Antroadis

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Complete text of entry:

Antroadis Plinius si in macedonia brevis arbor hec atque fructicosa in Damasco syrie magna materies ei admodum lenta ac fidelis ac vestustate nigris splendoribus flos racemosus olive modo sed rubens folia densa fert et folliculos mittentes quedam animalia ceu culices lentoremque resinosum qui et corticem rumpit. struria mascula fert sterilis femina folio ulmi paulo longiore et piloso foliorum inter se semper contrariis pediculis gracili brevique ramo pelles candide conficiuntur hiis, semen lentis simile cum una rubescit quod vocatur ros medicamentis necessarium et cetera, est sumach quod ros syriacus dicitur infra.


Complete Translation:

Antroadis, Pliny says, when growing in Macedonia is a low-growing tree and shrubby but in Damascus, Syria, it is a big tree; its wood is very flexible and strong and of great age, making black and very shiny {timbers}; the flower comes out in clusters like the oliva’s {"olive’s"} but it is reddish and the leaves are arranged tightly. It bears follicles that send out certain {very small} animals like midges {which produce} a resinous substance that breaks out from under the bark.
The male struria {rhus Syriae Pliny} bears {sc. fruit} but the female is sterile, it has the leaf like ulmus {"elm"}, though a little bit longer and downy, with the leaf stalks opposing each other; and the plant has a slender and short branch. Animal skins are bleached white with this plant. Its seed is similar to lens {"lentils"} and it reddens at the same time as the grape, and it is called ros. It is necessary for preparing some medicaments. This is sumach, also called ros Syriacus {lit. Syrian fog"}, see entry Ros siriacus below.


Sectioned text of entry:

Plinius, liber XIII, cap. xii, § 54 terebinthus:

Antroadis Plinius si in macedonia brevis arbor hec atque fructicosa in Damasco syrie magna materies ei admodum lenta ac fidelis ac vestustate nigris splendoribus flos racemosus olive modo, sed rubens folia densa fert et folliculos mittentes quedam animalia ceu culices lentoremque resinosum qui et corticem rumpit.


Apparatus:

Antroadis ABC fj | Antroiadis p | Antrohadis e
in macedonia | manus cedonia? ms. e
hec om. AC
fructicosa ABC f | fructuosa ejp
syrie AC fj | sirie B p | serie ms. e
ei ABC ef | ea p | ei .n. {= enim, superscript} j
vetustate | letustare f
nigris | magĩs B
splendoribus | splendidioribus f
racemosus | ramecosus f
sed | .s. B
rubens AC p | rubeus B efj
densa | dẽpsa B p
folliculos AC fp | foliculos B j | funiculos ms. e
animalia | herba ms. e
resinosum | resinum B
qui om. j


Translation:

Antroadis, Pliny says, when growing in Macedonia is a low-growing tree and shrubby but in Damascus, Syria, it is a big tree; its wood is very flexible and strong and of great age, making black and very shiny {timbers}; the flower comes out in clusters like the oliva’s {"olive’s"} but it is reddish and the leaves are arranged tightly. It bears follicles that send out certain {very small} animals like midges {which produce} a resinous substance that breaks out from under the bark.


Commentary:

Simon’s entry is a near-verbatim quote from Pliny, 12, 12-13, 54-5, ed. Rackham (1938-63: IV.130). Here excerpts from two different chapters of Pliny describing two different plants that grow in Syria, i.e. terebinthus and sumach, were collapsed into a single entry. In the initial section of this entry Simon quotes the last part of Pliny’s description of Syria's terebinthus tree {i.e. § 54}, which is only a low-growing shrub on Mount Ida but grows into a big tree around Damascus, as he says. Apparently Simon or his copyists were not aware that they were using a text on terebinthus, but seem to have believed that there was such a plant named *Antroadis, which they saw as a synonym for sumach or ros syriacus. However the first and part - here missing - of Pliny’s description of terebinthus is quoted in the Clavis under the entry Terebintus.

