When now I had said these things myself, certain grammarians affirmed, that those apples were called ὑπέρφλοια by reason of their vigor and florid manner of growing; for to blossom and flourish after an extraordinary manner is by the poets expressed by the word φλοίειν. In this sense, Antimachus calls the city of Cadmeans flourishing with fruit; and Aratus, speaking of the dog-star Sirius, says that he
To some gave strength, but others did consume,calling the greenness of the trees and the blossoming of the fruit by the name of φλόος. Nay, there are some of the Greeks also who sacrifice to Bacchus surnamed Φλοῖος. And therefore, seeing the verdure and floridness chiefly recommend this fruit, philosophers call it ὑπέρφλοιον. But Lamprias our grandfather said that the word ὑπέρ did not only denote excess and vehemency, but external and supernal; thus we call the lintel of a door ὑπέρθυρον, and the upper part of the house ὑπερῷον; and the poet calls the outward parts of the victim the upper-flesh, as he calls the entrails the inner-flesh. Let us see therefore, says he, whether Empedocles did not make use of this epithet in this sense, seeing that other fruits are encompassed with [p. 335] an outward rind and with certain skins and membranes, but the only husk that the apple has is a glutinous and smooth tunic (or core) containing the seed, so that the part which is fit to be eaten, and lies without, was properly called ὑπέρφλοιον, that is over or outside of the husk.
Their bloom and verdure parching;