ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Biblical Greek morphology and syntax, aspect, linguistics, discourse analysis, and related topics
Stirling Bartholomew
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ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » July 7th, 2017, 7:51 pm

Two questions in one post:

What do the dead remember?
What is the meaning and function of ἀλλὰ?

Eurip. IA 1238-1240

βλέψον πρὸς ἡμᾶς, ὄμμα δὸς φίλημά τε,
ἵν' ἀλλὰ τοῦτο κατθανοῦσ' ἔχω σέθεν
μνημεῖον, ἢν μὴ τοῖς ἐμοῖς πεισθῆις λόγοις.
Look at me, give me your glance and your kiss so that when I have died I may at least have that to remember you by, if you are not moved by my words.

David Kovacs 2002.
Another poet weighs in on the question:
“If ya give this man a ride, Sweet memory will die
Killer on the road” Jim Morrison
Riders on the Storm 1971.
I consulted the first chapter of Robert Garland[1] “The Power and Status of the Dead” which wasn’t conclusive. It appears that the cognitive powers of the dead were considered by some to be quite limited or none at all. I looked in Helma Dik (Word Order 2007) which has a chapter devoted to Greek ways of dying. Again nothing conclusive.

Then I consulted the Bryn Mawr “commentary” on Eurip. IA. They had a cryptic note on ἀλλὰ “at least” GP 12[2]. Cooper has a whole page on this with many examples including Eurip. IA 1239 cited twice.
In the apodosis of a conditional [...] sentence ἀλλὰ means contrariwise, on the other hand, still. After Homer, the apodosis is typically a less desirable alternative [...] as a fixture in this recurrent structure ἀλλὰ developed a special sense which it exhibits when standing alone and when there is continuous discourse. It can suggest an abbreviated or omitted apodosis: at least, at any rate. [3]
This is also a NT idiom. See F. Danker (BDAG p45, ἀλλὰ #4).


There is a third question we could address: Why is the apodosis fronted? In other words, why do we see
ἵν' ἀλλὰ τοῦτο κατθανοῦσ' ἔχω σέθεν μνημεῖον in front of the conditional ἢν μὴ τοῖς ἐμοῖς πεισθῆις λόγοις?

[1]Robert Garland, chapter one from The Greek way of death Cornell University Press 1985.

[2] Denniston’s Greek Particles page 12. Looked at this in google books. Denniston is cryptic and unhelpful.

[3] Guy L. Cooper III, Greek Syntax, vol 4, page 2858, 2:69.5.5.A&B.
C. Stirling Bartholomew

Robert Crowe
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Re: ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Post by Robert Crowe » July 9th, 2017, 6:34 am

Stirling Bartholomew wrote:
July 7th, 2017, 7:51 pm
Two questions in one post:

What do the dead remember?
What is the meaning and function of ἀλλὰ?

Eurip. IA 1238-1240

βλέψον πρὸς ἡμᾶς, ὄμμα δὸς φίλημά τε,
ἵν' ἀλλὰ τοῦτο κατθανοῦσ' ἔχω σέθεν
μνημεῖον, ἢν μὴ τοῖς ἐμοῖς πεισθῆις λόγοις.
The mythic belief was that the dead retained their memories up until drinking from the river Lethe. Whether this was compulsory is not certain. Some accounts suggest it was an option for those with bad memories. In the Aeneid it was compulsory for those chosen for reincarnation. In The Republic X a myth is narrated where all drink from it, but only the unwise lose their memory by drinking too much. Socrates has much to say about death in the Apology, Crito, and Phaedo, but is sceptical about mythical specifics: 'Only the gods know what is beyond death.' I think the impact of Iphegenia's remark would have been merely one of pathos and not contention about the cognitive status of the dead.

ἀλλά = at least, at least makes sense here.
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MAubrey
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Re: ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Post by MAubrey » July 10th, 2017, 7:00 pm

There doesn't seem to really be any restriction in the use of conjunctions between the protasis and the apodosis according the following data (NT syntax search):

Mark 14:29
CSGNTSBL
ὁ δὲ Πέτρος ἔφη αὐτῷ Εἰ καὶ πάντες σκανδαλισθήσονται ἀλλʼ οὐκ ἐγώ
The New Revised Standard Version
Peter said to him, “Even though all become deserters, I will not.”

Luke 5:36
CSGNTSBL
ἔλεγεν δὲ καὶ παραβολὴν πρὸς αὐτοὺς ὅτι Οὐδεὶς ἐπίβλημα ἀπὸ ἱματίου καινοῦ σχίσας ἐπιβάλλει ἐπὶ ἱμάτιον παλαιόν εἰ δὲ μήγε καὶ τὸ καινὸν σχίσει καὶ τῷ παλαιῷ οὐ συμφωνήσει τὸ ἐπίβλημα τὸ ἀπὸ τοῦ καινοῦ
The New Revised Standard Version
He also told them a parable: “No one tears a piece from a new garment and sews it on an old garment; otherwise the new will be torn, and the piece from the new will not match the old.

