ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Re: ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Postby David Lim » January 7th, 2012, 12:14 pm

Jason Hare wrote:
714. The article as a signaler of ease (gender, number). In §§125-129 it was observed that the article often serves to signal the case (gender, number) of the head and attributives in nominal clusters. In addition to its utilitarian function when used with fully inflected items, it is especially helpful in the case of indeclinables:

(9) εὑρίσκει Φίλιππος τὸν Ναθαναήλ Jn 1:45
Philip finds Nathaniel

In (9) the article marks the indeclinable name Ναθαναήλ as accusative and therefore as the object of the verb. Although Φίλιππος is declinable, the article makes the structure of this sentence immediately clear. In signaling case the article contributes to grammatical lucidity. Bl-D §260(2).


I was referring to a point in the link that you provided. I didn't state anything new myself. Funk was referring to several functions that the article might serve, and this was one of them. Not once will you find in my comment the idea that this explains all instances of the article with a proper name.


Yes and here I have to disagree slightly with Funk's grammar, or at least the way it is phrased, because I do not believe the article serves any function of specifying case that is intentional on the part of the author, which means that one should not expect it to be used more often for indeclinable names as compared to declinable names. Just a sentence after John 1:45, "ναθαναηλ" is used without the article. Anyway, the main point is that the article is essentially irrelevant to the meaning of proper names because proper names are themselves already definite. (And I see that I misread your statement about Philip. Sorry!)
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Re: ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Postby MAubrey » January 7th, 2012, 2:25 pm

David Lim wrote:Yes and here I have to disagree slightly with Funk's grammar, or at least the way it is phrased, because I do not believe the article serves any function of specifying case that is intentional on the part of the author, which means that one should not expect it to be used more often for indeclinable names as compared to declinable names. Just a sentence after John 1:45, "ναθαναηλ" is used without the article. Anyway, the main point is that the article is essentially irrelevant to the meaning of proper names because proper names are themselves already definite. (And I see that I misread your statement about Philip. Sorry!)


You may expect that it will be used more often with indeclinable names, but I would doubt that is actually the case in texts. The reason I would doubt is because the article is most definitely not irrelevant to the meaning of proper names.

What is definiteness, David?
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Re: ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Postby Stephen Carlson » January 7th, 2012, 3:17 pm

Proper names are already definite, so the article performs different functions.

My sense is that the use of the article with proper names is multifaceted, but there are some tendencies.

For indeclinable names, the article tends to be used for dative and accusative cases but tends to be avoided for nominatives and genitives. I forgot who pointed this out. This tendency seems to hold up generally, but there are exceptions.

For declinable names, the article tends to be used with topics and/or given referents, and the articles tend to be avoided for focus and/or new referents.

Stephen

P.S. Keep in mind that Latin students never decline sex.
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Re: ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Postby Ken M. Penner » January 7th, 2012, 3:26 pm

Stephen Carlson wrote:Proper names are already definite, so the article performs different functions.
My sense is that the use of the article with proper names is multifaceted, but there are some tendencies.
For indeclinable names, the article tends to be used for dative and accusative cases but tends to be avoided for nominatives and genitives. I forgot who pointed this out. This tendency seems to hold up generally, but there are exceptions.
For declinable names, the article tends to be used with topics and/or given referents, and the articles tend to be avoided for focus and/or new referents.

I'm having to deal with this a bit in my commentary on Isaiah.
Auld made some points in his Joshua volume in the same series. He made a case for the translation of κυριος as a proper name, based on the inclusion or omission of the article before κυριος (Auld 2005), the question is whether the same holds in the book of Isaiah. Auld found that the presence of the article is determined more by grammatical case than by whether the noun is a proper noun or a common noun. In Joshua, Auld found that the article tends to be used with proper names only in the dative case, and never in the genitive case.
Definite Names in Joshua.jpg
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In Isaiah, Jerusalem, Egypt, Hezekiah, Isaiah, Babylon, Cyrus, Somnas, and Judah never get the article except 2x as genitive (Is 5:3, 7) and once as accusative (9:21). Judea and Lebanon always do (the land), as does Chelkias (all 3 genitive). Romelios is arthrous twice out of four in the genitive. Is 8:2 has arthrous proper names for all the men mentioned.
Definite Names in Isaiah.jpg
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Re: ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Postby MAubrey » January 7th, 2012, 3:51 pm

Stephen Carlson wrote:Proper names are already definite, so the article performs different functions.

My sense is that the use of the article with proper names is multifaceted, but there are some tendencies.
...
For declinable names, the article tends to be used with topics and/or given referents, and the articles tend to be avoided for focus and/or new referents.


