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cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

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cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby pmda » Thu Jul 03, 2014 4:00 pm

In Orberg LLPSI Cap XLII Romulus ita regnum accepit;

Augur ad laevam eius capite velato sedem cepit dextra manu baculum aduncum tenens, quem 'lituum' appellaverunt.

Si 'quem' (pronomen relativum) = baculum nonne 'quod' (neut. acc. sing.) appositum sit.
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby pmda » Thu Jul 03, 2014 4:01 pm

forsitan 'quem' = lituus !
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby Qimmik » Thu Jul 03, 2014 5:42 pm

forsitan 'quem' = lituus

Exactly.
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby mwh » Thu Jul 03, 2014 11:52 pm

Or is baculum here masculine?
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby Qimmik » Fri Jul 04, 2014 12:52 am

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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby mwh » Fri Jul 04, 2014 10:30 pm

Well, which is it, do you think? I’m badly out of practice with Livian Latin, but I can’t say I much like the look of that attraction. I'm not sure why, I must admit. I could readily enough accept qui lituus est (after baculum neut.), and this isn't all that different. I’d still like to see it validated, though, for Livy.

— I’ve just had a look at the TLL baculum entry (which subsumes baculus), which says there are no certain examples of the masc. before 3rd cent. (but lists several uncertain exx. in Ovid). It doesn’t say anything about certain exx. of the neuter, however, and glancing through the citations I actually don’t see any unequivocal neuters except one in Celsus, unless you count the grammarians but even they go mainly—and unexpectedly—for the masculine (Isidore, for one, deriving from Bacchus!). I didn’t look very carefully and I may have missed some. None of the Livy exx. reveal the gender. I’m guessing people assume neuter on account of Gk. baktron. Might be worth investigating?
(So there’s two agenda items for someone: searching for ψωλίζω and cognates, and investigating gender of baculus/um. The latter should be straightforward enough, though there’s disagreement among manuscripts to contend with. Publication in Glotta or elsewhere guaranteed. You will live for ever!)

Incidentally, I see Amazon is offering David Packard's Livy Concordance (yes, that's the David Packard) for the (discounted!) price of $575.70. Whoever would want it, today?
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby Qimmik » Sat Jul 05, 2014 2:30 pm

pmda, your question, cur "quem?", really goes much deeper than you may have thought.

The problem is that baculum/s is an object that rarely if ever acts as an agent and therefore rarely appears in the nominative. (I suspect that this may be why the neuter nominative singular 2d declension ending in both Latin and Greek is identical to the masculine accusative, and why in both language, as well as in Russian, neuter nominative and accusative endings are always identical. There must be something pre-proto-Indo-European in this.)

Both of the instances in Ovid cited as doubtful evidence for baculus look like errors in the manuscript tradition, and the modern editors (the Teubner Fasti of Alton, Wormell and Courtney, and Tarrant's Oxford Metamorphoses) treat the word as neuter.

At Fasti 1.177, the oldest manuscript, which dates from the 10th century and is now preserved in the Vatican Libarary, reads incumbens baculo quod [actually, qd] dextra gerebat ("leaning on a staff, which his right hand held"), against the other manuscripts' baculo quem. The Teubner editors read quod.

Metamorphoses 2.789: baculumque capit quod spinea totum/ uincula cingebant ("and she grabbed a wand which was entirely girded with chains of thorns"--this is Invidia, the personification of Envy). Most of the manuscripts read quem, but again, a 10th century German manuscript in the British Museum reads quod, and an 11th century Italian manuscript now in Florence appears to have read quod before being "corrected" to quem.

Metamorphoses 2.681 is just about conclusive evidence that Ovid treated baculum as neuter. Here, the word does appear in the nominative, and, again, most of the manuscripts, with the exception of the same 11th century Italian manuscript in Florence prior to "correction," read baculus. However, the word is modified by the neuter adjective siluestre, which is guaranteed by the meter, so Ovid must have written baculum. And baculum . . . agreste appears again (in the accusative), with a metrical guarantee, at 15.655.

So it looks like Ovid treated the word as neuter, but it was liable to be mistakenly changed subsequently to masculine in the Ovidian manuscript tradition by scribes who thought it was masculine, after the word itself underwent a change in gender in post-Ovidian times.

(continued)
Last edited by Qimmik on Sun Jul 06, 2014 2:32 am, edited 10 times in total.
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby Qimmik » Sat Jul 05, 2014 2:31 pm

No variant reading quod is recorded in Ogilvie's Oxford text of Livy at 1.18.7 (which Orberg reproduces more or less verbatim), but could the same process--one that we can actually see happening in the text of Ovid--have been at work in Livy's manuscript tradition, i.e., a post-Livian shift from quod to quem?

