I'm trying to understand the syntax/meaning in the following sentence:

The poet was distinguished by concise treatment with the paraphernalia of fire that were characteristic of the genre.

My understanding of the sentence would require "treatment of", but then I'm wondering whether I'm missing something.

Full context:

Asclepiades of Samos, also called Sicelides (fl. 300-270 BC). Inventor of the Alexandrian erotic epigram (see ALEXANDRIA; MUSEUM), distinguished by concise and witty treatment with the paraphernalia of fire and Erotes that were to be so characteristic of later erotic epigram.

This being the article on Asclepiades of Samos in the Oxford Classical Dictionary.

  • 1
    There's some flexibility, but I'd use of, too. But fretting over a small word someone else used can be exhausting. However, I once earned 10 points on a college final for assembling 20 microscopic edits in the professor's textbook new edition. He asked for it. Mar 16 at 22:08
  • Ha - a good catch, then! To be honest, I wouldn't be fretting over it if I didn't have to translate it - have to make sure. Thanks a lot.
    – katerina
    Mar 16 at 22:16
  • 2
    What is the surrounding context? What is the source?
    – alphabet
    Mar 16 at 22:34
  • Does the paraphernalia need treatment? Or is something treated with the paraphernalia? or does the paraphernalia accompany the treatment like daytime TV accompanies bed-rest?
    – Stuart F
    Mar 16 at 23:17
  • 1
    – Hot Licks
    Mar 17 at 1:37

1 Answer 1


Do we ever use "treatment with" instead of "treatment of"?


  1. Treatment with antibiotics was ineffective.

  2. Treatment of the disease was particularly cruel.

With and of are prepositions, which, followed by an NP, form an adjunct.

With introduces a contemporaneous instrument.

Of introduces an association with the previous noun phrase.

To simplify the example and create a sentence:

[The picture is of] Asclepiades of Samos, inventor of a form of epigram that is distinguished by concise and witty treatment [of the subject] together with/accompanied by the paraphernalia of fire and Erotes that were to be so characteristic of the later erotic epigram.

  • True; and this is what makes this so very confusing. Perhaps the text means - more or less - that Asclepiades was distinguished for the treatment (of something I have yet to figure out) with the paraphernalia etc. But as I said I just had to check whether the two prepositions might be interchangeable in some cases.
    – katerina
    Mar 17 at 11:18
  • I have added to my answer.
    – Greybeard
    Mar 17 at 14:54
  • In other words, you take the paraphernalia not as the means by which he treated the epigram, but as an accompaniment, so to speak. Will have to think about it. Thanks a lot.
    – katerina
    6 hours ago

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