b-greek-digest V1 #556
b-greek-digest Thursday, 26 January 1995 Volume 01 : Number 556
In this issue:
Re: Entry Level Greek texts
Lexical statistics/ Pastoral epistles inquiry
Re: Lexical statistics/ Pastoral epistles inquiry
Style and Authorship
Crypts, Cellars, Vaults, and Hidden Places
Re: Entry Level Greek texts
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 1995 06:24:27 -0500
Subject: Re: Entry Level Greek texts
I agree with your statements about Dr. Fee's book. He was one of my profs at
Gordon-Conwell and we saw his methodology first hand. There is also a
companion volume for Hebrew exegesis by Dr. Stuart. Same applies!
From: Greg Doudna <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 1995 03:32:31 -0800
Subject: Lexical statistics/ Pastoral epistles inquiry
To Stephen Carlson:
Again I am very grateful for the data you prepared and presented
on third-order [three-word string] lexical contacts between the
Pauline epistles. This, along with the data previously from
David Mealand as well, and the much-appreciated cross-post from
the linguist-l list by David Moore on state of the art
bibliography on these methods.
As I study your numbers again a method question comes up: since
you are evaluating by the _percentage_ of exclusively shared
contacts among the letters in the corpus, if one letter involved
drawing or borrowing from another, some third-corder contacts
would emerge which would have nothing to do with common
authorship--yet their very existence and perhaps large number
would give a high percentage and reduce the other percentages
of real and significant contacts. This might effect, for
example, 2 Thessalonians, which according to your numbers scores
higher in contacts with the core-Paulines than either Romans,
1 or 2 Corinthians.
Yet the possibility of coming up with a method to evaluate a
questioned letter against a corpus for common authorship is a
goal worth pursuit (even better if a method could be found which
would not be fooled even by conscious imitation of style or
forgery, if that is possible). I've only begun to track down
the bibliography posted by David Moore, but this is a very
fascinating line of investigation to me. I hope you will
continue to work along these lines and report developments.
West Linn, Oregon
From: Stephen Carlson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 95 14:18:51 EST
Subject: Re: Lexical statistics/ Pastoral epistles inquiry
Greg Doudna wrote:
> As I study your numbers again a method question comes up: since
> you are evaluating by the _percentage_ of exclusively shared
> contacts among the letters in the corpus, if one letter involved
> drawing or borrowing from another, some third-corder contacts
> would emerge which would have nothing to do with common
> authorship--yet their very existence and perhaps large number
> would give a high percentage and reduce the other percentages
> of real and significant contacts. This might effect, for
> example, 2 Thessalonians, which according to your numbers scores
> higher in contacts with the core-Paulines than either Romans,
> 1 or 2 Corinthians.
I think this method as structured does generally address your
concerns about spurious contacts from borrowing or drawing. From
the reports generated by my software I can investigate each contact
The most troubling source of a lot of third-order contacts would
be from a long verbatim string. Technically a higher order contact can
contribute to many lower order contacts. For example, an 11th-order
contact can generate up to 9 third-order contacts. However, not
all substrings will generate a lower ordered contact, because some
of them might not be exclusively shared, especially if they are common
combinations of common words.
Paraphrases tend not increase the contact count, because the
paraphraser may reorder the phrase or substitute synonyms which
disrupt the third-order contacts. Each substitution would reduce
the number of third-order contacts by three. Each transposition
will have an even greater impact. On the other hand, since the
contacts are lexical not literal, changes solely in number/person/
tense admittedly do not cut down on the count.
An author's use of long stock phrases would not much affect the results
of this method because the contact must be exclusive. Some of my
grouping of books into a corpus, such as Pc include 7 Paulines, can
capture these stock phrases, like the "Grace to you and peace..."
Direct borrowing of long strings (i.e., without modification) will
generate large number of contacts, but those can be investigated.
First, one can remove all quotations to a common source, such as
the LXX or Q. (I have not done so, because my computerized source
did not tag quotations, but printout of the sixth and higher order
contacts can help me track these down).
For 2 Thessalonians there are two eleventh-order contacts with
1Th which do affect the third-order count (of 22 contacts total).
