« PreviousContinue »
Drawn & Engby
G H Swanston
Edinburgh W. & R. Chambers
The text of this edition of the first, second, twenty-first, and twenty-second books of Livy is founded on Immanuel Bekker's
Recension' (Berlin. 1829.3 vols. 8vo.); and in every case of importance where a reading different from his is given, both the variation and the reasons for it are stated in the notes. Bekker's text is founded generally, and particularly in these books, not on recently-discovered or newly-used manuscripts, but on the materials afforded by the great edition of Arn. Drakenborch (Amsterdam and Leyden, 1738-46. 7.vols. 4to.), which contains a digest of the labours of all preceding editors ; and was reprinted at Stuttgard (1820-28. 15 vols. 8vo.), enriched in the last two decades with new readings from manuscripts. Since the publication of Bekker's • Recension, new and important materials, especially in these books, have been brought to light by Mr Alschefski in his critical edition of Livy (vol. i. containing books i.-v. Berlin, 1841 ; vol. ii., books vi.—x. 1843; vol. iii., books xxi.- xxiii. 1846). Mr Alschefski for the first decade has compared anew the celebrated “Codex Mediceus,' and has found many things which had been previously overlooked. He has also consulted the Codex Parisinus, No. 5725 of the Paris Library; and for the third decade, compared with greater care than was ever done before, the oldest manuscript of Livy in Paris -- namely, the Codex Puteanus,' another Codex Parisinus, No. 5731, and another • Mediceus.' By this praiseworthy diligence the reading in many passages has been corrected, and it is not without sincere sorrow that we nevertheless have felt ourselves obliged to differ in opinion from Mr Alschefski still more frequently than from Bekker; but the truth is, that from his over-fidelity to the manuscripts, and at the same time his eagerness to alter readings, he has made the text of Livy incorrect, and frequently unintelligible. We have, according to our best judgment, kept a middle course between over-innovation and over-adherence to present readings ; and confidently believe that the text now presented is very much more accurate than that in common use.
Our notes are intended to explain the difficulties of the language, which present themselves not only to the beginner, but