Kinyras: The Divine Lyre

  Franklin, John Curtis. 2016. Kinyras: The Divine Lyre. Hellenic Studies Series 70. Washington, DC: Center for Hellenic Studies.

Conventions and Abbreviations

To keep the main text as accessible as possible, I have presented all Greek in transliteration (retaining accentuation as several key points depend on this); more specialized philological issues are dealt with in the footnotes, where I have not always translated Greek and Latin.

Following Assyriological convention, Akkadian words are given in italics, Sumerian in expanded spacing, logograms in capital letters, and determinatives in superscript. I have usually not Romanized ancient Greek names; arbitrary exceptions include most place-names.

References to ANE and Greco-Roman sources follow the abbreviations below or are spelled out in full, to be as intelligible as possible for an intended triple audience in Classics, Near Eastern Studies, and (Ethno)Musicology. Specific editions of Greco-Roman authors are given only when the text is questionable, or its numeration seemed to need clarification; commentators are sometimes cited by last name only.

I have not achieved absolute consistency in the use of Roman vs. Arabic numerals, commas and full-stops, etc., though any given source should be treated consistently throughout (except for minor discrepancies with Professor Heimpel’s usage in “Balang-Gods”). The treatment of inscription-collections may cause confusion: ICS 94 refers to text 94 in the collection, but ICS:399 to page 399.

All dates are BCE unless otherwise noted. These are mostly conventional, with academic disagreements not affecting the argument unless otherwise noted. For the sake of consistency I have followed Kuhrt 1995 for the ANE (but KH for the Hittites); and the OCD for the Greco-Roman world.


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AJC = Meshorer, Y. 1982. Ancient Jewish Coinage. 2 vols. Dix Hills.

AMEL = Norborg, Å. 1995. Ancient Middle Eastern Lyres. Musikmuseets Skrifter 25. Stockholm.

ANET = Pritchard, D. 1969. Ancient Near Eastern Texts Relating to the Old Testament. 3rd ed. Princeton.

AOM = Wellesz, E., 1957. Ancient and Oriental Music. London.

AP = Hellbing, L. 1979. Alasia Problems. Göteborg.

ARAB = Luckenbill, D. D. 1926–1927. Ancient Records of Assyria and Babylonia. 2 vols. Chicago.

ARET = Archivi reali di Ebla. Testi. Rome, 1985–.

ARM = Archives royales de Mari. Paris, 1950–.

ARTU = de Moor, J. C. 1987. An Anthology of Religious Texts from Ugarit. Leiden.

Aspects = Karageorghis, V. 2006. Aspects of Everyday Life in Ancient Cyprus: Iconographic Representations. Nicosia.

AT = Wiseman, D. J. 1953. The Alalakh Tablets. London.

BÉ = Bulletin Épigraphique, published in Revue des Études Grecques.

BIN = Babylonian Inscriptions in the Collection of James B. Nies. New Haven, 1917–.

BM = Museum siglum of the British Museum, London.

BMC = A Catalogue of Greek Coins in the British Museum. 29 vols. London, 1873–1927.

BPOA = Biblioteca del Proximo Oriente Antiguo. Madrid, 2006–.

BT = Epstein, I., ed. 1978. The Babylonian Talmud. 18 vols. London.

Bustron = Mas Latrie, R. de 1886. Florio Bustron: Historia overo commentarii de Cipro. Collection de documents inédits sur l’histoire de France. Mélanges historiques 5. Paris. Reprinted, with an introduction by G. Grivaud, in 1998 (Th. Papadopoullos, Leukosia; Kypriologikē Bibliothēkē 8).

CA = Powell, J. U. 1925. Collectanea Alexandrina. Oxford.

CAAC = Karageorghis, V. 1991–1999. The Coroplastic Art of Ancient Cyprus. 6 vols. Nicosia.

CAD = The Assyrian Dictionary of the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago. Chicago, 1956–.

CAH = The Cambridge Ancient History, editions as noted.

CANE = Sasson, J. M., ed. 1995. Civilizations of the Ancient Near East. 4 vols. New York.

CAT = Dietrich, M. et al. 1995. The Cuneiform Alphabetic Texts from Ugarit, Ras Ibn Hani and Other Places (KTU). 2nd enl. ed. Abhandlungen zur Literatur Alt-Syrien-Palastinas und Mesopotamiens 8. Münster.

