Re: Puzzled on Inf. in Mk 2:15

From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Tue Oct 21 1997 - 11:24:51 EDT

At 10:07 AM -0500 10/21/97, Rod Decker wrote:
>How is the infinitive functioning here? From the flow of the context I want
>to translate the phrase as "and he was reclining"--but that doesn't fit any
>typical patterns of infinitive useage that I recall. I note that the NIV
>translates it temporally: "when he was reclining"--but I don't think of
>other infinitives used temporally without a preposition (META, EN, PRO,
>Any suggestions appreciated.

I've always understood this as a transposition into the present tense
(typically Marcan?) of the common LXX construction KAI EGENETO + acc.
subject + infinitive. I'd understand it idiomatically thus: "And it comes
to pass that he is reclining ..." (English translators always want to
translate this clear reference to ancient eating in a triclinium or the
like as "sit at table," which of course one can do, if it's preferred). At
any rate, that's the way I've always read this construction.

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics/Washington University
One Brookings Drive/St. Louis, MO, USA 63130/(314) 935-4018
Home: 7222 Colgate Ave./St. Louis, MO 63130/(314) 726-5649 OR

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