Identifying peak

From: Bruce Terry (
Date: Thu Oct 26 1995 - 00:39:23 EDT

On Sat, 21 Oct 1995, Philip L. Graber wrote:

>But again, in KG narrative (take for example the Gethsemane story in
>Matthew 26:36-46 where there is a high concentration of present tense
>verbs), there seem to be both aorist and present tense verbs carrying the
>main line of the story, and they alternate (at least they are not
>clustered together at one point so as to identify an identifiable "peak"
>or any such thing).

Actually "peak" is a zone of turbulence in a text. There does not have to be
a complete switch from one grammar form to another in order for peak to exist.
It is enough to make a noticeable shift from the usual style. That shift does
not start abruptly. It begins even in the pre-peak areas of the text and
continues through post-peak areas.

I have not done an analysis of Matthew, but if I were to guess I would say
that Matt. 26:36-46 is pre-peak and the peak region is found in the
crucifixion. It would be interesting to test this hypothesis (also a lot of
hard work). Now there is a master's thesis topic in NT Greek.

Bruce Terry E-MAIL:
Box 8426, ACU Station Phone: 915/674-3759
Abilene, Texas 79699 Fax: 915/674-3769

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