|dc.description.abstract||The most recent, and in many ways the best, text of the Florida
of Apuleius is that of P. Vallette in the Budé series (Paris, 1924).
I have, however, used the Teubner text by R. Helm (Leipzig, 1910, reprinted
with addenda 195 and 1959) as the basis for this Commentary, mainly
because of the usefulness of Helm's critical apparatus, which is
considerably fuller than Vallette's. I have discussed variant readings
where the sense appears to be affected, but I have made no independent
study of the MSS. This Commentary makes no claim to be a critical edition.
I have been more concerned with interpretation and elucidation than
with matters of style, though in an author like Apuleius the two aspects
cannot always be separated. A commentary is not, however, the most
convenient medium for a stylistic study. I have commented mainly on
subject matter, on the language (including points of grammar), and on
anything of general or special interest that appeared to throw light on
the meaning and intention of the author.
In the Introduction I have considered the question of the
composition of the Florida. My conclusion is that the passages, as we
now have them, are excerpts from an earlier collection made by Apuleius
himself, and that the division into four books goes back to this original
collection. I have also tried to show that, even in its present mutilated
state, the Florida gives a unique insight into Apulelus' manner as a
public speaker and his relations with his Carthaginian audience.
For convenience, I have inserted the Bibliography at the beginning
of the work, so that the reader may more easily refer back to the list of
older editions, which are discussed in the first section of the