Re: Two accents in one word??

David L. Moore (
Wed, 08 Jan 1997 19:04:39 -0500

At 04:53 PM 1/8/97 -0600, Carl W. Conrad wrote:
>At 4:34 PM -0600 1/8/97, Jim Beale wrote:
>>On Jan 6, 7:29pm, Carl W. Conrad wrote:
>>> >Jim, the rule of accent is that if a word with an acute on the antepenult
>>> >(third from last syllable) or a circumflex on the penult (second from
>>> >last), it receives a second accent (acute) on the ultima (last syllable).
>>> This is true IF, AND ONLY IF, the word in question is followed by an
>>> enclitic (an accentless word that is deemed, for purposes of pronunciation
>>> and accentuation, an addendum to the preceding word). In Romans 1:9 the
>>> enclitic that follows is MOU. The reason for this is the instinctive horror
>>> felt by a Greek speaker for an accent (pitch-mark in reality) more than
>>> three syllables from the end of a word.
>>1. Well, this has been an enlightening experience. None of my grammars have
>>any information on this. Accenting is given short shrift in most of the
>>ones I've seen - although Dana and Mantey say that in order to be considered
>>to have a polished knowledge of Greek, one must pay close attention to the
>>accents. There's little fear that I am at the polishing level - I'm still
>>rough hewing! Not even BDF has anything to say on this. Where does one
>>find the little gems that Carl and Carlton tossed out so non-chalantly?
>>You guys blow me away! :-)
>Any decent grammar of classical Attic will discuss this. NT textbooks seem
>disposed to let students wrestly with everything else. It's not really the
>most important thing to learn about in ancient Greek.

Just to add to Carl's comment a bibliographic note that might be
helpful to Jim and others who find the info on accents in the NT grammars to
be either scanty or scattered and so not very accessible: D. A. Carson has
produced a text called _Greek Accents: A Student's Manual_ (Grand Rapids:
Baker, 1985). It contains a well oraganized treatment of the Greek accent
and should be helpful for anyone who feels short shrifted by the
presentation of this subject in the grammars.

David L. Moore Director
Miami, Florida, USA Department of Education Southeastern Spanish District of the Assemblies of God