CCSF = Karageorghis, V. and J. des Gagniers. 1974. La Céramique chypriote de style figuré. Supplément, 1979. 2 vols. Rome.

CDA = Black, J. et al. 1999. A Concise Dictionary of Akkadian. SANTAG: Arbeiten und Untersuchungen zur Keilschriftkunde 5. Harrassowitz.

CEWAL = Woodard, R. G., ed. 2004. The Cambridge Encyclopedia of the World’s Ancient Languages. Cambridge.

Chorograffia = Étienne de Lusignan, Chorograffia et breve historia universale (1573); references both by original pagination and section number (§) in SHC 10.

CIL = Corpus inscriptionum Latinarum. Berlin, 1863–.

CIS = Corpus inscriptionum Semiticarum. 5 vols. Paris, 1881–1962.

CLAM = Cohen, M. E. 1988. The Canonical Lamentations of Ancient Mesopotamia. 2 vols. Potomac.

CPG = von Leutsch, E. L. and F. W. Schneidewin, eds. 1965–1991. Corpus paroemiographorum Graecorum. 2 vols. Hildesheim.

CS = Hallo, W. W. and K. L. Younger, eds. 1997–2002. The Context of Scripture. 3 vols. Leiden.

CT = Cuneiform Texts from Babylonian Tablets in the British Museum. London, 1896–.

CTA = Herdner, A. 1963. Corpus des tablettes en cunéiformes alphabétiques découvertes à Ras Shamra-Ugarit de 1929 à 1939. Mission de Ras Shamra 10/Bibliotheque Archeologique et Historique 79. Paris.

CTH = Laroche, E. 1971. Catalogue des textes hittites. Paris.

CUSAS = Cornell University Studies in Assyriology and Sumerology. Bethesda, 2007–.

DCPIL = Lawergren, B. 1998. “Distinctions among Canaanite, Philistine, and Israelite Lyres, and their Global Lyrical Contexts.” Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research 309:41–68.

DDD = van der Toorn, K. et al., eds. 1999. Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible. 2nd ed. Leiden.

DDUPP = Lipinski, E. 1995. Dieux et déesses de l’univers phénicien et punique. Leuven.

Description = Étienne de Lusignan: Description de tout l’isle de Cypre (1580); references by page number in Papadopoullos 2004, vol. 2.

DGAC = Egetmeyer, M. 2010. Le Dialecte grec ancien de Chypre. Tome I: Grammaire; Tome II: Répertoire des inscriptions en syllabaire chypro-grec. Berlin.

DJD = Discoveries in the Judaean Desert. Oxford, 1955–.

DM = Aura Jorro, F. 1985. Diccionario micénico. 2 vols. Madrid.

DMG = Ventris, M. and J. Chadwick. 1973. Documents in Mycenaean Greek. 2nd ed. Cambridge.

DP = Allotte de la Fuÿe, M. F. 1908–1920. Documents présargoniques. 5 vols. Paris.

DUL = del Olmo Lete, G. and J. Sanmartín. 2003. A Dictionary of the Ugaritic Language in the Alphabetic Tradition. Leiden.

EA = El-Amarna tablet. See Knudtzon 1907–1915; Rainey 1978; Moran 1992.

EFH = West, M. L. 1997. The East Face of Helicon. Oxford.

EGF = Davies, M. 1988. Epicorum Graecorum fragmenta. Göttingen.

Emprunts = Masson, E. 1967. Recherches sur les plus anciens emprunts sémitiques en grec. Études et Commentaries 67. Paris.

EQ = McAuliffe, J. D., ed. 2001–2006. Encyclopaedia of the Qurʾān. 6 vols. Leiden.

ETCSL = J. Black et al., eds. Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature (

ExcCyp = Hogarth, D. G. et al. 1888. “Excavations in Cyprus, 1887-88. Paphos, Leontari, Amargetti.” Journal of Hellenic Studies 9:147–271.

FGE = Page, D. L. 1981. Further Greek Epigrams. Cambridge.

FGH = Jacoby, F. 1923–1958. Fragmente der griechischen Historiker. 3 vols. Berlin.

FHG = Müller, C. 1841–1870. Fragmenta historicorum Graecorum. 5 vols. Paris.

