Non pretereundum/pretereudam censui, sed deorum numero annotandam

Marziano's Tractatus again.

8745preterevdam.jpg


8745preterevndvm.jpg


One or both of these texts is corrupt, clearly praetereudam is not a word, but praetereundum is not clearly correct.

My colleague suggested the following emendation -

Non preter eundum censui, sed deorum numero annotandam undecimam Vestam virginem et singulari quadam veneratione excipiendam quamquam modestissima virgo visa sit, humanarum laudum nihil exposcere.

I did not think to proceed further without adding Vesta the virgin at the 11th place of the gods. Although the most modest virgin seemed to require nothing of human praise, she is one who should be excepted for unique veneration.


Is the emendation plausible, or can someone suggest a better understanding of praetereundum?
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Praetereundam is a word, and it's the better reading. It's a gerundive of praetereo, "pass over (in silence)", "omit", agreeing in the singular feminine accusative with Vestam virginem.

The meaning is, fairly literally, "I thought that Vesta the virgin should not be omitted, but that she should be added as the eleventh in the number of the gods and received with a certain unique veneration, although the most modest virgin did not seem to require any human praise."
 
Praetereundam is a word, and it's the better reading. It's a gerundive of praetereo, "pass over (in silence)", "omit", agreeing in the singular feminine accusative with Vestam virginem.

The meaning is, fairly literally, "I thought that Vesta the virgin should not be omitted, but that she should be added as the eleventh in the number of the gods and received with a certain unique veneration, although the most modest virgin did not seem to require any human praise."

Thanks!

We really were unsure if we were missing some way to interpret the masculine/neuter praetereundum, although either way there is an emendation to be made.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
The neuter could make sense as "I thought that it should not be omitted, but that Vesta the Virgin should be added..." but it reads more naturally with praetereundam in agreement with Vestam.
 
The neuter could make sense as "I thought that it should not be omitted, but that Vesta the Virgin should be added..." but it reads more naturally with praetereundam in agreement with Vestam.

Yes, it is just a matter of deciding which mistake was more likely - or if praetereundum was a mistake at all. This is where familiarity with the better natural flow comes in handy, as you have shown.

You may be interested in another aspect of this chapter about Vesta. Actually, two aspects.

De Vesta virgine.


Non pretereundam censui, sed deorum numero annotandam undecimam Vestam virginem et singulari quadam veneratione excipiendam quamquam modestissima virgo visa sit, humanarum laudum nihil exposcere. Ea deorum sacris, contemplativisque cogitationibus semper intenta, religionem virginibus religionisque professionem prima instituit, quo non amplius professis liceat ad mundana converti . Haec clara et vera oratione temporalia quaeque momentanea et caduca monstravit, neque in his quicquam optabile, firmumque consistere. Ob hoc ea nihilo existimanda suadebat et oportere mentem ad meliora dirigere maximaeque dementiae humanum arguebat genus, quod haec terrena, tanta solertia, tantoque studio prosequeretur totiens fallaci et vacua spe frustratum atque delusum. Mundi huius aiebat fugiendas illecebras, tanquam magna impedimenta virtutum. Demum infima haec caelestibus comparata vilescere et multis amaritudinibus involuta, hic non nisi, langores, metus, labores assiduos, et mortem instare. deorum vero contemplantibus, spem bonam fore guadium, quietem, et sempiternam his superesse vitam. Virgines suas deinde monuit, diis assidue gratias agere, quod ab eis plurima bona acceperant, seque plurimum accepturas sperarent, si perseveranter et non ficta devotione persisterent. Ipsa ante aras ad deorum venerationem perpetuos prima ignes consacravit, et ab ea virgines vestales dictae sunt, maxima apud romanos reverentia habitae, habitu honestissimo sanctimonialium more et ad aram ante immortales astat atque praecatur deos.

The first is that, as far as I can find, Marziano's Vesta is unique in mythography. That is, he is the only author who euhemerizes her - she become the founder of female monasticism, the Vestal Virgins. No other source, ancient or medieval, gives such an account of Vesta or the foundation of the Vestals.

The second aspect is more interesting - the bold part of the text above is matched in a hagiography of the 12th century saint Gaucherius of Aureil (April 9 in the Bollandist Acta Sanctorum). His earliest Vita is from around 1200, but the passage is lacking. It appears in a manuscript coming from Paris in the early 17th century, and in printed works thereafter. The printed works say their version is "Ex antiquo codice MS. Ecclesiae Lemovicensis", "Ex Cartulario sancti Stephani Lemovicensis," and "ex MS. Legendario Lemovicensi." The Paris manuscript (online at Gallica) is not old, and is neither a cartulary nor a legendary.

