Latomus 33 (1974) p. 467
|TERTULLIAN, Adversus Marcionem, Books I-V,
ed. transl. by E. EVANS,
Press, 1972, xxv-658 p. in-8° en deux volumes, 8.00 £.
L'oeuvre la plus considérable de Tertullien n'avait plus fait
l'objet d'une édition par-
The most considerable work of Tertullian had not been the subject of a particular edition since 1906, the date of that of E. Kroymann (CSEL XLVII), which, if marked progress from that of Oehler (1854) because of the use of Montepessulanus (M), had quickly appeared far from sure because of conjectures and of arbitrary restitutions: it is enough, to be convinced of this, to throw a glance at the warnings multiplied by E. Dekkers, on the bottom row of the apparatus, in the CC, vol. II, where he reprinted, for want of anything better, the text of Kroymann (Turnhout, 1954). However now one after another appear two new editions of a work neglected for more than half-a-century. It is a pity that E. Evans could not benefit from the critical work carried out by Cl. Moreschini starting from new collations (a second reading of M which had been often badly read by Kroymann, the use of Luxemburgensis 75) and whose results appeared initially in a study in Annali della Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa (1966, p. 293-308; 1967, p. 93 -102 and 235-244; 1970, p. 1-25) before forming the base of his critical edition published in Milan in 1971. The text of the edition of Evans rests primarily on that of Oehler and did justice to the audacities of Kroymann, of which it retains however certain conjectures; the principal effort related to an improvement of the punctuation. With its critical apparatus reduced to one or two indications per page, the present edition will be able to compete with the above mentioned Italian edition only by the merit of its translation. This, generally exact, and precise, releasing the thought well, will give great service in illuminating Latin often abrupt or touffu or condensed to the extreme. Let us say however that in several cases, one may have doubts about the good foundation of the interpretation. Thus with I, 10, 2 (p. 27), to translate etiam tantam idololatria dominationem obumbrante by "in splashes of the darkness of idolatry and its wide dominion" appears us to distort the play of ideas and of images, because here tanta dominatio indicates the sovereignty of the God of Moses (the preceding sentence indicates that it is known to the large majority of men), sovereignty which is violated, obfuscated (obumbrante) by the screen of idolatry. It will be also regretted that the introduction and the annotation were not more substantial. The twenty-three first pages simply list the problems raised by this crucial work in the career of Tertullian as in the history of the ancient church. The question recently raised by J Regul (Die antimarclonitischen Evangelienprologe, Freiburg, 1969) of all heresiology documentation relating to Marcion is not mentioned. In connection with the genesis of the work, of its three successive editions, possibility of vestiges of the first edition in the last, of the scriptural texts used (marcionite, catholic), we remain a little hungry. But nevertheless this elegant and clear presentation of after all a difficult treatise, and which emanates from a good expert of the Carthaginian polemicist, will be extremely useful and will facilitate, if not the study of all the questions related to Adversus Marcionem, at least the approach to its text; and that is already much!
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