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Title: The early textual history of Lucretius' De Rerum Natura
Author: Butterfield, D. J.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2011
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Abstract:
The thesis concerns the manuscript history of Lucretius’ De Rerum Natura between the work’s composition in the mid-first century BC and its rediscovery by Poggio in 1417/18. The thesis develops the arguments proving the descent of the Poggianus from O (s.IX), thereby rendering the Italian manuscripts mere codices descripti, and therefore focuses upon three related ninth century mss O, Q and S (= GVU). The thesis bolsters knowledge about the direct and indirect transmission of Lucretius’ DRN with a view to establishing a more secure basis for the editing and textual criticism of the poem. The first chapter outlines the major details about OQS, attempting to reconstruct their origins and individual histories from being written until arriving in their current locations. Various loose ends regarding the citation of codices and lections in printed editions and (by hand) in the margins of a number of such books, are tidied up. The chapter then treats the relationship of the Italic mss to OQS. The second chapter summaries the utility of the indirect tradition for DRN. On the basis of a complete apparatus fontium for the work (published online), and a survey of all mentions and citations of Lucretius, from the mid-first century BC to the early fifteenth century AD, an evaluation of such witnesses is provided. The capitula interspersed throughout the poem and the indices of them preceding Books IV-VI repay close study. I argue that they originated as marginal jottings from two readers of Antiquity, seemingly intended only for their own benefit. On the basis of a full collation of all corrections in O (totalling over 2,000 items and published online), six later hands are distinguished. Of these, only one (that of the Irishman Dungal) is shown to have used another manuscript as he worked, albeit not always. The modus operandi of each of these various annotators is analysed thoroughly. Some 28 marginal jottings in a Carolingian hand can be found spread throughout Q. Chapter 5 briefly treats their role and surveys the few other notes that entered Q prior to the Renaissance (pre-Q2). A revised reconstruction of the archetype’s foliation is attempted, along with a succinct discussion of scripts of preceding phases of transmission.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.597190  DOI: Not available
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