whose changes are evident because of the different colour of the ink he used (I see no evidence at all that good readings in A2 came ‘from another manuscript, which was not N’ [p. ix] rather than from his own ingenuity); and also A3, who made a correction at Ant. 6.25 in pencil. My own view is that this system is overly complicated, since the corrections that are not made by A2 in lighter ink are clearly made by A’s scribe and I am not sure what level of confidence is required to distinguish between Ac and A1; and in any case Aa is the same as A. But Murphy has taken a different path, which is his prerogative, and he has presumably refined the draft apparatus provided to him by Dilts quite extensively. I note that Aa and Ac are omitted on the page of Sigla, as are the equivalent sigla for manuscript N. Again, Murphy’s description and discussion of the other two main manuscripts are very informative. These are, for Antiphon, N (Bodleian Auctarium T.2.8, which is wrongly listed on the page of Sigla as T.2.4) and, for Andocides 3 and 4, Q (Ambrosianus D 42 sup.; this manuscript is omitted from the page of Sigla entirely). I am not convinced, however, that ‘Q occupies a further stage from the archetype [supposed for ANQ] than does A’ (p. x).[4]

Murphy moves on, in section II, to what is again a helpful, if slightly brief discussion of the printed editions. He does not, however, fully bring out the fact that the early editions from the Aldine of 1513 onwards were based on an inferior manuscript, L (Marcianus app. class. VIII.6). This is perhaps more obvious in the speeches of Isaeus, where even the ingenuity of great scholars such as Marcus Musurus (the Aldine editor) and J. J. Reiske could not overcome the lacuna from 1.22 to 2.47; but if ‘the text could not be established on scientific principles until … Maetzner had brought Oxford N into parity with the family of the Crippsianus’ (p. xiii), then in my view it ought also to be mentioned that A was not available until Bekker in 1822. Apographs are apographs, however carefully copied—and B, the source of L, was not.

In section III, Murphy informs us of the principles he and Dilts employed in preparing the edition. The crucial point here is that they have greater faith in the manuscripts than earlier editors, especially with regard to ‘proper Attic oratorical diction’ (p. xiii), but also with ‘matters of content’ and ‘grammatical outliers’ (p. xiv), as well as spelling. An example of where this leads to may be found at Ant. 5.76, where in my edition I retained the manuscript reading as corrected by A2, εὐρόπως. This rare word was subsequently rejected by Diggle, who advocated Schömann’s conjecture εὐπόρως, which had been printed by most earlier editors.[5] Dilts and Murphy reinstate the reading of A2.

What this principle also leads to is a conservative text. Many will applaud this, others may be less enthusiastic, perhaps wondering whether it demonstrates on the part of the editors an ‘excessive trust in the accuracy of copyists’ (p. xiii). In reading the apparatus, I found very few instances of editorial intervention, and these were invariably by Murphy: ‘scripsi’ appears on p. 30 apparatus line 59 (in fact merely a change of spelling), p. 54 app. l. 28 (a change of word order, combining the readings of A and N and a conjecture by Blass), p. 72 l. 272 (a change of breathing in the combination τούτοις αὐτοῖς to αὑτοῖς—a good change) and p. 197 l. 147 (preservation of AQ’s αὐτὸς ἄλλους by the insertion of a comma and addition of δὲ: αὐτός, ἄλλους δὲ—good, though Sauppe had already suggested τοὺς δὲ); ‘posui’ appears on p. 134 l. 491-2 (the addition of brackets after MacDowell, and so not original); ‘delevi’ on p. 187 l. 310 (a deletion of the article ‘auctore Albinio’, and so not original). These are all reasonable suggestions, but scanty for over 200 pages of text. The editors are, indeed, far more concerned with restoring manuscript readings than with making conjectures of their own. In consequence, there are a number of passages where the new text is debatable. To illustrate this I shall give two examples, one from each author. Thus, at Ant. 5.3 Dilts and Murphy print τῶν λέγειν δυναμένων, which is the correction by A2 of τῶν λέγειν (ANa; Nc has τῶι λέγειν) and is also printed in the Teubner.[6] In the apparatus they record two suggestions by Fuhr, to add ἐπισταμένων after τῶν λέγειν or δεινῶν after τῶν. My preference is to follow Jernstedt in adding δυναμένων after τῶν in order to balance the preceding τῶν οὐ δυναμένων in what is stylistically a carefully contrived opening to the speech.[7] For some reason, Jernstedt’s proposal is not mentioned. An example from Andocides comes at 3.30, where Reiske’s εἰ βουλοίμεθα seems to me to fit Andocides’ discussion of a (probably fictitious) proposal of alliance by the Syracusans that was rejected by the Athenians better than the εἰ βουλόμεθα of AQ, which is retained in the OCT.[8]

In the course of this review I have pointed out a number of omissions and errors, but as one would expect of an OCT the volume is generally copy-edited to a high standard. I note, however, the two incorrect spellings of Valckenaer’s name on pp. 155 and 164; ‘Tetralogies’ on p. iv should be italicised as on p. xv.[9]

Anyone who has attempted to prepare a text and critical apparatus knows how much work goes into this task if it is to be done well. Despite the above criticisms, I have no hesitation in stating that, in my opinion, Dilts and Murphy have done an excellent job in bringing us a reliable new text of Antiphon and Andocides, which is worthy of the OCT series.


[1] See R. Hatzilambrou, Isaeus’ On the Estate of Pyrrhus (Oration 3) (Newcastle, 2018), p. 42.

[2] See also Hatzilambrou 44-8. I base this judgment on my own collation of P for my forthcoming OCT of Isaeus.

[3] See W. Wyse, The Speeches of Isaeus (Cambridge, 1904), p. vii.

[4] Again, this judgment is based on my own collation of Q for Isaeus.

[5] See M. J. Edwards and S. Usher, Greek Orators I. Antiphon and Lysias (Warminster, 1985); J. Diggle, ‘Εὐπόρως ἔχειν and Antiphon, De Caede Herodis 76’, ICS 19 (1994), 81-2. The volume number of Diggle’s article is incorrectly given as 14 in the Conspectus Studiorum.

[6] See F. Blass and Th. Thalheim, Antiphon. Orationes et Fragmenta (Leipzig, 1914).

[7] Admittedly as in Edwards and Usher, and cf. M. Gagarin, Antiphon. The Speeches (Cambridge, 1997).

[8] Again I must confess that this was the reading I adopted in M. J. Edwards, Greek Orators IV. Andocides (Warminster, 1995). Dilts and Murphy follow the Teubner of F. Blass and C. Fuhr, Andocidis Orationes (Leipzig, 1913).

[9] I also note what I deem unnecessary commas separating manuscripts on pp. 102 app. l. 175 (A, N1), 105 app. 259 (after the bracket), 108 app. ll. 316 and 326, 192 app. l. 34 (after the bracket), but the editors may not agree. I find the variations in the expression alia alii (e.g. p. 12), alii alia (p. 46), alii aliter (p. 89), aliter alii (p. 119) slightly irritating.