FM 3 = Durand, J.-M. and M. Guichard. 1997. “Les Rituels de Mari.” In Recueil d’études à la memoire de Marie-Thérèse Barrelet (eds. D. Charpin and J.-M. Durand). 19–78. Mémoires de NABU 4/Florilegium Marianum 3. Paris.

FM 4 = Ziegler, N. 1999. Le Harem de Zimrî-Lîm: La Population féminine des palais d’après les archives royales de Mari. Mémoires de NABU 5/Florilegium Marianum 4. Paris.

FM 9 = Ziegler, N. 2007. Les Musiciens et la musique d’après les archives royals de Mari. Mémoires de NABU 10/Florilegium Marianum 9. Paris.

GGM = Müller, C. F. W. 1855–1861. Geographi Graeci minores. 2 vols. Paris.

GIBM = Newton, C. T. et al., eds. 1874–1916. The Collection of Greek Inscriptions in the British Museum. 5 vols. London.

GMO = Grove Music Online, containing updates and emendations to NG.

GMW = Barker, A. 1984–1989. Greek Musical Writings. 2 vols. Cambridge.

GR = Burkert, W. 1985. Greek Religion. Cambridge, Massachusetts.

HBMH = Wellesz, E. 1961. A History of Byzantine Music and Hymnography. 2nd ed. Oxford.

HC = Hill, G. F. 1949. A History of Cyprus, Volume I. To the Conquest by Richard Lion Heart. Cambridge.

HIOP = Mitford, T. B. 1961. “The Hellenistic Inscriptions of Old Paphos.” Annual of the British School at Athens 56:1–41.

HKm = Schuol, M. 2004. Hethitische Kultmusik. Eine Untersuchung der Instrumental- und Vokalmusik anhand hethitischer Ritualtexte und von archäologischen Zeugnissen. Orient-Archäologie 14. Rahden.

HLC = Barton, G. A. 1905–1914. Haverford Library Collection of Cuneiform Tablets or Documents from the Temple Archives of Telloh. 3 vols. Philadelphia.

HMI = Sachs, C. 1940. The History of Musical Instruments. New York.

HUS = Watson, W. G. E. and N. Wyatt, eds. 1999. Handbook of Ugaritic Studies. Leiden.

I.Kourion = Mitford, T. B. 1971. The Inscriptions of Kourion. Philadelphia.

I.Paphos = Cayla, J.-B. 2003. Les Inscriptions de Paphos: Corpus des inscriptions alphabétiques de Palaipaphos, de Néa Paphos et de la chôra paphienne. PhD dissertation, Université Paris-Sorbonne.

I.Rantidi = Mitford, T. B. and O. Masson. 1983. The Syllabic Inscriptions of Rantidi-Paphos. Konstanz.

I.Thess.I = Decourt, J.-C. 1995. Inscriptions de Thessalie I. Les Cités de la vallée de l’Énipeus. Athens.

ICGSL = Moscati, S. et al. 1964. An Introduction to the Comparative Grammar of the Semitic Languages: Phonology and Morphology. Wiesbaden.

ICS = Masson, O. 1983. Les Inscriptions chypriotes syllabiques: Recueil critique et commenté. 2nd ed. Paris.

IEG = West, M. L. 1989–1992. Iambi et elegi Graeci ante Alexandrum cantati. 2nd ed. 2 vols. Oxford.

IG = Inscriptiones Graecae. 12 vols. 1873–1939.

IGRom. = Inscriptiones Graecae ad res Romanas pertinentes. 3 vols. 1906–1927.

ISMP = Nakassis, D. 2013. Individuals and Society in Mycenaean Pylos. Leiden.

ITT = Inventaire des tablettes de Tello conservée au musée impérial Ottoman. Paris, 1910–.

IΚ = Inschriften griechischer Städte aus Kleinasien. 1972–.

KAI = Röllig, W. and H. Donner. 1966–1969. Kanaanäische und aramäische Inschriften. 2nd ed. 3 vols. Berlin.

KAV = Schroeder, O. 1920. Keilschrifttexte aus Assur verschiedenen Inhalts. Wissenschaftliche Veröffentlichungen der Deutschen Orient-Gesellschaft 35. Leipzig.