Rom 6:5
CSGNTSBL
Εἰ γὰρ σύμφυτοι γεγόναμεν τῷ ὁμοιώματι τοῦ θανάτου αὐτοῦ ἀλλὰ καὶ τῆς ἀναστάσεως ἐσόμεθα
The New Revised Standard Version
For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.

1 Cor 9:2
CSGNTSBL
εἰ ἄλλοις οὐκ εἰμὶ ἀπόστολος ἀλλά γε ὑμῖν εἰμι ἡ γὰρ σφραγίς μου τῆς ἀποστολῆς ὑμεῖς ἐστε ἐν κυρίῳ
The New Revised Standard Version
If I am not an apostle to others, at least I am to you; for you are the seal of my apostleship in the Lord.

2 Cor 2:2
CSGNTSBL
εἰ γὰρ ἐγὼ λυπῶ ὑμᾶς καὶ τίς ὁ εὐφραίνων με εἰ μὴ ὁ λυπούμενος ἐξ ἐμοῦ
The New Revised Standard Version
For if I cause you pain, who is there to make me glad but the one whom I have pained?

2 Cor 5:16

CSGNTSBL
Ὥστε ἡμεῖς ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν οὐδένα οἴδαμεν κατὰ σάρκα εἰ καὶ ἐγνώκαμεν κατὰ σάρκα Χριστόν ἀλλὰ νῦν οὐκέτι γινώσκομεν
The New Revised Standard Version
From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view; even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we know him no longer in that way.

Col 2:5

CSGNTSBL
εἰ γὰρ καὶ τῇ σαρκὶ ἄπειμι ἀλλὰ τῷ πνεύματι σὺν ὑμῖν εἰμι χαίρων καὶ βλέπων ὑμῶν τὴν τάξιν καὶ τὸ στερέωμα τῆς εἰς Χριστὸν πίστεως ὑμῶν
The New Revised Standard Version
For though I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit, and I rejoice to see your morale and the firmness of your faith in Christ.

James 4:15
CSGNTSBL
ἀντὶ τοῦ λέγειν ὑμᾶς Ἐὰν ὁ κύριος θελήσῃ καὶ ζήσομεν καὶ ποιήσομεν τοῦτο ἢ ἐκεῖνο
The New Revised Standard Version
Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wishes, we will live and do this or that.”

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 3:57 PM July 10, 2017.
Seems legit.
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Stirling Bartholomew
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Re: ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » July 11th, 2017, 7:30 pm

Robert,

Thank you for the helpful reply. I did some more reading on this. It would take a lot of research to find out all the views which were floating around about the afterlife at the time when Iphegnia at Aulis was being put into the form we now have. While looking into this I wandered into necromancy which is a tangental subject. The question in my mind had to do with the audience. Would it sound strange to the audience to have Iphegnia talking about having a memory of her father after she had died.


Postscript

Peoples views on this subject sometimes undergo change[1] in their lifetime.

The Other Side, Diane Kennedy and Bishop James Pike.
Last edited by Stirling Bartholomew on July 11th, 2017, 7:45 pm, edited 3 times in total.
C. Stirling Bartholomew

Stirling Bartholomew
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Re: ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » July 11th, 2017, 7:34 pm

Mike,
Mark 14:29 SBLGNT
ὁ δὲ Πέτρος ἔφη αὐτῷ Εἰ καὶ πάντες σκανδαλισθήσονται ἀλλʼ οὐκ ἐγώ

Rom 6:5 SBLGNT
Εἰ γὰρ σύμφυτοι γεγόναμεν τῷ ὁμοιώματι τοῦ θανάτου αὐτοῦ ἀλλὰ καὶ τῆς ἀναστάσεως ἐσόμεθα

1 Cor 9:2 SBLGNT
εἰ ἄλλοις οὐκ εἰμὶ ἀπόστολος ἀλλά γε ὑμῖν εἰμι ἡ γὰρ σφραγίς μου τῆς ἀποστολῆς ὑμεῖς ἐστε ἐν κυρίῳ
From your list, these three citations are found in the BDAG (p45 ἀλλὰ #4). While they demonstrate a certain use of ἀλλὰ in a conditional expression, they differ from Eurip. IA 1238-1240 in two respects:

First: ἢν (ἐὰν) μὴ ... πεισθῆις[1] is a different “class” of conditional. On the other hand, Cooper’s examples also include various types of conditionals.