The question is what is it about the article that would drive such usage?

The answer revolves around:

1) What it means for an entity to be definite.
2) What is it about topics and focal element would guide the use of the article.

I'm not directly asking this question to you, Stephen. I think you already know the answer to it. This is the beginners forum and I'd like to see if we can tease this out without simply giving the answer and I think "definiteness" is one of those words that gets thrown around in classes and textbooks without ever receiving a proper explanation as to what it means.
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Re: ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Postby David Lim » January 7th, 2012, 9:09 pm

MAubrey wrote:
David Lim wrote:Yes and here I have to disagree slightly with Funk's grammar, or at least the way it is phrased, because I do not believe the article serves any function of specifying case that is intentional on the part of the author, which means that one should not expect it to be used more often for indeclinable names as compared to declinable names. Just a sentence after John 1:45, "ναθαναηλ" is used without the article. Anyway, the main point is that the article is essentially irrelevant to the meaning of proper names because proper names are themselves already definite. (And I see that I misread your statement about Philip. Sorry!)


You may expect that it will be used more often with indeclinable names, but I would doubt that is actually the case in texts. The reason I would doubt is because the article is most definitely not irrelevant to the meaning of proper names.

What is definiteness, David?


Mike, I am not sure whether you are supporting the point I was trying to make from the start. I was saying that, contrary to the way the relevant portion in Funk's Grammar is phrased, I believe that whether the proper name can be declined or not has nothing to do with whether the article is used or not. But you also said that the article is relevant to the meaning of proper names, which I don't understand. It seems to me that the semantic meaning of a proper name is entirely contained by the name itself. The article does not contribute anything, with the sole exception of "ΚΥΡΙΟΣ" in the Septuagint and the new testament that is a substitute word for "יהוה", where of course "ΚΥΡΙΟΣ" is not used as the count noun that it originally was.

As for definiteness, for those who have never come across this term, I would simply define it as how definite a reference to an entity is. A definite noun clause points to a specific noun, whereas an indefinite noun clause does not point to any specific noun or example of it, at least on the grammatical level. For example, in the phrase "the king must rule well", "the king" is definite because it refers to a particular person. In contrast, in "a king must rule well", "a king" is indefinite and refers to no particular person. Since proper names refer to specific persons by virtue of the purpose of names, they are by default definite.
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Re: ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Postby David Lim » January 7th, 2012, 9:50 pm

Thomas M Campbell wrote:Well, I remember some twenty odd years back, browsing through a library copy of a Greek-English interlinear Bible. For some reason I was
intrigued with the way the definite article was used with the name Jesus, and I think also Peter. I took it that in the case of Peter the use of the article was
on account of an object: 'the' stone, but 'the' Jesus?


By the way, Peter's name is just a name once it had been adopted from the word meaning stone, so it no longer functions in the same way it would have as an ordinary noun. Many Hebrew names actually mean short phrases like "My God [is] Yah", but definitely do not function in the same way at all. For example, Matt 4:18, 8:14, 26:69, Mark 5:37 (compare with Mark 9:2 and Matt 17:1), Luke 22:8 do not have the article with Peter's name, for no apparent reason except perhaps whether it sounds nice. Moreover, Mark, John, Thomas, Judah.. all get the article here and there too: Acts 15:39 (compare with 2 Tim 4:11), John 1:19, 1:26, 3:26, Acts 3:4, John 20:27, 20:28, Matt 1:2, Mark 14:10.
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Re: ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Postby MAubrey » January 8th, 2012, 10:00 pm

David Lim wrote:Mike, I am not sure whether you are supporting the point I was trying to make from the start. I was saying that, contrary to the way the relevant portion in Funk's Grammar is phrased, I believe that whether the proper name can be declined or not has nothing to do with whether the article is used or not. But you also said that the article is relevant to the meaning of proper names, which I don't understand. It seems to me that the semantic meaning of a proper name is entirely contained by the name itself. The article does not contribute anything, with the sole exception of "ΚΥΡΙΟΣ" in the Septuagint and the new testament that is a substitute word for "יהוה", where of course "ΚΥΡΙΟΣ" is not used as the count noun that it originally was.


When I say meaning, I'm not talking about the lexical semantics of a word. Technically, proper names do not have any meaning at all--they only have referents. I'm talking about the meaning of the text, the meaning of the discourse. If the article didn't contribute anything at all, then it wouldn't be used. But it is used, so surely it means something.

