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Manuscripts. Editions and Commentaries.

In this play, as in the others, the editor has used the Autotype
The Laurentian MS (L).
Facsimile of L (published by the London Hellenic Society in 1885); and, with its aid, has endeavoured to render the report of that manuscript as complete and exact as possible. In some instances, where discrepancies existed between previous collations, the facsimile has served to resolve the doubt; in a few other cases, it has availed to correct errors which had obtained general currency: the critical notes on 311, 375, 770, 1098, 1280 will supply examples.

The MSS., besides L, to which reference is made, are:—A (13th

Other MSS.
cent.), E (ascribed to 13th cent., but perhaps of the 14th), T (15th cent.), V (late 13th or early 14th), V2 (probably 14th), with the following 14th century MSS.,—V3, V4, Vat., Vat.b, L2, R. Some account of these has been given in the Introduction to the Oedipus Tyrannus; cp. also the Introd. to the Oed. Col. p. xlix. A few references are also made to an Augsburg MS. (Aug. b, 14th cent.), to Dresd. a (cod. 183, 14th cent.), and to M4 (Milan, Ambrosian Library, cod. C. 24 sup., 15th cent.). The symbol ‘r’ is occasionally used in the critical notes to denote ‘one or more of the MSS. other than L’. The advantages of such a symbol are twofold: (1) the note can often be made shorter and simpler; (2) the paramount importance of L is thus more clearly marked, and, so far, the relative values of the documents are presented to the reader in a truer perspective. But this symbol has been employed only in those cases where no reason existed for a more particular statement.

The Antigone furnishes three instances in which the older scholia
Readings due to the Scholia.
do what they rarely do for the text of Sophocles,—give a certain clue to a true reading which all the MSS. have lost. One is “'φάπτουσα” in v. 40; another, “φονώσαισιν” in v. 117; the third, “δεδραγμένος” in v. 235.

Points bearing on the relation of L to the other MSS.
this play presents some points of curious interest in regard to the much-discussed question whether L is the source from which all other known MSS. of Sophocles have been derived.

(1) There are two places in which an apparently true reading has been preserved by some of the later MSS., while L has an apparently false one. The first example is in v. 386, where L has “εἰς μέσον”, while A and others have “εἰς δέον”. Some editors, indeed, prefer “εἰς μέσον”: but A's reading seems far preferable (see comment.). The other example is clearer. In v. 831 L has “τάκει”, a manifest error, occasioned by “τακομέναν” shortly before. The true reading, “τέγγει”, is in A and other of the MSS. later than L.

(2) Verse 1167, “ζῆν τοῦτον, ἀλλ᾽ ἔμψυχον ἡγοῦμαι νεκρόν”, is in none of the MSS. It is supplied by Athenaeus 7. 280 C, who quotes vv. 1165-1171. The earliest printed edition which contains it is that of Turnebus (Paris, 1553 A.D.). Now Eustathius (p. 957. 17) quotes v. 1165 (partly) and v. 1166,—remarking that, after v. 1166, ‘the careful copies’ (“τὰ ἀκριβῆ ἀντίγραφα”) give the verse “ζῆν τοῦτον, ἀλλ᾽ ἔμψυχον ἡγοῦμαι νεκρόν”. Eustathius wrote in the second half of the 12th century: L was written in the first half of the eleventh century. It would be a very forced explanation to suppose that Eustathius, in speaking of “τὰ ἀκριβῆ ἀντίγραφα”, meant those MSS. of Sophocles on which Athenaeus, some 1000 years before, had relied for his quotation; or, again, those MSS. of Athenaeus in which Eustathius found it. According to the natural (or rather, the necessary) sense of the words, Eustathius is referring to MSS. of Sophocles extant in his own time. But did his memory deceive him, leading him to ascribe to MSS. of Sophocles what he had seen in Athenaeus? This, again, would be a very bold assumption. His statement has a prima facie claim to acceptance in its plain sense. And if his statement is accepted, it follows that, when L was written (in the first half of the eleventh century), two classes of MSS. of Sophocles could be distinguished by the presence or absence of verse 1167. But that verse is absent from every MS. of Sophocles now known. If, therefore, L was not the common parent of the rest, at any rate that parent (or parents) agreed with L in this striking defect, which (according to Eustathius) could have been corrected from other MSS. known in the twelfth century. There is no other instance in which a fault, now universal in the MSS. of Sophocles, is thus alleged to have been absent from a MS. or MSS. extant after the date at which L was written. Whatever construction may be placed on the statement of Eustathius, it is certain that it deserves to be carefully noted.

Another noteworthy fact is the unusually large number of
The MSS. versus ancient citations.
passages in which the MSS. of the Antigone vary from the quotations made by ancient writers. In every one of these instances (I think) our MSS. are right, and the ancient citation is wrong: though there are some cases in which modern scholars have thought otherwise. See the critical notes on vv. 186, 203, 223 (with commentary), 241, 292 (with note in Appendix), 324, 456, 457, 563, 564, 678, 742, 911 f., 1037, 1167.