The first is found at 1Th1:1 & 2Th1:1, the opening line of the
epistle. This is responsible for 5 third-order contacts, 3 around
the word QESSALONIKEUS, the 2 others due to the identical joint
sponsors, Paul, and Silvanus and Timothy. This kind of contact
may betray a situational or topical similarity rather than one
The other eleventh-order contact is more interesting and is
responsible for 7 contacts. It is found at 1Th2:9 & 2Th3:8.
I have not noticed any other kinds of borrowing or paraphrase
in the near context, though.
1Th2:9 MNHMONEUETE GAR ADELFA TON KOPON H(MWN KAI TON MOXQON NUKTOS
KAI H(MERAS ERGAZOMENOI PROS TO MH EPIBARHSAI TINA U(MWN
2Th3:8 ALL' EN KOPW| KAI MOXQW| NUKA KAI H(MERAN ERGAZOMENOI PROS TO
MH EPIBARHSAI TINA U(MWN
I'm not sure what the implications of this particular sharing are.
These two strings account for 12 of the 22 contacts 2Th has with 1Th.
Of all the others, no two come from the same higher order contact.
Some like 1Th4:1 & 2Th3:12 [KAI PARAKALOUMEN EN KURIW| IHSOU I(NA]
only general one contact [PAR. EN K.] because the other parts are
not exclusively shared. If you wish to investigate the other contacts
and see that for them there does not appear to be any borrowing,
consider: 1Th1:4&2Th2:13, 1Th5:12&2Th2:11, 1Th3:4&2Th3:10,
1Th4:5&2Th1:8, 1Th4:1&2Th3:12, 1Th4:1&2Th3:6, 1Th1:2&2Th1:3 2:13,
For the 11 contacts between 2 Thess and Romans, only 4 of them are
due to a higher order contact and those are 2 distinct fourth-order
contacts. Thus, the third-order contacts are due to how Paul likes
to use short combinations of words. For example, the second-order
phrase ARA OUN occurs only 12 times in the NT--8x in Romans, once
in Ga6:10, Ep2:19, 1Th5:6, and 2Th2:15. This is a Pauline phrase,
however it can't generate a second-order contact because it is found
in five books. Because this phrase would be found next to other
words, a third-order contact is more likely to hit. Furthermore,
the chance of hit depends on the relative frequency of the author's
vocabulary. This indeed happened once for Galations (Ga6:10 & Rm5:18
ARA OUN W(S), but thrice for 2Thess. (on the front: Rm5:17-18 & 2Th2:
14-15 I. X. ARA OUN, yield two; and once on the back Rm8:12 & 2Th2:15
ARA OUN ADELFOI). The other fourth-order contact, I(NA R(USQW/R(USQWMEN
APO TWN, (Rm8:12, 2Th2:15) is found in a prayer (cf. Mt6:13).
Therefore, I can't say that the high percentage of contacts between
2Thess and Romans is due to any borrowing or drawing from each other.
Most of them are not part of a larger strings or found in similar
contexts. Half of the high percentage for the 1Thess-2Thess contacts
are due to the opening verse and that one phrase. The first verse does
not present too many problem, and I'm not sure what to make of the
Stephen Carlson : Poetry speaks of aspirations, : ICL, Inc.
email@example.com : and songs chant the words. : 11490 Commerce Park Dr.
(703) 648-3330 : Shujing 2:35 : Reston, VA 22091 USA
From: Bruce Terry <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 1995 15:48:50 CST
Subject: Style and Authorship
I have been following with interest the discussion on determining authorship by
statistics. I did some statistical work on 1 Corinthians while working on my
dissertation. It indicates that the task of relating style and authorship may
be more difficult that one might think.
My analysis showed that there are at least 4 statistically significant (by the
chi-square test) different styles in 1 Corinthians, if style is defined in
terms of frequency of usage of syntactical devices. There is a difference in
style between those sections where Paul is answering the Corinthians' letter
and where he is responding to oral reports. I conclude that this difference is
most likely due to the different rhetorical situations involved.
