Dr Neil Stanley Independent Sleep Expert
BACK Henricus Petraeus and Abraham Vechner, Agonismata . . . (Marburg, 1618), 172; here  Note there is an occurrence of use of ‘secundo somno’ seemingly missed by Ekirch “Cur primus somnus fortior quam secundus? quia in principio major vaporum copia , qui spiritus animales magis circumsepiunt ac cogunt. in secundo somno vapores magis sunt discussi & spiritus rursus instaurati.” Ugo Benzi, Scriptum de somno et vigilia, Gianfranco Fioravanti and Antonella Idato, eds. (Siena, 1991), 4; Christian Philippus Brinck, Dodecas thesium inauguralium juridicarum de somno (Basil, [1669]). here Having ‘read’ the entire document I am unable to find any occurrence of the phrase ‘primo somno’ or any of its derivatives. D. P. Simpson, Cassell's Latin Dictionary (London, 1982), 128; here concubius -a -um (concombo) relating to sleep found only in the phrase concubia nocte Cic., Liv., (or noctu concubia, Enn.) at the time of men’s first sleep, at dead of night. N as subt. concubium -i, the time of the first sleep: PL. Perhaps interesting is the fact that an earlier edition of the Dictionary (1907) merely gives  here  “concubia nocte, in the dead of night”  Cicero, De Senectute, De Amicitia, De Divinatione, William Armistead Falconer, trans. (Cambridge, 1964), 287; here  “Cum duo quidam Arcades familiares iter una facerent et Megaram venissent, alterum ad cauponem devertisse, ad hospitem alterum. qui ut cenati quiescerent, concubia nocte visum esse in somnis ei, qui erat in hospitio, illum alterum orare, ut subveniret, quod sibi a caupone interitus pararetur; eum primo perterritum somnio surrexisse;” This is translated as “Two friends from Arcadia who were taking a journey together came to Megara, and one traveller put up at an inn and the second went to the home of a friend. After they had eaten supper and retired, the second traveller, in the dead of the night, dreamed that his companion was imploring him to come to his aid, as the innkeeper was planning to kill him.” Note that this not a usage that is necessarily equivalent to ‘first sleep’ Tacitus in Five Volumes, Clifford H. Moore and John Jackson, trans. (Cambridge, Mass., 1969), 2: 446,  here  “Vitellianus miles socordi custodia clausos circumdedit ; eoque concubia nocte suos liberos Sabinus et Domitianum fratris filium in Capitolium accivit, misso per neglectaad Flavianos duces nuntio qui circumsideri ipsos et, ni^ subveniretur, artas res nuntiaret.” The English translation of which is then given on page 447 “While the Vitellians besieged Sabinus and his companions they kept only a careless watch; therefore in the depth of night Sabinus called his own sons and his nephew Domitian into the Capitol.” Note that this not a usage that is necessarily equivalent to ‘first sleep’ 3: 310; here  “et nocte concubia vexillum in domo Germanici situm flagitare occipiunt, concursuque ad ianuam facto,” The English translation of which is then given on page 311 “Before the night was far advanced, they began to shout for the colours kept in Germanicus' quarters.” Note that this not a usage that is necessarily equivalent to ‘first sleep’ Livy with an English Translation in Fourteen Volumes, F. G. Moore, trans. (Cambridge, Mass., 1966), 6: 372; here  “Hannibal concubia nocte movit” Translated as “Hannibal broke camp early in the night (1 i.e. at the time of the first sound sleep, not yet intempesta nocte (toward midnight) ; Cicero de Div. I. 57 ; Macrobius I. iii. 15.” Note that Hannibal and his men were not asleep and that this was merely the ‘time of the first sound sleep’ not the time of ‘first sleep’ as conceptualised by Ekirch Plautus with an English Translation, Paul Nixon, trans., 5 vols. (London, 1960), 5: 182; here “Syc. Quia, pater, si ante lucem ire occipias a meo primo nomine, concubium sit noctis prius quam ad postremum perveneris.” The English translation of which is then given on page 183 “Swindl. Well, father, if you set forth before daylight from the first part of my name, it would take you till bed- time to reach the end of it.” “before daylight” does not fit the conception of ‘first sleep’ put forward by Ekirch Pliny, Natural History, with an English Translation in Ten Volumes, W. H. S. Jones, trans. (Cambridge, Mass., 1963), 8: 254; here “alii sanguine et eerebro eius utuntur cum vino nigro, alii excocunt ipsum et nocte concubia in plumbeum vas condunt.” he English translation of which is then given on page 255 “Some use a raven's blood and brains added to dark wine; others thoroughly boil the raven itself and store it away at bed time in a vessel of lead.” “at bed time” does not fit the conception of ‘first sleep’ put forward by Ekirch Paulus Orosius, Historiarum adversum paganos libri VII, Marie-Pierre Arnaud-Lindet, trans., 3 vols. (Paris, 1990–91), 2: book 4, cap. 18; here “Scipio in Africa adgressus hyberna Poenoruin atque alia Numidarum, quae utraque haud procul ab Ulica erant, nocte concubia fecit incendi.”  Jacobus Andreas Crusius, De nocte et nocturnis officiis . . . (Bremae, 1660), 44; here “Vulgo nox dividi folet a nonnullis in partes feptom : In Crepusculum , Primam sacem, Concubium, Noctem intempestam, Gallicinium, Conticinium, Diluculum sive auroram.”  Macrobius, The Saturnalia, Percival Vaughan Davies, trans. (New York, 1969), 42.here  “17. Reliqua autem verba quae Avieno nostro nova visa sunt veterum nobis sunt testimoniis adferenda. Ennius enim, nisi cui videtur inter nostrae aetatis politiores munditias respuendus, noctu concubia dixit his versibus: Qua Galli furtim noctu summa arcis adorti Moenia concubia, vigilesque repente cruentant. 18 Quo in loco animadvertendum est non solum quod noctu concubia, sed quod etiam qua noctu dixerit.” I find it unbelievable that Ekirch makes now makes no reference to the varying interpretations as to their meaning that have been given for these two phrases over the years. For instance ‘primo somno’ has been interpreted in a number of ways (for a comprehensive discussion see Aeneidea, Or, Critical, Exegetical, and Aesthetical Remarks on the Aeneis: With a Personal Collation of All the First Class Mss., Upwards of One Hundred Second Class Mss., and All the Principal Editions, Volume 1 James Henry Williams and Norgate, 1873, 707-718 here) 1813 470. Primo somno. Dr. Trapp translates this, — In the first repose by night betray' d; and Mr. Strahan,—Betray' d in their first sleep. But this gives one an idea of the beginning of the night; whereas Homer says it was towards the approach of the morning, —Il. X.251. And that Virgil was not forgetful of this circumstance, appears from the. episode of Nisus and Euryalus, which is plainly an imitation of that of Diomede and Ulysses in Homer, where he particularly marks the time of their adventure to have been about the dawn of the morning,— lux inimica propinquat. ᴁn . XI. 355. Thei-efore Rureus, more consistently, takes primo somno to mean the first night, namely, the first night that Rhesus slept in the Trojan camp; somnus being put for night, Georg. I. 208. Staughton here  1869 “by the first sleep;” i.e., the sleep of the first night after his arrival” Searing here 1876 ‘Primo somno is proved by a number of instances (2. 268, 5. 