Re: Dative of extent of time?

Carl W. Conrad (
Thu, 22 Aug 1996 15:43:39 -0500

At 1:15 PM -0500 8/22/96, wrote:
>Carl, I am also fascinated by this dative construction and all supposed NT
>"solecisms". One thing that needs to be done, though, is to search the TLG
>for corresponding occurrences. In fact, I would like to explore a list of
>supposed solecisms in the NT to see if they ever occurred elsewhere. This
>should also be done using the PHI papyri CD and any other usable data source.

Don, I quite agree with you on this: one would not want to claim any
thoroughgoing uniformity of usage (and, I suspect, even of pronunciation).
We certainly find side by side the equivalent expressions LEGEI AUTWi and
LEGEI PROS AUTON. Though less common, I suspect that TOSOUTON XRONON and
TOSOUTWi XRONWi to express the notion of "for so long a period" are both in
use in the time of NT Koine, and there are certainly such variances of
usage even in classical Attic. The so-called "solecisms"--which I suspect
are worst in Revelation--may be simply the usages we don't find in our more
"respected" authors.

This particular question arose in connection with John 15:9; in my previous
post I noted that there is MS support for TOSOUTON XRONON in B. Now, upon
checking NA27, I find that p66 and p75 have TOSOUTON XRONON rather than
TOSOUTWi XRONWi. This, of course, is not a matter of any difference so far
as meaning is concerned, so it isn't even noted in UBS4 or discussed in
Metzger's commentary on that edition, but now I'm wondering whether people
better versed in Textual Criticism can explain to me why the ediorial
committee decided for the dative rather than for the accusative form.

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University
One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO, USA 63130
(314) 935-4018 OR