A quick and dirty search with Perseus didn't come up with any unambiguous instances, i.e., in the nominative singular or nominative or accusative plural or with an unambiguously neuter third-declension adjective in the accusative singular (maybe I should spring for the Packard concordance just to make sure), and in any case Livy's prose doesn't give us metrical guarantees, as Ovid's verse does.

pmda, this illustrates something it's important to keep in mind in reading ancient Latin. Our primary sources for classical texts are manuscripts, which rarely go back beyond the 9th century, and the process of copying and re-copying introduced many errors into the texts. Each text has its own unique history, and some texts are better than others. Vergil and what survives of Livy have been transmitted with a high degree of reliability (relative to, say, Catullus and Propertius and even Ovid) but by no means are their texts completely free from error. For Vergil and part of Livy, manuscripts from late antiquity have actually been preserved, but even these contain clear errors. You have to read ancient texts always bearing in mind the fallibility of the manuscripts on which the texts are based and the possibility that what you are reading may not necessarily be exactly what the author wrote.
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby mwh » Sun Jul 06, 2014 2:22 am

Many thanks Qimmik for looking into this. Ov.Met.15.655 does seem decisive. The Thesaurus Linguae Latinae (TLL) lists 2.681 among its “incerta” Ovidian examples—perhaps on the ground that it could be argued that there silvestre could be modifying not baculum but onus as predicate, with baculus as subject, but that would be a most unnatural construal.

I agree it looks as if neut.>masc. was the direction of development. All the same, it would be very bold to change quem to quod in the Livy passage (I will say nothing of tampering with the text), and of course there’s no reason to even contemplate it if quem is taking its gender from lituum. I’m still ignorantly wondering about Livy’s use of this kind of relative attraction, but I guess it’s acceptable. Certainly it hasn’t led scholars to posit masc. baculus in Livy.

pmda, aren’t you glad you don’t have to fret about this sort of thing yet a while?
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby pmda » Wed Jul 09, 2014 6:53 pm

Many thanks Qimmik and MWH. Much food for thought here. I did feel instinctively that 'quem' was unsatisfactory. It is a relative pronoun and its antecedent seems clearly to be baculum... I shall re-read your posts carefully.

Of course given that one has to train one's mind to carefully to read Latin when one is learning, such attention to detail can be problematic if, as you say, texts aren't always reliable. In Latin it seems that one has to hold many ideas, meanings and approaches in one's head at the same time.
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby thesaurus » Thu Jul 24, 2014 2:27 pm

pmda wrote:Of course given that one has to train one's mind to carefully to read Latin when one is learning, such attention to detail can be problematic if, as you say, texts aren't always reliable.


Or you can do what I do and just shrug your shoulders and keep reading when something like this crops up :) Sometimes too much focus on details can drive me crazy and cause me to loose the thread of my reading.
Horae quidem cedunt et dies et menses et anni, nec praeteritum tempus umquam revertitur nec quid sequatur sciri potest. Quod cuique temporis ad vivendum datur, eo debet esse contentus. --Cicero, De Senectute
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby Qimmik » Thu Jul 24, 2014 3:56 pm

I'm sorry. It's not a good idea for students reading a text designed as a teaching tool to shrug their shoulders and keep on reading when they encounter something they don't understand. In fact, it's really not a good idea under most circumstances, at least not until you've made a concerted attempt to figure out what the text means, because passing over something you can't figure out can lead to serious misunderstandings of what follows. Sometimes it may be unavoidable, but personally I would not recommend this to anyone. It would in fact be better, in an utterly desperate situation, to turn to a translation for guidance, because you might be able to use the translation to unpack the syntax of the text and learn something.

If nothing else, the discussion that ensued from the original question might have reinforced the need to keep in mind the uncertainties of textual transmission when engaging with Latin and Greek texts.
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Re: cur 'quem' sed non 'quod'

Postby thesaurus » Thu Jul 24, 2014 4:26 pm

Qimmik wrote:It's not a good idea for students reading a text designed as a teaching tool to shrug their shoulders and keep on reading when they encounter something they don't understand.


I certainly agree, especially when starting out. When learning the rudiments of a language, we should be attentive to details.

All I'm saying is that sometimes it's fun to delve into details, and other times it can detract from the pleasure of reading Latin. When/where/if this happens to someone depends on the interests and abilities of each person. In my case, I try not to get hung up on a grammatical oddity unless it crops up again or seriously impedes my ability to understand the sentence. Others derive great pleasure from analyzing and researching these points in depth.
Horae quidem cedunt et dies et menses et anni, nec praeteritum tempus umquam revertitur nec quid sequatur sciri potest. Quod cuique temporis ad vivendum datur, eo debet esse contentus. --Cicero, De Senectute
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