857) to mean ‘in their first and deepest sleep;’ not, as Wagn. thinks, the first time they slept at Troy. ‘Prodita,’ betrayed to him, and so surprised. Possibly Henry may be right in making ‘somno’ instrumental, ‘betrayed by sleep’’. Conington here 1881 ‘primo prodits somno. " Betrayed by the first (and deepest) sleep." A beautiful idea. What was done during sleep is called a betrayal by sleep itself’. Anthon here 1884  ‘Primo somno, ' by the first sleep ', i.e., either (1) the sleep of the first night after his arrival, or (2) the first—and so deepest—sleep’. Wetherell here 1892 ‘primo etc through which betrayed in their first (and so soundest) sleep’ Papillon  here 1894 ‘primo somno, by their first sleep, which was the deepest’ Walpole here  1896 ‘Primo somno of time: "in their first sleep" i.e. in their deepest sleep’ Henderson and Hegerty here  1897 ‘primo sumno,—we may trans. either 'in' or 'by';the first sleep is the deepest’. Robertson here 1900 ‘primo. .. somno maybe either temp. or instr. abl.; the attack took place on the very night of his arrival’. Knapp here  1901 ‘primo, abl. sing. m. of primus, -a, -um, superl. formed frum the prop. prae or pro (com- parative prior) ; qualifies somno. Primo may be taken in two ways: (I) as a descriptive attribute of somno = lit. first, signifying that the night was the first spent near Troy by Rhesus, and so the sleep of that night actually the first; (2) as a partitive attribute, = the first (i.e. the earliest and soundest) steep, in which Rhesus was most likely to be surprised; most commentators prefer the latter, though in Homer it is late in the night when the Greeks surprise Rhesus’ Maclardy here 1902  ‘primo prodita somno * betrayed by earliest slumber.' The earliest sleep is the deepest’ (cf. 2. 268)’ Page here 1904 ‘Primo Somno i.e on the first night after entering Trojan territory’ Bennett here 1906 ‘primo...somno ‘first sleep’ i.e. ‘deep sleep’ the first slumber being the deepest’ Carter here 1916 ‘primo somno, not as some take it on the first night of their arrival, but 'in their first sleep,' which is soundest’. Jerram here 1917 ‘primo somno: trans, by 'in' or posibly 'by'; the first sleep is the deepest’. Curruthers and Robertson here 1919 ‘primo somno: First (i.e. deepest) sleep’. Fairclough and Brown here 1919 ‘primo somno: best taken as abl. of means; betrayed by their first sleep’ Burton here See also here; here; here; here; here; here; here; here; here; here; here; here; here Note that a number of the interpretations actually show that ‘first sleep’ is merely the deepest sleep, what we now know as deep Slow Wave Sleep and the key to the myth of segmented sleep. With regards to the  phrase ‘concubia nocte’, a myriad of other sources do not support the two translation given by Ekirch i.e.  ‘at the dead of night’ or ‘the first part of the night’ A Latin Dictionary. Founded on Andrews' edition of Freund's Latin dictionary. revised, enlarged, and in great part rewritten by. Charlton T. Lewis, Ph.D. and. Charles Short, LL.D. 1879. here  “concŭbĭus , a, um, adj. concubo, I.of or belonging to lying in sleep, or to the time of sleep. I. As adj. only in the connection concubiā nocte (rarely: nocte concubiā, nocte in concubiā, noctu concubiā; v. the foll.), at the time of the first sleep, in the first sleep, Sisenn. ap. Non. p. 91, 22 (primi somni, Non.); Cic. Div. 1, 27, 57; Liv. 25, 9, 8; Tac. H. 3, 69; Just. 22, 8, 8: “nocte concubiā,” Tac. A. 1, 39: “nocte in concubiā,” Plin. 29, 6, 34, § 110: noctu concubiā, Enn. ap. Macr. S. 1, 4 (Ann. v. 170 Vahl.).