David Lim wrote:As for definiteness, for those who have never come across this term, I would simply define it as how definite a reference to an entity is. A definite noun clause points to a specific noun, whereas an indefinite noun clause does not point to any specific noun or example of it, at least on the grammatical level. For example, in the phrase "the king must rule well", "the king" is definite because it refers to a particular person. In contrast, in "a king must rule well", "a king" is indefinite and refers to no particular person. Since proper names refer to specific persons by virtue of the purpose of names, they are by default definite.


You've named one of two key aspects of definiteness here. That's good. Specificity is the dominant feature of the English definite and indefinite articles, but it is not the dominant feature of the Greek article. The other feature involved in the concept of definiteness is identifiability and it is central to the use of the article and drives why the article is or is not used with various nouns and proper names. Let's look at a bit of text, focusing on the proper names and the use of the article.

Luke 1:5-25 (NA27) wrote:Ἐγένετο ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις Ἡρῴδου βασιλέως τῆς Ἰουδαίας ἱερεύς τις ὀνόματι Ζαχαρίας ἐξ ἐφημερίας Ἀβιά, καὶ γυνὴ αὐτῷ ἐκ τῶν θυγατέρων Ἀαρὼν καὶ τὸ ὄνομα αὐτῆς Ἐλισάβετ. 6 ἦσαν δὲ δίκαιοι ἀμφότεροι ἐναντίον τοῦ θεοῦ, πορευόμενοι ἐν πάσαις ταῖς ἐντολαῖς καὶ δικαιώμασιν τοῦ κυρίου ἄμεμπτοι. 7 καὶ οὐκ ἦν αὐτοῖς τέκνον, καθότι ἦν ἡ Ἐλισάβετ στεῖρα, καὶ ἀμφότεροι προβεβηκότες ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις αὐτῶν ἦσαν.

8 Ἐγένετο δὲ ἐν τῷ ἱερατεύειν αὐτὸν ἐν τῇ τάξει τῆς ἐφημερίας αὐτοῦ ἔναντι τοῦ θεοῦ, 9 κατὰ τὸ ἔθος τῆς ἱερατείας ἔλαχε τοῦ θυμιᾶσαι εἰσελθὼν εἰς τὸν ναὸν τοῦ κυρίου, 10 καὶ πᾶν τὸ πλῆθος ἦν τοῦ λαοῦ προσευχόμενον ἔξω τῇ ὥρᾳ τοῦ θυμιάματος. 11 ὤφθη δὲ αὐτῷ ἄγγελος κυρίου ἑστὼς ἐκ δεξιῶν τοῦ θυσιαστηρίου τοῦ θυμιάματος. 12 καὶ ἐταράχθη Ζαχαρίας ἰδὼν καὶ φόβος ἐπέπεσεν ἐπʼ αὐτόν. 13 εἶπεν δὲ πρὸς αὐτὸν ὁ ἄγγελος·

μὴ φοβοῦ, Ζαχαρία,
διότι εἰσηκούσθη ἡ δέησίς σου,
καὶ ἡ γυνή σου Ἐλισάβετ γεννήσει υἱόν σοι
καὶ καλέσεις τὸ ὄνομα αὐτοῦ Ἰωάννην.
14 καὶ ἔσται χαρά σοι καὶ ἀγαλλίασις
καὶ πολλοὶ ἐπὶ τῇ γενέσει αὐτοῦ χαρήσονται.
15 ἔσται γὰρ μέγας ἐνώπιον [τοῦ] κυρίου,
καὶ οἶνον καὶ σίκερα οὐ μὴ πίῃ,
καὶ πνεύματος ἁγίου πλησθήσεται
ἔτι ἐκ κοιλίας μητρὸς αὐτοῦ,
16 καὶ πολλοὺς τῶν υἱῶν Ἰσραὴλ ἐπιστρέψει
ἐπὶ κύριον τὸν θεὸν αὐτῶν.
17 καὶ αὐτὸς προελεύσεται ἐνώπιον αὐτοῦ
ἐν πνεύματι καὶ δυνάμει Ἠλίου,
ἐπιστρέψαι καρδίας πατέρων ἐπὶ τέκνα
καὶ ἀπειθεῖς ἐν φρονήσει δικαίων,
ἑτοιμάσαι κυρίῳ λαὸν κατεσκευασμένον.

