Bellum Alexandrinum Cynthia Damon, et al. Society for Classical Studies TEI XML encoding: Samuel J. Huskey Programming for automatic generation of TEI XML: Virgina K. Felkner Coauthor of content related to section 2.5: Dallas Simons Coauthor of content related to sections 12.1–2 and 13.5: Tom Vozar Coauthor of content related to section 26.1–2: Marcie Persyn Coauthor of content related to sections 35.3 and 36.4–5: Maria Kovalchuk Coauthor of content related to sections 47.2, 49.1, and 49.2–3: Tim Warnock Coauthor of content related to section 60.2: Isabella Reinhardt Coauthor of content related to sections 63.5 and 66.3–4: Brian Credo Coauthor of content related to sections 67.1 and 68.1: Amelia Bensch-Schaus Coauthor of content related to sections 72.2–3 and 74.4: Wes Hanson First Edition The Digital Latin Library 650 Parrington Oval Carnegie Building 101 Norman OK 73071 USA The University of Oklahoma Norman, OK 2022 Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International Licence (CC BY-SA 4.0) Library of Digital Latin Texts Edited by Samuel J. Huskey 1 Born digital. 12.1–2 Tom Vozar and Cynthia Damon Eo detrimento adeo sunt fracti Alexandrini, cum iam non uirtute propugnatorum, sed scientia classiariorum se uictos uiderent, quibus et superioribus locis subleuabantur, ut ex aedificiis defendi possent et materiam cunctam obicerent, quod nostrae classis oppugnationem etiam ad terram uerebantur. (2) Idem, posteaquam Ganymedes in concilio confirmauit sese et eas quae essent amissae restituturum et numerum adaucturum, magna spe et fiducia ueteres reficere naues accuratiusque huic rei studere atque inseruire instituerunt.“The Alexandrians were so crushed by this defeat, since they now saw themselves conquered not by the courage of the fighters but by the skill of the mariners, for whom both in/from (?) the higher locations they were being supported, so that (?) they could be defended from the buildings and interposed all the wood as a barrier, because they feared an attack by our fleet even on land. (2) The very same people, after Ganymedes assured them in council that he would both restore those (sc. ships) that had been lost and increase their number, began with great hope and confidence to repair the old ships and quite diligently to apply and devote themselves to this matter.” classiariorum USTV et Msupra lineam | nauigatorum M | post et lacunam statuimus, post uiderent Dauisius 1706, post quibus Nipperdey || quibus] a quibus (sc. classiariis) Rhellicanus (cf. Hirt. 8.9.4) | qui (sc. Alexandrini) Cellarius, qui Manutium infra sequitur || ex] uix Manutius (u. 18.1 et cf. BHisp 12.5) | uix ex Dinter (cf. 17.4 et u. infra) || locis] temporibus dubitanter Kübler (cf. BG 7.14.3) || quibus … possent] ut uix ex aedificiis defendi posse se confiderent, quibus et superioribus locis subleuabantur Dinter || 2 confirmauit MUS | firm- TV || et1 MU | ut STV || amissae naues Müller || restituturum MSV | restiturum UT | adaucturum MUS | adac- TV The first sentence of this passage, as transmitted, has a number of glaring problems. The most substantial is the incompatibility of the main clause, which is about a loss of morale (adeo sunt fracti Alexandrini), and the apparent result clause, which is about defensive capability (ut ex aedificiis defendi possent). The antecedent of quibus is another puzzle: does the relative pronoun refer to Roman classiarii, Alexandrians, or something that can function in tandem with locis? And then there is the difficulty of making sense of materiam cunctam in light of the earlier assertion that Alexandrian buildings contained no materia (1.3 ab incendio fere tuta est Alexandria, quod sine contignatione ac materia sunt aedificia et structuris ac fornicibus continentur tectaque sunt rudere aut pauimentis). These problems are interconnected, which complicates the task of seeing and explaining solutions, but the context, especially the subsequent sentence (quoted above), provides something of a framework to use in approaching them. The passage we are concerned with reports the beginning of the aftermath of an unexpected naval defeat suffered by the Alexandrians, who had hoped to catch Caesar in a moment of vulnerability (10.3 magnam sibi facultatem fortunam obtulisse bene gerendae rei crediderunt) but barely avoided losing their entire fleet (11.5 Quod nisi nox proelium diremisset, tota classe hostium Caesar potitus esset). In the sentence immediately before our passage they return to Alexandria terrified (11.6 perterritis). The immediately following sentence, introduced with an emphatic idem, shows the resilience of their military commander, Ganymedes (see 4.2), and the revival of hope and confidence in the Alexandrians themselves. Details follow in 12.3–13.4. This is the context into