KBo = Keilschrifttexte aus Boghazköi. Leipzig, 1916–.

KH = Bryce, T. 2005. The Kingdom of the Hittites. 2nd ed. Oxford.

KN = Linear B tablet from Knossos.

KTU = Dietrich, M. et al. 1976. Die Keilalphabetischen Texte aus Ugarit, einschliesslich der keilalphabetischen Texte ausserhalb Ugarits. Alter Orient und Altes Testament 24. Kevelaer.

KUB = Keilschrifturkunden aus Boghazköi. Berlin, 1921–.

KwH = Smith, M. S. 1985. Kothar-wa-Hasis. The Ugaritic Kraftsman God. PhD dissertation, Yale University.

Kypris = Karageorghis, J. 2005. Kypris: The Aphrodite of Cyprus. Ancient Sources and Archaeological Evidence. Nicosia.

LBW = Lebas, P. and W. H. Waddington. 1870. Voyage archéologique en Grèce et en Asie Mineure, Vol. III. Paris.

LIMC = Ackermann, H. C. and J.-R. Gisler, eds. 1981–2009. Lexicon iconographicum mythologiae classicae. 8 vols. Zürich.

LJ = Ginzberg, L. 1909–1937. The Legends of the Jews. 7 vols. Philadelphia.

LS = Lewis, C. T. and C. Short. 1945. A Latin Dictionary. Oxford.

LSJ = Liddell, H. G. et al. 1940. A Greek-English Lexicon. 9th ed. Oxford.

LXX = Septuagint.

MAIP = Braun, J. 2002. Music in Ancient Israel/Palestine: Archaeological, Written, and Comparative Sources. Grand Rapids.

MgB = Besseler, H. and M. Schneider, eds. 1961–1989. Musikgeschichte in Bildern. 4 vols. Leipzig.

MGG = Finscher, L., ed. 1949–1979. Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart. Allgemeine Enzyklopädie der Musik. 2nd ed. 17 vols. Kassel.

MgP = Landau, O. 1958. Mykenisch-griechische Personennamen. Göteborg.

MMA = Museum siglum of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

MMAE = Manniche, L. 1991. Music and Musicians in Ancient Egypt. London.

MS = Tablet from the Marten Schoyen Collection.

MSG = Jan, K. von 1895. Musici scriptores Graeci: Aristoteles, Euclides, Nicomachus, Bacchius, Gaudentius, Alypius. Leipzig.

MSL = Landsberger, B., ed. 1937–2004. Materialien zum sumerischen Lexikon. 17 vols. Rome.

MT = Masoretic Text.

MVN = Materiali per il vocabolario neosumerico. Rome, 1974–.

MY = Linear B tablet from Mycenae.

NG = Sadie, S., ed. 2001. The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians. 2nd ed. 29 vols. London.

Ni = Tablet from Nippur in the Archaeological Museum, Istanbul.

Nik 1 = Nikol’skij, M. V. 1908. Dokumenty khozjajstvennoj otcetnosti drevnejsej epokci Khaldei iz sobranija N. P. Likhaceva. Drevnosti Vostocnyja 3/2. St. Petersburg.

NP = Cancik, H. and H. Schneider, eds. 2002–2006. Brill’s New Pauly: Encyclopaedia of the Ancient World: Antiquity. 15 vols. Leiden.

NPHP = Mlynarczyk, J. 1990. Nea Paphos in the Hellenistic Period. Nea Paphos 3. Warsaw.

NRSV = New Revised Standard Version.

OCD = Hornblower, S. and A. Spawforth, eds. 1999. The Oxford Classical Dictionary. 3rd ed. Oxford.

OLD = Glare, P. G. W. 1982. Oxford Latin Dictionary. Oxford.

OSG = Lightfoot, J. L. 2003. Lucian, On the Syrian Goddess. Oxford.

Pap.Oxy. = Grenfell, B. P. and A. S. Hunt, eds. 1898–. Oxyrhynchus Papyri.

Paphos = Maier, F. G. and V. Karageorghis. 1984. Paphos: History and Archaeology. Nicosia.

PBSB = Markoe, G. 1985. Phoenician Bronze and Silver Bowls from Cyprus and the Mediterranean. Berkeley.

