Re: IC datives (olim: EIPE LOGWi)

From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Mon Dec 01 1997 - 06:29:50 EST

I won't repeat the message that Daniel has sent--although perhaps, since I
want to praise it as exceptionally clear and useful, I really OUGHT to
repeat it. So, on second thought (hAI DEUTERAI PWS FRONTIDES SOFWTERAI
...), I will repeat it, just in case anyone has deleted it too quickly (and
the November archives probably won't be up right away).

At 3:51 PM -0600 11/30/97, Daniel Ria–o wrote:
> wrote:
>>On Wed, 26 Nov 1997 Carl Conrad wrote:
>>>How many "indirect objects" in the dative do we know of that do not
>>>refer to persons? I'm not saying it doesn't happen, but I think it
>>>must be very rare.
>>Perhaps it is an oversimplification, but I have come to teach that a key
>>identification mark of datives of indirect object and advantage is exactly
>>what Carl notes here, namely that they refer to persons. Thus far I haven't
>>found any exceptions that seem to be better described as datives of indirect
>>object than with some other syntactical category, but my search has been
>>restricted to the NT. If someone has some clear cases that might not fit
>>this picture of datives of indirect object, hopefully they will share it so
>>that a more precise idea of exceptions to the general usage to persons can be
> This is undoubtedly on the core problems of case syntax. I
>understand that when you say "persons" you include other beings capable of
>"grammatical" personification (QEW/=, A)GGE/LW/, ktl.) as well.
> The kind of Indirect Complements (IC) you can find in a given text
>depends to certain extent of the kind of text: v. gr. if you look for IC in
>the Batrachomyomachia, most of the ICs will be mice or frogs, and so on. In
>the same way, "keraunoi=s" is not a dative that you expect to be used with
>instrumental force unless you are reading about Zeus (or B. Franklin, for
>that matter).
> In my opinion, it is preferable to speak of "positions typically
>occupied by a human", a locution that you can simplify as "human" only when
>everybody agrees that the term covers the mentioned "typical positions".
> Then it is easy to find non-humans in position typically human:
> ei)pe\ tw=| li/qw| tou/tw| Eu.Luc.4.3
> tai=s e(te/rais po/lesin eu)aggeli/sasqai Eu.Luc.4.43 (not local,
>the usage is classical:
> th=| po/lei (...) le/gein X.HG 2.3.35, cf. 2.3.15
> And now it's when the real problems arises: a) how you define the
>"typical position"? b) is it the CI a grammatical function to be defined in
>terms of the lexical meaning of the noun and the verb? mmm. I wait for the
>list's commentaries.
> Besides, I would like to emphasise a point that seems really
>important to me (but maybe because I am the only one who doesn't seem to
>realise the obvious explanation): The frequency of the dative in Lucas is
>*much* greater than the frequency in Classical literature (my estimations
>are: Eu.Luc 11: Thuc. and. Plb. 8: Xenopho 9): in a time when the dative is
>clearly disappearing. It's uses, true, are very limited and the personal
>dative takes the part of the lion: it is however, a use that I think hasn't
>been fully explained.

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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