This edition replaces A. G. Peskett’s 1914 Loeb edition of the Civil Wars, which is now outdated in both text and translation. Peskett’s text was based largely on the 1847 edition of Nipperdey and the 1906 edition of Kraner-Hofmann-Meusel. The century since its publication has seen new critical editions in the Teubner and Budé series, and my Oxford Classical Text, which is based on a new collation and stemma, appeared in 2015 along with a volume of studies on the text. The text presented in the present Loeb edition differs from Peskett’s in more than four hundred places. The new Loeb Civil War also has a different editorial philosophy, one that encourages readers to acknowledge the nature of the text they are reading, which is not Caesar’s text exactly, but rather a text resulting from the mediation—copying, preserving, emending, printing, studying—of many agents over the course of two millennia. Where that mediation has resulted in readings whose discrepancies significantly affect the meaning, I provide both textual notes and help for the reader who wants to use them: the competing readings are translated in the notes to the translation.
The translation, too, is new, and not just where the texts diverge. Our understanding of the collapse of the Republic and of Caesar’s style and rhetoric has advanced considerably