Classical Quarterly 20 (02):365- (1970)

The purpose of this paper is twofold: to comment on certain remarks of E. Koestermann, and to examine briefly some passages adduced by K. Wellesley as evidence for the alleged independence of the Leidensis . In a paper in CQ N.S. XV , 299–322, I attempted to demonstrate by various arguments that the readings of L are not such as to support the claim that this manuscript has authority independent of M. Those arguments may be summarized as follows: that the majority of L's readings fall into a pattern of systematic normalization, that they give virtually no help in solving really deep corruptions, that L is particularly unreliable in transmitting proper names, that many readings of L show clear signs of being derived from M, that few of the good readings in L could not have been extracted from the corrupt text of M, and that other fifteenth-century manuscripts of Tacitus contain good corrections, not inferior to corrections found in L. No defender of L has yet, as far as I know, answered the arguments I put forward, and E. Koestermann has not even understood them, for he writes as follows : ‘[Goodyear] legt den Finger darauf, daß die abweichenden Lesarten in L in ihrer Diktion stärker ciceronischen Charakter tragen, demnach eher als Konjekturen zu verstehen seien. Aber dies Argument ist nicht durchschlagend, da die späteren Annalenbücher … eine gemässigtere Tendenz aufweisen und damit näher an Cicero heranrücken.’
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DOI 10.1017/S0009838800036363
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