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The enigma of Aelia Laelia – solved?

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The enigma of Aelia Laelia – solved?

Postby adrianus » Tue Nov 22, 2011 2:59 am

I read about this unsolved enigma here: http://www.archimedes-lab.org/latin.html. I think I have solved it. Aelia Laelia is a horse or mule with a curly mane whose carcass was burned, and it's not an inscription on a tomb but on a horseblock at the side of the road. (On horseblocks, see here: http://www.textkit.com/greek-latin-forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=15796.) The last six lines below don't belong to the original, I say (after looking at Malvasia), but have been added by a writer from another source.

De Aeliae Laeliae aenigmate non exsoluto legi. Credo me id exsolvisse. Equa mulave comis crispis seu jubâ crispâ, cuius cadaver ustum est. Nec sepulcralis inscriptio sed in suppedaneo equorum insultandorum desultandorum propter viam (de quo aliò epistulam misi). Meâ mente, illi versum sexti terminantes ad pristinam inscriptionem non attinent. Addantur ab alio fonte, id mihi videtur (post opus Malvasiae consultavi).

http://www.archimedes-lab.org/latin.html wrote:The unsolved riddle of Bologna
The Latin enigmatic inscription illustrated below was discovered, in the sixteenth century, upon a Roman tombstone near Bologna. It has obsessed and exercised the wits of many puzzlers for more than four hundred years to find out its meaning. Mario L. Michelangelo published a 410-page pamphlet on it at Venice, in 1548. In 1683, Count Carlo Cesare Malvasia in his work 'Aelia Laelia Crispis non nata resurgens in expositione legali' enumerates 43 attempted solutions of it. It has been thought to denote: rain, the soul, Niobe, Lot's wife, a child promised in marriage that died before its birth, etc. (source 'Bibliotheca Chemica', John Ferguson) Carl Gustav Jung dedicated a full chapter to this enigma in his 'Mysterium Conjunctionis'. The French writer Gerard de Nerval cited the enigma in two tales: 'Pandora' and 'Le Comte de Saint-Germain'. Until now, no univocal solution to this riddle and its puzzling antitheses has been found.

D. M.
AELIA LAELIA CRISPIS
NEC VIR NEC MULIER
NEC ANDROGYNA
NEC PUELLA NEC JUVENIS
NEC ANUS NEC CASTA
NEC MERETRIX NEC PUDICA
SED OMNIA
SUBLATA
NEQUE FAME NEQUE FERRO
NEQUE VENENO
SED OMNIBUS
NEC COELO NEC AQUIS
NEC TERRIS
SED UBIQUE JACET
LUCIUS AGATHO PRISCUS
NEC MARITUS NEC AMATOR
NEC NECESSARIUS
NEQUE MOERENS
NEQUE GAUDENS
NEQUE FLENS
HANC NEQUE MOLEM
NEC PYRAMIDEM
NEC SEPULCHRUM
SCIT ET NESCIT
CUI POSUERIT

HOC EST SEPULCHRUM
INTUS CADAVER NON HABENS
HOC EST CADAVER SEPULCHRUM
EXTRA NON HABENS
SED CADAVER IDEM EST
ET SEPULCHRUM SIBI
I'm writing in Latin hoping for correction, and not because I'm confident in how I express myself. Latinè scribo ut ab omnibus corrigar, non quod confidenter me exprimam.
adrianus
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Re: The enigma of Aelia Laelia – solved?

Postby adrianus » Tue Nov 22, 2011 8:57 pm

http://www.ebooksread.com/authors-eng/francis-bazley-lee/notes-and-queries-volume-yr1871-pt2-dno/page-13-notes-and-queries-volume-yr1871-pt2-dno.shtml wrote:" Hoc est sepulchrum intus cadaver non latens,
Hoc est cadaver sepulchrum extra non habens,
Sed cadaver idem est, et sepulchrum sibi."

These have been published, as the concluding lines of the celebrated Bologna enigma, "D. M. Celia Laelia Crispis," engraved on marble in Senator Volta's country seat near Bologna ; but in fact they are not on the marble at all, but are taken from an old parchment at Milan written in Gothic characters.

The inscription itself will be found in the Royal Magazine, v. 44, in the number for Jan. 1761, with several attempts at solution; one notion being that it meant Pope Joan, who was not a man because she was a woman, and not a woman because he was a pope, &c. But I believe it has never been solved. There is a copy of it, very slightly altered for the purpose in view, at the heading of a pamphlet called Second Thoughts on Legal Discontent (Stevens & Son), where it is assumed as typical of the inscrutability of the English law, but a correct copy can be given if desired. R. H. S.

This seems to me to apply to an object (possibly a box bearing the inscription) made of human bone, as well as to any unburied body.
Hi versus, id mihi videtur, ad rem (forsit cistam cum inscriptione ipsâ) quae osse humano facta est pertinent et ad ullum cadaver insepultum.

A copy of the Bologna stone is shown here. No appended verse! // Simulacrum Aeliae Laeliae saxi hîc demonstratum (sine appendice, nota!): http://aeliamedia.org/?page_id=443
I'm writing in Latin hoping for correction, and not because I'm confident in how I express myself. Latinè scribo ut ab omnibus corrigar, non quod confidenter me exprimam.
adrianus
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Posts: 3270
Joined: Sun Sep 10, 2006 9:45 pm


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