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Roman consul

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  • Ronald Wallenfels, Ph.D.
    Dear readers, I am confused by what I assume is some subtlety of Latin phonology that escapes me: The full name of the Roman consul who in 168 BCE famously
    Message 1 of 5 , Oct 12, 2009
      Dear readers,

      I am confused by what I assume is some subtlety of Latin phonology that
      escapes me: The full name of the Roman consul who in 168 BCE famously
      confronted Antiochus IV in Egypt is given variously as C(aius) Popilius
      Laenas (e.g., The Cambridge Ancient History VIII, 2nd. ed., p. 344) and
      G(aius) Popilius Laenas (e.g., The Oxford Classical Dictionary, 2nd ed.,
      p. 861, s.v.). Can anyone explain why I might prefer one reading (C. or
      G.) over the other?

      Thanks in anticipation,

      Ron Wallenfels
      Fair Haven, NJ
    • Spek, R.J. van der
      Dear Ron: the answer is simple. Originally the Latin alphabet had no G (the G is nothing more than a C with an inversed gamma on it). The C was the gamma, and
      Message 2 of 5 , Oct 12, 2009
        Dear Ron: the answer is simple. Originally the Latin alphabet had no G (the G is nothing more than a C with an inversed gamma on it). The C was the gamma, and the K sound was indeed written with K (as was maintained in a few words like Kalendae and the personal name Kaeso). So Gaius was originally written Caius, but later Gaius. In the abbreviations, however, the Romans stuck to the C.
        Hence also C. Iulius Caesar.
        All my best,
        Bert

        Prof.dr. R.J. van der Spek
        Vrije Universiteit / VU University Amsterdam
        Faculteit der Letteren / Faculty of Arts
        Afdeling Oudheid / Dept. of Archaeology, Classics and Ancient Near Eastern Studies
        De Boelelaan 1105
        1081 HV Amsterdam
        Tel.: +31 (0)20 5986490
        Fax: +31 (0)20 5986500
        http://www.let.vu.nl/nl/organisatie-van-de-faculteit/wetenschappelijk-personeel/medewerkers-alfabetisch/medewerkers-l-s/prof-dr-r-j-van-der-spek/index.asp
        http://www.livius.org/cg-cm/chronicles/chron00.html
        http://www.iisg.nl/hpw/babylon.php




        Van: seleukids@yahoogroups.com [mailto:seleukids@yahoogroups.com] Namens Ronald Wallenfels, Ph.D.
        Verzonden: maandag 12 oktober 2009 17:09
        Aan: Seleukids
        Onderwerp: [seleukids] Roman consul



        Dear readers,

        I am confused by what I assume is some subtlety of Latin phonology that
        escapes me: The full name of the Roman consul who in 168 BCE famously
        confronted Antiochus IV in Egypt is given variously as C(aius) Popilius
        Laenas (e.g., The Cambridge Ancient History VIII, 2nd. ed., p. 344) and
        G(aius) Popilius Laenas (e.g., The Oxford Classical Dictionary, 2nd ed.,
        p. 861, s.v.). Can anyone explain why I might prefer one reading (C. or
        G.) over the other?

        Thanks in anticipation,

        Ron Wallenfels
        Fair Haven, NJ


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        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Carl Sandler Berkowitz
        I won t attempt here to go into too much detail. But that C must have originally had something of the sound of a G, especially when examined in the light of
        Message 3 of 5 , Oct 12, 2009
          I won't attempt here to go into too much detail. But that C must have
          originally had something of the sound of a G, especially when examined in
          the light of the Greek alphabet, where instead of A B C, we have Alpha,
          Beta, Gamma. And the Greek alphabet was derived from the Phoenician, where
          the sequence was Aleph, Beit, Gimel. The hard C sound that we associate
          with Caius or Claudius was rendered by the Greeks with Kappa. Since Latin
          does not have a K in the alphabet with the exception of a few borrowed
          words, such as Kalends, they adopted the G and used it where they would
          expect a hard C sound. This is a very rudimentary analysis and I am sure
          that others out there will expend more energy and expand on what I have
          presented, and probably amend it a little. But basically it was the same
          letter letter to the Romans who wrote it either way.



          Carl Sandler Berkowitz

          _____

          From: seleukids@yahoogroups.com [mailto:seleukids@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
          Of Ronald Wallenfels, Ph.D.
          Sent: Monday, October 12, 2009 11:09 AM
          To: Seleukids
          Subject: [seleukids] Roman consul





          Dear readers,

          I am confused by what I assume is some subtlety of Latin phonology that
          escapes me: The full name of the Roman consul who in 168 BCE famously
          confronted Antiochus IV in Egypt is given variously as C(aius) Popilius
          Laenas (e.g., The Cambridge Ancient History VIII, 2nd. ed., p. 344) and
          G(aius) Popilius Laenas (e.g., The Oxford Classical Dictionary, 2nd ed.,
          p. 861, s.v.). Can anyone explain why I might prefer one reading (C. or
          G.) over the other?

          Thanks in anticipation,

          Ron Wallenfels
          Fair Haven, NJ





          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Ronald Wallenfels, Ph.D.
          My sincerest thanks to all who replied, Ron
          Message 4 of 5 , Oct 12, 2009
            My sincerest thanks to all who replied,

            Ron

            Ronald Wallenfels, Ph.D. wrote:
            >
            >
            > Dear readers,
            >
            > I am confused by what I assume is some subtlety of Latin phonology that
            > escapes me: The full name of the Roman consul who in 168 BCE famously
            > confronted Antiochus IV in Egypt is given variously as C(aius) Popilius
            > Laenas (e.g., The Cambridge Ancient History VIII, 2nd. ed., p. 344) and
            > G(aius) Popilius Laenas (e.g., The Oxford Classical Dictionary, 2nd ed.,
            > p. 861, s.v.). Can anyone explain why I might prefer one reading (C. or
            > G.) over the other?
            >
            > Thanks in anticipation,
            >
            > Ron Wallenfels
            > Fair Haven, NJ
            >
            >
          • Ford Mommaerts-Browne
            The name Gaius was abbreviated C. ... From: Ronald Wallenfels, Ph.D. To: Seleukids Sent: Monday,
            Message 5 of 5 , Oct 12, 2009
              The name 'Gaius' was abbreviated 'C.'
              ----- Original Message -----
              From: "Ronald Wallenfels, Ph.D." <rwallenfels@...>
              To: "Seleukids" <seleukids@yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: Monday, October 12, 2009 10:09 AM
              Subject: [seleukids] Roman consul


              > Dear readers,
              >
              > I am confused by what I assume is some subtlety of Latin phonology that
              > escapes me: The full name of the Roman consul who in 168 BCE famously
              > confronted Antiochus IV in Egypt is given variously as C(aius) Popilius
              > Laenas (e.g., The Cambridge Ancient History VIII, 2nd. ed., p. 344) and
              > G(aius) Popilius Laenas (e.g., The Oxford Classical Dictionary, 2nd ed.,
              > p. 861, s.v.). Can anyone explain why I might prefer one reading (C. or
              > G.) over the other?
              >
              > Thanks in anticipation,
              >
              > Ron Wallenfels
              > Fair Haven, NJ
              >
              >
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