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Classics related FACEdit

Hello all, I have recently nominated the article of classicist R. A. B. Mynors for Featured Article status. If you find this article interesting, you are invited to add your comments to Wikipedia:Featured article candidates/R. A. B. Mynors/archive1. Best, Modussiccandi (talk) 13:01, 15 April 2021 (UTC)

Cotia and CottiaEdit

Are we sure these two are not the same gente? As far as I know it was not unusual for gentes to sometimes have slight spelling differences (especially when it comes to double consonants) while still being one and the same.★Trekker (talk) 16:04, 15 April 2021 (UTC)

Since one is known for only a single individual and the other for a pair of brothers who appear together in the sources, might it not make sense to have articles for the individuals rather than the (hypothetical) gens? Furius (talk) 17:13, 15 April 2021 (UTC)
All that "known primarily from a single individual" or similar language means is that only one member was mentioned in the sources I consulted at the time the article was written. In all but a few cases, there were many other obscure personages belonging to the same gens; nowadays I would include a list of those known from inscriptions if it could be done in a reasonable amount of time, but when I started this series I didn't even know how to find them, and had to work from a much more limited selection of sources. In fact, there are quite a lot of Cottii known from inscriptions, and at least a few other Cotii. They might be the same, but I don't feel confident in saying so. I'm not averse to combining the articles, but I can't remember whether I had any thoughts on these two names and whether they might be the same back when the articles were created. I probably can't tackle either adding additional members or merging the articles this week, but I might possibly be able to next week. But apart or separate, there's no question that they were either one or two distinct gentes. P Aculeius (talk) 18:37, 15 April 2021 (UTC)

Galla or Gallia?Edit

Gaius Sosius had a daughter that's usually called "Sosia Galla", but a number of sources (1, 2, 3, 4) I've seen seem to also call her "Sosia Gallia" instead. Can we assume these are print errors or similar?★Trekker (talk) 01:02, 16 April 2021 (UTC)

I'd say that's more likely than not to be the explanation, but without digging any deeper it's not certain. Gallus was a common surname throughout Roman history; Gallius the nomen of a minor plebeian gens, albeit one that comes into view towards the end of the Republic. A second nomen, pointing at maternal ancestors, would be typical of mid-first century nomenclature, although I think this is a bit early for that. It's quite likely that someone could carelessly substitute a nomen for a cognomen, although it seems less likely to be repeated across multiple, independent sources, unless the gentile name is much better known—surely the reverse of the situation here. But that just brings me back to the beginning: more likely than not, Gallia is a mistake for Galla, but we can't be sure without a clear explanation from some scholarly source. P Aculeius (talk) 02:12, 16 April 2021 (UTC)
Galla makes inherently more sense. Gscholar returns 100 results for it but only 6 for 'Sosia Gallia', and the PIR also spells it w/o 'i'. Avilich (talk) 14:29, 16 April 2021 (UTC)
I'd follow PIR on this. Unless you want to do the spadework of going thru all of the possible times the name has appeared in literary texts & inscriptions. And I can't think of a good reason to undertake all that work just to determine whether to spell it with an "i" or not. -- llywrch (talk) 22:42, 16 April 2021 (UTC)

FAR noticeEdit

I have nominated Theramenes for a featured article review here. Please join the discussion on whether this article meets featured article criteria. Articles are typically reviewed for two weeks. If substantial concerns are not addressed during the review period, the article will be moved to the Featured Article Removal Candidates list for a further period, where editors may declare "Keep" or "Delist" the article's featured status. The instructions for the review process are here. Hog Farm Talk 01:45, 24 April 2021 (UTC)


Hello, I'm supposed to be on furlough from Wikipedia but an issue has arisen in a study group I'm working with about the name of Gaiseric. There is an alternative spelling, Genseric, but the origin of that version is unclear whereas Gaiseric is evidently derived from the Latin Gaisericus. The article was renamed following this proposal but the issue raised in the group is that Genseric is used in some WP articles such as Vandals but not in others like Vandal Kingdom, thereby creating confusion. Other sources prefer Gaiseric, such as Britannica and the authoritative Encyclopedia of European Peoples.

