Latin, literally 'the removal of singular readings'.

The operation of textual criticism by which the so-called lectiones singulares (i.e. the secondary readings presented by a single witness only, and not belonging to the rest of the tradition) that have been singled out after recensio, are discarded on the ground that they they are not of any use for the reconstruction of the text (constitutio textus). Cf. Maas (1960, §8).

It would be safer to record all the lectiones singulares that are not trivial errors in the critical apparatus, both because they convey readings not attested anywhere else, and also because the recovery of a possible new witness may lead to a reinterpretation of them as non singulares. This procedure is especially crucial for the edition of mediaeval vernacular texts. Cf. among others, Brambilla Ageno (1975).


– Brambilla Ageno, Franca. 1975. L’edizione critica dei testi volgari. Padova: Antenore.
– Maas, Paul. 1960. Textkritik. 4th ed. Leipzig: Teubner. – 1st ed. 1927.

In other languages

Latin term used throughout.


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