Origin of the reading saevos leones in Hor. Epod. XVI

The aim of the article is to explain the origin of the variant saevos in several related manuscripts of Horace (Epod. 16. 33; the adjective describes lions). Most manuscripts of two tradition-lines have ravos and flavos, the former being undoubtedly lectio difficilior. The variant saevos seems to be obviously secondary, and might have erected as a palaeographic error, as it was usually assumed, since this adjective can be an explanation neither for rāvus ‘yellow-grey’ (of animals’ body or eyes) nor for flavus ‘pale yellow’. Meanwhile it could be originally a margin-gloss, made as a commentary on ravus, if an early-medieval commentator understood it erroneously as rˇavus — ‘hoarse’. Both rāvus and răvus are quite rare and were confused already in the Late Antiquity (Paul. Fest. p. 283 M) and the author of the gloss may have made a note: «hoarse» meaning ‘fierce’.

Jegorova S. K. Origin of the reading saevos leones in Hor. Epod. XVI