From: Carlton L. Winbery (
Date: Tue Mar 05 1996 - 05:35:58 EST

Dale Wheeler wrote;
>This raises one of the interesting problems of lexicography, namely at what
>point to substantival adjectives stopped being percieved by speakers as
>adjectives with an article on the front of them and are only percieved as
>nouns. The masc form goes back to Thucydides (5thBC) and the neuter form
>back to Aristotle (4thBC). BAGD's treatment seems to indicate that they
>believe that by the time of Koine speakers no longer thought of these as
>substantival adjectives, but as simple nouns. Moreover, BAGD seems
>unimpressed by the suggestion of BDF (#49.3) and Robertson (Gr., p. 263f.)
>that the neuter plural forms are a result of the fluctuation of gender; they
>seem to think we are simply dealing with two different nouns. I'm leaning
>towards the idea that Lukan usage is all neuter (cf., Acts 16:26), while
>everyone else uses the masc (cf., Paul - 2Tim 2:19; John - Rev 21:19; and
>Barnabas [my preference] - Heb 11:10; though some will obviously disagree on
>certain authorship selections...but that is really not the point here).
You are probably right about QEMELIOS/ON being thought of as a noun in the
Hellenistic period, but it seems (I still use the old Grimm/Wilke/Thayer
unabridged) that it resulted in two nouns, one neuter and one masculine and
both of the second declension which results in the same problem in the
accusative sing, dative, and genitive. I haven't checked to see what
individual writers prefer. Some writers seem to delight in using two forms
that have the same referent, like in I John 1:5 SKOTIA and 1:6 SKOTEI from

Carlton L. Winbery
Prof. Religion
LA College, Pineville, La

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