Thebaid (late 15th century manuscript)

Statius, Thebaid
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Late 15th-century upright humanistic bookhand; paper; 168 folios (i + 102 + 4 + 812 + ii); 2nd folio incipit Turbidus hipomedon
24 lines per page; line-initial capitals written by the main scribe, slightly separated from the main text.

Little abbreviation at first, save for regular q; (but see quidem at 1.474 on f.10v); abbreviation bar occasionally used above nr (= noster), comittere (= committere), etc., and this increases later in the codex. Accents have regularly been added to help distinguish i; sometimes wrongly, as in nimis, later corrected to minis at 1.469 (f. 10v).

Inked initial only to book 1 (not matching space left); no title for book 1 or in interstices (of 3 verses) left before later books.

Some neat corrections of errors, e.g. at 1.459 (f. 10v) etiam has the added iam expunged; on the same page, in 1.462, es his has been written, apparently by the first hand, after the obliteration of a longer sequence of letters, and a supralineal si added (in the wrong place) by a later hand). 2.662-3 omitted, and then added in the lower margin, apparently by first hand (f. 25v).

Variants on early openings are added in the same hand as line numbers, marked as late 19th-century or later by the reference to Baehrens (f. 1r).

Only an occasional good reading stands against the bulk of the tradition, e.g. at 9.581 numquam for nusquam (with the oldest MS P): f. 140r. Three verses are omitted at 6.51-3, which P also omits, with a note deficiunt tres; then 6.81 has just purpureos, and 6.179-80 simply the line-initials A and H, before resuming at 185.

Text kindly provided, especially for this exhibition, by Stephen Heyworth