which our problematic sentence needs to fit. It will be helpful to begin by reviewing the (relatively) secure ground in our sentence. As was mentioned above, it begins with the Alexandrian loss of morale (adeo sunt fracti Alexandrini). It ends with a causal clause concerning their fears about a possible fleet-based attack on the city (quod nostrae classis oppugnationem etiam ad terram uerebantur). Verebantur might be a restatement of fracti, but it might also show that the Alexandrians have overcome their panic and started taking sensible precautions. In the latter scenario, our sentence mirrors the turnaround reported in 12.2. In the former scenario, our sentence stands in contrast to 12.2. The emphatic idem is compatible with either scenario (parallel: BG 6.13.5, BAfr 22.2, 28.2; contrasting: BAlex 18.3). According to the cum-clause, the morale problem was particularly acute because the Alexandrians had been defeated in the arena where they felt most confident, the sea, and now needed to defend themselves on land, a situation that seems to underlie both aedificiis defendi possent and materiam … obicerent. Early editors left the spot alone, presumably taking the antecedent for quibus to be uirtus and scientia and quibus itself as an instrumental ablative parallel to locis (cf. BG 1.40.6 quos … usus ac disciplina … subleuarent). The lack of materia in Alexandria is perhaps made less worrisome by a later passage about roof beams (13.2 Porticus gymnasia publica aedificia detegebant, asseres remorum usum obtinebant) that encourages taking 1.3 sine contignatione ac materia as a hendiadys, “without wooden decking.” But the larger sense problem eventually attracted attention and a variety of approaches. Manutius proposed a simple solution to the aforementioned incompatibility, replacing ex with the negation uix: the Alexandrians are so dispirited by the naval disaster that they can scarcely feel secure in the city itself. It is easy enough to supposed that uix was misread as ex before aedificiis, and a similar scene plays out later on Pharos Island with an explicit reference to the situation in Alexandria: 18.1 Neque uero diutius ea munitione se continere potuerunt etsi erat non dissimile atque Alexandriae genus aedificiorum, ut minora maioribus conferantur, turresque editae et coniunctae muri locum obtinebant. But neither Manutius’ repair, nor Dinter's subsequent suggestion that uix fell out before ex, sits at all well with cunctam. And yet the two subjunctive expressions seem to be aligned in content as well as form. Rhellicanus took a completely different approach, supplying (or understanding) a before quibus and specifying that the antecedent is classiariorum.Rhellicanus’ note as quoted by Jungermann is not clear on this point, but it does not seem possible to take quibus (without a) as a separation ablative in context; Cellarius’ paraphrase of Rhellicanus includes the preposition. Quibus is construed as an instrumental ablative parallel to superioribus locis by Glandorp, taking the antecedent to be classiarii sui, but the Alexandrian sailors are never called classiarii. The idea is that the Alexandrians’ elevated positions provided them with assistance against attackers coming from the Roman fleet. Incertus does use the preposition ab in this sense (78.2 prouincias … a barbaris atque inimicis regibus … muniuit, cf. 61.3 ab oppugnatione tutus), and similar usages can be found elsewhere in the corpus (cf. esp. Hirt. 8.9.4 ut ab hostibus duplici fossa, duplici propugnatorum ordine defenderentur), but nowhere with a verb like subleuabantur, with which a quibus would be much more likely to be construed as a personal agent (cf. BG 1.16.6 grauiter eos accusat quod … ab iis non subleuetur). With this repair the point of et is also hard to fathom. Davies postulated a lacuna in the text before quibus. But therafter he rather throws up his hands, “cum de locis tam mutilis nihil certo possit definiri.” Nipperdey placed the lacuna after quibus, a position preferred by subsequent editors since it allows one to avoid specifying the identity of the antecedent: it could be the Romans or the Alexandrians, or for that matter uirtus and scientia. Both lacunas leave a space in which the meaning of materia cuncta might have been made clear. But we will argue below that the expression locis subleuabantur is problematic. First, however, another approach. Dinter rewrote the passage: adeo sunt fracti Alexandrini … ut uix ex aedificiis defendi posse se confiderent, quibus et superioribus locis subleuabantur, et materiam cunctam obicerent, quod nostrae classis oppugnationem etiam ad terram uerebantur. The Alexandrians were so shattered … that they scarcely trusted that it was possible for themselves to be defended from the buildings, from