There is a Tertullian quote in one of the editions of Gibbon (see the asterisked note here for the original).

Nam proximè ad lenonem damnando Christianam, potius quam ad leonem, confessi estis labem pudicitiae apud nos atrociorem omni poenâ et omni morte reputari, Apol. capult.

I searched and found the Tertullian quote, thus discovering that the "Apol. capult." isn't part of the quote. The "Apol." is for Apologeticus, the source of the quote.

What I can't find is the "capult." I've done quite a bit of searching, and I can't find that word in any Latin dictionary, nor can I find it as an abbreviation (in case that period is doing double-duty).

Is "capult" a word or an abbreviation, if the latter what is it an abbreviation for, and what does it mean in this context?

  • 2
    Could it perhaps be a typesetting error for "caput 1", that is, chapter 1 of the Apologeticus?
    – Draconis
    Feb 28, 2021 at 22:00

1 Answer 1


I'm guessing it's probably a typographical error. The actual passage comes from chapter 50 (caput L). Originally it might have been spelled "caput l" and somewhere along the way it might have been transposed into "capult."

There is no Latin word capult nor is there any abbreviation for it that I can find.

  • Good grief. The site I found the quote on only showed a small section of the text at a time, and it was the 10/11/12/13 smaller numbers. I didn't see the chapter#, or I might have (more likely my wife, who has some Latin) been able to put that together. Thanks very much!
    – vr8ce
    Feb 28, 2021 at 23:32

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