Date: Sat May 31 1997 - 06:01:13 EDT
what do aorist indicative forms imply? so much less than is commonly thought
that the situation proves abjectly absurd.
'punctiliar' aorist mirage
'types of aorists' (e.g. complexive, epistolary, gnomic &c.) serve only as
analyses from an english language mindset. they correspond nil to what was
going on in ancient greek brains that used the forms. therefore such lists mean
absolutely nothing with regard to what the forms themselves truly implied in
the minds of the users. they have utility only as offering suggestions of the
contradictory ways in which aorists may be translated. (1923-44 parr. in smyth
constitutes a clear statement of variety.)
there's the rub. there's the key. i said contradictory ways. the formal
implication had to be such that it would function in any one of these
totally different settings. i mean that nuances falsely attributed to aorist
forms arise, nil from the form, but only from what the setting shows about it.
you cannot tell at all from the form the timing of it relative to other parts
of the sentence -- anything from pluperfect to future may fly.
you cannot tell from the form, but only from the setting, any other feature
than time attachable to said verbal statement (i never use action, because only
a small percentage of verbs actually show action. verbs assert. the word phma =
rhema refers to a predicating statement or assertion.) i put it as 'other
feature than time' because most grammarians who use words like 'aspect' and
'aktionsart' (apologies to deutschers for non-majuscule. i'm averse to most
majuscules) cannot consistently define what on earth they mean. it can be
habitual, inceptive, inchoative, culminating -- G_d knows what all -- abundant
chances to wow the grammatical world by picking up from the setting on some new
factor falsely attributable to aorist forms.
the hopelessly contradictory spectrum of said types does itself show that no
time, no aspect, no Aktionsart inherently attaches to aoristic forms qua the
form. an aorist form per se implies no more of said features than if it were
either a noun or a gerund with a 'genitive subject', e.g. eloucamhv 'my bath'
'my washing me' enoihca 'my performance, accomplishment' 'my doing, causing,
n.b. this again is only an illustration of the lack of indication. it is not, i
repeat not, a claim of equivalence. indeed, such a substituted substantival
for the verb does not prove susceptible of combining into a predicate adverbial
and other syntactical functions.
the foreging substantival illustration offers an insight into the only correct
sense in which one could conceivably apply a term like 'punctiliar' to aorist
forms across the board.
no matter what the actual nature of the event -- momentary, repetitive,
imperfective, &c. -- an aorist form simply 'snapshots' it. this enables it to
function where any more exact verbal assertion could occur.
furthermore, those pundits spout asinity who claim any one language to be more
'more precise'. any linguistic pool has large areas wherein one may find it far
more precise in some respects than any other linguistic pool. the juridical
linguistic pool that surrounds the buncombe county courthouse is far more
precise than the english of most of us in some very expensive ways.
bearded bill of asheville <email@example.com>
unca not having approved either whom or thereof.
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