The second difference: The apodosis appears first followed by the protasis. There are lots of examples of this so it isn’t unusual. I couldn’t find any discussion of this.
Heb. 3:6 NA27 Χριστὸς δὲ ὡς υἱὸς ἐπὶ τὸν οἶκον αὐτοῦ· οὗ οἶκός ἐσμεν ἡμεῖς, ἐάν[περ] τὴν παρρησίαν καὶ τὸ καύχημα τῆς ἐλπίδος κατάσχωμεν.

Heb. 6:3 NA27 καὶ τοῦτο ποιήσομεν, ἐάνπερ ἐπιτρέπῃ ὁ θεός.

[1]Eurip. IA 1238-1240

βλέψον πρὸς ἡμᾶς, ὄμμα δὸς φίλημά τε,
ἵν' ἀλλὰ τοῦτο κατθανοῦσ' ἔχω σέθεν
μνημεῖον, ἢν μὴ τοῖς ἐμοῖς πεισθῆις λόγοις.
Look at me, give me your glance and your kiss so that when I have died I may at least have that to remember you by, if you are not moved by my words.

David Kovacs 2002.
C. Stirling Bartholomew

MAubrey
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Re: ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Post by MAubrey » July 11th, 2017, 7:49 pm

I seem to have misunderstood your initial questions (or conflated them and confused myself...something).

Anyway, it sounds like you should try to locate a copy of Gerry Wakker's monograph on conditionals in Ancient Greek. I don't know whether or not he deals with this particular text, but He certainly spends significant time discussing the ordering of the protasis & apodosis. It's out of print, but excellent. I'd look it up myself, but a friend is currently borrowing my copy.

http://amzn.to/2tGaZVD
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Robert Crowe
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Re: ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Post by Robert Crowe » July 12th, 2017, 12:59 am

Stirling Bartholomew wrote:
July 11th, 2017, 7:30 pm
It would take a lot of research to find out all the views which were floating around about the afterlife at the time when Iphegnia at Aulis was being put into the form we now have. While looking into this I wandered into necromancy which is a tangental subject. The question in my mind had to do with the audience. Would it sound strange to the audience to have Iphegnia talking about having a memory of her father after she had died.
Necromancy was an important feature of the Greek mystery religions. We have scant knowlege of the actual rituals, but the objective was surely to seek information from the dead.

A main man here is the eminent classical scholar Arthur Woolgar Verrall. He and his wife were keen necromancers. He claimed he could clarify obscurities in Euripides' because he was in touch with the maestro himself.

[*]Euripides has just told me that ἀλλά in IA 1239 is an expletive meaning mais oui. Iphigenia's sole joy will be the memory of her father's smile.

[*]OR was it Verrall? Anyway, didn't sound like his wife.
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Robert Crowe
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Re: ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Post by Robert Crowe » July 12th, 2017, 8:00 am

One of Verrall's insights is quoted in Denniston p61. listed with a use of the particle γάρ which lacks logical precision. At issue is Medea 573:
χρῆν γὰρ ἄλλοθέν ποθεν βροτοὺς παῖδας τεκνοῦσθαι
Most of us would settle for γάρ = because of this (foregoing argument):
  • Because of this, mortal men should produce children from somewhere else.
Verrall gives γάρ = because a woman is nothing but a badly contrived machine for reproduction.

I suspect his wife had opted to go shopping that day.
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Stirling Bartholomew
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Re: ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » July 12th, 2017, 2:05 pm

MAubrey wrote:
July 11th, 2017, 7:49 pm

Anyway, it sounds like you should try to locate a copy of Gerry Wakker's monograph on conditionals in Ancient Greek. I don't know whether or not he deals with this particular text, but He certainly spends significant time discussing the ordering of the protasis & apodosis. It's out of print, but excellent. I'd look it up myself, but a friend is currently borrowing my copy.

http://amzn.to/2tGaZVD
I put in an ILL order for it. Certainly worth looking at. I get very impatient with reading our standard reference works on NT Grammar. Conditionals have always given me headaches. Simply because the grammarians talk in a code which I have refused to learn. Main reason being that the code isn't consistent.

I did a worldcat search to see who had it. U of Wash has it but they don't deal with my library. It will probably come from UC Berkeley or Stanford. McMaster has it, wonder who ordered it. DTS (Dallas) has it.
C. Stirling Bartholomew

MAubrey
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Re: ἀλλὰ in the apodosis - memory of the dead

Post by MAubrey » July 12th, 2017, 2:10 pm

AbeBooks lists a used copy at a reasonable price, too.

https://www.abebooks.com/servlet/BookDe ... n%3Dwakker
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