Sunday, February 20, 2005

Stephanme, Stephanyou, Stephanus

ever wonder why texts of plato have that funny page-numbering system? you know, 'stephanus pages'? well, i wondered, too.

they are due to the edition of scholar and printer henricus stephanus (henri estienne) (1528-31--1598), son of scholar and printer robertus stephanus (robert estienne). henricus has a number of notables to his credit, including discovering ten new books of diodorus while on a trip to italy, which were printed in 1559, the same year in which he took over his father's business in geneva.

moreover, he was responsible for the printing of editions of myriad ancient works: 58 in latin and 74 in greek, of which 18 were editiones principes. his aeschylus, edited by victorius (1557), was the first to include the complete Agamemnon.

he is perhaps best-known for his Thesaurus Linguae Graecae, which, as of 1908, was still unsurpassed as a Greek lexicon on a large scale, and for his edition of Plato, issued in 1578, which held its ground for two centuries until the bipontine edition of 1781-87.

(the foregoing information is taken from sandys, A History of Classical Scholarship, vol.II.)

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