a1 University of Chicago
A textual problem in Virgil, Aen. 2.349–50 has puzzled scholars since antiquity and still divides editors and commentators today. Aeneas is exhorting his comrades to join him in the final battle for Troy, but the variants audendi and audentem leave it uncertain whether he says, ‘si vobis audendi extrema cupido/ certa sequi, quae sit rebus fortuna videtis’, or ‘si vobis audentem extrema cupido/ certa sequi, quae sit rebus fortuna videtis’. The variant audendi has been discussed and defended in several commentaries and articles, whereas audentem, though often the choice of editors, has yet to receive a detailed defence. In this note, I will demonstrate that audentem is the correct reading and that the false reading audendi came about through a common scribal error.