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Helcima Plinius sic vocant greci scoriam argenti supra in helcismatos.


Helcisma B | Helcima ABC f

vocant (uocãt B) B e | vocat AC | dt f {= dicunt}

greci (greci ms. e) B ef | .g. AC

helcismatos (-cisinatos? f) AC ef | elcismatos B


Helcima, Pliny says, is what the Greeks call Latin scoria argenti {"silver dross"}, see also the entry above helcismatos.


Simon's text is from Pliny, 33, 35, 105, ed. Rackham (1938-63: IX.80): Scoriam in argento Graeci vocant helcysma - "the Greeks call the dross in silver helcysma {i.e. "what is drawn off"}. Simon quotes this statement by Pliny verbatim in the entry Elcismatos.

Greek ἕλκυσμα /hélkysma/ means "something that is drawn off", like spun wool, and in relation to metal it is the dross that is drawn off with a hook during the smelting process, < ἕλκω /hélkō/ or ἑλκύω /helkýō/ "to draw, drag" (LSJ).

The expected transcription is Helcisma, which is only found in witness B, the letter 's' was lost in the copying process in the other witnesses. Simon’s form still shows initial 'H', which would no longer have been pronounced; it is a purely historical spelling relict as shown by his entries Elcismatos and Elkismos. Furthermore the late Greek sound-change /y/ > /i/ applies.

WilfGunther 22:42, 8 October 2014 (BST)

See also: Scoria, Elcismatos, Elkismos

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