Re: genitive

From: Carl William Conrad (
Date: Mon Feb 09 1998 - 15:06:24 EST

On Mon, 9 Feb 1998, Glen Riddle wrote:
> Paul S. Dixon wrote:
> > >I think I'll buy Carl's view in a New York minute.
> > >blessings,
> >
> > Hey, I never have a problem deferring to Carl. Before I bow, however,
> > you said,
> > "if subjective the believers out there would be doing the modeling." No,
> > if subjective, then the type or example of Timothy would be the object
> > which the believers, the subject, would be imitating.

Please don't defer to any person! An argument ought to convince by its own
persuasiveness. In the case of 1 Tim 4:12, however, it is not "believers"
that are associated in the genitive case with TUPOS, but "faithful" or
"trustworthy" persons. Maybe that's not the problem, however. I think that
Glen is right on target here: TUPOS is simply not the sort of verbal noun
that would take either a subjective or objective genitive.
Let me also explain that there was no miracle this morning in my finding
that 1 Tim 4:12 was the passage Glen wanted. I had the TLG disk in my
CD-ROM drive for another reason (to be explained) and simply booted up the
search program and found the GNT TUPOS passages in a flash.

And the reason I had it was this: the Greek textbook that I'm using this
term to do an intensive Beginning Attic class had a passage at the end of
the lesson purported to be from Plato: LABE TO BIBLION KAI LEGE. I didn't
recognize it; what is this, I said, "Pick up the scroll and start
talking"? Surely the fellow who cited this was thinking of the celebrated
passage in Augustine's Confessions, "TOLLE LEGE" ("Pick up (the Bible) and
read."). Would Plato really have said LEGE for read? So I did a search of
Plato for that passage, LABE TO BIBLION KAI LEGE, and came up at once with
the passage from the Theaetetus reading exactly that--and the force of the
LEGE is indeed, "read aloud"--"speak the words that you see on the
scroll." So hardly a day goes by that one doesn't learn something new and
fascinating! I then checked my mail and there was Glen's question, fresh
as a newly-laid egg. Which reminds me of another story that I'd better
leave untold.

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University
One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO, USA 63130
(314) 935-4018 OR

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