Quintus Smyrnaeus, Posthomerica

LCL 19: xii-xiii



question open. The Greek words aisa, moros, moira, and kêr, the latter two used also in the plural, give particular difficulty. Depending on context, “doom,” “death,” “destiny,” and “fate” can be a suitable translation for each, and they are sometimes weakly, sometimes strongly personified.

The notes identify events from the Iliad and the Odyssey referred to in the poem but not linguistic and situational echoes of Homer, of which there are a very great number.

Names and places are identified in the Index.


Quintus’ poem is preserved in two fifteenth-century manuscripts. It is clear from their shared errors and omissions that they derive from the same source, a now lost manuscript, perhaps of the thirteenth century. Later transcriptions of these two manuscripts contain many successful attempts at correction and emendation by their copyists.

For reports of readings, the present edition is based on that of F. Vian (Budé, 1963–1969). The brief notes (“apparatus criticus”) to the Greek text use the following abbreviations:

  • M = reading found in both manuscripts
  • m = reading found in one of these manuscripts or in a later transcription

Of conjectures made by scholars since the Renaissance, only those adopted into the text are mentioned in the apparatus; a few more are discussed in the notes.



  • Bär, S. Quintus Smyrnaeus, Posthomerica 1. Hypomnemata 183. Göttingen, 2009. Long intro.; comm. on lines 1–219.
  • Campbell, M. A Commentary on Quintus Smyrnaeus, Posthomerica XII. Mnemosyne Supplement 71. Leiden, 1981. No text.
  • De Pauw, J. C. Leiden, 1734. With notes of C. Dausque.
  • Ferreccio, A. Commento al libro II dei Posthomerica di Quinto Smirneo. Rome, 2014. Text, trans., comm.
  • Hopkinson, N. Greek Poetry of the Imperial Period: An Anthology. Cambridge, 1994. Text and comm. on 10.259–331, 411–89.
  • James, A., and K. Lee. A Commentary on Quintus of Smyrna, Posthomerica V. Mnemosyne Supplement 208. Leiden, 2000. No text.
  • Kakridis, Ph. I. Kointos Smurnaios. Genikê meletê tôn meth’ Homêron kai tou poiêtous. Athens, 1962. Comm. in Modern Greek. No text.
  • Köchly, H. Leipzig, 1850. Extensive introduction in Latin on language and sources; text, app. crit.
  • ———. Leipzig: Teubner, 1855. Text, app. crit.