Re: Common-sense aorist

Date: Tue Apr 07 1998 - 13:27:28 EDT

Carlton Winbery wrote:

> If the aorist is completely timeless, why the augment? ... I am far from
> convinced by my reading of the NT that the aorist in the indicative is
> timeless. Its tendency to show past time can be pushed into the background
> by the context, but I cannot see that any form with the augment would ever
> be seen as completely without time.

Hi Carlton ~

Much of this I addressed in the post I just sent answering Carl's
post. The key to this issue, as I am seeing it, is to recognize the
structural imbeddedness of past, present and future in Greek verbs
that has us chasing our tails with aspect theory. The E____SA form IS
this imbeddedness [in the sigmatic aorist], and it simply specifies
past, present and future non-selectively [AhORIZW]. The non-sigmatic
'aorist' would then be in the past. 'Lazarus is dead.' It simply
states a fact of his condition, you see... And you are correct in
placing it in past time, yet it does, indeed, carry true [in this case
at least] into the present as Jesus speaks these words. Even if you
translate it [badly in my understanding] 'Lazarus has died', or
'Lazarus died', it still carries into the present, which is why I
prefer 'Lazarus is dead.'

This seems so simple and obvious to me...


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