I propose that Gaiseric should be used in all articles about the Vandals and each should state on first mention that his name is sometimes rendered Genseric. I am pinging Woofboy and Srnec here because they took part in the RM, which was raised by an IP who I will try to contact separately, if possible. Thanks. No Great Shaker (talk) 10:55, 27 April 2021 (UTC)

My understanding is that both forms occur in our literary and historical sources. It makes little sense to rely on Latin etymology for a name that clearly isn't Latin—and presumably each form is equally influenced by Latin. Which form you prefer probably depends on what was used by the sources in which you first encountered him—and I don't see any compelling reason to require all editors and all articles to use one preferred form, when he's easily linked to, and the first line of his article provides the two versions at issue, as well as a spelling variant. It's a bit like telling people what wording they should adopt. Nothing is gained by fighting over someone else's choice of words. Neither version is clearly wrong, so the most we can say is that it should be used consistently within articles (excepting quoted material)—not that it needs to be uniform among all articles. P Aculeius (talk) 12:16, 27 April 2021 (UTC)
Well, I hope no one is going to fight over it. The crux of the issue is consistency in closely related articles. As I said above, Vandals uses Genseric while Vandal Kingdom uses Gaiseric. Note also that I said "all articles about the Vandals", not "all articles in Wikipedia". The origin of Genseric is uncertain but some people suggest it is from the Old High German rather than Latin, although a Latin equivalent may well have been applied. No Great Shaker (talk) 12:34, 27 April 2021 (UTC)
It is most certainly not a Latin name, although since all of the contemporary writing mentioning him will have been in Greek or Latin, the forms passed down to us are presumably Latinized—but that doesn't tell us which is correct. Although my expertise in Germanic names is limited, I did spend a lot of time cataloguing Germanic names years ago from various sources. I don't recognize any cognates of the prototheme, although -ric is a very common deuterotheme in Germanic names. But Gai- doesn't look Germanic at all. It could be; it could be eastern, it could be worn down beyond recognition; but I can't think of any other protothemes that resemble it. Gens- isn't familiar either, but it could be cognate with Gund-, a common prototheme. You might not be familiar with Gundisalvis, probably Visigothic, but it's the original form of Gonzales. I could certainly imagine that Genseric, or whatever the original form was, is derived from the same root. P Aculeius (talk) 17:54, 27 April 2021 (UTC)
Gais- is the East Germanic form of a word meaning spear, which appears in North and West Germanic as geir/gar/ger depending on language (the second element in Hrothgar or Siggeir for instance). His name thus means "Spear-King". I'm not sure where the Gens- form comes from. According to Hennig Kaufmann (1968), the form Genseric is made by a hyper-correction in which an 'n' is inserted before an s because 'n' disappeared before 's' in Vulgar Latin (p. 134).--Ermenrich (talk) 18:00, 27 April 2021 (UTC)
Unless some subsequent work has overturned Kaufmann 1968, that seems decisive. When both an incorrect and a more correct form are in common usage, there is no reason for wiki to perpetuate the incorrect form. Furius (talk) 21:16, 27 April 2021 (UTC)
His name has a whole lot of spellings, including Gensericus, so that doesn't come from nowhere. I don't see a need for consistency across all articles, but Gaiseric is probably the most common and preferable rendition in English. Avilich (talk) 13:01, 27 April 2021 (UTC)
  • I personally favour consistency and therefore using only one form of the name across Wikipedia, and would be fine with either form. I note that Genseric and its derivatives is more common in Latin countries (Italy, France, Spain, Portugal, etc.), while Geiseric is found principally in Northern European languages, apparently in English too. T8612 (talk) 18:51, 27 April 2021 (UTC)
I'd say we can just let the matter slide. Strict consistency is not a serious necessity, and both spellings are acceptable - as T8612 said, it's just a matter of which linguistic system's spelling is preferred. Academic sources don't seem to have any trend of partiality for a particular spelling either. As for Kaufman's analysis, while it may well be true, it must be said that spellings as used today often do not reflect traditional spelling - there isn't a question of "wrong", but of common usage. HalfdanRagnarsson (talk) 09:51, 6 May 2021 (UTC)

Marcius MarcellusEdit

I've come across mentions of "Marcius Marcellus", the name is listed on Marcia gens as being the man mentioned by Seneca the Elder, but there is also references to a doctor by the same name here and here. Are these likely to be the same man or separate people?★Trekker (talk) 17:49, 27 April 2021 (UTC)

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