Critical editions of most classical authors are based on readings transmitted by medieval scholars that can be examined and collated. Modern editions of Petronius, on the other hand, are principally based on printed editions, most of them published in France during the sixteenth century. In this volume T. Wade Richardson considers the use made of the Petronius manuscripts then extant by seven French humanist editors for their various editions, commentaries, and notes.
Some of the manuscripts they used may be equated with extant exemplars, which therefore serve as a good check on the quality of their readings. But as much as half of the text rests on the sixteenth-century witness alone. Through a broad and integrated study of the problems of the Petronius text the author attempts to unravel the tangled skein of humanist work on Petronius, to settle some of the old textual puzzles, and to solidify the text and recast the apparatus.
Richardson also provides information on the codicology and palaeography of the texts and on the talents and habits of the scholars who created them.
About the author
T. Wade Richardson is a member of the Department of Classics, McGill University.