Re: Some clarity on DIA

From: Jonathan Robie (
Date: Thu Mar 20 1997 - 10:02:25 EST

I'm trying to lay low and get some work done right now, so I'm trying to
ignore b-greek. It is a hard thing to do. I even managed to avoid posting on
one of my favorite topics - tense and aspect - though I really enjoyed
reading what y'all said.

But DIA got to me. You see, I've always found that prepositions are
difficult in any foreign language, and even though I lived in Germany for 7
1/2 years, I'm not always sure which preposition is correct. The
prepositions of one language generally don't correspond that well to the
prepositions of another language, so prepositions can be really tricky. It
is always a little hazardous to say that one Greek word "means" the same
thing as one English word, and this is certainly true for prepositions.

I was fascinated that the same question prompted such different responses:

1. DIA+accusative vs. DIA+genitive, a simple distinction that beginners need
to learn
2. All the Louw and Nida glosses for DIA
3. Carl's statement that he'd like a response from a real linguist like
Micheal Palmer to say something about this

Such a little word, yet even the big Greeks haven't exhausted its mysteries.
And when someone asks about the meaning of DIA, they get responses on all of
these levels.

Now I'm still struggling with distinctions on levels one and two, but I
suspect that when I get beyond that, I'll continue to have lots to struggle
with, so I guess I can continue to be a little Greek for my whole lifetime.


(who is returning to lurker mode for the next few weeks, since he has to get
some work done)

Jonathan Robie
POET Software, 3207 Gibson Road, Durham, N.C., 27703
Ph: 919.598.5728 Fax: 919.598.6728
email:, <--- shockwave enabled!

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