18 καὶ εἶπεν Ζαχαρίας πρὸς τὸν ἄγγελον· κατὰ τί γνώσομαι τοῦτο; ἐγὼ γάρ εἰμι πρεσβύτης καὶ ἡ γυνή μου προβεβηκυῖα ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις αὐτῆς. 19 καὶ ἀποκριθεὶς ὁ ἄγγελος εἶπεν αὐτῷ· ἐγώ εἰμι Γαβριὴλ ὁ παρεστηκὼς ἐνώπιον τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ ἀπεστάλην λαλῆσαι πρὸς σὲ καὶ εὐαγγελίσασθαί σοι ταῦτα· 20 καὶ ἰδοὺ ἔσῃ σιωπῶν καὶ μὴ δυνάμενος λαλῆσαι ἄχρι ἧς ἡμέρας γένηται ταῦτα, ἀνθʼ ὧν οὐκ ἐπίστευσας τοῖς λόγοις μου, οἵτινες πληρωθήσονται εἰς τὸν καιρὸν αὐτῶν.

21 Καὶ ἦν ὁ λαὸς προσδοκῶν τὸν Ζαχαρίαν καὶ ἐθαύμαζον ἐν τῷ χρονίζειν ἐν τῷ ναῷ αὐτόν. 22 ἐξελθὼν δὲ οὐκ ἐδύνατο λαλῆσαι αὐτοῖς, καὶ ἐπέγνωσαν ὅτι ὀπτασίαν ἑώρακεν ἐν τῷ ναῷ· καὶ αὐτὸς ἦν διανεύων αὐτοῖς καὶ διέμενεν κωφός. 23 καὶ ἐγένετο ὡς ἐπλήσθησαν αἱ ἡμέραι τῆς λειτουργίας αὐτοῦ, ἀπῆλθεν εἰς τὸν οἶκον αὐτοῦ. 24 Μετὰ δὲ ταύτας τὰς ἡμέρας συνέλαβεν Ἐλισάβετ ἡ γυνὴ αὐτοῦ καὶ περιέκρυβεν ἑαυτὴν μῆνας πέντε λέγουσα 25 ὅτι οὕτως μοι πεποίηκεν κύριος ἐν ἡμέραις αἷς ἐπεῖδεν ἀφελεῖν ὄνειδός μου ἐν ἀνθρώποις.


Notice that you're not going to see a proper named used with an article until (1) after that particular person is introduced or (2) if the speaker can already confidently assume that his audience can identify the person. Thus in verses 5-7, Ἐλισάβετ is first introduced as Zechariah's wife and only after that is the article used with her name: ἡ Ἐλισάβετ in verse 7.

Now, you might notice in this section that there is surely far more going on than merely that simple rule: the article is used with participants who have already been introduced in a discourse. There are numerous places where Zechariah's name appears after he's been introduced where he has no article:

vs 12: καὶ ἐταράχθη Ζαχαρίας
vs 13: μὴ φοβοῦ, Ζαχαρία
vs 18: καὶ εἶπεν Ζαχαρίας πρὸς τὸν ἄγγελον

In verse13, this is cased by the use of the vocative, where there is no form of vocative article, but these other two demonstrate an important principle. The appearance of the article is not the only manner of expressing definiteness. Word order also does. If a participant is already known and identifiable in a stretch of text but is not particularly prominent or contrastive with another participant, placing after the verb is a perfectly adequate way to showing that he (or she) is definite. This is one of the major ways languages that do not have definite articles (e.g. Latin & Russian). And we see this with Ζαχαρίας in both verse 12 and verse 18. In both cases, Luke could have just as easily replaced the proper name with "he" without causing much confusion to the reader or simply chosen to not use an explicit subject all.

There is, of course, far more that could be said. Things are more complicated when you're dealing with why the article doesn't occur with participants who have already been introduced and to explain the principles that drive that would take a massive amount of time and space than I have here.

At the very least, I can rather confidently promise that when you find a name that does has the article with it, that particular participant has already been introduced earlier in the text (or that particular name refers to a person that is so incredible well-known to the writer's audience that he or she has absolutely no need of introduction).
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Re: ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Postby Ken M. Penner » January 8th, 2012, 11:56 pm

MAubrey wrote:At the very least, I can rather confidently promise that when you find a name that does has the article with it, that particular participant has already been introduced earlier in the text (or that particular name refers to a person that is so incredible well-known to the writer's audience that he or she has absolutely no need of introduction).

You know I couldn't leave you there in your confidence, Mike! ;) Some texts to explain:
Isaiah 8 wrote:1 Καὶ εἶπεν Κύριος πρός με Λαβὲ σεαυτῷ τόμον καινοῦ μεγάλου καὶ γράψον ἐκεῖ γραφίδι ἀνθρώπου Τοῦ ὀξέως προνομὴν ποιῆσαι σκύλων· πάρεστιν γάρ. 2 καὶ μάρτυράς μοι ποίησον πιστοὺς ἀνθρώπους, τὸν Οὐρίαν καὶ τὸν Ζαχαρίαν υἱὸν Βαραχίου.

