From: Jonathan Robie (email@example.com)
Date: Mon Oct 27 1997 - 08:28:20 EST
Rev 10:2 contains this phrase:
KAI EQHKEN TON PODA AUTOU TON DEKSION EPI THS QALASSHS,
TON DE *EUWNUMON* EPI THS GHS,
And he set his right foot upon the sea,
but the "one of good repute" upon the earth
This caught me by surprise yesterday, because I saw EU and ONOMA in the
word, and it didn't look like a word that ought to mean "left". All of my
translations simply call this his left foot, without discussing the
reputation of the foot, and BAGD and L&N also translate it as "left",
without further comment.
The LSJ entry for this says that this originally means "of good repute", and
is used as a euphemism, because bad omens come from the left side; it points
out that ARISTEROS is also a euphemism.
And now for my questions...
1. Can anyone give me a fuller picture of "bad omens" in Greek culture, and
the use of euphemisms to avoid them?
2. In the NT era, would people still be aware that EUWNUMOS and ARISTEROS
were euphemisms used to avoid bad omens, or had these usages become so
integrated with the language that these were simply the normal ways of
3. Is there any indication that Christians were also concerned about "bad
omens", like the Greek culture around them? Or was this still a concern in
the Greek culture of the NT era?
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