Here is the matching passage, adapted to his story (anonymous Vita Beati Gaucherii, edition of Philippe Labbe, Novae bibliothecae manuscriptorum librorum, Paris, 1657, pp. 561-562 = "De Sancto Gaucherio", Acta Sanctorum, 9 April (Aprilis I, ed. 1675 p. 852; ed. 1865 p. 841)). -

Quo in loco sacris contemplationibus et cogitationibus semper intentus, religionem religionisque professionem prius instituit. Hic clara et vera oratione temporalia quaeque momentanea et caduca monstravit, neque in his quidquam optabile firmumque consistere : maximaeque temeritatis humanum arguebat genus, quod haec terrena tanta solertia, tantoque studio prosequeretur, toties fallaci et vacua spe frustratum atque delusum. Mundi huius aiebat fugiendas illecebras, tamquam magna impediementa virtutum. Demum infima haec caelestibus comparata vilescere, et multis amaritudinibus involuta, aiebat. Hic non nisi languores, labores assiduos, et mortem instare : Deum vero contemplantibus spem bonam sive gaudium quietum, et sempiternam his superesse vitam.

What accounts for this? Did Marziano and Gaucherius' hagiographer borrow from a common source, or did one borrow from the other? Given that Marziano's is two full centuries earlier than any attestation (so far) for the version in the Gaucherius Vita (early 15th century versus early 17th century), that Marziano never left northern Italy, that there seems to be no connection between Aureil and Marziano, and that Marziano's text is attested in several copies and was already in Paris, it seems more likely, however bizarre, that someone adapted the passage from Vesta to Gaucherius.

Either that, or they both adapted from a common source, which we have not yet found. I have shown this interesting puzzle to an editor of the Analecta Bollandiana, who is as stumped as I am about it.
 
Here are the two versions of the Vita of Gaucherius, the 12th century version edited in 1964, and the Labbe/Bollandist version edited in 1657 and 1675 respectively. "BHL 3271/3272" refers to the Bollandist Biblioteca Hagiographia Latina number.

Perhaps you can detect something from the rearrangement of the sentence preceding the passage in question in the 12th century versus 17th century versions, i.e.

12th century "Ibique cum socio per triennium commorans, heremiticam uitam duxit, quauquam hominibus parum notus, Deo tamen non ignotus."
17th century "ibique quamquam hominibus parum notus,Deo tamen non ignotus cum socio per triennium commorans, eremiticam vitam duxit." (followed by our passage)

Does it prepare for an interpolation somehow?

I have bolded significant differences between the two versions.

Jean Becquet, « La vie de saint Gaucher », p. 48 [24] (BHL 3271)

Cum autem iam esset fere annorum X et VIII et pertimesceret contaminari de hiis que succrescunt humano generi, secutus sui magistri umberti monitum, sciens et ipse a Domino esse predictum : « Omnis qui reliquerit domum, uel fratres, aut sorores, aut patrem etc.. propter me, centuplum accipiet et uitam eternam possidebit ». Ideo athleta Dei hac promissione suffultus, loricam fidei indutus patriam uiduaturus [f° 81 v°], reliquit patrem et matrem et pios parentes et dulcem patriam, et sociato sibi Germundo uenerabili uiro, eius futuro canonico, sed tunc temporis sui secreti ignaro, qui sequeus doctorem supradictum, uenit in partes aquitanie causa discendi scientiam artis grammatice, cum illo ergo Dei prouidentia uenit in hac prouincia (sic) et hospitatus est in Sancti Leonardi uillam (sic), cuius maximam miraculorum audierat famam. Pernoctauit igitur nocte illa ante sepulchrum beati uiri cuius conuersationem et uitam obtabat imitari, flagitans ab eo humillimis precibus ut apud Dominum obtineret sui desiderii effectum. Insurgente uero diluculo cum sacra missarum solempnia celebrarentur, accepta licentia a beato uiro, cum compatriota suo ceptum iter tetendit, et circum circa girans nemora, ad locum cui est uocabulum Chauanacum tandem Dei ductu peruenit, cuius aspiratione per tot et tanta means locorum spacia, huc gressum diuertit, implens illud prophete : « Ecce elongaui fugiens et mansi in solitudine » Ibique cum socio per triennium commorans, heremiticam uitam duxit, quauquam hominibus parum notus, Deo tamen non ignotus.