PCG = Kassel, R. and C. Austin. 1983. Poetae comici Graeci. 8 vols. Berlin.

PDT 1 = Çig, M. et al. 1954. Die Puzris-Dagan-Texte der Istanbuler Archaologischen Museen Teil 1 (1–725). Annales Academiae Scientiarum Fennicae, Reihe B 92. Helsinki.

PEG = Bernabé, A. 1996–2007. Poetarum epicorum Graecorum: Testimonia et fragmenta. 2 vols. Bibliotheca scriptorum Graecorum et Romanorum Teubneriana. Leipzig.

PG = Migne, J.-P., ed. 1857–1887. Patrologiae cursus, series Graeca. 161 vols. Paris.

PGL = Lampe, G. W. H. 1961. A Patristic Greek Lexicon. Oxford.

PHG = Gabbay, U. 2014. Pacifying the Hearts of the Gods: Sumerian Emesal Prayers of the First Millennium BC. Heidelberger Emesal Studien 1. Wiesbaden.

PIW = Mowinckel, S. 1962. The Psalms in Israel’s Worship. 2 vols. Oxford.

PLG = Bergk, T. 1878–1882. Poetae lyrici Graeci. 4th ed. 4 vols. Leipzig.

PMG = Page, D. L. 1962. Poetae melici Graeci. Oxford.

PMGF = Davies, M. 1991. Poetarum melicorum Graecorum fragmenta. Vol. 1 Alcman Stesichorus Ibycus. Oxford.

PP = Lindgren, M. 1973. The People of Pylos: Prosopographical and Methodological Studies in the Pylos Archives. Boreas 3. Uppsala.

PPC = Knapp, A. B. 2008. Prehistoric and Protohistoric Cyprus: Identity, Insularity, and Connectivity. Oxford.

Princeton 1 = Sigrist, M. 1990. Tablettes du Princeton Theological Seminary: Epoque d’Ur III. Occasional Publications of the Samuel Noah Kramer Fund 10. Philadelphia.

PRU 5 = Virolleaud, C. 1965. Le Palais royal d’Ugarit. V: Textes en cunéiformes alphabétiques des archives sud, sud-ouest et du petit palais. Mission de Ras Shamra 11. Paris.

PTT = Bennett, E. L. and J.-P. Olivier. 1973–1976. The Pylos Tablets Transcribed. 2 vols. Rome.

PY = Linear B tablet from Pylos.

RCU = Pardee, D. 2002. Ritual and Cult at Ugarit. Writings from the Ancient World 10. Atlanta.

RE = Pauly, A. et al., eds. 1894–1972. Real-Encyclopädie der classischen Altertumswissenschaft. 34 vols. Stuttgart.

REG = Revue des études grecques

RIH = Tablet from Ras Ibn Hani.

RIME = Frayne, D. and D. O. Edzard, eds. 1984–. Royal Inscriptions of Mesopotamia. Early Periods. Toronto.

RlA = Ebeling, E. et al., eds. 1928—. Reallexikon der Assyriologie und vorderasiatischen Archäologie. Berlin.

RS = Tablet from Ras Shamra/Ugarit.

RTU = Wyatt, N. 2002. Religious Texts from Ugarit. 2nd ed. London.

SAM = Westenholz, J. G. et al., eds. 2007. Sounds of Ancient Music. Jerusalem.

SAT = Sigrist, M. 1993–. Sumerian Archival Texts. Bethesda.

SBH = Reisner, G. 1896. Sumerisch-babylonische Hymnen nach Thontafeln griechischer Zeit. Berlin.

SCE = Gjerstad, E. et al. 1934–. The Swedish Cyprus Expedition. Stockholm.

SEG = Supplementum epigraphicum Graecum. Amsterdam, 1923–.

SF = Deimel, A. 1923. Die Inschriften von Fara II: Schultexte aus Fara. Wissenschaftliche Veröffentlichung der Deutschen Orient-Gesellschaft 43. Leipzig.

SH = Parsons, P. J. and H. Lloyd-Jones. 1983. Supplementum Hellenisticum. Texte und Kommentare 11. Berlin.

SHC = Wallace, P. W. and A. G. Orphanides, eds. 1990. Sources for the Ηistory of Cyprus. Albany. Much the same material is collected in Chatzēiōannou 1971–2001, to which SHC contains cross-references.