Among the interpolations which modern criticism has suspected,
there is one which is distinguished from the rest alike by extent and by importance. This is the passage, founded on Herodotus 3. 119, in Antigone's last speech. I concur in the opinion of those who think that this passage,—i.e., vv. 904-920,—cannot have stood in the text as Sophocles left it. The point is one of vital moment for our whole conception of the play. Much has been written upon it; indeed, it has a small literature of its own; but I am not acquainted with any discussion of it which appears to me satisfactory. In a note in the Appendix I have attempted to state clearly the reasons for my belief, and to show how the arguments on the other side can be answered.

This is the only passage of the play which seems to afford solid ground for the hypothesis of interpolation. It is right, however, to subjoin a list of the verses which have been suspected by the critics whose names are attached to them severally. Many of these cases receive discussion in the notes; but there are others which did not require it, because the suspicion is so manifestly baseless. It will be seen that, if effect were given to all these indictments, the Antigone would suffer a loss of nearly 80 verses.

  • Verses 4-6 rejected by Paley.
  • 5 Bergk.
  • 6 Nauck.
  • 24 Wunder.
  • 30 Nauck.
  • 46 Benedict.
  • 203 Herwerden.
  • 212 Kvíčala.
  • 234 Göttling.
  • 287 f. Nauck.
  • 313 f. Bergk.
  • 393 f., to be made into one verse, Nauck.
  • 452 Wunder.
  • 465-468 Kvíčala and Wecklein.
  • 495 f. Zippmann.
  • 506 f. Jacob.
  • 570 and 573, with a rearrangement of 569-574, Nauck.
  • 652-654, to be made into two verses, Nauck.
  • 671 f., to be made into one verse, Heiland.
  • 679 f. Heimreich.
  • 680 Meineke and Bergk.
  • 687 Heimreich, with “δή” for “μή” in 685.
  • 691 Nauck.
  • 838 Dindorf.
  • 851 Hermann.
  • 1045-1047, 1053-1056, 1060 f., Morstadt.
  • 1080-1083 Jacob.
  • 1092-1094 and 1096 f. Morstadt.
  • 1111-1114 Bergk.
  • 1159 Nauck.
  • 1167 Hartung.
  • 1176 f. Jacob.
  • 1225 Dindorf.
  • 1232 Nauck.
  • 1242 f. Jacob.
  • 1250 Meineke.
  • 1256 Nauck.
  • 1279 Bothe.
  • 1280 Wex.
  • 1281 Heiland.
  • 1301 Dindorf.
  • 1347-1353 F. Ritter.

In v. 125 f., where the MSS. have “ἀντιπάλῳ...δράκοντι” (with
indications of correction to “ἀντιπάλου...δράκοντος”), I propose with some confidence the simple emendation “ἀντιπάλῳ...δράκοντος”. In v. 606 I give “πάντ᾽ ἀγρεύων” for “παντογήρως”. In 966, “πελάγει” for L's “πελάγεων” (sic). In 1102, “δοκεῖ” for “δοκεῖς”. In 1124, “ῥεῖθρόν τ᾽” for “ῥέεθρον”. In v. 23 f. I had conjectured “δίκης χρήσει” as a correction of “δίκη χρησθείς” before learning that Gerh. H. Müller had already suggested the same. He had not, however, forestalled my arguments for it. If the admission of it into the text is deemed too bold, it may be submitted that the barbarous character of the traditional reading, and the absence of any emendation which can claim a distinctly higher probability, render the passage one of those in which it is excusable to adopt a provisional remedy.

With regard to “οὐκ ἄτης ἄτερ” in v. 4, I would venture to invite the attention of scholars to the note in the Appendix. My first object has been to bring out what seems the essential point,—viz., that the real difficulty is the palaeographical one,—and to help in defining the conditions which a solution must satisfy before it can claim more than the value of guess-work. By the kind aid of Mr. E. M. Thompson, I have been enabled to give a transcript of the words “οὐκ ἄτης ἄτερ” as they would have been written in an Egyptian papyrus of circ. 250-200 B.C.

Besides the various complete editions
Editions, etc.
of Sophocles (Oed. Tyr., p. lxi), these separate editions of the Antigone have been consulted.— Aug. Boeckh. With a German translation, and two Dissertations. (Berlin, 1st ed. 1843; new ed. 1884.)—John William Donaldson. With English verse translation, and commentary. (London, 1848.)— Aug. Meineke. (Berlin, 1861.)—Moriz Seyffert. (Berlin, 1865.)—Martin L. D'Ooge. On the basis of Wolff's edition. (Boston, U.S.A., 1884.)— Pallis. With A. critical notes in Modern Greek. (Athens, 1885.)— Semitelos. With D. C. introduction, critical notes, and commentary, in Modern Greek. (Athens, 1887.)—Selected passages of this play are discussed by Hermann Schütz, in the first part of his Sophokleische Studien, which deals with the Antigone only (Gotha, 1886, pp. 62). Many other critics are cited in connection with particular points of the play which they have treated. Lastly, reference may be made to the list of subsidia, available for Sophoclean study generally, which has been given in the Introduction to the Oedipus Tyrannus, p. lxii.

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