Re: Re: Johannine ARCH (was Jn.1:1b word order)

From: lakr (
Date: Tue Feb 10 1998 - 19:35:12 EST

> At 04:04 PM 2/10/98 -0800, lakr wrote:
> >Craig, Koine Greek is properly spoken of as having 'aspect'. The
> >imperfect of EIMI, HN, has an aspect which has been described as
> >_continuous_, it is true, however the endpoints of the action are
> >not in focus. John has simply not chosen to make this part of
> >the action visible to us in the prologue.
> Say what? Show me an example of HN that does not have past reference. And
> if you want to emphasize the aspect of would you express the past
> tense of EIMI *without* continuous aspect, since the verb does not appear
> in the aorist? I think that we have to see HN as neutral for aspect, but
> marked for past reference.
> I know that Porter does not believe that Greek has tense, but most other
> writers on the subject do, including Fanning, Olsen, and the traditional
> grammars. The only examples of the imperfect in the NT that do not have
> clear past reference are the desiderative imperfects.
> Jonathan

Jonathan, I don't think I said that the action of HN did not happen
in the past, with reference to when John narrates. However, I don't
think this is what Craig means. I understood him to mean that the 'tense'
of HN because of it's tense form extends into the infinite unbounded past,
because of the nature of the verb itself. I don't think you really
believe this is the case, do you ?

For example, consider John 1:10 where the LOGOS 'EN TW KOSMW HN'.
Clearly this HN had a definite time period when it started,
because HO KOSMOS is part of the 'PANTA DI' AUTOU EGENETO'.

I think your suggestion to take this off line is a good one, as I
don't want to weary the list.


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