SIAG = Maas, M. and J. Snyder. 1989. Stringed Instruments of Ancient Greece. New Haven.

SL = Lipinski, E. 2001. Semitic Languages: Outline of a Comparative Grammar. 2nd ed. Leuven.

SOM = Farmer, H. G. 1986. Studies in Oriental Music. 2 vols. Frankfurt am Main.

SURS = Clemens, D. M. 2001. Sources for Ugaritic Ritual and Sacrifice. I. Ugaritic and Ugarit Akkadian Texts. Alter Orient und Altes Testament 284/1. Münster.

TCL = Textes cunéiformes. Musées du Louvre. Paris, 1910–.

TGF = Snell, B. et al. 1971–1985. Tragicorum Graecorum fragmenta. 4 vols. Göttingen.

TH = Linear B tablet from Thebes.

TM = Tablet from Tell Mardikh/Ebla.

TPm = Pardee, D. 1988. Les Textes para-mythologiques de la 24e campagne (1961). Paris.

TR = Pardee, D. 2000. Les Textes rituels. Paris.

TSA = de Genouillac, H. 1909. Tablettes sumériennes archaïques. Matériaux pour servir à l’histoire de la société sumérienne. Paris.

TUT = Reisner, G. 1901. Tempelurkunden aus Telloh. Mittheilungen aus den orientalischen Sammlungen 16. Berlin.

UET = Ur Excavation Texts. London, 1928–.

UTI = Gomi, T. and F. Yildiz. 1988–2001. Die Umma-texte aus den Archäologischen Muséen zu Berlin. 6 vols. Bethesda.

VS = Vorderasiatische Schriftdenkmäler der Königlichen/Staatlichen Museen zu Berlin. Berlin, 1907–.

W = Tablet from Warka/Uruk.

YBC = Tablet in Yale Babylonian Collection.

YGC = Albright, W. F. 1968. Yahweh and the Gods of Canaan: A Historical Analysis of Two Contrasting Faiths. Garden City.

Cultural, Chronological, Linguistic, and Textual:

Akk. = Akkadian

ANE = Ancient Near East(ern)

Ar. = Arabic

Aram. = Aramaic

BA = Bronze Age

Can. = Canaanite

EBA = Early Bronze Age

Ebl. = Eblaitic

EIA = Early Iron Age

ED = Early Dynastic

Gk. = Greek

Hatt. = Hattic

Heb. = Hebrew

Hitt. = Hittite

Hurr. = Hurrian

IA = Iron Age

Lat. = Latin

LBA = Late Bronze Age

LC = Late Cypriot

Lin. B = Linear B

Luw. = Luwian

MA = Middle Assyrian

MB = Middle Babylonian

MBA = Middle Bronze Age

MH = Middle Hittite

MK = Middle Kingdom (Egypt)

Myc. = Mycenaean

N-A = Neo-Assyrian

NE = Near East(ern)

NK = New Kingdom (Egypt)

NK = New Kingdom (Egypt/Hittite)

N-S = Neo-Sumerian

OA = Old Assyrian

OAkk. = Old Akkadian

OB = Old Babylonian

OK = Old Kingdom (Egypt)

Pers. = Persian

Phoen. = Phoenician

P-S = Proto-Semitic

Pun. = Punic

Sum. = Sumerian

Ug. = Ugaritic

WS = West Semitic


* = reconstructed, hypothetical, or unattested form

| = line division (inscriptions, papyri)

/ = verse division

— /‿ = long/short syllable (verse)

// = phonetic value

√ = radical/root

[ ] = 1) editorial comment. 2) damaged area of tablet, inscription, or papyrus. 3) false attribution to ancient author (in footnotes, = ps.- in main text)

ca. = circa

col. = column(s)

DN = divine/god name

fig. = figure(s)

fl. = floruit/flourished

fr. or F = fragment(s)

κτλ = etc. (in Greek texts)

MS(S) = manuscript(s)

n = note(s)

no. = number(s)

obv. = obverse (of tablet)

p(p). = page(s)

PN = personal name

ps.- = pseudo-

rev. = reverse (of tablet)

Σ = scholion/scholia (to)

s.n. = no name

T = testimonium/a

TN = toponym/place-name

v.l. = variant reading