given rise to a serious mistake. His translation is as follows: ‘Equos vero tum inutiles et infirmos ob inediam, claudicantesque solearum inopia, detritis ungulis, aversis ab hoste itineribus, misit in Bithyniam.’ No such words as solearum inopia occur in the original text; they are an interpolation by the learned translator without the faintest authority, and have led several writers of note to believe that horse-shoes were then in use: whereas the contrary may be inferred, for the horses, it is explicitly mentioned, were lame by the attrition of their hoofs; which implies that horses were not shod. Montfauçon was led astray by this addition to the original account. He writes: ‘There are certain and undoubted proofs that the ancients shod their horses; thus much Homer and Appian say;’ and Fosbrooke remarks that ‘an iron horse-shoe is mentioned by Appian; so that the conclusion from Xenophon's recommendation for hardening the hoof, that the ancients did not shoe beasts of burden, is too rash.’
Subsequent to the Christian era, we find Arrian (a.d. 200) comparing the human body to a pack-ass—οναριον εωισεαγμένο, and speaking of a kind of shoe for that animal: ‘Οταν εχεινο οναριον η, ταλλα γίνεται χαλιναρια του οναριον, σχημαατια, υωοδηματια, κριθαι, χορτος. Some translators have rendered υωοδηματια as ‘ferreæ calces;’ but Didot, in his new Collection of Classical Greek authors, translates it as sparteæ calces: ‘Si asselus est corpus, cetera freni erunt aselli, clitellæ, sparteæ calces, hordeum, fœnum.’
Artemidorus, in his Interpretation of Dreams, about
- Antiquité Expliquée, vol. iv. p. 50.
- Ency. of Antiquities. London, 1840.
- Commentar. in Epictetum, lib. iii.