— II. As subst.: concŭbĭum , ii, n. (sc. tempus), that part of the night in which the first sleep falls upon men: “si ante lucem occupias ... concubium sit noctis prius quam, etc.,” Plaut. Trin. 4, 2, 44: “concubium appellarunt, quod omnes fere tunc cubarent,” Varr. L. L. 6, § 7 Müll.; cf. id. ib. 7, § 78 ib.; Censor. de Die Nat. 24; Macr. S. 1, 3 fin.; Serv. ad Verg. A. 2, 268.” Latin Synonyms, with Their Different Significations: And Examples Taken from the Best Latin Authors Jean Baptiste Gardin Dumesnil 1825 here “Concubia nox. Intempesta nox. Concubia nox, (cubare cum) when people are in bed and in their first sleep. Qui ut ccenati quicscerent, concubia nocte visum est in soumis ei qui erat in hospitio, &c. Cic. — Nox intempesta, (non tempus, because the time of the night is not employed in working,) at an unseasonable time of the night. Ñocte intempesta nostram devenit do- mum. Liv. Repente nocte intempesta servorum armatorum fit con- cursus. Cic.” Dictionary of Latin Synonymes: For the Use of Schools and Private Students Ludwig Ramshorn Francis Lieber 1841 here Nox concubia, the time of night, when one has laid down to sleep, hence the name; No x inte mp est a, the late night, inasmuch as it is a time unfit for business (properly, untimely night): Concubia nocte visum est in somnis. Cic. Re- pente, nocte intempesta, servorum armatorum fit concur- sus. A copious and critical Latin-English lexicon, founded on the larger Latin-German lexicon of Dr. William Freund: with additions and corrections from the lexicons of Gesner, Facciolati, Scheller, Georges, etc by Andrews, E. A.  Freund, William, 1806-1894.  1850 New York, Harper & brothers here concubins- o> urn, adj. [concubo] Of or belonging to lying in sleep, or to the time of sleep, Thus only (but class.) in the connection concubia nocte, or eubat. concubium, 7i. (sc. tempus) for that part of the night in which the first sleep falls upon men : "concubium appellarunt, quod orance fere tunc cubarent," Ver. L. L. 6, 2, 53; cf. id. ib. 7, 4, 95; Censor, do Die nat 24 ; Macr. Sat 1, 3 ßn. ; Serv. Virg. A. 2, 268 ; Adam's Antiq. 2, p. 7. — a. Con cubia nocte, At the time of the first sleep, in the first sleep, Sisenn. in Non. 91, 2Й (•lprimi somni," Non.); Cic. Div. 1, 27, 57 ; Liv. 25, 9 ; Tac. H. 3, 69 ; Just 22, 8, 8 : nocte concubia, Tac. A. 1, 39 : nocbu in concubia, Plin. 29, 6, 24. — * b. Concu bium, The time of the first sleep: concubi um sit noctis priusquam ad postremum perveneris, Plaut Trin, 4, 2, 44 ; also quoted in Var. L. L. 7, 4, 95. — Whence diff., 2. Concubium, ii, n. = coneubitus, Coition (perh. only in tlie two follg. cxs.), Ena in Non. 342, 23 ; Gell. 9, 10, I Latin: a structural approach Waldo E. Sweet, Ruth Swan Craig, Gerda M. Seligson 1966 here ‘concubia nocte = prima nocte; early in the night’ Latin for the Illiterati, Modern Guide to an Ancient Language Jon R. Stone 2009 here “Concubia nocte: at the dead of night” There are a number of other examples here Plautus: Trinummus  884  “Sycophanta:  Quia, pater, si ante lucem ire occipias a mio primo nomine concubium sit noctis prius quam ad postremum perveneris.” Sycophant: Because, sir, my name is so long that if you were to start at the beginning of it before dawn it would be bedtime before you could get to the end of it. Cicero: De divinatione 1.27 “Qui ut cenati quiescerent, concubia nocte visum esse in somnis ei, qui erat in hospitio, illum alterum orare, ut subveniret, quod sibi a caupone interitus pararetur.” After they had eaten supper and retired, the second traveller in the first sleep of night, dreamed that his companion was imploring him to come to his aid, as the innkeeper was planning to kill him. Seneca the elder: Controversiae 7.1.27 “nox erat concubia, et Omnia, iudices, canentia (sub) sideribus muta errant” it was the first sleep of night and all singing things, judges, were silent beneath the stars Valerius Maximus: Factorum et dictorum memorabilium 1.5.4 “At Caecilia Metelli, dum sororis filiae, adultae aetatis virgini, more prisco nocte concubia nuptiale petit omen, ipsa fecit” But Caecilia, wife of Metellus, while at the first sleep of night was seeking a marriage