Re: Greek Question

From: S. M. Baugh (
Date: Mon Mar 10 1997 - 10:19:38 EST

John Oaklands wrote:

>I was emailed the following question today by a friend in college. >Does any one know of any instances that would help him?
>Do you know of any instances in extra-biblical Greek writings in
>which the writer uses the first person in a similar fashion as the
>'royal we' is used today?

John, I don't have all my texts at home to give you references, but
First Clement opens with the "royal" we (although scholars think he was
writing "officially" in the name of the Roman church). Also, H. Smyth,
whose grammar concentrates on classical Greek writes: "Plural of
Modesty.--A speaker referring to himself may use the first person plural
as a modest form of statement" (sec. 1008). He gives examples from
Xenophon (Cyropaedia 1.1.1)and particularly the tragedians (e.g.,
Euripides Hercules furens 1206). He prefers modesty over majesty.


S. M. Baugh
Westminster Theological Seminary
in California

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