Commenta in Ciceronis Rhetorica. Accedit Incerti Auctoris Tractatus de adtributis personae et negotio, Thomas Riesenweber (ed.), Teubner-De Gruyter, Berlin-Boston 2013.
This treatise, which Karl Halm first edited as part of his Rhetores Latini Minores (1863: 305-310), consists of a summary of Cicero’s De inventione 1.34-43 that is divided into three parts: de adtributis personae, de adtributis negotio, and de consecutione. It is preserved in the same codices that have transmitted Marius Victorinus’s extremely rich and detailed commentary on Cicero. The manuscript tradition is unusually full and complex, as has recently been elucidated by Antonella Ippolito (2009) and Thomas Riesenweber (2015: viii-xvi). Two codices are especially important for our reconstruction of the text: Kölner Dom- und Diözesebibliothek cod. 166, of the 7th-8th c. (= olim Darmstadtiensis / D); and Oxford, Bodleian Library, D’Orville 152, of 16th c.(= O). We remain unsure of the treatise’s original aims: Riesenweber suggests it was part of a larger commentary on the De inventione that has not survived, basing his argument on comparisons between the treatment of topics like the differentiae verborum and parallel sections of Victorinus’s commentary (Riesenweber 2013: 454); Ippolito, on the other hand, thinks that the treatise goes back to a rhetorical collection intended for school use, a view that may be supported by the presence of excerpta from Cassiodorus in some manuscripts (Ippolito 2009). Although the text had been attributed to Marius Victorinus since the high medieval period and the two texts were transmitted together, Halm refuted this claim: according to him, it was unlikely that the same author would have bothered to treat the same material in summary form after already producing a more detailed version; moreover, the short text’s uneven and fragmentary style differs greatly from what one finds in Victorinus, and the manuscripts reveal confusion about where the text belongs: some have it follow Victorinus’ treatise, while others place it between his first and second books. Riesenweber makes the hypothesis that the author can be identified as an otherwise unknown Q. Fabius Laurentius, a name that Halm had assumed was the complete name of Victorinus on the basis of a corrupt title in D (Riesenweber 2013: 16). Teuffel and Müller subsequently distinguished between the author of the De adtributis and the famous rhetorician. The dating of the text remains uncertain; all we can say for certain is that it post-dates Victorinus. [A. Balbo; tr. C. L. Caterine].