For each of these there is a difference in style between the peak and non-peak
sections of the text. For those not familar with Longacre's concept of peak,
it is a zone of grammatical turbulance usually found at the climax and
denouement (sometimes at the inciting incident) of a narrative. For example,
in English a storyteller may switch from the past tense to the present while
relating the climax. Such areas of grammatical turbulance also occur in
non-narrative texts as well. In 1 Corinthians the peak is chapters 12-15 and
it is stylistically different than the rest of the letter. If statistical
methods do not take the concept of peak into account, they are doomed to
failure because in languages around the world, texts that contain peak areas
are being found with increasing frequency.
Bruce Terry E-MAIL: email@example.com
Box 8426, ACU Station Phone: 915/674-3759
Abilene, Texas 79699 Fax: 915/674-3769
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 1995 17:31:03 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Crypts, Cellars, Vaults, and Hidden Places
I have an information request. I am doing work on Luke 11:33. The
word used by Luke in contrast to lampstands is kruptHn, which is usually
translated "cellar." LSJ offers "crypt" or "vault," each giving the sense
of an underground room. BAGD offers "dark and hidden place" and "cellar,"
at least offering the choice of translating the substantivized adjective as
specifically as "cellar" or more generally, perhaps closer to the adjective
from whence it comes. LSJ, BAGD, and MM offer only five examples of this
word in greek lit (New Docs -- none). So, the sucker looks pretty rare. Not
only that, but the four texts I've gotten hold of (Strabo 17, 1, 37;
Athenaeus 5 p205A; Josephus 5,330; PSI V 547,18 (see MM)) give some different
contexts for the use of the word. Ath and PSI seem closest to "cellar," while
Strabo is speaking of long, interconnected passages, apparently underground,
and Josephus' account, if not for the presence of an article, would seem best
translated as "hidden place" (Castor jumps into the flaming rubble of a fallen
fortification tower to hide from Titus -- did wall towers have cellars?).
Furthermore, Luke uses tamieion in 12:3 in contrast to "rooftop,"
suggesting that it is best understood as "cellar." The other use in Luke,
12:27, seems also best translated this way, since it is paired with another
word for "storehouse" (hence indicating the usual function of a cellar --
storage). Yet, Luke 12:3, a la Matt 6:6, is often translated "secret" or
"hidden place." Frankly, I feel like translators have concretized kruptHn
and abstractified tamieion.
So, my question is, _is_ there a commonly used word to indicate the
basement/storage area under a house: i.e. a common Greek word for "cellar?"
hypogeion or -gaion seems to refer to a cave-like underground crypt, with a
vaulted roof. Howard Jackson of Pomona College/CGS says he runs across it
especially in texts discussing mystery religions. So, it doesn't work.
Tamieion seems to be the best word, and LSJ provides an abundance of examples
for translating it as "storehouse" or "storeroom." It makes me want to look
up those texts to see if they are referring to underground storage, such as
for perishable food and the like (contrasted to a grain storage house as
Luke uses in 12:27). Any ideas out there? Anyone know of an English to
Greek dictionary/lexicon out there I can refer to? Does anyone know of other
examples of kruptH in Greek lit? Is there a more common word for "cellar."
THERE MUST BE! They weren't rare. According to Jonathan Reed of the U. of
La Verne, who's been working at Sepphoris for a number of years, they're not
uncommon in Palestine, or in particular Galilee. So, what did folk call them
in Greek? HELP!
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 1995 23:00:32 -0500
Subject: Re: Entry Level Greek texts
firstname.lastname@example.org (Travis Bauer) wrote:
> Has anyone read "New Testament Exegesis: A Handbook for Students
>and Pastors" by Gordon Fee? I purchased it when I purchased one of his
>commentaries for a class. It is not about Grammar, but assuming a basic
>knowledge of grammar, it introduces the reader to basic analysis of a
>text, including an introduction to BAGD. It has a good bibliography.
Yes. I have found it helpful and informative and would recommend it to
End of b-greek-digest V1 #556
** FOR YOUR REFERENCE **
To unsubscribe from this list write
with "unsubscribe b-greek-digest" as your message content. For other
automated services write to the above address with the message content
For further information, you can write the owner of the list at
You can send mail to the entire list via the address: