Category Archives: Curculio

Plain and Simple: Marcus Argentarius IV G-P (A.P. 5.89)

(Note: I hope someone will let me know if the Greek comes out wrong, and if so what browser and operating system were in use. On my screen, it looks fine except that acute accents not combined with breathings are … Continue reading

Posted in Curculio: Greek, Greek Epigram | Tagged | 2 Comments

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Chicken (Pliny, Ep. 7.21)

(Note: a general bibliography for this and my other Pliniana will soon be uploaded and linked, and this note removed.)     Pliny’s Epistle 7.21 seems trivial at first. It is short enough to quote in full:(1) C. Plinius Cornuto suo s. … Continue reading

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“We’ve Made It Legal, but We Can’t Make It Right” (Martial 5.75)

    Any problems in this little poem are exegetical – there are no significant variants: Quae legis causa nupsit tibi Laelia, Quinte,     uxorem potes hanc dicere legitimam. As a punch-line, the pentameter, particularly the last word, seems rather flat. I suspect … Continue reading

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A Different Kind of Astronomical Conjunction (Pliny, Ep. 1.3.1)

    Pliny opens the third letter of his collection, to Caninius Rufus, with a series of questions about the latter’s luxurious villa in Comum – I mark the clauses I am most interested in (1.3.1):(1) Quid agit Comum, tuae meaeque deliciae? … Continue reading

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Female Turpitude Meets Male Torpitude (Catullus 11.18)

    Daniél Kiss’s Catullus Online: An Online Repertory of Conjectures on Catullus is a wonderful resource, which I have found complete and accurate in whatever I have checked, but rather depressing viewed at length. Only six of the sixty-eight lines in … Continue reading

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“I’ll put her to her pension”: A Mad World, My Masters I.ii.66

One of the more difficult passages in Middleton’s play is the soliloquy of Harebrain (aka Shortrod) as the “pure virgin” (actually a courtesan) fetches his wife (I.ii.62-69): This is the course I take; I’ll teach the married man A new … Continue reading

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A Dumb Question about Animals (Pliny, Ep. 1.20.5)

    In the course of a long discussion of rhetoric addressed to Tacitus, Pliny argues that size matters in judging orations, with an extended analogy from living creatures (Epistulae 1.20.4-5):(1) Et hercule ut aliae bonae res ita bonus liber melior est … Continue reading

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Curculio 6: Two Adjectives in Seneca’s Agamemnon

How’s that for a boring title? As a continuation of my experiment with publishing original scholarship on this site, I have just uploaded an eight-page PDF containing two conjectures on the text of Seneca’s Agamemnon, titled as above (link). (I … Continue reading

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Curculio 5: Worst. Endearment. Ever.

Peter Davidson’s Poetry and Revolution: An Anthology of British and Irish Verse 1625-1660 (Oxford, 1998) includes a rather dull love-poem (number 36) by “T.C.”, most likely Thomas Cary, “Gentleman of the Bedchamber to Charles I” (516). The untitled poetic dialogue … Continue reading

Posted in Curculio: English, English Literature, Etymology, Orbilius | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Curculio 4: A Sly Joke in The Alchemist?

Kastril or Kestrel, the ‘angry boy’ of Ben Jonson’s Alchemist, calls his sister his ‘suster’ and says ‘kuss’ for ‘kiss’.1 It is not clear whether this is meant to represent a particular regional dialect, a generalized country accent, or his … Continue reading

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Curculio 3: “Some say the world will end in fire, some say in ice . . .”

. . . and there are definitely worse possibilities. When one language adopts words from another, it sometimes happens that standard spelling changes create a new pair of homonyms, making two words that were quite different in the source language … Continue reading

Posted in Curculio: Misc, Etymology, Spanish | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Curculio 2: ‘Pervert the Present Wrath’: a Conjecture on Cymbeline

I am experimenting with publishing original scholarly notes on this site. My first attempt, a week ago, was a single page on the structure of Silius Italicus’ Punica. I have just uploaded a PDF file of my second paper, two … Continue reading

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Curculio 1: Silius Italicus: Why Seventeen Books?

The unusual length of Silius Italicus’ Punica has often caused puzzlement. Antony Augoustakis discusses the point in the first chapter of the recent Brill companion to Silius. He credits Michael von Albrecht with noting that the number of books “corresponds … Continue reading

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