Scholastic Humor

Found on Amazon:

Martial, Buch VI: Ein Kommentar (Hypomnemata)
by Farouk Grewing

Availability: Currently unavailable.

It is in fact still in print in Germany, for only 89 Euros — around $107 — in paperback, and worth every penny. For more information, go here and search on the author’s (I mean the editor’s, not Martial’s) name. German Amazon also lists it, though with very little information except that they can ship it within 1-2 days. I would have thought that the various Amazon sites could share information and avoid misstatements, but apparently not.

What I found humorous is the single review on the U.S. Amazon site:

Amazon 5 stars Just great!, April 25, 2002
Reviewer: Dr. Farouk F. Grewing (Cambridge, MA United States)
I really did an excellent job on this one!

He did, actually, and I use the book often, still grateful that a book dealer in the U.S. was foolish enough to price a used copy in excellent condition at $20 when I would have gladly paid quite a bit more. (Some of my Martial texts, with marginal apparatus criticus, are nearly ready to unveil, though not Book VI.)

Dr. Grewing’s curriculum vitae (on line here) confirms that his middle initial is F. and that he was a visiting lecturer in the Boston area in 2002, so I suspect the review is genuine. One small detail of the c.v. is also slyly humorous. The bullets for list items are all dark green, except for the one marking a review of Hans Peter Obermayer, Martial und der Diskurs über männliche ‘Homosexualität’ in der Literatur der frühen Kaiserzeit, which is pink. I like the portrait, too.

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