which, as well as from their higher positions, they used to derive support, and interposed all the wood as a barrier, because they feared an attack by our fleet even on land. The core of this repair is a transposition, but it also involves adding uix before ex (as was mentioned above) and emending possent to posse se confiderent.Many will share Larsen’s reaction (1886, 6): “hac tanta licentia locum sanari non posse, omnes statim intellegent.” Further changes are proposed by Fleischer 1879, 860. It also requires that the negation be taken with only the first of two parallel verbs, with confiderent but not obicerent. In other words, the syntax is difficult, the necessary sequence of innovations is implausibly complicated, and the mystery of materia cuncta is revived. Kübler shed welcome light on the problem of locis by suggesting that it be emended to temporibus, presumably by analogy with BG 7.14.3 quod anni tempore subleuentur. He printed locis here but temporibus at a later problem spot also involving locis.At 72.2 Kübler prints detrimentum … superioribus acceptum temporibus for the transmitted detrimentum … superioribus locis atque itineribus. For discussion see his note in Philologus 55 (1896) 154–55. The argument for temporibus here is admittedly weaker since he also accepted Nipperdey’s lacuna, which makes it hard to see what temporibus might refer to. But locis does deserve scrutiny. One necessary step in wringing sense from the transmitted text is deciding whether subleuabatur is to be taken literally (“raised up”) or metaphorically (“assisted”), and how locis is to be construed with it. The verb is accompanied by simple ablatives in both its literal (BG 1.48.7 iubis equorum subleuati) and metaphorical senses (e.g., re … frumentaria, industria, anni tempore, opibus). But there are no good parallels for locis with either sense of subleuari. The expression superioribus locis might suggest that literal lifting is appropriate here but the imperfect tense is against it.Unless the subject of subleuabantur is something like asseres (cf. 13.2) and the lost text shows that the imperfect has a sense other than “used to be.” This would clarify materiam cunctam nicely. The sense of being assisted or even supplied from a place is paralleled in the Bellum Africum (41.2 oppidum … unde aquari reliquisque rebus subleuari eius exercitus consuerat; cf. BAlex 43.1 neque prouinciae facultatibus subleuabatur), and the sense of mounting a defense from an elevated place in the Bellum Hispaniense (12.5 oppidani superiore loco defendebantur, 31.1 aduersarii loco superiore se defendebant) but the constructions are different.The possibility of fighting against Caesar’s boats from Alexandria’s elevated locations and buildings was in fact mentioned earlier, in Caesar’s contio: 8.5–6 Magnam autem moram et difficultatem ascensum in naues habere praesertim ex scaphis. Summam esse contra in Alexandrinis uelocitatem locorumque et aedificiorum notitiam. Hos … loca excelsiora atque aedificia occupaturos. Ita fuga nauibusque nostros prohibituros. But this passage provides no help for the construction of our passage. It therefore seems unlikely that the ablative is instrumental in our passage. As a local ablative locis superioribus appears in the corpus both with and without the preposition in. It might also be part of an ablative absolute (cf. BG 1.23.3 superioribus locis occupatis, Hirt. 8.13.3 amissis superioribus locis, 8.36.3 relictis locis superioribus) or a separation ablative (e.g., BG 4.23.3 ut ex locis superioribus in litus telum adigi posset; cf. BAlex 17.4 ex tectis aedificiorum propugnabant). These three constructions either require or are compatible with a lacuna after et. This leaves us with a relative clause beginning quibus et. It probably contained either a laudatory description of the Roman classiarii (26.1 et uoluntate et … diligentia, 26.2 et … magnitudine … et perseuerantia, 31.1 et animi magnitudine et … scientia, 41.1 et uictor et … rex, 43.4 et fortuna … et uirtus) or an assessment of the Alexandrians’ plight (15.4 et dedecori et dolori, 43.4 et infelicitas … et … mors). The et … et construction, which Incertus uses liberally (18x), would fit either scenario. The rest of the material lost in the lacuna would perhaps describe how despite the defeat the Alexandrians began to contemplate a land-based defense as a preliminary to the revival of their naval hopes once Ganymedes promised assistance (12.2).Andrieu (1954, 12 n. 2) asserts that the missing text “avait sans doute quelque étendue,” perhaps describing the organization of the Eunostos harbor and the fortifications. For other reconstructions of what has been lost see Larsen (1886, 6–7). At a minimum we need an explanation of the mysterious materia cuncta.