Antroadis:
The word Antroadis is the result of a misunderstanding. The Plinian text says: circa Iden Troadis – "around Mount Ida {Greek: Ἴδη /Ídē/} in the Troas region {Τρῳάς /Trōás/}". Pliny uses the Greek accusative sg. following the preposition circa, i.e. Ἴδην /Ídēn/, transcribed Iden, and Troadis renders a Latinised version of the Greek genitive Τρῳάδος /Trōádos/, meaning "around the area of Mount Ida of the Troad region". Ida is here geographically specified because there is also a Mount Ida in Crete. Circa Iden Troadis was read as *[circ]a[Ide]ntroadis or even *I[de]ntroadis > *Introadis and then the first element was changed to Antro- most likely either through interference from the well-known Greek word ἀνθροπο- /anthropo-/ "human being" or some other word association. At any rate the misunderstanding must have occurred very early on because the entry is listed under the letter 'A' rather than 'I'.


Plinius ctd., liber XIII, cap. xiii, § 55, rhus Syriae:

struria mascula fert sterilis femina folio ulmi paulo longiore et piloso foliorum inter se semper contrariis pediculis gracili brevique ramo pelles candide conficiuntur hiis, semen lentis simile cum una rubescit quod vocatur ros medicamentis necessarium et cetera, est sumach quod ros syriacus dicitur infra.


Apparatus:

struria AC j | stru͠ia p | Et (& B) ruria B ef | rhus Syriae Pliny
mascula | macula f
fert ABC ep | sunt f | super fructu {fructu superscript} j
ulmi | oliui j
conficiuntur | confitiunt~ j
hiis efjp | his ABC
una | uva Pliny
ros | res f
necessarium (nẽcariũ A; nariuʒ j) AC j | neccessarium B | nec͠ciũ p | n͞criuʒ ms. e | necm f | ?? ms. e
et cetera om. f
syriacus | ciriachus B
dicitur AC fj | dicet~ B | om. p


Translation:

The male struria {rhus Syriae Pliny} bears {sc. fruit} but the female is sterile, it has the leaf like ulmus {"elm"}, though a little bit longer and downy, with the leaf stalks opposing each other; and the plant has a slender and short branch. Animal skins are bleached white with this plant. Its seed is similar to lens {"lentils"} and it reddens at the same time as the grape, and it is called ros. It is necessary for preparing some medicaments. This is sumach, also called ros Syriacus {lit. Syrian fog"}, see entry Ros siriacus below.


Commentary:

struria:
Just as the previous section of this entry was more than usual corrupted, this section suffered a similar fate. The words struria or ruria are misreadings of Pliny’s rhus Syriae > ru[s sy]ria[cus] or some such omission. This conflation of the two different chapters in Pliny can have occurred for no other reason than the fact that terebinthus described in chapter xii, § 54 - and rhus Syriae i.e. sumach - described in chapter xiii, § 55 - follow each other in book XIII, where Pliny describes a number of exotic trees. Perhaps the two chapters were copied by Simon together at the same time and ultimately became incorrectly seen as one. That this whole entry was seen as dealing with sumach is confirmed by the final remark, though perhaps by a later commentator, clearly identifying the latter excerpt as dealing with sumach or ros syriacus.

To clear up this confusion the text from § 54 above is to be added to the text of entry Terebintus and the text of § 55 above constitutes an entry in its own right that should be headworded "Sumach".

sumac(h):
Medieval Latin sumac(h) is a direct loan from Arabic ﺳﻤﺎﻕ /summāq/, cf. Wehr (1976: 431): ﺳﻤﺎﻕ /summāq/ "sumac (Rhus; bot.) its highly acid seeds which, after being dried and ground, serve, together with thyme, as a condiment".
Siggel (1950: 43): ﺳﻤﺎﻕ /summāq/, ﺳﻤﺎﻗﻴﻞ /sumāqīl/ Rhus coriaria (Anacard.), Sumach [[1]]. Naturally the word sumach does not appear in the literature of antiquity but the plant(s) was (were) known as ros syriacus or other similar synonyms.


WilfGunther 11:06, 12 May 2015 (BST)


See also: Ros siriacus, Terebintus


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