omen for her sister’s daughter, a young girl of marriageable age, created one herself Valerius Maximus: Factorum et dictorum memorabilium 1.7.7 “ubi concubia nocte cum sollicitudinibus et curis mente sopita in lectulo iaceret, existimavit ad se venire hominem ingentis magnitudinis, coloris nigri, squalidum barba et capillo inmisso” In the first sleep of night he was lying in bed, his mind exhausted with worries and cares, when he dreamed that a huge man, with dark skin, an unkempt beard and long hair, was coming towards him Valerius Maximus: Factorum et dictorum memorabilium 2.4.5 “ac luntre Ostiam petens nocte concubia ad Martium campum appulit” and setting off for Ostia in a small boat he landed at the Campus Martius at the first sleep of night Tacitus: Histories 3.69 “eoque concubia nocte suos liberos Sabinus et Domitianum fratris filium in Capitolium accivit” thus in the first sleep of night Sabinus was able to bring his children and Domitian, his brother’s son, onto the Capitol Florus: Epitome of Roman history 2.13 “adeo impatiens erat, ut ad arcessendos eos ardente ventis mari, nocte concubia, speculatorio navigio solus ire temptaverit.” [Caesar] was so impatient that, though a gale was raging at sea, he attempted to cross at bedtime alone in a light reconnoitring boat Fronto: Ad M Caesarem 2.6 “id vespera et concubia nocte, dum se intempesta nox ut ait M Porcius, praecipitat, eodem modo perseverat.” this continues the same during the evening and the first sleep of night, until, as M. Porcius says, the dead of night falls swiftly down Apuleius: Metamorphoses, 2.25 “animum meum permulcebam cantationibus, cum ecce crepusculum et nox provecta et nox altior et dein concubia altiora et iam nox intempesta.” As I sought to soothe my spirits by singing, twilight shaded into night and night grew deeper and deeper until it was past bedtime and already dead of night. Justin: Epitome of the Philippic history of Pompeius Trogus, 22.8.8 “concubia nocte solus a castris cum Archagatho filio profugit.” During the first sleep of night [Agathocles] slipped out of the camp accompanied only by his son Archagathus Ammianus Marcellinus: Res Gestae 18.5.3 “lembis inpositus cum omni penatium dulcedine nocte concubia transfretat” he embarked in boats with all his loved ones and was ferried across during the first sleep of night Orosius: Historiarum adversum paganos libri 4.18.18 “Scipio in Africa adgressus hiberna Poenorum atque alia Numidarum, quae utraque haud procul ab Utica erant, nocte concubia fecit incendi.” In Africa Scipio advanced on the winter quarters of the Punic troops and those of the Numidians, both of which were not far from Utica, and had them burnt in the first sleep of night Sidonius Apollinaris: Letters 2.2.14 “Hic iam quam volupe auribus insonare cicadas meridie concrepantes, ranas crepusculo incumbente blaterantes, cygnos atque anseres concubia nocte clangentes, intempesta gallos gallinacios concinentes, oscines corvos” How charming it is here to have echoing in one’s ears the midday chirp of cicadas, the croaking of frogs in the twilight, the honking of swans and geese at the time of first sleep of night, the crowing of cocks in the dead of night At this remove in time it is impossible to know conclusively what the ancient authors truly meant by the phrases "primo somno" and "concubia nocte”. However it would appear that there are legitimate reasons for the various interpretations given. This coupled with the problems set out in the other sections dealing with the specific authors I believe casts a considerable degree of doubt that the idea of ‘first sleep’ as described by Ekirch actually existed in the Ancient world. BACK
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