Lucretius 4. 1026

Classical Quarterly 34 (01):240- (1984)
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Abstract

puri in 1026 can hardly be right. Bed-wetting is normally confined to children, and tum quibus…in 1030 presupposes the mention of an earlier stage of life in the previous sentence. And what does puri mean? Munro and Bailey translated it as ‘cleanly people’ , though Munro himself pointed out that the Latin for this was mundi rather than puri, and in any case there is no reason to suppose that in ancient Rome cleanly people were addicted to bed-wetting. Giussani, followed by Merrill and by Leonard and Smith, tried to give the required sense by supposing that puri meant ‘innocents’ and hence ‘children’, an expedient which is very far from convincing. Emendation seems called for. M. F. Smith in the 1982 edition of the Loeb Lucretius adopts Avancius' multi,2 but this does not provide the reference we need to the age of those concerned

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