Isaiah 22 wrote:20 Καὶ ἔσται ἐν τῇ ἡμέρᾳ ἐκείνῃ καλέσω τὸν παῖδά μου Ἐλιακὶμ τὸν τοῦ Χελκίου

Isaiah 36 wrote:3 καὶ ἐξῆλθεν πρὸς αὐτὸν Ἐλιακεὶμ ὁ τοῦ Χελκίου ὁ οἰκονόμος καὶ Σόμνας ὁ γραμματεὺς καὶ Ἰὼχ ὁ τοῦ Ἀσὰφ ὁ ὑπομνηματογράφος. ...
22 Καὶ εἰσῆλθεν Ἐλιακεὶμ ὁ τοῦ Χελκίου ὁ οἰκονόμος καὶ Σόμνας ὁ γραμματεὺς τῆς δυνάμεως καὶ Ἰωὰχ ὁ τοῦ Ἀσὰφ ὁ ὑπομνηματογράφος πρὸς Ἑζεκίαν ἐσχισμένοι τοὺς χιτῶνας καὶ ἀνήγγειλαν αὐτῷ τοὺς λόγους Ῥαψάκου.
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Re: ὁ Ἰησοῦς· The article with proper names

Postby David Lim » January 9th, 2012, 12:35 am

MAubrey wrote:
David Lim wrote:Mike, I am not sure whether you are supporting the point I was trying to make from the start. I was saying that, contrary to the way the relevant portion in Funk's Grammar is phrased, I believe that whether the proper name can be declined or not has nothing to do with whether the article is used or not. But you also said that the article is relevant to the meaning of proper names, which I don't understand. It seems to me that the semantic meaning of a proper name is entirely contained by the name itself. The article does not contribute anything, with the sole exception of "ΚΥΡΙΟΣ" in the Septuagint and the new testament that is a substitute word for "יהוה", where of course "ΚΥΡΙΟΣ" is not used as the count noun that it originally was.


When I say meaning, I'm not talking about the lexical semantics of a word. Technically, proper names do not have any meaning at all--they only have referents. I'm talking about the meaning of the text, the meaning of the discourse. If the article didn't contribute anything at all, then it wouldn't be used. But it is used, so surely it means something.


Actually I would like to agree with you, but there are many grammatical constructions where the individual constituents are essentially lexically empty but must all be used in a certain construction. One example is the accusative and infinitive in indirect statements. The case of the subject has no meaning until it is put together with the infinitive.

MAubrey wrote:
David Lim wrote:As for definiteness, for those who have never come across this term, I would simply define it as how definite a reference to an entity is. A definite noun clause points to a specific noun, whereas an indefinite noun clause does not point to any specific noun or example of it, at least on the grammatical level. For example, in the phrase "the king must rule well", "the king" is definite because it refers to a particular person. In contrast, in "a king must rule well", "a king" is indefinite and refers to no particular person. Since proper names refer to specific persons by virtue of the purpose of names, they are by default definite.


You've named one of two key aspects of definiteness here. That's good. Specificity is the dominant feature of the English definite and indefinite articles, but it is not the dominant feature of the Greek article. The other feature involved in the concept of definiteness is identifiability and it is central to the use of the article and drives why the article is or is not used with various nouns and proper names. Let's look at a bit of text, focusing on the proper names and the use of the article.

[...]

Notice that you're not going to see a proper named used with an article until (1) after that particular person is introduced or (2) if the speaker can already confidently assume that his audience can identify the person. Thus in verses 5-7, Ἐλισάβετ is first introduced as Zechariah's wife and only after that is the article used with her name: ἡ Ἐλισάβετ in verse 7.

[...]


I was actually including your second aspect in my definition, because I consider that if a specific person is in view, either previously mentioned or easily identifiable, then it is natural for the article to be used, whereas if it is a new character, the article is less natural. But still I cannot see any clear distinction in function or meaning in the occurrence or absence of the article. Looking at John 1 alone, "φιλιππος" appears without the article at 1:45,46,48 even though it is with the article at 1:44. "ναθαναηλ" on the other hand appears for the first time with the article at 1:45 but then without at 1:46 and then with it again at 1:47 and then without again at 1:48,49. So my conclusion is that the article with proper names in Koine Greek is essentially superfluous, even if it may have had any grammatical or semantic function earlier.

As for your suggestion that the placement after the verb indicates definiteness, the verb is often used in front.. John 1:6 surely does not indicate that "ανθρωπος" is definite. Unless you mean that this kind of influence of word order is only relevant to proper names? But John 1:48 has "προ του σε φιλιππον φωνησαι".. So it does not apply to this kind of construction as well?
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