The Apparatus Criticus: Abbreviations and Conventions

Latin Meaning
a(nte) c(orrectionem)before correction (by a scribe or reader)
addub(itavit)wondered about (a conjecture)
agn(ovit)recognised, realised
al(ii/ias/ibi/iter)others / elsewhere / elsewhere / otherwise
alii alia (coniecerunt)(too many) others (to name) have made other (unstated) conjectures
alt(er)second (latter of two)
anor perhaps (used to introduce an editor’s tentative suggestion)
ap(ud)in (of one author being cited by another)
cet(eri)others (usually of the remaining mss)
cf. (=confer)compare
coll(ato etc.)comparing (a passage)
comm(entarius etc.)commentary
cont(inuavit)continued (esp. the attribution of dialogue)
corr(ectio/exit)correction / corrected
damn(avit)deleted as spurious
deest/desuntis/are missing (from one or more mss)
def(endit)defended (the transmitted text from emendation / deletion)
del(evit)deleted (as spurious)
det(eriores)worse manuscripts
dist(inxit)punctuated / separated by punctuation
dub(itanter)doubtfully (of non-committal conjectures)
ed(itiones/itores)editions / editors; edd. vett. = editores veteres; edd. pr. = editores priores
exc(idit)fell out (from the manuscript(s))
exp(unxit)expunged / deleted
expl(evit)filled (a lacuna)
fors(itan) / fort(e/asse)perhaps
γρ(άφεται)it is written (used of glosses)
h(ic) l(ocus)this passage / place (in the text)
h(aec/ic) v(ox/ersus)this word/line
i(n) m(argine)in the margin
i(n) r(asura)in an erasure
i(n) t(extu)in the text (as opposed to the margin)
ibid(em)in the same place
id(em)the same (person)
incip(it)‘it begins’: the opening header of a work / ms
incl(usit)enclosed (usually within brackets)
lac(una)a gap in text (caused in the manuscript transmission)
lect(io)a reading (i.e. something found in a manuscript)
l(inea/ae) pl. ll.line(s) (of text)
loc(us)place/passage (of text)
l(oco) c(itato)in the passage cited
malimI (the editor) would prefer (this tentative suggestion I don’t print)
m(anus)hand (of scribe or reader)
m(anus) r(ecentior)a more recent hand (of scribe or reader)
ms(s)(codex) manu scriptus = manuscript(s)
op(ere) cit(ato)in the work cited
p(agina) pl. (of printed books)
Π / Ppapyrus fragment (much more common in Greek texts)
p(ost) c(orrectionem)after correction (by a scribe or reader)
pap(irus)papyrus fragment
pler(ique)most (manuscripts / editors / scholars)
pos(uit)placed (in the text)
possis (e.g.)you could (read) (for example)
pr(imus etc.)first
prob(ante/avit)approving/ed (a conjecture)
q(uod) s(equitur)(and the text) which follows
rec(entior/es)more recent (esp. of manuscripts)
rel(iqui)the remaining (manuscripts)
Σscholion (much commoner in Greek texts)
s(upra) l(ineam)written above the (usual) line
s(upra)s(criptum) /sscr.written above a word/line
s(ub) v(oce)under the word entry (in a dictionary vel sim.)
s(i) v(era) l(ectio)if (this) is the true reading
scr(ipsi/t)wrote (often of an emendation)
secl(usit)bracketed off (usually as text out of place)
sim(ilia)similar (things)
spat(ium)space / gap (in manuscript)
stat(uit)marked (especially of lacunae)
suppl(evit)supplied (to fill a lacuna)
susp(icatus/a est)suspected
tempt(avit)tried / attempted (often of a conjecture)
test(e/ibus)on the testimony of (an author / scholar)
tr(ansposuit)transposed (i.e. moved some text to a diferent place)
trib(uit)attributed (to another speaker / author)
ult(imus etc.)last
unc(is) incl(usit)enclosed in brackets (as spurious or out of place)
ut vid(etur)as it seems (expressing uncertainty)
vulg(o)commonly, i.e. the lectio vulgata / textus receptus of an edition
v(ide) or vid(e)see
v(ersus) pl. vv.verses (of poetry)
v(aria) l(ectio)variant reading
vac(uus)empty (of space left in manuscript)

For most editions of Greek and Roman texts:

[       ] words deleted by the editor
[[    ]]words deleted by the scribe
<     >words added by the editor
†      (†)the transmitted text which cannot be right nor confidently corrected

For papyri and epigraphic texts:

[       ] words lost in damage: anything within them is conjectural
ạ ṿ ọ etc.the letter read is doubtful, as not enough ink/stone survives for certainty.