Philippe Labbe, Novae bibliothecae manuscriptorum librorum, pp. 561-562 (BHL 3272)

Cum autem iam esset natas fere decem et octo, et pertimesceret contaminari de hiis que succrescunt humano generi, secutus sui Magistri Humberti monita, sciens et ipse a Domino esse praedictum, Omnis qui reliquerit domum, vel fratres, aut sorores, aut patrem propter me centuplum accipiet et vitam eternam possidebit : ideo athleta Dei hac promissione suffultus, loricam fidei indutus patriam viduaturus reliquii patrem et matrem et pios parentes et dulcem patriam, et sociato sibi Germundo venerabili uiro, eius futuro Canonico, sed tunc temporis sui secreti ignaro, sequeus doctorem supradictum, venit in partes Aquitaniae. Cum illo ergo Dei providentia venit in hanc provinciam, et hospitatus est in Leonardi villa, cuius maximam miraculorum audieravat famam. Pernoctavit illa nocte ante sepulchrum beati viri cuius conuersationem et vitam obtabat imitari, flagitans ab eo humillimis precibus ut apud Deum obtineret sui desiderii effectum. Insurgente vero diluculo cum sacra Missarum solemnia celebrarentur, accepta licentia ab eo viro, compatriota suo coeptum iter tetendit, et circum circa gyrans nemora, ad locum cui vocabulum Chavaniacum tandem Dei ductu pervenit, cuius aspiratione per tot et tanta means locorum spatia, hic gressum direxit, implens illud prophetae de se: Elongavi fugiens et mansi in solitudine : ibique quamquam hominibus parum notus, Deo tamen non ignotus cum socio per triennium commorans, eremiticam vitam duxit. Quo in loco sacris contemplationibus et cogitationibus semper intentus, religionem religionisque professionem prius instituit. Hic clara et vera oratione temporalia quaeque momentanea et caduca monstravit, neque in his quidquam optabile firmumque consistere : maximaeque temeritatis humanum arguebat genus, quod haec terrena tanta solertia, tantoque studio prosequeretur, toties fallaci et vacua spe frustratum atque delusum. Mundi huius aiebat fugiendas illecebras, tamquam magna impediementa virtutum. Demum infima haec caelestibus comparata vilescere, et multis amaritudinibus involuta, aiebat. Hic non nisi languores, labores assiduos, et mortem instare : Deum vero contemplantibus spem bonam sive gaudium quietum, et sempiternam his superesse vitam.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Yes, it is just a matter of deciding which mistake was more likely - or if praetereundum was a mistake at all.
Praetereundum sounds like a mistake, though it can make grammatical sense if you stretch things a bit. Praetereundam is the right reading, I'm almost sure, as it makes for both grammatically correct and natural Latin.
The printed works say their version is "Ex antiquo codice MS. Ecclesiae Lemovicensis", "Ex Cartulario sancti Stephani Lemovicensis," and "ex MS. Legendario Lemovicensi." The Paris manuscript (online at Gallica) is not old, and not a cartulary nor a legendary.
Was the Paris manuscript ever kept at Limoges?
What accounts for this? Did Marziano and Gaucherius' hagiographer borrow from a common source, or did one borrow from the other? Given that Marziano's is two full centuries earlier than any attestation (so far) for the version in the Gaucherius Vita (early 15th century versus early 17th century), that Marziano never left northern Italy, that there seems to be no connection between Aureil and Marziano, and that Marziano's text is attested in several copies and was already in Paris, it seems more likely, however bizarre, that someone adapted the passage from Vesta to Gaucherius.

Either that, or they both adapted from a common source, which we have not yet found. I have shown this interesting puzzle to an editor of the Analecta Bollandiana, who is as stumped as I am about it.
It's an intriguing mystery.
 
Was the Paris manuscript ever kept at Limoges?
It's an intriguing mystery.
There is no reason to think so. The manuscript lat. 14366 is a fairly heterogenous collection made by Jean Picard, a monk at the Abbey of Saint Victor in Paris. See "vue 172" (f. 167ff) here -
https://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/btv1b9066718x/f1.planchecontact

The passage is at f. 167v, starting at the sixth line of this screen-capture "Quo in loco sacris". I find the writing difficult to get used to.

14366bnfgaucher.jpg
 
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