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Cafron Dyascorides multi nacafron vocant de india venit corio similis sicamini fumigationibus odoratis et diversis odoribus miscetur.


Whole entry om. f

Cafron ABC {'t' misread as 'r'} | cafton Diosc. Longob.

nacafron ACD | nafracon B | nacafton Diosc. Longob. {'t' was misread as 'r' in ABC, B shows metathesis of 'c' and 'fr'}.

sicamini ABC | siccamini e

{miscetur} et cetera add. B e


Cafron, according to Dyascorides many people call it nacafron, it comes from India, with a bark similar to sicaminus {"mulberry-tree"}, and the bark is used in odorous fumigations and is mixed in with diverse fragrances.

Commentary and botanical identification:

This is a near verbatim quote ultimately from Dioscorides Longobardus, 1, 23, ed. Mihăescu (1938: 16) De caftu.

Cafton / Cafron is a shortened form that only occurs in Dioscorides Longobardus. The full form has a number of variants in the Greek codices, where it is only found in Dioscorides and Paulus Aegineta, the Dioscoridean variants being νάρκαφθον /nárkaphthon/ or νάσκαφθον /náskaphthon/, cf. 1, 23, ed. Wellmann (1906-14: I.28) [[1]] and in Paulus Aegineta, 7, 3, ed. Heiberg (1921-4: II. 244) [[2]], who has ναόκαφθον /naókaphthon/, νάκαφθον /nákaphthon/. LSJ gloss it as "a fragrant Indian bark used as a spice".

Its identification is uncertain. Cf. Miller (1969: 79f).

WilfGunther 08/01/14

See also: Affron

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