“Herw[erden] besser fort” should he ‘go’, or is he ‘better’

This note discusses one of the largely superfluous conjectures unearthed by J. Diggle and given an honourable place in his otherwise very succinct and efficient apparatus criticus. Reported by none of the recent editors, and earlier by Prinz–Wecklein and Verrall, Herwerden’s μελανόσπλαγχνος in Euripides’ Medea 109 is an undesirable change of the sound, if idiosyncratic, mss. reading μεγαλόσπλαγχνος. Diggle, however, having (independently) conjectured the same word, patched together arguments for it. An additional attraction this conjecture gained in his eyes was due to his misreading of the remark (quoted in the heading) Wilamowitz made proofreading the first volume of Murray’s OCT in 1901. While Wilamowitz discouraged Murray from reporting this conjecture with his usual “besser fort”, Diggle, on passing acquaintance with the letters, took it to mean “Herw. besser fort[asse]”, thus corroborating his point.

Kostyleva T.V. “Herw[erden] besser fort” should he ‘go’, or is he ‘better’