Re: Verbal Aspect

Rod Decker (
Mon, 6 May 1996 06:44:39 -0500

Elizabeth wrote:

>I am currently writing a paper applying Porter's theses on verbal aspect to
>portions of Luke's gospel and wondering if anyone can help me.

There isn't a great deal more to be read than what you listed on the
subject, esp. as it relates to the discourse function of aspect. You didn't
mention Porter's "big one" on aspect (i.e., his published dissertation:
_Verbal Aspect in the Greek of the NT_ NY: Lang, 1989?). That is def. worth
reading. His _Idioms_ is only a sketch of the argument. You might also note
K. McKay, _A New Syntax of the Grek Verb with Reference to Verbal Aspect_
(title isn't quite right, but I don't have it at home; NY: Lang, 1994?).
There are also a number of journal articles by McKay that touch on aspect
and particularly on the perfect. (You should be able to find their refs. in
the bibliog. of what you have already read.) I have an article in the fall
95 issue of _Trinity Journal_ that addresses one part of the issue as well
as an extended introduction to the current discussion: "Temporal Deixis of
'nun' in the Gospels" (that title prob. isn't even quite exact!). Moises
Silva also touches on verbal aspect in _God, Language, and Scripture_
(Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1990?), as does D. A. Carson in his recently
revised _Exegetical Fallacies_ (2d ed., Grand Rapids: Baker, 1996; _not_ in
the first ed., 1984?). Re. markedness, read some of the standard linguistic
references; this is a standard term from linguistics. (I think I first
tracked it down in _Encycl. of Linguistics_ and found their discussion
helpful.) You might also look at the general discussion of aspect in the
linguistic iterature, e.g., B. Comrie, _Aspect_ (Cambridge), and S.
Levinsohn, _Pragmatics_ (Cambridge; not sure if the name is spelled right
from memory, there are two who write in this field and each is spelled one
letter diff.!).


_/Rodney J. Decker, Asst. Prof./NT Calvary Theol. Seminary\_
_/ Kansas City, MO\_
_/As of 7/96: Baptist Bible Seminary (PA)\_