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Bassus, Ga'vius

or GA'BIUS, a learned grammarian, whose Commentarii and treatise De Origine Verborum et Vocabulorum are cited by Gellius (2.4, 3.9,19, 5.7, 11.17). He is probably the same with the writer of the work De Diis, spoken of by Macrobius (Macr. 1.19, 3.6, compare 3.18), and perhaps to him belong the Satirae also from which Fulgentius Planciades quotes a line. (Serm. Antiq. Explic.) We hear of a Gavius Bassus who was praefectus of the Pontic coast under Trajan (Plin. Ep. 10.18, 32, 33), but those who would identify him with the person mentioned above have overlooked the circumstance that the author of the commentaries declares, that he beheld with his own eyes at Argos the famous equus Seianus, which was said to have belonged in succession to Dolabella, Cassius, and M. Antonius ; and hence it is clear that, unless in addition to its peculiar property of entailing inevitable destruction upon its possessor, it had likewise received the gift of longer life than ever steed enjoyed before, it could hardly have been seen by a contemporary of the younger Pliny. The praenomen Gavius or Gabius has in many MSS. been corrupted into Gaius or Caius, and then abbreviated into C., which has given rise to considerable confusion ; but, for anything we can prove to the contrary, each of the above-mentioned books may be from the pen of a distinct individual.


hide References (5 total)
  • Cross-references from this page (5):
    • Pliny the Younger, Epistulae, 10.18
    • Pliny the Younger, Epistulae, 10.32
    • Pliny the Younger, Epistulae, 10.33
    • Gellius, Noctes Atticae, 2.4
    • Gellius, Noctes Atticae, 3.9
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